Tuesday, July 30, 2013

South Jordan Before 1900: Pictures from "Of Dugouts and Spires"

South Jordan Pictures from "Of Dugouts and Spire"

Mormon Station aka Reese's Station: Nevada's First Permanent Settlement

Mormon Station was established in 1851.  It was a response by a couple of Mormon entrepeuners to the need for a station on the California Trail, for outfits to recruit before going over the Sierra Nevada.  The Nevada State Park website describes the history:
In June of 1850, two members of the Mormon Battalion, Abner Blackburn and Hampton Beatie, established a temporary trading post on the west side of Carson Valley. Their stories of this beautiful area on the emigrant trail intrigued their Salt Lake employer, John Reese, and his nephew, Stephen Kinsey.
In the spring of 1851, Reese and Kinsey loaded more than a dozen wagons full of supplies and set out for the Carson Valley. The Reese Company built a permanent trading post, approximately one mile south of the temporary trading post established by Blackburn and Beatie. Reese’s Station soon had a blacksmith shop, livery stable, and flour and saw mills nearby.
The Genoa City history adds some clarification:
Explorers and trappers made their way through this area but it wasn't until June of 1851 when John Reese and his party built a trading post that the area began to attract settlers and became a permanent settlement. Reese and his men took up land claims extending from the Walley's Hot Springs marsh area south of Genoa into Jack's Valley on the north. Since most of the men in Reese's party were Mormon, the location became known as Mormon Station. After building a trading post, Reese built a house and sent for his family in New York. Later, Reese added a blacksmith shop and a large corral for livestock.
The Overland Emigrant Trail passed down what is now Genoa's Main Street. Reese's operation did very well and when the Mormons were called back to Salt Lake City in 1857, Reese decided to stay to protect his business and extensive land claims. A great deal of buying, trading and selling of land went on during these early years. Reese did return to Salt Lake City in 1859 after business reversals.
Orson Hyde, an elder in the Mormon Church, was sent to "Mormon Station", Utah Territory, to set up a government, survey the town into lots, and define the state line between California and Utah Territory. He renamed Mormon Station "Genoa" in 1855. As the story goes, Hyde admired Christopher Columbus and so named the town site" Genoa" after Columbus's birth place, Genoa, Italy. Orson Hyde was the first probate Judge. Court matters were settled by Judge Hyde in the loft of Reese's trading post. Entrance to the loft was gained by climbing a ladder on the outside of the building then climbing through a large window into the loft. This loft was also used as a type of hotel for those pioneers traveling by foot and wishing to stay the night.
There is some argument as to whether this is the first settlement, as the town of Dayton also lays a claim.  Turns out there were miners living in Dayton, before Reese established Mormon Station.  However they had not built permanent buildings. 

Movie Review: Zion's Camp


This movie was part of the lesson this last Sunday, "They Must Needs Be Chastened and Tried."  There are many things about Zions Camp which I had not realized.  I knew it was organized to help restore the Saints to their homes in Independence, but never realized this goal.  I did not realize that the Governor  Dunklin of Missouri had indicated he would help with the restoration of property, and then changed His mind. 
However it is the miracles of the trip which I had never before realized.  That Joseph Smith found water when they were without as Moses did for the Children of Israel.  And that God fought their battles for them.   I also did not realize that the members of Zions Camp were chastened with cholera as they were.
Sometimes we do not see things from God's perspective, and as a result grumble and complain.  That was the case here, as the Lord was preparing men, by allowing them to be close to the prophet, by proving their sacrifice, by letting them witness miracles.  When the quorum of the Twelve Apostles and the Quorum of the Seventy were organized, they almost all came from this group of men.  They had been tried and proven.  However they did not redeem Zion.  This short clip helps explain this concept. 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Documentary Movie Review: *When the Bough Breaks


When the Bough Breaks is a movie that is part of the series Unnatural Causes which was produced for PBS by California Newsreel.  I understand the series is going to be presented again on PBS.  It originally aired in 2008.  For better or worse this series is part of the policy discussion in health care.
I was at a training yesterday, in which the movie was shown and it has me thinking.  Perhaps my previous blog "Racket Sports Make You Smart" was a sarcastic reaction to this movie.
The movie presents data about low birth weight babies.  The statistics show that African American mothers have twice the chance of having a low-birth weight baby as a whit mother.  It indicates the researchers thought this must have been due to difference in socioeconomic class.  However when they ruled this out, the gap became wider rather than narrower.  The movie presented the story of an African American mother, lawyer and successful in terms of things of the world.  However her baby was born just over two pounds if I remember, and was another statistic in this debate.  It pointed out that upper economic classed African American women have babies with lower birth weight than the babies of White women.
They decided this must be something in their genetic code.  However when they looked at recent immigrants from Africa, their babies had the same weight on average as white babies.  However after being in the United States for a generation, then their statistics reflected the African American population at large.  Consequently they concluded it wasn't genetic factors.
They concluded that the reason for the low-birth weight among babies born to African American woman had to be racism.  That racism, over a life time effects the Black women in such away as to make affect the health of their babies.
The movie points out the infant mortality in the United States is not much to be happy about.  It seems the United States ranks 34 overall in the world.  Even taking away the African American babies we still rank around 23.  So the health and risk of low-weight babies is prevalent amongst our entire population, and more prevalent among the African American population.
In our own family, our little Tony was born with low-birth weight.  He was in the hospital for 10 days.  In his case his birth mother was very young.  I also find that drugs may have something to do with low-birth weight.  It seems doing foster care, most or all of our babies have been exposed to drugs.  I wonder if age of the mother and drugs could be factors? Another factor could be multiple births.
During the past year there have been four low-weight babies born among my extended family.  The wife of my nephew had triplets, all of low-birth weight.  They are all doing fine now.  My niece also had a baby who was born too soon.  Unfortunately she lost her baby when he got an infection in the hospital.
Low-birth weight is not confined to babies of African American women.  I wonder if this issues is more complex than just blaming it on racism.  Are their other factors at play with regards to the make up of the African American family that could play a factor as well?

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Native Americans of Hyrum, Utah

Cache Valley was the home to the Northwest Band of the Shoshone Indians.  Chief Bear Hunter was leader of the division which inhabited Cache Valley.  He was considered the chief leader of the Northwest Shoshone.  There were two other divisions under Chief Pocatello and Chief Little Soldier.
It is interesting to note that Cache Valley was plentiful with buffalo at one time.  However, the buffalo met a terrible fate before the 1800s.  "This is the story told by an Indian Chief, Sagwich, to the first settlers of Cache. At the time of the telling, Sagwich was seventy-five or eighty years old, thus making his birth about 1780. He says that when he was in his fourth year, the snow began to come early in the fall to such a depth that the Indians became alarmed and began to move out of the Valley into the Valley west. By doing this, they saved their lives, for all winter the snow continued to pile up in the two Valleys until even in Salt Lake Valley it reached the depth of about fourteen feet and in Cache Valley it was worse. In the spring when the Indians returned to this Valley they counted but seven live buffaloes. These they gave chase to, killing some, and the others fled and disappeared out of the Valley to the north."
It may have been, that before having access to the horse, the inhabitants were a framing people.  However the plentiful supply of buffalo, and the ability to kill them from the horse, lead to the abandonment of agriculture.
The coming of the Mormon pioneers to Cache Valley starting in 1859 alarmed the native population.  They retaliated to the incursion by driving away and stealing the settlers cows and horses.  A local militia was set up to combat the threat.  There were conflicts in Richmond and Providence.  In 1863, the Bear River Massacre took place.  Colonel Patrick Connor attacked the encampment of Chief Bear Hunter with about 200 California volunteers.  As a result, 23 soldiers, and over 250 Native Americans, including at least 90 women and children, were killed.  Chief Bear Hunter was among the killed.  After this, there were really no major conflicts with the Shoshone in Cache Valley.
There are a few stories of Indians in Hyrum from "Home in the Hills of Bridgerland.  When they first arrived, while the men wee working on the canal, the women where confronted with a group of Indians.  However they only demanded provisions and were satisfied.  During the years of the fort, a group headed by Chief Pocatello came to town demanding provisions, and they were supplied.  The only year "trouble" occurred shortly after the Bear River Massacre.  Twelve horses were stolen from the joint corral.  The militia headed out in search of them.  A couple days later they came upon the camp of those who had stolen them, and stole them back. 
 Chief Washakie was a frequent visitor with a group of Indians.  He would come in watermelon season and was allowed to pick a few.  Annually, the Indians would come through, and the squaws would go door to begging for flour, while the men would visit the Bishop for meat.  The general policy was it was better to feed them than to fight them.
There was an Indian Princess who became ill and died in Hyrum and was buried west of town close to the river.
For the most part, there were no hostilities in Hyrum.  Many years the Indians would camp just out side of town, and Indian children would play with white children.

Chief Pocatello

Saturday, July 6, 2013

The History of Methamphetamine in the U.S.

Amphetamine was first produces in Germany in 1887.  However it was mostly a drug without a problem to treat, and used for many different things.  Methamphetamine, which is cheaper to make, was first produced in Japan in 1919.  It too had difficulty finding a home, but was used extensively in WWII to keep soldiers going.  Kamikaze Pilots used the drug before suicide missions.  It was used on both sides.  It was also used extensively during the Vietnam War by U.S. Servicemen.  After WWII there was an epidemic in Japan, which had surplus drugs which were released to the public during this period. 
Legal use in the United States centered on depression and weight loss.  Legal sources of these drugs are still on the market, but highly controlled.  During the 70s, when the drug became a controlled substance, in the United States, illegal distribution of the drug was mostly through Hells Angels.  However with the advent of cold formulas containing Ephedrine it became very easy for people to manufacture the drug at home, and “Meth labs” popped up in many places to supply the drug.  It is easy to make, but difficult to control for toxic wastes.  Also fires from manufacture became common for a time.
More recently, cold remedies with these substances have also become increasingly controlled.  However control has not lessened the availability of methamphetamine.  The major supplier now is Mexican drug cartels, and the drug is readily shipped from Mexico with common carrier routes.  The drug is manufactured in Mexico, but also in California and other states by the cartels.
In the United States, the spread of the drug began on the West coast, where it was produced in large amounts by home manufactures.  Oregon and California lead the country in production.  The use of methamphetamine has slowly spread to the East.  Other western states for first affected, Nevada, Utah etc.  Also states in the Midwest have had problems with the drug. 
This is a dangerous drug.  It is poison that people are taking, and trying to control the amount for the most positive effect, without consequences.  However it is highly addictive and the negative consequences become worse over time.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Documentary: ***Simon and Garfunkel: The Harmony Game (to MMBOE)

A 2011 documentary of Simon and Garfunkel was on a Dish channel and it looked interesting so I recorded it.  There were a couple of things about this show that were very intriguing. It mentioned and told the story of a 1969 show put together by Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel as they reacted to the political climate of the late 60s.  I found this on You Tube and made a blog:
The other thing this documentary tells is the story behind several of their songs. This includes "Bridge Over Troubled Water."  This song, as most of their songs, was written by Paul Simon.  He felt it was perfect for Art Garfunkel.  Up until this their songs were duets, with harmony.  This song was sung before 1970, but the album and single came out in 1970 and it was voted best song of the decade.
For more Simon and Garfunkel set out these posts:
This movie also has some interesting dialogue with the artists, as well as the producers about the use of echo and harmony.  This is a nice presentation.  My only complaint is I would have loved less talking and more music.  

Simon and Garfunkel: **^Songs of America (to mmboe)


This is a documentary presentation put together and Simon and Garfunkel in 1969, giving them a platform to express their ideas of what was going on around them.  This was a very troubled time in our history.  It had been a few years since President Kennedy had been assassinated, and more recently had seen the assassinations of Bobby Kennedy and Martin Luther King, as well as the shooting of George McGovern.  As a result, Simon and Garfunkel decided to respond to what they were seeing in the news.  This documentary is the result.  As they started working on it, it was going to be sponsored by AT&T.  However, as they previewed the documentary they decided to back out as it was too political, and too one sided. In the end it was sponsored by a toothpaste company with a statement at the end indicating they thought these two young men deserved a platform because of their success in music. 
This documentary presents views of President Kennedy, Martin Luther King,Cesar Chavez and Bobby Kennedy, to the music "Bridge Over Troubled Water."  It showed life pictures of their stories, and except for Cesar Chavez, showed their funeral trains.
Bridge over Troubled water is very well done.  The first two verses are presented with Art Garfunkel and piano.  On the third verse Paul Simon and an orchestra.  Having the orchestra carry the piano notes at the end is very effective and very moving. 
Paul Simon talks about his feelings with regards to Woodstock.  They then sing "Scarborough Fair" as their depiction of the mood of Woodstock.  The visual overlaps scenes of the Vietnam War.  Art Garfunkel shares his feelings of war.
A quote form Coretta Scott King introduces the song "El Condor Pasa (If I Could):"

 I must remind you that starving a child is violence; suppressing a culture is violence; neglecting schoolchildren is violence; punishing a mother and her family is violence
This documentary