Bancroft and Pulitzer Prize-winner Wood suggests that behind
America's current romance with the founding fathers is a critique of our own
leaders, a desire for such capable and disinterested leadership as was offered
by George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.
Provocatively, Wood argues that the very egalitarian democracy Washington and
Co. created all but guarantees that we will "never again replicate the
extraordinary generation of the founders." In 10 essays, most culled from the
New York Review of Books and the New Republic, Wood offers miniature portraits
of James Madison, Aaron Burr, Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Paine. The most
stimulating chapter is devoted to John Adams, who died thinking he would never
get his due in historians' accounts of the Revolution; for the most part, he was
right. This piece is an important corrective; Adams, says Wood, was not only
pessimistic about the greed and scrambling he saw in his fellow Americans, he
was downright prophetic-and his countrymen, then and now, have never wanted to
reckon with his critiques. Wood is an elegant writer who has devoted decades to
the men about whom he is writing, and taken together, these pieces add
perspective to the founding fathers cottage industry. -- Publishers Weekly
advance praise for "Revolutionary Characters : What Made the Founders Different"
Must scapegoats be muzzled
by executive privilege?
February 24, 2006
Does former FEMA Director and current Katrina scapegoat
Michael D. Brown have an unfettered right to speak truthfully about his
communications with the White House in general and President Bush in
particular, especially now that he is a private citizen, whether or not
President Bush asserts executive privilege?
My answer is yes. Even if Mr. Brown were still part of the Executive Branch,
he would have the option to speak or to comply with an invocation of an
executive privilege claim.
The Law Encyclopedia describes executive privilege as follows: "n. a claim
by the President or another high official of the executive branch that
he/she need not answer a request (including a subpoena issued by a court or
Congress) for confidential government or personal communications, on the
ground that such revelations would hamper effective governmental operations
and decision-making. The rationale is that such a demand would violate the
principle of separation of powers among the executive, legislative and
judicial branches. If there is a potential criminal charge, executive
privilege will be denied, as Richard Nixon discovered when he attempted to
use executive privilege to deny Congress, the courts and the Department of
Justice access to tapes and documents in the Watergate scandal (1973-1974)."
So executive privilege is the right of the President and high-level
executive branch officials to withhold information from those with
compulsory power — Congress and the courts.
But, executive privilege is not mentioned, much less defined, in the
Constitution, and it is subject to egregious abuse.
The famous rationale for it — that presidential advisers will be reluctant
to give frank advice if the president can be compelled to reveal it makes
sense, for presidential advisers who gave bad advice and are in the
President's good graces as well as in need of the President's protection.
But, what about presidential advisers who gave good advice, warnings or
reports that was ignored? Especially such presidential advisers who would
embarrass the President (while exonerating themselves) simply by telling the
truth? Should such presidential advisers remain silent for the President's
sake? Does the law require them to remain silent at the behest of the
President? Or are they permitted to tell the truth, the whole truth and
nothing but the truth, even when the President wants them not to say a word?
And does it matter whether they become private citizens again?
Wikipedia provides helpful information:
"The concept of executive privilege is a legally murky one, since the
Constitution does not mention it anywhere. The history of the doctrine
underscores that point, since Presidents have generally sidestepped open
confrontations with Congress and the courts over this issue by first
asserting the privilege, then producing some of the documents requested on
an assertedly voluntary basis.
"Jefferson set the precedent for this in the trial of Aaron Burr for treason
in 1807. Burr asked the court to issue a subpoena duces tecum to compel
Jefferson to provide his private letters concerning Burr. Chief Justice John
Marshall, a strong proponent of the powers of the federal government but
also a political opponent of Jefferson, ruled that the Sixth Amendment to
the Constitution, which allows for these sorts of court orders for criminal
defendants, did not provide any exception for the President. As for
Jefferson's claim that disclosure of the document would imperil public
safety, Marshall held that the court, not the President, would be the judge
of that. Jefferson complied with Marshall's order, but claimed he was doing
so voluntarily. President William Clinton did the same when agreeing to
testify before the grand jury called by Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr
only after negotiating the terms under which he would appear.
CORNWALL -- Bill Barker never gets bored with Thomas Jefferson.
For 22 years, the last 15 or so full time, Barker has represented the
nation's third president, mostly at Colonial Williamsburg, but also at schools,
for the National Park Service and other nonprofit groups in 43 states.
Barker brought Jefferson to Cornwall on Sunday, portraying the Virginia
statesman at a special town meeting hosted by the Cornwall Consolidated School
Fund for Excellence.
Sunday's session, which lasted about 90 minutes, began with Jefferson
addressing town residents. "I search for every opportunity to leave the fetid
swamp of politics in Washington," he said at the session's opening. "I have
always enjoyed traveling incognito. It allows me to venture through this vast
nation and to feel as one with the American citizenry."
He spoke in detail about the sustainability of the nation's still-new
democratic experiment. That included the election of 1800, which ended in an
electoral vote tie between Jefferson and Aaron Burr, but was ultimately decided
in Jefferson's favor, marking a historic, peaceable transfer of power.
"The remarkable story is that we survived," he said.
"We survived by following our principals. We survived by following our
Barker, as Jefferson, then fielded questions on a wide variety of topics,
everything from his views on the separation of church and state to women's
rights and suffrage to the Louisiana Purchase.
"He had always fascinated me," Barker said after Sunday's session.
"Monticello was usually a stop-off when we traveled down to North Carolina and
Virginia. I was always interested in history."
Raised in Philadelphia, Barker traveled often with his family to Virginia,
including Williamsburg, and to North Carolina.
A history major in college, he ultimately became a professional actor and
director. It was 22 years ago that Al Gatter, an acquaintance from the theater
world and a Philadelphia teacher who portrayed William Penn, noted Barker's
resemblance to Jefferson.
Barker and Jefferson, Gatter pointed out, were the same height, weight and
"He's the first one I can remember who made a decided effort to say, 'Hey,
did you ever think of this?'" Barker said. "I wouldn't have thought it."
Initially, Barker began portraying Jefferson at Philadelphia's Independence
Hall while continuing with his work in theater. Thirteen years ago, he began
portraying Jefferson full time at Williamsburg, which in the spring of 1993 was
celebrating the 250th anniversary of Jefferson's birth.
Arnold A. Rogow, an author and political scientist who trained as
a psychoanalyst to gain insight into historical figures like
Alexander Hamilton, died on Feb. 14 at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia
hospital in Manhattan. He was 81.
The cause was complications of a stroke,
his daughter Jeanne Rogow said.
Mr. Rogow, a professor at City College of New York, argued in his book "A
Fatal Friendship: Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr" (Hill and Wang, 1998)
that Hamilton became obsessed with his hatred of Burr and that this obsession
ultimately prompted him to force the situation that led to his death in their
duel. Hamilton, more than Burr, was thus responsible for Hamilton's death, Mr.
He arrived at his conclusion by examining Hamilton's personal letters. So
far as is known, Burr never openly criticized Hamilton.
Mr. Rogow used his psychoanalytic knowledge to diagnose Hamilton as a manic
depressive who, in effect, committed suicide by agreeing to fight a duel with
Burr. Mr. Rogow argued that Hamilton was pulled down by recurring illnesses
and was depressed by Washington's unexpected death in 1799.
Hamilton's decision not to fire, as well as his serenity in the days before
the duel, contributed to Mr. Rogow's diagnosis.
Some critics suggested that Mr. Rogow's psychological approach to biography
was limited. Fred Anderson, a historian who reviewed "A Fatal Friendship" in
The Los Angeles Times, said Mr. Rogow relied on motives that can "only be
inferred from the elliptical and fragmentary writings of the participants."
Suggesting that Mr. Rogow's narrative became lost in the "psychosexual
wilderness," Mr. Anderson wrote, "The result is a narrative so thick with ifs
and maybes that even Rogow loses his way."
Mr. Rogow wrote or edited a dozen or so other books in which he applied his
psychoanalytic expertise, including biographies of James V. Forrestal, who was
the first secretary of defense when he committed suicide, and Thomas Hobbes,
the political philosopher.
Arnold Austin Rogow was born in Harrisburg, Pa., on Aug. 10, 1924. His
father died when he was 5 and his mother when he was 12. He sought refuge in
books, his daughter said.
His studies at the University of Wisconsin were disrupted by his joining
the Army as an infantryman in World War II. He served in the Battle of the
Bulge, earned a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star and made friends with Gertrude
Stein in Paris.
He graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1947 and earned his Ph.D.
in political science from
Princeton in 1953. He then taught at the University of Iowa and Stanford
before coming to City College in 1966.
While teaching political science, he became qualified as a psychoanalyst at
the New York Psychoanalytic Institute. As part of his training, he underwent
analysis himself and later became a practicing psychotherapist in addition to
teaching and writing.
In an interview with The New York Post in 1970, Mr. Rogow explained the
dynamic between psychiatry and politics. "Sick societies producing sick people
who produce sick politics," he said. "They all feed on each other."
Mr. Rogow is survived by his companion, Martha Moraes; his daughters,
Jeanne, of Whiting, Vt., and Jennifer Rogow Wilson, of Jackson, Miss.; and
In 1975, Mr. Rogow essentially psychoanalyzed the United States in his book
"The Dying of the Light: A Searching Look at America Today." He saw a violent,
confused, unfair country.
Reviewing the book in The New York Times Book Review, Richard Goodwin
wrote, "Mr. Rogow confronts problems which are darkly fundamental and,
therefore, beyond the reach of contemporary political discourse."
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
Princeton, NJ Weather
Partly Cloudy, 24ºF
Home of notables
Celebrated statesmen, intellectuals
buried minutes from campus
By Aditi Eleswarapu
Princetonian Staff Writer
Photo by Katherine
Home of notables: Aaron Burr, Jr., a member of the Class of the
1772, is among the prominent Princetonians buried in the Princeton
Cemetery's "Presidents' Plot".
Within blocks of the University reside
several professors, diplomats, senators, one U.S. president and a
signatory of the Declaration of Independence. And they live together.
They rest in what one historian termed the "Westminster Abbey of the
United States": Princeton Cemetery, a small plot of land on Witherspoon
Street, across from the Princeton Public Library.
Established in 1757 and located at the end of Greenview Avenue, the
cemetery houses the graves of numerous prominent figures, including
leaders of the town, University and nation.
President Grover Cleveland, arguably the cemetery's most famous
resident, is buried in the northwest corner of the grounds alongside
First Lady Frances Cleveland. Cleveland's birthday is celebrated every
March with a eulogy and wreath-laying ceremony by a Fort Dix military
guard. First daughter Ruth Cleveland, known as the inspiration for the
"Baby Ruth" candy bar, is also buried there.
Tours of the cemetery are offered two weekends a year, typically
around Memorial Day. Elizabeth Evans and her husband, Bill, have
conducted these tours on a voluntary basis for 42 years.
"We traveled around to different states and interviewed family
members to find interesting stories to tell about these people,"
Elizabeth Evans said.
Along the way, the family learned the
story of Jimmy Johnson, a runaway slave who sold pencils, apples and
candy on campus in the mid-to-late 19th century. When he died in 1902,
students took up a collection to have him buried in the cemetery.
All but four of the dead presidents of Princeton are buried in the
Presidents' Plot on the south side of the cemetery, referred to as the
"Old Graveyard." Many of these tombs are located above ground with
detailed Latin inscriptions.
The oldest surviving tomb in the Presidents' Plot is that of Aaron
Burr, Sr., former president of the University. Burr is perhaps better
known as father of Aaron Burr, Jr., who served as vice president during
Thomas Jefferson's first term as President of the United States before
killing Alexander Hamilton in a duel. Burr, Jr. is buried next to his
Some of the people buried in the cemetery are familiar to Princeton
students in name only. Arnold Henry Guyot, Moses Taylor Pyne and the
McCosh family are among the people whose names have since been attached
to buildings on campus.
Another familiar name on a gravestone is that of Paul Tulane, whose
donations led to the creation of Tulane University. Theologian Jonathan
Edwards, pollster George Gallup and Jose and Kitty Menendez, the slain
parents of Erik and Lyle, are also buried there. Lyle Menendez attended
Princeton in the late 1980s.
In certain areas, inscriptions have eroded over time and distinct
names and information can be hard to discern. The cemetery, though, has
plaques next to some of the more prominent tombs to indicate what the
stones originally said.
New gravesites in the Princeton Cemetery
might soon become limited. "This is basically one of the only cemeteries
that's been around so long, it is being sold out to capacity," said
Douglas Sutphen, superintendent of the cemetery. The cemetery is now
closing down some old stone driveways and using those areas for
gravesites as well.
According to Sutphen, a few hundred people visit the cemetery
annually. "Though some people do come to mourn at graves, I'd say about
80 percent come just for the historical value," he said.
George Brown, who previously ran the Memorial Day tour, said that
few students seem to care about the cemetery. "They aren't interested or
they don't know about it," he said.
Sutphen, however, said that many of the cemetery's current visitors
are University students.
In some cases, it is the visitors themselves who add to the
tradition of the cemetery.
"A father of the Olympics is buried in the cemetery," Elizabeth
Evans said, referring to Princeton professor William Milligan Sloane,
who founded the U.S. Olympic Committee in the 1890s. The Olympic torch
was carried through the cemetery on the way to the 1996 Summer Olympics
"One of the good aspects of this cemetery is that it has its own
maintenance and preservation fund," Sutphen said. "It will be taken care
of for years and years to come."
Proposed letter to the Editor:
We enjoyed reading the story by
Princetonian Staff Writer Aditi Eleswarapu "Home of Notables - Celebrated
statesmen", about the intellectuals buried minutes from campus.
The selection of the photo of Colonel Aaron Burr Jr.'s memorial stone was
gratifying to members of the Aaron Burr Association.
We consider Vice President Burr to be the first true feminist in America,
marrying his elder wife for her intellect, and motivating their daughter
Theodosia to be the best educated American woman of the 18th century.
Burr's Assembly House resolution to end slavery in New York in 1785 made him the
greatest Abolitionist of his time too.
We are very appreciative of Princeton's commitment to funding his final resting
place with perpetual landscaping care.
Sincerely, Peter Tavino PE
So whom does he see starring as the Weedman if a filmmaker takes the bait?
"Ice-T looks a lot like me," he said. "But Snoop Dogg, he's lived the life. He'd
be my first choice."
- Sam Wood
'The birthplace of duels'
There's a newsroom belief that wild stories probably have a Jersey
Take the one about Vice President Cheney's accidentally shooting a lawyer
friend Feb. 11.
While history buffs quickly noted that Aaron Burr was the first sitting vice
president to shoot a man, it took State Sen. Joseph Vitale (D., Middlesex) to
make it a matter of state pride.
"We should be rightfully recognized as the birthplace of duels and where vice
presidents shoot their friends," Vitale said.
Burr shot former friend Alexander Hamilton, a lawyer, in Weehawken, N.J., in
1804 in a duel. Hamilton died a day later.
Fortunately, Cheney's lawyer friend, Harry Whittington, appears to be
surviving his birdshot wounds.
"The vice president didn't see him. The covey flushed
and the vice president picked out a bird and was following it and
shot. And by God, Harry was in the line of fire and got peppered
--Katharine Armstrong, the owner of a Texas ranch where Vice President
Dick Cheney accidentally shot fellow hunter Harry Whittington.
"The orange that they're wearing is not because they're concerned that
the vice president may be there."
--White House press secretary Scott McClellan, during a news
conference explaining the burnt orange color that the University of
Texas championship football team wore during their visit to the White
"Cheney's was clearly an accident. Burr's was a matter of Hamilton
drawing him into the duel and Hamilton bringing hair-trigger pistols
for a slight advantage."
--Peter Tavino comparing Vice President Dick Cheney's shooting of a
hunter with former Vice President Aaron Burr's shooting of Alexander
Hamilton in a duel.
"Next time you come up here and propose a tax you can't pass, dumping
the problem in the lap of Congress, I'm going to make you pay the
Rep. Hal Rogers, R-Ky., to Transportation Safety Administration
chief Kip Hawley about a proposed security tax on airline tickets.
WHEN HUNTING QUAIL, ALWAYS DUCK
"We all assume certain risks in what we do, in what activities we
Harry Whittington, recovering from his accidental shooting by Vice
President Dick Cheney while they were hunting Feb. 11.
THIS WAS A CASE OF FRIENDLY FIRE
"Cheney's was clearly an accident. Burr's was a matter of Hamilton
drawing him into the duel and Hamilton bringing hair-trigger pistols for
a slight advantage."
Peter Tavino, in comparing Cheney's shooting of Whittington with
former Vice President Aaron Burr's shooting of Alexander Hamilton in a
WRECKAGE OF THE LINGERING STORM
"I got nowhere to go."
Meoshia Davis, 21, one of about 12,000 families made homeless by
hurricanes Katrina and Rita who began checking out of their federally
funded hotel rooms Monday after the government pulled back funding for
the temporary housing.
Burr-dened with guilt By Brian Fraga, Standard-Times Correspondent
2-15-06 andy_in/mock burr trial 2-15-06/kendal.jpg ANDREW T.
GALLAGHER/Standard-Times Special Prosecution Atty. Kendal Ramos
reads from a passage of testamony while questioning "Van Ness"
played by Jeremy McAffee. Kendal was part of a sophmore group from
the N. B. Global Charter Learning School that held a mock trial of
Aaron Burr at the SNESL last night.
DARTMOUTH — More than 200 years
after Vice President Aaron Burr shot and killed Alexander Hamilton in a
duel at Weekhawken, N.J., Burr faced trial in a courtroom at the
Southern New England School of Law on Faunce Corner Road.
This time there was a twist —
Hamilton himself was called upon as a witness to describe what it felt
like to be mortally wounded at the hand of Burr, his political rival.
The Burr-Hamilton affair —
brought back into the national conscience with recent news headlines of
a shooting involving a certain modern-day vice president — was the
"presentation of learning" project of the 10th-grade class of the New
Bedford Global Learning Charter School.
The students presented a mock
trial of Burr, charged with second-degree murder, last night at SNESL.
Guided by history teacher Chris Jones, who served as the courtroom
bailiff, student Angeline Ladetto presided as judge while student
defense and prosecution teams attempted to sway a jury comprised of
community residents, family members and school staff.
"The students did all the work
researching the case, coming up with case theories, crafting their
opening statements," said Mr. Jones, who taught the "Law, Justice, and
Society" course associated with the project, which was sparked after
Hamilton insulted Burr through a trouble-making reporter.
"I noticed that at lunch time,
the seating arrangements changed according to which sides the students
were on," Mr. Jones said. "It was fun listening to them talk smack about
who was going to beat who."
The prosecution team —
comprised of students Shakeela Najjir, Kendal Ramos, Edwin Lugo and
Matthew Hopkins — called upon witnesses to build upon their theory that
Burr intended to kill Hamilton, and did not accidentally misfire his
pistol into the former treasury secretary's abdomen.
"Mr. Burr is a murderer and he
has no right to get away with killing Alexander Hamilton," Najjir said
during her closing statements to the jury.
"The lesson Burr sought to
teach Hamilton cost him his life. What kind of lesson is that?"
The defense, meanwhile, made
their best case in arguing the fatal shot was the result of Burr
slipping on a rock and losing his aim. For good measure, defense lawyers
Kevin and Monica Marques, Matt Correia and Khalil Woods called upon
Maria Reynolds, Hamilton's mistress, as a witness to smear the
Gil Monteiro, playing the role
of Burr, said he wasn't trying to kill Hamilton, but "teach him a
lesson." When Najjir asked him what that lesson was during
cross-examination, Monteiro simply stated, "Don't disrespect me."
The impartial jury apparently
didn't buy that logic, as they convicted Burr of second-degree murder
after 10 minutes of deliberation. Ms. Ramos, 15, humbly said she did not
care whether her prosecution team nailed Burr or not, but enjoyed the
"Everyone put their best foot
forward, and it came out really great," she said. "But it does feel
pretty good to win."
Congratulations on publishing this interesting article.
Thank you for allowing me to get the hair trigger message out there to
your vast audience.
Please let me know if I can be of any further assistance regarding Colonel
Peter Tavino PE
Posted on Wed, Feb. 15, 2006
Vice presidents share curious lineage
Late in the 1960 campaign, a reporter asked outgoing President Dwight
Eisenhower to name an important contribution Vice President Richard Nixon,
who was running to succeed him, had made to his administration.
"If you give me a week," Eisenhower replied, "I might think of one."
The 46 men who have served as the nation's second-in-command form a
curious lineage - made only more bizarre by Vice President Dick Cheney's
accidental shooting of a hunting companion on a Texas ranch.
Sure, they cast tie-breaking votes in the Senate. And they stand a moment
away from assuming the most powerful job in the free world.
But vice presidents also have wound up often on the business end of
Washington one-liners deriding their job as worthless. And some of the best
cracks have been hurled by the very men who held the job, or were offered
Taken together, they make up a kind of vice-presidential open-mike night:
John Nance Garner, who served two terms as veep under Franklin D.
Roosevelt, once characterized the job as "not worth a bucket of warm spit" -
alternately quoted with another body fluid.
Daniel Webster, an orator and U.S. senator, passed up the nomination for
the No. 2 slot on the Whig Party ticket in 1848. The punch line: "I do not
propose to be buried until I am really dead."
Dan Quayle, while vice president, faced endless mockery for adding an "e"
But pity the veep: Even the most critical task of the No. 2 puts him in
an awkward spot, noted Stephen Hess, professor of media and public affairs
at George Washington University and a senior fellow at the Brookings
"The president looks across the cabinet table at the vice president and
has to realize, `The only reason he's there is in case I die," Hess said.
None of which is to make light of the responsibilities of the post. Vice
presidents have been part of some of the most important moments in American
Think of the black-and-white photo of a somber Lyndon B. Johnson, taking
the oath of office aboard a plane in 1963, a shaken Jacqueline Kennedy to
his left. Think of Cheney himself, bunker-bound and working the phones on
Sept. 11, 2001.
And think of the most famous duel in American history: The shooting of
Alexander Hamilton by a pistol-wielding Aaron Burr, vice president to Thomas
Jefferson, on the New Jersey banks of the Hudson River in 1804. Hamilton
died the next day.
Burr and Hamilton had a long-standing political rivalry, and Hamilton
made no secret of his distrust for Burr when Burr, who had narrowly missed
beating Jefferson, ran for governor of New York in early 1804.
When Burr got wind of a newspaper article that reported Hamilton had a
"despicable opinion" of him, he challenged Hamilton to a duel near
Weehawken, N.J. - and won, firing a .54-caliber pistol.
Hamilton, from his deathbed, forgave Burr, who was indicted on murder
charges but never brought to trial.
The duel remains in some ways a just subject to some members of the Aaron
Burr Association, who believe Burr - who himself was unhappy as vice
president because he disagreed with Jefferson about slavery - hasn't gotten
a fair shake from history.
"Hamilton is thought to be the victim and the hero, while Burr is found
to be a foe," said Peter Tavino, a civil engineer who has published articles
for the group. "And we don't believe it. "Most people are ignorant and just
like to paint people as guilty or someone that we should hate."
He said the Cheney shooting has spurred discussion within his group - but
quickly brought the conversation back to defending its hero.
"Cheney's was clearly an accident," Tavino said. "Burr's was a matter of
Hamilton drawing him into the duel and Hamilton bringing hair-trigger
pistols for a slight advantage."
Cheney's errant shots, which landed 78-year-old attorney Harry
Whittington in intensive care, almost instantly seemed to launch a thousand
late-night groaners. (More than one wisecracker dubbed Cheney "No. 2 - with
There were some calls by bloggers Tuesday to tone down the jokes while
Whittington recovered, but they were seemed drowned out by the
Cheney-shooting jokes that continued to swamp inboxes.
Which, for a sitting vice president, may just be par for the course.
Even the Burr-Hamilton duel eventually found its way into the pantheon of
It happened in 1993, when the milk industry launched the first of its
"Got Milk?" TV spots. Featured was a history buff who stuffs a peanut-butter
sandwich into his mouth, then is randomly called by a radio DJ offering
$10,000 for knowing who shot Hamilton.
The man realizes, to his terror, that he has run out of milk.
Which is why, if you ask a friend today who shot Alexander Hamilton, you
have even odds of hearing "Aaaaawon Buuuhhh" as the answer.
I'm trying to
reach an official of the Aaron Burr Association to contact today for a
brief phone interview. I'm working on a piece, related to Vice President
Cheney's accidental shooting of a hunting companion in Texas, that
includes some discussion of the Burr-Hamilton duel. Is there an
appropriate person within the ABA that I should be trying to reach -- and
if so, how?
National Writer, Associated
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Vice President Dick Cheney accidentally shot and injured a man during a
weekend quail hunting trip in Texas, his spokeswoman said Sunday. Harry
Whittington, 78, was "alert and doing fine" after Cheney sprayed him with
shotgun pellets on Saturday while the two were hunting at the Armstrong
Ranch in south Texas, said property owner Katharine Armstrong. Armstrong
said Whittington was mostly injured on his right side, with the pellets
hitting his cheek, neck and chest, and was taken to the hospital by
ambulance. Whittington was in stable condition Sunday, said Yvonne Wheeler,
spokeswoman for the Christus Spohn Health System.
Back to Aaron Burr. He was later tried (although acquitted) for treason.
Will this strange vice-presidential historical coincidence continue?
Today is Monday, Feb. 6, the 37th Day of 2006 with 328 to Follow.
The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Neptune, Jupiter, Pluto and Venus.
The evening stars are Mars, Saturn, Uranus and Mercury.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Aquarius. They include
England`s Queen Anne in 1665; statesman Aaron Burr in 1756; baseball great
George Herman 'Babe' Ruth in 1895; former President Ronald Reagan in 1911;
actors Patrick MacNee in 1922 (age 84), Zsa Zsa Gabor in 1923 (age 83) and Rip
Torn in 1931 (age 75); French film director Francois Truffaut in 1932; actors
Mike Farrell in 1939 (age 67) and Michael Tucker in 1944 (age 62); television
news anchorman Tom Brokaw in 1940 (age 66); handgun activist Sarah Brady in 1942
(age 64); singers Fabian Forte in 1943 (age 63) and Natalie Cole in 1950 (age
56); and actor/director Robert Townsend and actress Kathy Najimy, both in 1957
Latin lovers whoop it up at convention
400+ students turn out here
By Susan Troller Madison, 1/28/06
When more than 400 enthusiastic young Latin lovers packed Great Hall of the
Memorial Union this week, their whoops and cheers were loud enough to, well,
awaken a dead language.
Hailing from both public and private high schools, the exuberant students
were attending the annual Wisconsin Junior Classical League Convention, which
began Thursday and ends today. The unlikely object of their enthusiasm was the
study of Latin, which was, repeatedly, described as awesome, amazing and
Aaron and Caleb Burr, a senior and freshman brother duo who are
part of a 33-student convention delegation from Edgewood High School, are also
Latin fans. Aaron, who is taking Advanced Placement 4th year Latin, finds the
ancient history compelling, and he loves a competition called Certamen that
poses tough Latin questions in a Jeopardy-style format. ...
1/21/06 From Lyman whose review of Alan Clark's book
will appear in the next Chronicle:
Your comments (on the book ) (on this web
site in early December) are pungent and appropriate. You might want to
add that Clark says Timothy Edwards was the third president of Princeton p. 41
(Not so); Clark keeps referring to Matthew Davis as a witness to the duel p. 55
(not so), Burr's third at the duel p. ?? (really?) and observer to the duel p.
119 (that's a stretch); the name of Burr's uncle was Pierpont Edwards, not
Pierpoint, or occasionally, Pierrepoint; Burr married Theodosia on July 4, 1782
p.71 (it was really July 2); John Vanderlyn was married p. 70 (my info is he
never married). This kind of sloppiness would indicate that Clark's whole
thesis is equally sloppy.
Women of Influence
A Conversation with Cokie Roberts
NEH Chairman Bruce Cole talked recently with ABC and NPR news analyst
Cokie Roberts about her most recent book, Founding Mothers, and the
role women played in the early days of the Republic.
Bruce Cole: I'm very interested in the role of women in politics.
In your book, Founding Mothers, you bring a particular perspective
to the importance of women in our political history. Could you talk a little
bit about that?
Roberts: Growing up in Washington in the 1940s and 1950s I saw the
influence of women like my mother--married to Hale Boggs, my father, who had
come to Congress when he was twenty-six and she was twenty-four back in
1941--and then the women that she associated with, Mrs. Lyndon Johnson, Mrs.
Albert Gore, and Mrs. Gerald Ford. They were very influential in the
community of Washington itself, working alongside the African American women
who were here, and extremely influential in their husbands' campaigns and
Then, when I became a journalist covering politics, my mother ended up
running for office and serving nine terms in Congress. I became interested
in what happened when a woman went from being behind the scenes to the
person in power. Women in politics
Cole: Were there any women you didn't react to well?
Roberts: Actually, I wasn't crazy about Mercy Otis Warren. To the
degree that the men were able to do what they were able to do because the women
made it possible for them by taking over everything at home, she refused to do
that. James Warren should have been in Philadelphia with Adams and Hancock and
the other Massachusetts men and she just wouldn't let him go, partly because she
really couldn't manage on her own. She was the exception to the rule.
When Abigail, who was young and had all these little children, was upset that
John was about to go off to Europe and it would be years before she saw him
again, Mercy Warren had the nerve to write her a letter saying, "What are you
talking about? It's your duty as a patriot to have him go." So she was not, you
know, a lot of fun.
The other person who I just didn't warm up to, but felt terribly sorry for,
was Esther Edwards Burr, Aaron Burr's mother. She was the daughter of Jonathan
Edwards, and spent her young life as a minister's wife in moral agony over
whether she was doing the right thing, whether her mortal soul was in danger,
all of these things. She was trying to manage a household with a couple of
little kids and her family far away; he was president of Princeton and she had
to do all that entertaining. I felt terrible for her, but again, she wasn't
exactly fun and games.
The Duel," James Patrick Kelly’s new play, is actually
two in one. The first act is a history primer. The second is what the
Nottingham writer is best at - a tale of interesting possibilities. "The
Duel’s" effectiveness is as broad as its threaded tales, and is most
successful and engaging when Kelly speaks his own language - his fiction
rather than fact.
Kelly’s production first explores the heated relationship between founding
fathers Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton, which in fact, when the pair duel,
ends with the death of the latter. Kelly stops time at the point the two face
off, then takes history for a spin, exploring what would have happened had the
outcome been different.
The altered history, which starts at the end of the first act, and runs the
entirety of act two, has New England and New York at war with the United
States after they secede from the union, something advocated for during that
time in history.
The first act is largely composed of freeze-and-instruct moments, with the
actors holding their place and reciting the words of historical figures. In
one longer scene, Burr, played by Steve Bornstein, and Hamilton, played by
Kevin Collins, deliver original lines with facts lifted from history books.
Two additional actors recite the words of numerous other historical figures.
This, as with the entire play, is accompanied by music written by Portsmouth’s
WHAT “The Duel” presented by New Hampshire Theatre Project WHERE West End Studio Theatre, 959 Islington St., Portsmouth WHEN through Jan. 22, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at
2 p.m. COST $20 adults, $15 students and seniors CONTACT 431-6644 ext. 5; or e-mail
The scene is difficult to stay with for a number of reasons. First it takes
a while to catch on to the format. There is a sense that action is frozen to
instruct the audience. Then, when you start to follow along, you are
constantly drawn out by the music. The show relies on the music to provide
rhythm or to interrupt or heighten tension. It’s a valiant attempt that
doesn’t work. Throughout most of the play the music is distracting, at times
melodramatic, even grating. In both acts the music upstages the performances
at times, making the dialogue hard to follow.
It feels as though "The Duel" begins with act two. It’s here we meet
fleshed out and real characters with interesting stories. It’s set in a
boarding house in Nottingham, NH, two years into the fictional war between New
England and the union. It’s here amidst a family affected by the battle, Burr
and Hamilton meet again, and determine the war’s direction.
The performers seem to move on the script’s waves. With the exception of
Collins as Hamilton, and Joseph Chase as William Van Ness, who are believable
throughout, the actors appear academic and stiff in act one. In act two they
all come alive, delivering interesting and authentic performances.
Steve Bornstein gives a solid portrayal of Burr, at times dead on, others
in step with the music, overplaying the scene. Lisa Richardson is stilted as
Clara Fulham in the first act, and brilliant in act two as Polly Kelsey.
Kathleen Somssich as Eliza Hamilton in act one, and as Rachel Kelsey in act
two; and Thomas Olson as Pendleton in act one and Claggett in act two, follow
Director Blair Hundertmark does little to ease the sense of stand and
deliver in the play’s first half. He stages the actors in still positions when
they recite historical lines. This is successful only in the scene during
which Burr and Hamilton read their wills. But again, as it is with the entire
show, he comes alive, and waves a strong directorial hand over act two.
The supporting arts for this play are wonderful. Kudos to Zhana Morris, who
has created rich and authentic costumes, and to Quentin F. Stockwell for his
apt lighting design.
"The Duel" is uneven, but interesting. If you’re a history buff, don’t miss
it. And if not, if you’re a James Patrick Kelly fan – or a fan of fine one-act
plays, "The Duel" is worth the wait through act one.
The Doctor Is In! Tommy Tune's Dr. Dolittle Makes His First House Call,
in Houston, Jan. 17
The Hobby Center in Houston is the first place Tommy Tune makes a house call
as Dr. Dolittle, starting Jan. 17.
Tony Award-winner Tune is star and director of this revamped national tour of
the Leslie Bricusse musical about the veterinarian who can talk to the animals,
but has a less easy time with members of the human race.
In recent months, Tune, choreographer Patti Colombo, musical director Michael
Biagi and writer Lee Tannen have been working to overhaul the touring production
that was shut down by producers in October following lackluster business. A new
cast was brought in by Tune.
The producers hope that Tune's name above the title will help stimulate
Three-time Tony Award nominee Dee Hoty plays Emma Fairfax, the woman in love
with a man who talks to the animals, in the freshened national tour. The casting
of Hoty (Footloose, City of Angels) had long been rumored but not
confirmed until early December 2005. Tune directed Hoty in The Best Little
Whorehouse Goes Public and The Will Rogers Follies.
Twelve-year-old newcomer Aaron Burr was handpicked by Tommy Tune to play
Chee-Chee the chimpanzee. In summer 2005, Burr won the Greatest Dancer
competition on ABC's "Good Morning America," judged by Tune and a handful of
other celebrity judges.
Filling out the cast are .....
This is a great play.
The playwright James Patrick Kelly and I
posed after the opening night.
In the first act Burr is true to character
(except with a married woman (: )
It ends when Burr throws away his fire.
In the second act of fiction, if Hamilton
we see New Hampshire as part of the
confederate New England states,
trying to break from the slave owning
Pickering is confederate president, but captured.
Burr is VP in hiding.
Gen Hamilton working for the Virginia
Union meets him in the tavern to surrender.
I loved it, especially the Mary
It is very dramatic with six great actors
HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA | Friday
January 13, 2006
Pauper’s work worth
Christie’s to auction 19th-century painting
By CHRIS LAMBIE
A portrait by a former Halifax painter who deceived the
public to make a buck and died a pauper is about to go on the
Christie’s is expecting a miniature portrait of Alexander
Hamilton, the famed American revolutionary officer, founding
father and politician, will fetch as much as $35,000 in a Jan.
20 auction at New York City’s Rockefeller Plaza. The painter
was William Weaver, an Englishman born in 1759, who spent time
painting Halifax’s elite around 1798.
"I think it’s fair to call him a Nova Scotia artist, at
least for part of his career," said Paul Schweizer, a
recognized expert on the painter’s work.
"He did attach himself with the garrison up there. . . . He
moved in those circles."
At the time, Halifax was a wealthy city, said Dianne
O’Neill, associate curator of historical prints and drawings
at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia.
"There was money here," she said. "Artists and theatre
people always go where the money is."
Indeed, profit is likely what prompted Mr. Weaver to move
south of the border. In New York he produced about a dozen
fake live portraits of Mr. Hamilton, who died in a famous 1804
duel with Aaron Burr that was brought on by a longtime
political and personal feud.
After Mr. Hamilton’s death, Mr. Weaver used a polygraphic
"contraption" that employed a series of levers and springs to
trace an earlier profile portrait of Mr. Hamilton that was
painted while he was still alive, said Mr. Schweizer, director
of the Museum of Art at the Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute
in Utica, N.Y.
Mr. Weaver made a series of paintings of the famous man "in
an attempt to capitalize on the market enthusiasm," Mr.
"Any time you can represent a portrait as having been made
from life, there is more value to the picture."
Based on ads Mr. Weaver placed in newspapers at the time,
Mr. Schweizer estimated he sold each of the fakes for a few
hundred dollars — large sums at the time. But the hefty price
tags probably had more to do with the subject matter than the
quality of the work.
"Hamilton had considerable political following in the
United States and, in many ways, saw himself as George
Washington’s logical and inevitable successor," he said.
"Weaver recognized . . . how much public sentiment and
sympathy was out there for the man, and, by the way, that
Mr. Weaver learned his copying craft in London at the
Polygraphic Society, Mr. Schweizer said.
"And I believe that the idea for these polygraphic copies
was his attempt to exploit that technology by making multiple
copies of the profile of Hamilton based on an earlier print by
But subtle details and some slick detective work by Mr.
Schweizer gave the painter away. In the portrait Mr. Hamilton
is depicted wearing the rank of a brigadier-general, a rank he
never held. He’s also sporting a blue vest, which was never
part of the army’s uniform.
Mr. Schweizer noted this took place in a "pre-copyright
age. . . . So the idea of
Alexander Hamilton Was Born on This Day
Today is the birthday of Alexander Hamilton, born in 1755 (although this year
is in dispute) in the Leeward Islands in the British West Indies. Fortunately, a
recent biography lays out his life in copious detail, but suffice
to say here that Hamilton had more in common with Abraham Lincoln than any of
the men of the founding generation, having been born into humble conditions but
with a tenacity of purpose that drew attention at an early age and opened the
doors of political life to him even before he reached his majority. He was an
aide to General George Washington, participated in the Confederation Congress
and the Federal Convention of 1787, inspired and wrote most of the essays for
The Federalist, served as the first Secretary of the Treasury, was a
seminal thinker on both domestic economy and foreign affairs and defense, was
invariably his own man (sometime to his and his party's detriment) and agreed to
a duel with Aaron Burr that ended the latter's career even as he sacrificed his
Richard Reeb | January 11, 2006 | 10:38 AM
The Softer Side Of Edwards
Project Finds More To Theologian Than Fire And Brimstone
January 10, 2006
By ADRIAN BRUNE, Special to the
Those of us who think we know Jonathan Edwards, the 18th-century fire and
brimstone theologian, don't really know one of Connecticut's most famous
sons. We really only know the side that brought his congregation to their
knees with words like this: "The God that holds you over the pit of hell,
much as one holds a spider ... abhors you, he looks upon you as worthy of
nothing else, but to be cast into the fire."
Yale Divinity School historian Kenneth P. Minkema wants people to see the
warm, fuzzy side of Edwards, the side that wandered through fields and sat
on the pristine banks of the Hudson; the side that pondered an "appearance
of divine glory, in almost everything."
"I often used to sit and view the moon, for a long time; and so in the
daytime, spent much time in viewing the clouds and sky ... in the
meantime, singing forth with a low voice, my contemplations of the Creator
and Redeemer," he wrote in a letter to his son-in-law Aaron Burr, father
to the famous 18th-century politician.
Last April, the Jonathan Edwards site went live (edwards.yale.edu)
with his major works, including the punishing discourse "Sinners in the Hands of
an Angry God." By the time Minkema finishes the site, it will contain, besides
the primary texts, reference works, secondary works, chronologies, audio and
video, and visual sources.
Architect Levi Weeks put distress and infamy
behind him when he came to Natchez to start a new life.
That second chance at life is what fascinated Bill McGehee, when he
began to dig into the history of Auburn, the 1812 Natchez mansion and
masterpiece attributed to Weeks’ hand.
“My wife became associated with Auburn,” McGehee
said of his wife, Dottie, who joined the Auburn Garden Club a few years
ago. “She kept nagging me to research, and that’s how I began
researching the people associated with Auburn, beginning with Lyman
Harding and going all the way to the garden club ladies who saved the
Auburn was saved twice, he said, first by members of a women’s club in
the 1930s and then again in 1972 by the Town and Country Garden Club,
which became the Auburn Garden Club.
Recently, members of the Auburn club installed a
marker in memory of Levi Weeks in the Natchez City Cemetery near the
grave site of Harding, the first owner of Auburn who commissioned Weeks
to build the house.
Dottie McGehee said it was the right thing to do. “We needed to do
something to honor his memory,” she said. “Don Estes at the cemetery
helped us get a better stone than we might have been able to get.”
Some facts about the life of the talented
architect are clear — that he married Ann Greenleaf in Natchez; that
they had four children; and that he died in 1819, when he was only 43.
No one knows where he is buried.
His life before Natchez began in Greenwich, Mass., where he was born in
“Levi Weeks had an older brother who was a successful building
contractor in New York,” Bill McGehee said. The younger Weeks moved in
1798 from the family’s home in Massachusetts to New York City to work
there with his brother, Ezra Weeks.
“He began studying architecture with his brother. And in 1799 he was
engaged to marry a young lady,” McGehee said.
With the mysterious murder of Gulielma “Elma” Sands, his betrothed, in
late December 1799, Weeks became the prime suspect, was indicted and
stood trial for the murder early in 1800.
Many ironic twists add to the drama of this real-life story, McGehee
said. One is that, in addition to the prominent attorney Brokholst
Livingston, Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton together represented
Weeks. Only four years later, in 1804, the famous Burr-Hamilton duel
took place, resulting in Hamilton’s death and bringing disgrace to Burr.
The Manhattan well in which the young woman’s body was found was built
by the Manhattan Company, owned by Burr.
And in the book “The Trial of Levi Weeks or the Manhattan Well Mystery,”
author Estelle Fox Kleiger writes:
“Since New York society was so small and tight-knit, it is not
surprising to note that Ezra Weeks had also had business dealings with
Aaron Burr; he had supplied wood for pipes for the Manhattan Company
water system, which owned, coincidentally, the Well in Lispenard Meadows
in which Elma’s body had been found.”
Also notable about the Weeks trial is that it was the first case ever to
be recorded by a court reporter.
Furthermore, Burr and Weeks both became associated with the Natchez area
in the years to come.
“Levi Weeks was found innocent of the murder charges,” McGehee said.
“But it was sort of like the O.J. Simpson trial. Public opinion didn’t
agree with the verdict.”
To escape the hostility in New York, Weeks began to look for work in
other places in 1805, making stops in Ohio and Kentucky before settling
Burr, in 1805, after leaving Washington, D.C., began plans for a
military expedition into the West that would lead to charges of treason.
At Natchez, early in 1807, a grand jury refused to indict him.
“He hired a lawyer named Lyman Harding,” McGehee said. “Burr was brought
before the grand jury, which basically ridiculed the charges and refused
to convict him.”
Burr left Natchez in secret but was found and arrested in what is now
the state of Alabama. He was tried in Richmond, Va., of the treason
charges and found not guilty.
The stories are unending, McGehee said. “It’s like you walk into a room,
and there’s a door at the end of it. You open that door and then another
and you just keep on going.”
His research into Harding’s life revealed that the lawyer was a graduate
of Harvard who did not do well when he started his practice in
Louisville, Ky., McGehee said.
“He took a job as a deckhand on a keelboat and wound up in Natchez
almost penniless when he arrived in 1798,” he said.
The Mississippi Territory was a new U.S. territory. Many documents
awaited proper scribes. “Lyman Harding had a beautiful handwriting and
began drafting documents. He also started his law practice. Within six
months he was attorney general of the territory,” McGehee said. “He had
a knack for making money. By 1805, he had accumulated $10,000, which he
invested in baled cotton and sold in New York for a huge profit.”
The stories go on and on. McGehee is compiling his research into a small
book on the history of Auburn and the people associated with it. He
hopes to have it available for sale by March, he said.
Two founding fathers face
New Hampshire Theatre Project will present "The Duel" from Jan. 13
to Jan. 22. This original play, written by James Patrick Kelly and
directed by Blair Hundertmark, is about the infamous duel between
Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr with live music and soundscape
composed by Jose Duque.
In 1804, two of the Founding Fathers met on the field of honor.
One was the sitting vice president of the United States. The other
was the leader of the opposition party. Both men aspired to the
If you can imagine what would have happened if Al Gore and
George W. Bush had settled their differences with gunplay, you can
get a sense of how this duel rocked the new nation to its
foundations. But there was more at stake than just personal
animosity between two great leaders.
Here’s history that they never taught in school: The larger
issue Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr fought over was whether
the New England states would secede from the Union. In "The Duel,"
everything you think you know about the birth of our nation is
called into question. And the outcome of the most famous duel in
history may not be what you think.
Audience members are asked not to reveal the surprise ending to
this taut political thriller.
The regionally selected cast includes Steve Bornstein as Aaron
Burr and Kevin Collins as Alexander Hamilton, with Joseph Chase,
Tom Olson, Lisa Richardson, and Kathy Somssich.
Tickets are $20 general admission and $15 for seniors and
students. For reservations, call 431-6644 x 5 or e-mail email@example.com.
Demystifying a spin on N.J. history
Emanuel Gottleib Leutze created this iconic painting of Gen.
George Washington crossing the Delaware River in Dusseldorf, Germany, around
1851. It hangs in New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Painting of Washington on the Delaware is largely inaccurate
The annual Christmas Day re-enactment of Gen. George
Washington crossing the Delaware River at Hopewell Township has endured a touch
of conflict, but not nearly as much as the famous painting.
The work — an icon of the nation and the "tails" side of quarters marking New
Jersey's statehood — may be U.S. history's most recognized piece of art. It is
also largely inaccurate.
Yes, the painting hangs in New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art. No, it is
not American, neither painted by a Yank nor created here. The river in the
depiction is not believed to be the Delaware. The flag is wrong. Washington's
boat is not genuine. And the timing is goofy.
Washington and his rag-tag Continental Army crossed the Delaware in the dark,
finishing with a 3 a.m. muster on the New Jersey side, followed by a march south
for the Battle of Trenton, the first major victory of the American Revolution.
Yet the 12-by-21-foot painting by Emanuel Gottleib Leutze has the sun shining
through roiled clouds.
Picky-picky, said Carrie Barratt. Barratt is curator of American paintings and
sculpture at the Metropolitan Museum.
"As historians, we like artistic license, and we understand the greater
international aspect of that painting," she said, adding, "It's so easy to
Later, she said: "I admit that there are plenty of inaccuracies in that picture.
The picture was made a good 75 years after the battle was fought."
"It was a time in American history, and world history," Barratt said, "when
George Washington was starting to be mythologized. It wasn't just a recording of
an event. It was a painting. If you want, you can think of it as theater. It was
never meant to be a re-enactment."
The year 1776 had been tough on the rebels. Routed at the Battle of the
Brandywine and during engagements in New York state and New Jersey, Washington
The British commander, Sir William Howe, deemed the Colonials not fit for battle
and settled down to winter in New York. But Washington surprised German
mercenaries, called Hessians, at Trenton. In sports parlance, Washington and his
men showed they were gamers.
Leutze created the painting in Dusseldorf, Germany, around 1851.
Two presidents-to-be crossed with Washington, James Madison and James Monroe,
who is believed to be holding the flag in the painting. History, though, says
nothing about Monroe actually being aboard Washington's boat. And the flag that
he gripped, with stars in a circle, did not fly until some eight months after
John Marshall made the crossing. He would become a chief justice of the U.S.
Supreme Court. Rivals Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton also made the trip.
Historians believe the black man in Washington's boat depicts a fellow named
Prince Whipple. But historians agree Whipple was in Baltimore the night of the
Even better, I thought,
was the short film with Chris Parnell and Andy Samberg rapping about their trip
to get snacks and see "The Chronicles of Narnia" on a lazy Sunday afternoon. It
was a terrific rap parody and a terrific rap song in its own right, one that's
been lodged in my head ever since I watched it. (Best line: "You can call us
Aaron Burr/from the way we're dropping Hamiltons!") Quite possibly the funniest
thing I've seen on "SNL" in years. (You can see it online at NBC's Web site,
really that funny)
Roberts champions founding women
Journalist speaks today at USC commencement
By JAMES T. HAMMOND
Posted on Mon, Dec. 12, 2005
Cokie Roberts becomes positively agitated when talking about South Carolina’s
women of the Revolutionary War. Heroines, she says, have been slighted by the
traditional telling of the period’s history.
“They were so brave, and so smart. They were incredible. We owe it to them”
to tell their story, the ABC News political analyst said Friday as she prepared
to deliver the winter commencement address today at the University of South
Women such as Eliza Lucas Pinckney and Rebecca Motte epitomized the
sacrifices of their generation of American women in service of a cause that was
bigger than themselves, Roberts said.
She’ll use such examples to urge public service and self-sacrifice to the
1,388 new USC graduates in ceremonies at 3:30 p.m. at the Colonial Center.
Roberts set out in her book, “Founding Mothers: The Women Who Raised Our
Nation,” to correct what she sees as a historical omission. She did some of the
research during 28 years of summer vacations at Pawleys Island on the S.C.
coast, developing an affection for the Palmetto State that borders on her love
for her own hometown of New Orleans.
And she tells the stories she has uncovered with great glee, such as the
sacrifice by Rebecca Motte of her home to root out a British garrison:
“The British had taken Fort Motte, which was Rebecca Motte’s house,” Roberts
said. “Her husband was dead. Her son-in-law, Thomas Pinckney, was in prison.
Generals Lee and Marion come to her and said, ‘We’re very sorry, Mrs. Motte,
since you are such a patriot, but we have to burn down your house and get the
“She said, ‘No problem, I have this great weapon that you can use.’ ”Roberts
is writing a sequel to “Founding Mothers,” which will feature, among others,
Theodosia Burr, daughter of Vice President Aaron Burr and wife of South Carolina
Gov. Joseph Alston.
Another of Roberts’ heroines is Eliza Lucas Pinckney, mother of Charles
Cotesworth Pinckney and Thomas Pinckney, two prominent leaders in the
Revolution. Eliza Pinckney, at the end of her life, went to Philadelphia to be
treated for breast cancer. Her daughter, Harriet Horry, kept a journal about all
the people who came to visit her mother.
Posted on Fri, Dec. 02, 2005 Charlotte.com
Nights of a
See Brookgreen Gardens in a whole new light this
HANNAH MITCHELL | SPECIAL TO THE
On weekends leading up to Christmas, Brookgreen Gardens on the S.C. coast
turns into an adventure for the senses.
Thousands of tiny lights shine amid the Spanish moss covering the 250- to
300-year-old live oaks on the former plantation site. Thousands of
luminarias light the paths through the sculpture gardens and float in the
sculpture pools, tugged gently by the wind.
It's Brookgreen's annual Nights of a Thousand Candles, when visitors
stroll throughout the gardens to discover food, sculpture and entertainment
at the end of candle-lit paths and in a heated entertainment tent. Remaining
evenings this year are Friday, Saturday and Dec. 16-17.
Brookgreen, on U.S. 17 between Murrells Inlet and Pawleys Island, was
once the plantation of Aaron Burr's daughter Theodosia and her husband,
Joseph Alston. The gardens were established on the old plantation site in
1931 by Archer Huntington and his wife, sculptress Anna Hyatt Huntington.
Her large, realistic works are still a major part of Brookgreen's collection
of more than 900 sculptures.....
I found a script online on Aaron Burr. Haven't
read it all yet, but it seems interesting.
Theatre Hopkins production to be
staged at Gilman School
Hopkins' 84th season continues with The Mistress of Riversdale at 2
p.m., Sunday, Dec. 4, at Centennial Hall on the campus of the Gilman School,
5407 Roland Ave.
Cherie Weinert performs this one-woman dramatization of the life of Rosalie
Stier Calvert, a wealthy Belgian and wife of George Calvert, at their plantation
near Washington, D.C., during the first two decades of the 19th century. Suzanne
Pratt, director of Theatre Hopkins, wrote the script, which she adapted from
Rosalie Calvert's original letters. They were published by Margaret Law Callcott
in the book Mistress of Riversdale: The Plantation Letters of Rosalie Stier
The text is drawn from letters that Calvert, the mother of nine, sent to her
family in Antwerp over her 20 years at Riversdale. The correspondence includes
her ardent views on Presidents Washington, Jefferson and Monroe as well as
Napoleon and Col. Aaron Burr.
Flutist Kateri Chambers, a senior at Johns Hopkins, will introduce the play
with a recital of music of the period. Tickets are $10 and may be reserved by
calling Theatre Hopkins at 410-516-7159 or e-mailing
See critique below:
Successful Spy in American History: Author Uncovers the Secret Truth
About Aaron Burr
Dr. Alan J.
Clark has been decoding the mysteries of history for years. Through an
exhaustive study of Aaron Burr’s coded letters written during the time
of the American Revolution, the historian has uncovered evidence that
may clarify our understanding of US history, while it simultaneously
reveals some fascinating and startling facts about our political
(PRWEB) November 27, 2005 -- Early American history is considered
linear, simple and straightforward, but upon closer scrutiny we find all
sorts of bewildering and unexplained riddles.
Dr. Alan J. Clark – who, like Gore Vidal, the author of Burr: A Novel,
and Dan Brown, the author of The DaVinci Code, attended The Phillips
Exeter Academy – has been decoding the mysteries of history for years.
Through an exhaustive study of Aaron Burr’s coded letters written during
the time of the American Revolution, the historian (who was also in
George W. Bush’s class at Yale) has uncovered evidence that may clarify
our understanding of US history, while it simultaneously reveals some
fascinating and startling facts about our political origins.
Dr. Clark’s findings are explained in his new book Cipher Code of
Dishonor: Aaron Burr, an American Enigma (Author House, 2005). By using
evidence gleaned from genealogical records, archival documents and
letters, and publicly recorded deeds to property, Clark scrutinizes the
relationship between Aaron Burr and the British Crown. Burr was a
Colonel in George Washington’s army and later served as the Vice
President of the United States under Thomas Jefferson. Dr. Clark’s book
reveals that Burr was also the greatest spy and traitor in American
Clark studied battlefield accounts from the Revolutionary War and found
compelling evidence that Burr sold wartime military secrets to the
British and arranged for Washington’s armies to be ambushed, almost
costing us the war. History books tell us that Benedict Arnold was a
traitor and a spy. But according to Dr. Clark he did not act alone, and
actually worked in concert with a British espionage ring organized by
Clark’s research also indicates that Burr – who killed New York
assemblyman and representative to the U.S. Constitutional Committee
Alexander Hamilton, the former Secretary of the Treasury and an author
of the Federalist Papers, during a pistol duel – planned the duel as a
way to legally assassinate Hamilton, who had never trusted Burr, always
suspecting that he was a turncoat.
But Dr. Clark does not limit his fact-finding to early American history.
He further reveals a political and financial connection between the
British Crown and wealthy New York City landowners, and offers insight
into why Great Britain is now the staunchest supporter of the US War on
Terror. A 99-year lease for the World Trade Center was signed a few
months before the 9/11 attacks, and Clark’s book ties that $3.2 billion
real estate contract directly to the present day income of the Royal
family of England.
By uncovering the truth of our nation’s history, Dr. Clark helps us to
preserve its legacy for future generations. He has learned secrets from
the American past that are 250 years old, and his discoveries may be
more relevant today than ever before. After all, the keys of the past
have the potential to unlock our future, even if a few skeletons are
found in closets along the way.
For a review copy of the book or to set up an interview with Dr. Alan J.
Clark for a story, please contact Jay Wilke at 727-443-7115, ext. 223.
# # #
This book is nonsense. It is funny in many places, but it is sad
to know that Alan Clark twists unverifiable facts to paint an
inaccurate picture of Burr for some sensational reason. We could
go on and on tearing it apart, but start with this page by page if you
have purchased one of the used copies available.
Bibliography does not include the Burr experts Lomask, Parton, Kline,
Knapp, Cote, Lindsay, Sam Burr, Wills, etc. Kennedy is ignored, and
all the pro Hamilton authors are believed.
Prologue: A 19 year old teenager did not arrange for the death of
General Montgomery in Quebec to make himself look good. Surviving the
starvation march through Maine is ignored. Arnold and Burr's
group got to Quebec from Newburyport before any British intelligence
who supposedly converted him to the dark side there.
He did not then get kicked off Washington's staff for immediately
going through GW's personal belongings. Would a real spy do that?
Read the anecdotal letter that only mentions correspondence on GW's
desk, not other personal hidden documents.
pg 18 1776 was not the beginning of competition with Hamilton. It
started in '91 as below. AH must have been grateful AB led him
north in Manhattan. Would British have let all those soldiers go
just to make AB look good after AB had quit GW's staff?
21 John Church is not identified as AH's brother in law here. JC
bought the pistols with secret hair triggers in London in 1796 and
tried to kill Burr with them in 1799. JC AH and Phil Schuyler family
hated Burr after Hamilton ruined Senate bid for PS in '91. See Lomask
page 139. JC was also there when Monroe was taunted to duel with
Hamilton. JM was wise to listen to friend AB say Hamilton only bluffs.
Neither knew about the new secret weapons.
22. Smithsonian says AH did set his secret hair trigger. But
this is only science, not Clark extrapolation.
22. Angelina Church was never the object of aspiration by Burr until
Clark now says so.
23. Some say Burr had an incestuous relationship with his daughter?
Only fiction writer Gore Vidal said AH said it to sell his fiction.
This is not a legitimate reference book.
24 Clark now says Maria Reynolds was Burr's lover when Hamilton
admitted affair while wife Betsy was in Saratoga with the 5 kids.
Hamilton saved nothing by admitting it. He was ruined after his patron
26. Burr sent Reynolds to entrap AH? Then why did AH pay off husband
James? What did Burr care about AH back then? AH was never
elected to anything, and was ineffective against AB, until Jefferson
betrayed Burr in 1800.
51. Great Britain killed Theo! (No way)
57 No mention of Jefferson's postmaster general opening everyone's
mail, making cipher necessary. (This book largely ignores
61. Clark admits Burr supported women's education but attacks his
character on all else. He ignores Burr educating Peggy his black
servant, and does Clark imply that Peggy the servant is Peggy Arnold
who Burr corresponds with?
63. Clark's thesis: "In the world of cipher, the opposite is often
meant from the text as written." Amen. And who determines this today?
64. From South Carolina, with baby in her life, daughter Theodosia
told her father to kill Hamilton. It gets even more bizarre than this!
72 Burr never mentioned his first wife? All letters to Theo were lost
at sea, (I'll verify quote "Your mother was the finest woman I ever
73. Clark tells us for the first time that Burr was gay. This
started with Hamilton's letters to John Laurens and should stop.
73 Son in law Joseph was governor of South Carolina and a spy
for Britain. Preposterous.
89. Monmouth Courthouse battle: Burr attacked and only lost 2/3 of
his men after GW told him to stop and come back.
100 Hermitage in 1779 was a small building. Rosencrantz built
additions. No way -did Aaron Burr keep a Hessian Captain's corpse in a
secret room on the second floor.
108 Burr as a French speaking friar was not recruited to help kill his
comrades who just trekked across Maine and his commander who made him
113 More accurate history? Future President Monroe "hung out with
Burr's gang at the Hermitage" and was thus a spy like them.
116. Col. Morgan wrote that letter about Burr's expedition after Burr
left because Burr convinced Morgan's sons to travel west with him.
Any father would feel badly.
118. No mention that Jefferson thought war with Spain was a certainty.
No mention about settling land after a military victory (showing
Burr's forward thinking.)
120. No mention of Burr as VP presiding over the impeachment trial of
Judge Chase. TJ gave favors finally because he needed Burr to help
the executive branch take over the judicial branch, but Burr wouldn't
do it. Burr hated TJ's plantation owning constituents. Burr's meeting
with TJ requesting a place in the gov. was after this trial, so
History Channel has it right.
121. TJ never fought in Rev War but acted as a coward, so he opposed
Burr writing a history of it and doing the required research.
122. Clark faults Burr for enforcing the "strict interpretation of the
law" against ex-sheriffs in NY.
129 "AB may have played a hand in death of his daughter." who he
hadn't seen for years so that his letters to her could be destroyed?
It's all so unbelievable to see this in print. If these letters
existed, Burr would be more of a hero than he is.
160 Descendents who staged the reenactment (do not) "have a clue as to
the reasons for the duel and why Britain supports War on Terror"
Thanks for the insult Alan. Keep up your message of unfounded hate.
What was the point of all that Trinity Church deed nonsense?
Enough for now.
Holiday season ushers in historical house tour
By Zachary Huszar
FOR THE TRIBUNE-REVIEW Friday, November 25, 2005
December marks a time of many holiday traditions, including family
celebrations and frenetic shopping trips through tightly packed malls. It
also welcomes one of the community's most appreciated jaunts through local
history and heritage in the form of the Norwin Historical Society House
This year's tour will be held Dec. 3 and marks the 10th year the
society has been helping to open up storied homes so all have a chance to
gain annual historical insight.
Among the homes on the tour is the Larimer/McFarlane House, which
boasts considerable historical significance.
The home was built by a Scot of French ancestry named William Larimer
Sr. in 1790, a local resident of prominence who fathered 12 children. One
of his sons, William Larimer Jr., went on to become a Civil War general
was an avid abolitionist. As such, it is speculated that the
Larimer/McFarlane house may have been a stop on the underground railroad.
The log home was modernized in 1870 by Andrew Lewis McFarlane Sr., and
stayed in family hands until the Depression of the 1930s. Among the guests
to visit the house were President William Henry Harrison and Vice
President Aaron Burr.
Another early 1900s home on the tour is Penglyn's Smeltzer house. ...
Little John’s Auction Service, Anaheim, California 11/9/05
Antique Arms Hit Target for $4 Million at
Little John’s Auction by Robert Kyle
The 1250 lots of collectible firearms and related items needed three
catalogs for the June 26 and 27 Little John’s auction. The result was only 40
passed lots for an impressive 96% sold ratio and a total of nearly $4 million,
which includes the 12% buyers’ premiums. American arms with Old West, Civil War,
or other notable connections continue to rack up robust results.
A meeting room in the Phoenix Club in Anaheim, California, was packed
with 500 bidders. Another 600 had either left bids or were on the phones. The
majority of foreign interest came from the U.K. and Australia.
"Henry rifles are hot, as are Colt single actions [revolvers]," said
company president John Gangel.
The Henry, a precursor of the Winchester repeating rifle, was
manufactured from 1860 to 1866 in a quantity of about 14,000. They were made for
the civilian and the military markets. The latter brings a premium.
A Model 1860 Henry rifle without military inspector’s marks was
nevertheless considered a Civil War veteran based on serial number research and
an "A" etched on a side plate, for Company A. It sold for $26,880 (est.
$17,500/27,500). Another Henry, military-proofed and belonging to General John
Howard Stibbs of Iowa, sold for $50,400 (est. $45,000/65,000).
"Historic arms are very good, and the market is strong across the
board. I’m not surprised at the high quality and rare arms bringing strong
money, but I am surprised at average items bringing very high prices," said
Gangel saw two lots sell in the six figures. The top lot of the sale
at $123,200 was a Model 1873 Colt revolver with a 12" barrel, a configuration
created by author and Wild West show promoter Ned Buntline (a.k.a. Edward
Judson, 1823-1886). His enduring legacy was adding extra-long barrels on Colt
revolvers. Known as "Buntline Specials," they are still being produced.
Originals made in his lifetime command top dollar.
Another example, with a 16" octagon barrel, sold for $36,400 (est.
$25,000/75,000). Made circa 1877, it has the name "Jack Childress" etched on the
side of the barrel.
The second-most expensive lot in the auction was a pair of new (1981)
Colt revolvers in a presentation case with a custom holster marked "President
Ronald Reagan" on the back. Given a broad estimate of $100,000/$200,000, they
sold for $112,000. The rig had been a gift to Reagan by Hollywood quick-draw
expert Arvo Ojala. The president appreciated the six-shooters and sent Ojala a
letter on White House stationery, included in the sale. Reagan also sent the
guns right back to him. Ojala sold them at auction the following year. Despite
their brief tenure at the White House, they are known as Reagan’s guns.
Generally, 19th-century American guns sent south of the border show
considerable wear and use. Not so with a Winchester Model 1866, gold plated and
engraved. Shipped from the factory in 1877, it was found in South America in
1990, still in an excellent state of preservation. Estimated at $35,000/55,000,
it sold for $42,000. Must’ve been owned by someone special.
Also selling for $42,000 (est. $35,000/70,000) was a "royal quality"
flintlock double-barrel shotgun, or fowling piece, made by Boutet of Versailles.
Its metal and wood were highly decorated.
Yet another $42,000 lot (est. $15,000/30,000) was a rare circa 1880
Hotchkiss five-shot revolving cannon, the type used by the U.S. Army against
Native Americans. It shot 37 mm projectiles at 43 rounds per minute out to a
distance of one mile.
A Model 1886 deluxe, special-order Winchester rifle made in 1888 in
about 98% original condition sold for $35,840 (est. $30,000/40,000).
Bearing serial number 4, a Colt single-action Army revolver with a
"pinch frame" and in .44 S&W caliber, fully restored, sold for $33,600 (est.
The star of the auction was expected to be a lot of two London-made
flintlock pistols belonging to statesman Alexander Hamilton. They were estimated
at $550,000/850,000, but bidding stopped at $400,000 by a gallery that freely
bought what it liked. "The reserve was too high, as was the estimate," John
Gangel said later. "We never have a reserve higher than our low estimate."
Collectors had determined they were worth where bidding had stopped. At that
figure, adding the buyer’s premium would bring them to $448,000.
Hamilton, the nation’s first Secretary of State, was killed in a duel
by Aaron Burr in July 1804. He did not use one of the pistols at this auction.
Perhaps he should have. Instead, he had borrowed his brother-in-law’s and was
not as familiar with it. The lesson here is never borrow your brother-in-law’s
dueling pistol or his lawn mower.
Another disappointment was no buyer for an elaborately decorated 1860
fowling piece made by LePage of France as a gift from the French government in
1870 to Mexican president Manuel Gonzales. The catalog devoted four full pages
to it, showing detailed close-ups of ornate workmanship. For 50 years it had
been the centerpiece at Harold’s Club Firearms Museum in Reno, Nevada. The hefty
estimate was $175,000/350,000.
Is a Second World War belt buckle worth $14,560? Yes, when it’s a
German experimental model, which is actually a four-shot, .32-caliber gun. From
the collection of Dr. Jack Strassman of Altoona, Pennsylvania, it was estimated
A circa 1780 Kentucky rifle, in original flintlock, no brass patchbox,
in .48-caliber smoothbore, maker unknown, sold for $14,560 (est.
A Sharps carbine identified to Co. E, 8th Cavalry, which saw action
in the Indian Wars in the Northwest, sold for $10,080 (est. $8000/12,000). A
circa 1876 Model 1874 Sharps buffalo rifle, assembled from two different guns,
in .50 caliber, brought $4760 (est. $4500/6000).
Large, high-end gun auctions such as this one often sell more than
firearms. This sale had 15th-century armor, 20th-century artwork, 19th-century
bowie knives, and more.
Demand continues to grow for variations of the legendary bowie. Some
19th-century examples sold were a lock-blade folding knife marked "Tillotson,"
$5040 (est. $4500/6500); a fixed-blade exhibition grade bowie by Henry Booth,
Sheffield, England, $44,800 (est. $35,000/70,000); a clip-point example by
Alfred Hunter, $16,800 (est. $17,500/25,000); and another clip-point, blade
etched "A Sure Defence," by William Jackson & Co., Sheaf Island Works,
Sheffield, $10,080 (est. $6000/12,000).
This company is currently in the midst of selling 8000 guns in a
series of five auctions extending into January 2006. For more information, call
(714) 939-1170; Web site
A biography of Andrew Jackson, defining his
role in American history.
Date published: 11/6/2005
"Andrew Jackson: His Life and Times" by H.W. Brands is an
entertaining and thorough biography and a must-read for any American
history enthusiast. Whether you like Jackson or not, and there is much
about him that is unlikable, his place in American history is
significant and worth reading about. He lived in an exciting and
uncertain period when the American democratic experiment was young and
its survivability often uncertain. The people of his time are names that
loom large in our history, including David Crockett, Sam Houston, Gen.
Winfield Scott, Thomas Jefferson, John Marshall, James Madison, James
Monroe, Henry Clay, John Quincy Adams, John Calhoun, Daniel Webster and
Aaron Burr. ....
(No news published while I was at ABA meeting and then two weeks
New and improved $10 bill is unveiled
By MARY DEIBEL Scripps Howard News Service September 28, 2005
WASHINGTON - The $10 bill is flush with new color as orange, yellow
and red join the 10-spot's traditional green. .....
At 34, Hamilton became President Washington's first treasury secretary, a
role in which he set the stage for U.S. commercial might by creating the
nation's first tax system, first budget system, first Customs Service, first
Coast Guard and first central bank.
Hamilton died in an 1804 duel with former Vice President Aaron Burr, whom he
helped defeat for New York governor that year and for president in 1800 by
throwing his support to Thomas Jefferson.
Hamilton biographer Ron Chernow, who found himself dragged into the debate
over Hamilton's place on the money, said he wasn't against Reagan but for
Hamilton, calling him "the prophet of the capitalist system" Reagan admired.
The new $10 bills, with Hamilton's portrait enlarged and freed from the
traditional oval, should show up early next year, with the $100 note next to be
redesigned in 2007.
Thomas Ferguson, head of Treasury's Bureau of Engraving
New Challenge at the Fleisher
Philadelphia Inquirer -
Philadelphia,PA,USA ... historical fact and fiction. One watercolor, for instance, refers to
the famous duel between Alexander Hamilton and AaronBurr in 1804.
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
On average, humans lose one neocortical neuron each second, or
about 85,000 each day. That's 31 million brain cells each year.
In 1840, poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow became the first American to
have plumbing installed in his home.
A frog has to close its eyes in order to swallow. ...
The Circus Maximus in Rome, after its rebuilding by Julius Caesar,
could hold 150,000 people. It was enlarged again in the early empire
to fit an additional 100,000.
A former U.S. vice president, Aaron Burr, was charged with
treason for trying to separate the western lands from the United
States and establish his own rule in the early 1800s. He was
acquitted, but his image remained tarnished. He is also the man who
shot and killed Alexander Hamilton.
The stegosaur was a dinosaur with a head so small that the nerve
knot in the middle of the back was larger than its brain.
The African eagle, swooping at more than 100 mph, can brake to a
halt in 20 feet.
letter to editor:
The "Fast Facts" article mentioned Aaron Burr. Burr was a brilliant man who
graduated college at 16 and was a colonel in the revolutionary war at 21. Burr
opposed slavery against Jefferson who gained power for the plantation owners
he represented. The old Virginians wanted slavery out west. Jefferson tried to
have Burr hung for treason, but Burr defended himself to a Not Guilty verdict.
Text of John Roberts hearing - 13
Associated Press 9/13/05
- The text of the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on John Roberts'
nomination to the Supreme Court, part 13.
FEINGOLD: Did you recognize at that moment that this might become a time when
it would be harder to protect civil liberties?
ROBERTS: I think -- I don't recall recognizing that in particular, but that
is, of course, always the challenge in times of war and in times of stress.
Whatever the cause, I think it is the obligation of the courts to remember, just
as within the model of the D.C. Circuit from our earliest case of the treason
trial of Aaron Burr, to calmly poise the scales of justice.
And the emphasis is on calmly. It requires a certain dispassion, a certain
separation from the passions of the moment.
FEINGOLD: That's absolutely right. And that's why I want to follow on what
Senator Leahy asked about earlier, a different time, a different challenge.
The Holy and the Ivy
by Collin Hansen | posted 09/01/20005 09:45 a.m. Intellectual skepticism persists in the Ivy League.
Thankfully, so does a vibrant Christian faith.....
This secular trend goes back a long way, as the Ivy League cleared a path toward
the new American nation's prosperous, pluralistic future. Among the founding
fathers, Princeton alum James Madison helped frame the Bill of Rights. American
independence had no bolder advocate than Harvard grad John Adams. Aaron Burr
didn't take to theology at Princeton the way his grandfather Jonathan Edwards
had at Yale. But he distinguished himself as a Revolutionary War officer and
vice president to Thomas Jefferson....
Today's highlight in history:
Myrtle Beach Sun News - Myrtle
In 1939, World War II began as Nazi Germany invaded Poland. In 1807, former Vice
President AaronBurr was found not guilty of treason. ...
On this date in history::-
Webindia123 - India
In 1807, AaronBurr, vice president of the United States under
Thomas Jefferson, was acquitted of treason charges growing out of an alleged
plot to set up an ...
On this day
News24 - South Africa ... Spanish. 1807 - Former US Vice President AaronBurr is
found innocent of treason. 1879 - Britain signs peace treaty with Zulus in SA.
thursDay September 1, 2005
Peoria Journal Star - Peoria,IL,USA ... free. Compiled by Tabitha L. Vester of the Journal Star. In 1807,
former Vice President AaronBurr was found innocent of treason. In
On this date in
| September 01, 2005 12:11:50 PM IST
| September 01, 2005 12:13:03 PM IST
In 1807, Aaron Burr, vice president of the United
States under Thomas Jefferson, was acquitted of
treason charges growing out of an alleged plot to
set up an independent empire in the nation's south
In 1914, the last known passenger pigeon died at
the Cincinnati Zoo.
In 1923, an earthquake struck Yokohama, Japan,
killing an estimated 143,000 people.
In 1939, Germany invaded Poland. Great Britain
and France served an ultimatum on Adolf Hitler, but
it was ignored.
In 1983, a Korean Air Lines Boeing 747 strayed
into Soviet air space and was shot down by a Soviet
jet fighter. All 269 people aboard died.
In 1985, scientists found the wreck of the
British luxury liner Titanic, sunk by an iceberg in
1912, in the Atlantic Ocean south of Newfoundland.
In 1990, three planes left Iraq with about 500
Western and Japanese women and children in the first
airlift, four days after Saddam Hussein's pledge to
begin releasing some of his so-called guests.
In 1991, President Bush established diplomatic
relations with Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia.
In 1992, the insurance industry estimated that
insured damage from Hurricane Andrew would reach
$7.3 billion, making it the costliest natural
disaster in U.S. history.
In 1993, Bosnian Muslims refused to accept a
draft of an U.N. peace agreement unless the Serbs
and Croats ceded them more land.
In 1995, a peace agreement worked out among
Liberia's warring militias moved forward with the
swearing in of an interim ruling council.
In 1996, the U.N. suspended the permission it
gave Iraq to sell oil again after Iraq took over the
unofficial Kurdish capital city in violation of the
cease-fire terms of the Gulf War.
In 1998, President Clinton held two days of talks
with Russian President Boris Yeltsin in Moscow but
the deadlock over the START II treaty remained
In 1999, Attorney General Janet Reno ordered a
new investigation into the events of April 19,1993,
that ended the siege at the Branch Davidian compound
near Waco, Texas. About 80 cultists died in a
In 2003, Libya agreed to compensate relatives of
the 170 people killed in the 1989 bombing of a
French airliner over the Sahara.
In 2004, Republicans opened their national
convention in New York to officially choose George
W. Bush and Dick Cheney for re-election.
Also in 2004, a heavily armed band of 31 Chechen
terrorists seized a school in Belstan in southern
Russia, taking hundreds of hostages.
And, sexual assault charges against pro
basketball star Kobe Bryant were dropped at the
request of the prosecution after the alleged victim
refused to testify.
On this day
891 – Arnulf defeats the Vikings from Scandinavia at the battle
of Louvain in Belgium. 1159 – Death of Pope Adrian IV. He was originally Nicholas
Breakspear and was the only Englishman to be chosen as Pope. He was
elected Pope in 1154. 1494 – France's King Charles VIII invades Italy to claim throne
of Naples. 1531 – War breaks out in Switzerland between Zurich and Catholic
forest cantons. 1542 – Holy Roman Empire's campaign against the Turks in Hungary
fails. 1674 – William of Orange takes Grave, Belgium, but is unable to
invade France. 1706 – British successfully defend Charleston, South Carolina,
against French and Spanish. 1715 – Death of King Louis XIV of France. He is succeeded by his
five-year-old great grandson Louis XV. 1807 – Former US Vice-President Aaron Burr is found
innocent of treason. 1824 – Advance party to establish penal settlement at Moreton
Bay, Queensland, selects temporary site at Redcliffe. 1858 – The East India Company's government of India ends with the
British Crown taking over its territories and duties. 1864 – Charlottetown Conference begins on Prince Edward Island,
representing the first steps toward Canadian confederation. 1870 – In the Franco-Prussian War the French under Napoleon III
are heavily defeated by the Prussians under Moltke at the battle of
Sedan. 1873 – South Australian government introduces eight-hour working
day. 1879 – Britain signs peace treaty with Zulus in South Africa.
Here is another website that members of the ABA might be interested in (if they
don't know about it already). It is associated with Valley Forge Park. Tom
Fleming (the author) told Ralph and me about it last year. He is one of the
scholars working on this undertaking. He said he thought the ABA should make a
contribution to it. I don't know how long it's going to take to get the funding,
but at least it's been started. Someone said that's it's the only important
American war that doesn't have a museum devoted to it.
History Buff Physician writes book on Burr, Hamilton
BY GWENN WELCH
Special to Star-Banner
Dr. Alan Clark signs one of his books for
a co-worker, Kittie Morena, in the Marion Oaks Optical Shop.
GWENN WELCH/SPECIAL TO THE STAR-BANNER
Dr. Alan Clark, a practicing
ophthalmologist at Marion Oaks Optical, uses his eyes for something
besides examining the retina and other eye parts. Clark is a long-time
history buff. He became involved in Civil War reenactments. He
participated in performances all over the Southeastern United States. "I
also did reenactments for movies," Clark said. "We were on sets for
'Glory', the 'Alamo', and 'Rambo 3'."
Clark developed an interest in genealogy, and a friend of his
mother-in-law got him interested in writing. He started piecing together
his own family histories. "Half were Loyalists," he said, "and I traced
their ancestry back to the Revolution. Many pre-revolution documents were
destroyed." Clark explained that when a family member took another
direction, they were disowned.
His research led him to write a book entitled "Cipher/Code of Dishonor," a
history of the relationship of Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton. This is
the first work to draw on unreported documents and genealogical
information, and an unprecedented look into relationships between Aaron
Burr, Alexander Hamilton, and the Trinity Church Corporation and Loyalists
of Manhattan Island. Clark delves deeply into the actions of Burr and
Alexander. He examined thousands of documents, including Burr's memoirs,
letters (in code), historic documents and property deeds.
Clark visited sites connected to Burr in Connecticut. Clark proposes that
letters Burr wrote, published after his death, infer that they would
reveal, in code, otherwise unknown facts; hence the book's name.
Burr's cipher, for instance, would be in a letter to his daughter that
referred to Le Grec (the Greek) which translated to Alexander the Great,
meaning Alexander Hamilton. Clark inserted his own cipher into the book
demonstrating how the code worked.
Clark is a 1968 graduate of Yale University, with classmate, Pres. George
W. Bush. He is a board certified ophthalmologist, and an early proponent
of antioxidant therapy. He originated surgical techniques to reduce
astigmatism in cataract surgery. Clark has published accounts of Loyalist
and American ancestors during the American Revolution and War of 1812.
Clark will be signing copies of his book at Barnes & Noble in Ocala, SR
200 on Sept. 17 from 2-4 p.m.
Monday, August 15, 2005
— Time: 5:05:37 PM EST
Author discusses Aaron Burr legacy
By DAVE PAYNE Sr.
PARKERSBURG - An author was in town this weekend to set the record straight
about Aaron Burr, a man despised by some of the founding fathers, one of whom
Joseph P. Wheelan, an author and former journalist, signed copies of and
spoke about his book "Jefferson's Vendetta: The Pursuit of Aaron Burr and the
The affair began with a luncheon catered by James Auvil, chef of the
Colonnade. Following the luncheon, Wheelan spoke about his book.
The event was sponsored by the Blennerhassett Historical Foundation.
Wheelan lives in North Carolina. He was an editor and reporter for the
Associated Press and the Casper Star-Tribune in Wyoming. He previously wrote
another book about the Jefferson administration entitled "Jefferson's War:
America's First War on Terror 1801-1805."
Burr is a central figure in the story of Blennerhassett Island. The book
concentrates on the 1807 treason trial of Burr after his meetings with Harman
Blennerhassett on Blennerhassett Island and their discussions about organizing a
military expedition to found a new nation in the American West.
Burr is mostly remembered for three things: killing Alexander Hamilton in a
duel, being Thomas Jefferson's vice president and being the highest-ranking
government official tried for treason.
Wheelan said Burr is often remembered as a seedy character, but he was an
intelligent man, a war hero and one of the first abolitionists. He did have some
flaws, however, in that he chose friends poorly, was too trusting and failed to
defend himself against accusations, Wheelan said.
"He believed people would find out the truth in good time. He was wrong,"
Politics of the day were "rough and tumble" with libel and slander simply
part of the game. A particularly severe slur against Burr uttered by Alexander
Hamilton led to the famous duel. Such slurs against him were also commonplace in
newspapers of the day, Wheelan said.
Blennerhassett Island Historical State Park historian Ray Swick said he has
read many of the articles - which would be considered libelous today - about
"In just about every issue, there was something about him being a despoiler
of women. It was like he was the only sexually active man in America," Swick
Aside from dueling Hamilton, Burr never defended himself against the
accusations. That, coupled with the fact his papers were later lost at sea, has
hampered his legacy, Wheelan said.
Wheelan described Burr as a very intelligent man who passed the entrance exam
for the College of New Jersey, but his application was rejected because he was
small for his age. He was admitted to Princeton three years later.
Burr's grandfather was Jonathan Edwards, who was perhaps America's greatest
evangelist and remembered best for his sermon "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry
God." Burr followed in his grandfather's footsteps for a year, but soon found
the life of a minister was not for him.
Wheelan said Burr was a talented officer who served under Benedict Arnold in
the Battle of Quebec and George Washington in the battles of New York City,
Monmouth Court House and at the Valley Forge winter encampment.
"He was a great war hero and he was a good officer," Wheelan said.
Burr conspired with Gen. James Wilkinson and Harman Blennerhassett to invade
the West. Wilkinson, however, got cold feet and informed President Jefferson of
the plot, claiming he was not involved. Jefferson was furious and put the power
of the presidency behind getting Burr convicted.
"It is interesting that he was the vice president and the president was going
after him. Could you imagine Bush going after Dick Cheney?" Wheelan said.
Yet, Wilkinson's involvement was easily discovered by a thorough
investigation. Without its star witness, Burr was acquitted on the treason
It wasn't until the U.S. captured Spanish documents in Cuba during the
Spanish-American War that it was known that Wilkinson was a Spanish spy.
Burr was never able to act upon the invasion plan and that saved him. Wheelan
said the case was a landmark one, in that the Supreme Court established for a
person to be found guilty of treason, one had to commit a treasonous act
witnessed by at least two people.
"In 1807 England, a person might hang for wishing the sovereign dead. Here,
you had to act on that wish and there must be two witnesses. That was the last
word on treason until World War II," Wheelan said.
Mineral Wells resident Diane Anderson said she found both the book and
Wheelan's speech informative.
"He explained it in layman's terms," she said.
Copies of Jefferson's Vendetta" are available at the Friends of the
Blennerhassett Gift Shop in the museum at Second and Juliana streets in downtown
Virginia lawyer and jurist John Marshall's
contributions to our nation's government are myriad, his legacy
far-reaching. By Jayne Harding
Date published: 8/6/2005
J OHN MARSHALL, first
justice of the United States,
lived in Richmond, where he
held the post from 1801 until his death in 1835. His stately
Federal-style brick house, located at what is now 818 E. Marshall St.,
stands today in a green-shaded oasis enclosed by a white picket fence in the
midst of modern downtown Richmond. In its time, the Marshall household was a
busy one, complete with six children, plus slaves and countless guests.
In honor of Marshall's 250th birthday, which falls this year,
In 1804, Marshall was selected to write George Washington's official
biography. And in 1808, he presided over Aaron Burr's famous trial for
treason against the U.S. government.
Marshall's long and successful career included numerous high-profile
cases and decisions. Many of his legal opinions reflect what we consider to
be the basic principles set forth in the U.S. Constitution.
Note sent to newspaper:
John Marshall found Aaron Burr Not Guilty in 1807 not
The duellist Hamilton won the fight to shape a nation, author
Friday, August 05, 2005
Reviewed by TOM ROOT
Special to the Register
Thomas Carlyle, the 19th-century English historian and essayist of literary
flair, wrote that "the history of the world is but the biography of great
men." Author Ron Chernow cheerfully complies with this notion in his
monumental biography "Alexander Hamilton." Through the medium of this flawed
character of genius and colossal ambition, Chernow re-creates an amazing story
of the founding of these United States.
But every hero's tale must have its villain, and in Chernow's mind it is the
crafty, Janus-faced Thomas Jefferson. In fact, the author devotes a whole
chapter to Jefferson titled "Dr. Pangloss," in reference to the foolish optimist
of Voltaire's satirical novel "Candide." Because of the titillating tale of
Sally Hemmings, the reader finds Jefferson exploded as a "closet sensualist."
Then is Hamilton a "closet monarchist?" But Chernow is right in his assessment
that Hamilton was the clear winner in the grand ideological war between robust
nationhood and state sovereignty, between the brawny commercial republic propped
up by splendid government and the yeoman's rural paradise soon to become a
subsidized sideshow to the great industrial drama.
To the modern mind the most senseless event in Hamilton's charged life was
the ending of it in his duel with Burr. But in Hamilton's age, public face and
reputation were what men of breeding were willing to risk life and limb for.
Chernow sets the epic Hamilton against the evil genius of Burr, who has the
unmistakable whiff of the sociopath. For Hamilton, fighting Burr was a win
either way -- if he were killed he would be apotheosized, and if he survived
with maiming, his public stock would stage a dramatic comeback. On the political
scene he would rally and again be "useful" to party and country.
As the highest of High Federalists, Hamilton projected the bold vision of
America's "everlasting glory." Would he be gratified by the outcome of history?
Certainly, he was prescient on all counts: We have profuse government, the
mysteries of central banking, a Constitution of endless implication, 50 paper
states and the mission of world salvation that requires a potent military ever
In "Alexander Hamilton," Ron Chernow presents a remarkable rendition of
perhaps the most influential of the Founding Fathers.
New Jersey is headed toward its first roundup of its most illustrious
citizens. They will be enshrined in the New Jersey Hall of Fame designated for
the Meadowlands Complex in East Rutherford.
Once acting Gov. Richard Codey signs the legislation he will be under
obligation to appoint 13 of the 15-member Hall of Fame Advisory Commission;
two will be named by Assembly Speaker Albio Sires of West New York.
The commission will determine "criteria" for selection of nominees and
The commission will also review architectural designs and development
Commission members will be drawn from "visual and performing arts, music,
literature, science, education, sports, entertainment, business, religion,
government, military and philanthropy."
There are obvious choices for Hall selection.
Most likely choices include Gov. and President Woodrow Wilson, inventor
Thomas A. Edison, poet Walt Whitman, physicist Albert Einstein, singer-actor
Frank Sinatra, actor Jack Nicholson and singer Bruce Springsteen.
But don't overlook some other figures from history, like Clara Barton,
founder of the Red Cross; John P. Holland, inventor of the modern submarine;
or the tarnished Aaron Burr, a vice president best remembered for the duel
that killed Alexander Hamilton on July 11, 1804, in Weehawken.
There are also the state's numerous war heroes: Gen. Philip Kearny, killed
in the Civil War in 1862; Adm. William F. Halsey of Elizabeth, famed South
Pacific commander; and Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf, commander in the Gulf War.