Thursday, December 22, 2005

Dear Readers

It is with regret that I am closing up shop here at Recorded Memory.

I enjoyed working on this project very much and learned a great deal from it, but my life has changed considerably since first starting this blog. A few months ago, I took on the responsibility of raising my little granddaughter, now a toddler, so "free time" is just a fading memory.

Thank you for stopping by.

Good-bye and God bless,
Sandra D

December 23, 1791

President Thomas Jefferson wrote to Archibald Stuart:

I wish to preserve the line drawn by the federal constitution between the general & particular governments as it stands at present, and to take every prudent means of preventing either from stepping over it.. it is easy to foresee from the nature of things that the encroachments of the state governments will tend to an excess of liberty which will correct itself...while those of the general government will tend to monarchy, which will fortify itself from day to day, instead of working its own cure, as all experience shews. I would rather be exposed to the inconveniencies attending too much liberty than those attending too small a degree of it...

December 23, 1776

Thomas Paine published his first American Crisis essay, in which he wrote:

These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: 'tis dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed, if so celestial an article as freedom should not be highly rated...

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

December 22, 1864

General William T Sherman telegraphed President Abraham Lincoln from Georgia:

I beg to present you, as a Christmas gift, the city of Savannah, with 150 heavy guns and plenty of ammunition, and also about 25,000 bales of cotton.

December 22, 1838

From an article in Illinois' Alton Telegraph:

The last Dubuque News brings us the first Message of Gov Lucas to the Iowa Legislature... It...expresses the opinion, that the legitimate ends of justice may be more fully attained by subjecting the atrocious criminal to perpetual confinement at hard labor, than by putting him to death; but that if the latter penalty must be inflicted in any case, it should be done privately rather than in public...

December 22, 1825

Trapping in the Snake Country, Peter Skene Ogden wrote in his journal:

Froze last night, 2 inches thick; not in our favor. If we do not soon find animals we shall surely starve. My Indian guide threatens to leave us and it was with trouble I persuaded him to remain. Few can form any idea of the anxiety an Indian guide gives. The fellow knows we are dependent on him. If we can but reach the Snake waters, he may go to the devil... Did not see the trace of an animal and as the cold increases, I feel very uneasy regarding food...

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

December 21, 1881

From an item published in Kansas' Arkansas City Traveler:

A proposition has been received from the Bell Telephone company to put up their wires and instruments in Winfield, if twenty-five subscribers can be secured. The prices at which instruments are put is $50 per year for one in a business house, and $30 in a private house. Wichita has an excellent exchange, and the people are delighted with it. It is a splendid thing, and if we once get it people would not part with the privilege for twice fifty dollars a year...

December 21, 1862

From an item published in Kansas' Leavenworth Daily Times:

Poor Santa Claus, the patron saint of the holiday season, and the friend of the juveniles, hard must be thy lot now, and severe thy tasks! It is a wonder 'Nick' comes around at all in these modern days. No more the wide fire-place gapes for his entrance into kitchens where tiny stockings wait to receive their quota, but the vender of Christmas presents is condemned to a five inch stove pipe... We wonder that the corpulent 'Saint Nick' has not become disgusted at modern innovations...

Monday, December 19, 2005

December 20, 1864

From an article in the Rocky Mountain News:

The affair at Fort Lyon, Colorado, in which Colonel Chivington destroyed a large Indian village, and all its inhabitants, is to be made the subject of congressional investigation. Letters received from high officals in Colorado say that the Indians were killed after surrendering, and that a large proportion of them were women and children.

December 20, 1833

Traveling through Georgia, Mrs James Hine of New York City wrote to her mother:

When we got to Norwood's, where we were to spend the first night, evening was closing in around us... [The house] was of logs, a single story in height, presenting but one window and one door... I supposed the building to be the barn... What was my astonishment upon finding that it was the dwelling -- the house of the family with whom we were to stay!... they showed me into the little room on the end of the piazza... the bedstead was a rough specimen of home manufacture, and the bed, professedly of feathers, though there were not enough feathers in it to have made a decent pair of pillows... There was no mattress, but a dried cowhide laid upon the cords to prevent what feathers there were in the bed from sinking down between them... I felt very much as if I had got on the extreme border of civilization but one remove from savage life. I have read much of frontier life, but I never pictured to myself anything so wild as this...

December 20, 1794

From an item published in Connecticut's Windham Herald:

We understand that a party of men who went out from Fort Hamilton to bring in the body of Mr Elliott who was killed by the Indians, as mentioned in our last, among which was Elliott’s servant, who escaped when Mr Elliott fell, having got the body in a coffin and in a waggon, they were attacked by a party of Indians who defeated them, killed the servant, took possession of the waggon and threw out the body of Mr Elliott...

December 20, 1787

Thomas Jefferson wrote to James Madison:

The season admitting only of operations in the Cabinet, and these being in a great measure secret, I have little to fill a letter. I will therefore make up the deficiency by adding a few words on the Constitution proposed by our Convention... I will now add what I do not like. First the omission of a bill of rights providing clearly & without the aid of sophisms for freedom of religion, freedom of the press, protection against standing armies, restriction against monopolies, the eternal & unremitting force of the habeas corpus laws, and trials by jury in all matters of fact triable by the laws of the land & not by the law of nations... Let me add that a bill of rights is what the people are entitled to against every government on earth, general or particular, & what no just government should refuse, or rest on inferences...

December 20, 1776

Dr James Thacher, a surgeon with the Continental Army, wrote in his diary:

Another disaster of much importance is the capture of Major-General Lee; on the 13th instant, marching at the head of his division to join the main army, he very incautiously took up his lodgings at a house three or four miles from his troops. Information of this was, by some tories, communicated to Colonel Harcourt of the British light-horse... Such is now the gloomy aspect of our affairs that the whole country has taken the alarm; strong apprehensions are entertained that the British will soon have it in their power to vanquish the whole of the remains of the continental army...

Sunday, December 18, 2005

December 19, 1881

After the Arrears of Pensions Act for disabled Civil War veterans was criticized as too costly and open to fraud, former President Rutherford B Hayes wrote:

The debt was the most sacred obligation incurred during the war. It was by no means the largest in amount. We do not haggle with those who lent us money. We should not with those who gave health and blood and life. If doors are opened to fraud, contrive to close them. But don't deny the obligation, or scold at its performance...

December 19, 1861

Following the Battle of Rowlett's Station in Kentucky, Confederate Sgt Benjamin Franklin Batchelor wrote to his wife:

Our charge was not made in front, but on a line... Our Shot Guns thew up a blaze of fire & shot almost into their faces -- the distance between our lines did not exceed ten or fifteen feet & in some instances the boys did not fire until the muzzles of their guns were within a few inches of the Enemy's heads causing horrible mutilation. Shrieks of their wounded filled the air, still the[y] stubbornly held their position till our guns and Six Shooters were nearly exhausted, and more than half their numbers were either killed or wounded... we were so close, and rushed along their line in such headlong fury -- yelling like Demons -- that they could no more draw a sight on us than they could on a Meteor... we took few prisoners; in fact the men were too much exasperated after the death of our colonel to take prisoners -- they were shot down...

December 19, 1775

British governor James Wright wrote to Lord Dartmouth from Savannah, Georgia:

In this province, My Lord, we are more unhappily circumstanced than in any other, for there are very few men of real abilities, gentlemen or men of property in their tribunals. The parochial committee are a parcel of the lowest people, chiefly carpenters, shoemakers, blacksmiths &c with a few at their head in the general Committee and Council of Safety. They are some better sort of men and some merchants and planters but many of the inferior class, and it is really terrible, My Lord, that such people should be suffered to overturn the civil government and most arbitrarily determine upon and sport with other men's lives, liberties and properties.

December 19, 1681

Josephe, a Spanish-speaking Indian, testified after the Pueblo Revolt in New Mexico:

[W]hile [Popé and his followers] were besieging the villa the rebellious traitors burned the church and shouted in loud voices, 'Now the God of the Spaniards, who was their father, is dead, and Santa Maria, who was their mother, and the saints, who were pieces of rotten wood,' saying that only their own god lived. Thus they ordered all the temples and images, crosses and rosaries burned, and this function being over, they all went to bathe in the rivers, saying that they thereby washed away the water of baptism.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

December 18, 1861

From an article in Virginia's Richmond Dispatch:

We also hear that Capt JB Ricketts, of the Federal army, who was wounded and captured in the battle of Manassas, will leave to-day for the North, having been exchanged for Capt DeLagnel. Mrs Ricketts who has shared his captivity from her own choice, accompanies him...

December 18, 1773

Boston merchant John Easson wrote to his father:

If you have any of your tea left, you must tak good care of it for there will be Non to be Gott [H]ere about a fortnight ago there arrived from England 450 chests of tea Last night the Sons of Liberty went and forced the Ships, brock all the Chests and Empt[i]ed all the tea into the Sea this I believe will be as bad as the Stamp Act.

December 18, 1727

Virginia planter Robert Carter wrote, in a letter to his grandson:

[Your] mother had very much di[s]abliged me in marrying much against my inclination but it hath been her good fortune to match with a gentleman that proves a very worthy kind husband to her and she and I are perfectly reconciled it seems you have writ a very unkind letter to her which Occasioned a great deal of disturbance to her repose Certainly you have not forgot the duty you owe to your parent and are not so unlearned to be ignorant of the seven Curses denounced by the Almighty against undetifull Children pray write to her in another stile...

December 18, 1624

Merchant adventurers James Shirley, William Collier, Thomas Fletcher, and Robert Holland wrote to Governor William Bradford and others of the Plymouth Colony:

As here hath been a faction and siding amongst us now more than two years; so now there is an utter breach and sequestration amongst us... And though we are persuaded the main cause of their this doing is want of money...yet other things are by many pretended, and not without some colour urged, which are these: 1st, A distaste of you there, for that you are (as they affirm) Brownists, condemning all other churches, and persons but yourselves and those in your way, and you are contentious, cruel and hard hearted, among your neighbours and towards such as in all points both civil and religious, jump not with you. And that you are negligent, careless, wasteful, unthrifty, and suffer all general goods, and affairs to go at six and sevens and spend your time in idleness and talking and confering, and care not what be wasted worn and torn out, whilst all things come so easily, and so cheap unto you...

Friday, December 16, 2005

December 17, 1904

From an article in the Los Angeles Herald:

Barney Oldfield dashed around the track at Agricultural Park in 54 seconds flat yesterday afternoon, establishing a new record for that course. When Barney came onto the track in the famous Green Dragon, the hearty reception he received proved that the people of the West were with him and appreciated his nerve in driving this death-dealing machine, which tears off the miles at such terrific speed...

December 17, 1903

Wilbur and Orville Wright made their first flights on the beach at Kitty Hawk, NC; afterward, Orville wrote in his diary:

At just 12 o'clock Will started on the fourth and last trip. The machine started off with its ups and downs as it had before, but by the time he had gone over three or four hundred feet he had it under much better control, and was traveling on a fairly even course. It proceeded in this manner till it reached a small hummock out about 800 feet from the starting ways, when it began its pitching again and suddenly darted into the ground. The front rudder frame was badly broken up, but the main frame suffered none at all. The distance over the ground was 852 feet in 59 seconds...

December 17, 1804

Quaker undertaker Joseph Price of Lower Merion, PA, wrote in his diary:

[T]he Graining house blue up with between 4 & 50 barrel weight of Pow[d]er in it... two Men badly Burnt one Jumpt in Race, he not so bad to appearance the other's belley privates face head nay almost all over burnt Crispt, he Cant Live, in most Excruciateing pain from his Complaint, wanted Some of us to kill him, I told him he must not talk So but pray for patians...

December 17, 1649

Janneken Melyn wrote to Cornelis Melyn from New Netherland:

[P]oor people have scarcely enough to eat, for no supplies of bread, butter, beef and pork can now be had, except for beaver or silver coin... It is so cold here, that the ink freezes in the pen.