Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Homicides, Old West Cow Towns, And Today


By Terry McGahey
Associate Writer/ Old West Historian

I get a kick out of how the far left enjoys comparing the murder rates in this modern age to the lawlessness of the "Wild West".

I can't tell you how many times I have heard the term "cowboy" used for someone who may go beyond the normal, or go on his own, in a manner which may be considered out of the box or too straight forward.

We can thank Hollywood for the Western movies which overestimated the killings from that time period and over zealous leftist politicians who love to use the term "having the wild west mentality" to do their best to scare folks into allowing them to pass more gun control laws because they fear the armed public.

Reality is much different than the myths which we have been led to believe about the "Wild West".

A study done by Robert Dykstra, called "The Legends of the Wild, Wild West", proved that the Wild West era was more civilized, more peaceful and a safer place and time period to live in than what it is now in our civilized modern society.

Over a fifteen year period, from 1870 to 1885, there were only forty five homicides reported which averaged only one and a half murders per cattle season in all five Kansas cow towns combined. Again, that's a fifteen year period!

These towns were Abilene, Ellsworth, Wichita, Dodge City and Caldwell. One of the most interesting statistics is that the largest number of murder rates took place with the advent of the officers of the law in those towns who were supposedly hired to prevent killings. So why did the numbers increase after that?
Only Ellsworth and Dodge City ever reached a peak of five killings in one year.

In reality, the cowboys who hit these towns after maybe three months on the trail were mostly looking for a bath, new clothes, boots, a new hat and maybe a "soiled dove" to spend some time with.

Sure, many of them got rowdy but for the most part they were the one's who did turn in their weapons to the designated depositories. They didn't go around shooting each other up as the movies and such would have us believe.

Remember, the term "cowboy" came from the reality that many of these cowhands were in their early to mid twenties or even teenagers for heaven's sake. Yes, they grew up faster than our teenagers today because they had to. But many were still teens with teenage mind sets, and had playful tendencies no different than the teens today. Many of these kids only carried guns to look more as adults.

Also, I would like you to think about this. There was no federal government intrusion out West during that time period and even though some of the towns initiated a non-carrying of weapons ordinance many towns folks carried concealed weapons anyway. That's no different than many people still do today, even in places like the gun hating area of Southern California where it is illegal to do so for any reason -- unless of course you are wealthy or well connected enough to receive a concealed weapons permit.

People are people, no different today than back in the 1800s. The major difference between then and now is the time itself and the brainwashing against firearms, which has been promoted by our own government officials as well as our school systems and colleges in these -- our supposed civilized times.

If you truly believe that man is civilized, take most people, stick them up in the Rocky Mountains for four weeks. If they survive, you will not see a civilized being at that point. We are only so called civilized because of society.

The next time you hear some news correspondent or progressive politician mention how we live with an "Old West mentality" because of a shooting, think about this: If we really did have the "Old West mentality", we would actually be living in a more polite, kinder and safer environment over all than we do now.

The numbers don't lie.





Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Let's Talk About Calaveras County


Many of my regular readers know that I live in Glencoe, California. It's been a great place to live. It's a place that I have bragged about on various posts. And while I'm always making note of the fact that this is truly rural America, I've also made folks aware that we only have a population of 189 folks here and that we have to drive 17 miles to get our groceries.

Calaveras County is cattle grazing land, farm land, vast forests, pristine lakes, and of course mountains like no other. It's small communities that started out as mining camps, roads that wind seemingly endlessly pass ranches, wineries, dairies, and logging, and more.

This county was part of the birth of the American West. Our roots are ruins found in flatlands, the foothills, the Sierra Nevada Mountains, all in the heart of the California Gold Country.

Calaveras County encompasses 1,020 square miles of land and 17 square miles of water. Our population, as of April 1st, 2010, is 45,578. In 2015, our population was estimated at 44,828. Yes, our density is measured at 44 residents per square mile.

Imagine that for a moment. Compare that to where I'm from, the island of Oahu, Hawaii, which has 597 square miles of land. The island of Oahu, Hawaii, has a population of 953,207 as of the 2010 census. That means the density of just the island of Oahu is measured at 1,636 residents per square mile. Yes, though part of my heart will always be in Hawaii, I don't miss the congestion.

And for you folks who are wondering, the word "Calaveras" is the Spanish word for "skulls." The name came about after the remains of warring Native American tribes were discovered by the Spanish explorer Captain Gabriel Moraga in the 1830s.

It's said that in 1836, a party of men, which included early Californians John Marsh and Jose Noriega, went exploring in Northern California. They made camp along a river bed in the evening of a moonless night. When they awoke the next morning, they discovered that they had camped in the midst of a great quantity of skulls and bones. It was there and then that they gave the river the appropriate name of Calaveras.

Gold prospecting in Calaveras County began in late 1848 with a camp founded by Henry and George Angel. The brothers first arrived in California as soldiers, serving under Colonel Fremont during the Mexican War. After the war's end, the brothers found themselves in Monterey where they heard of the fabulous finds in the gold fields. 

They joined the Carson-Robinson party of prospectors and set out for the gold fields. The company parted ways upon reaching the area which later would became known as Angels Creek.

The Angels brothers tried placer mining, but it's said that they soon opened a trading post and really struck paydirt. By the end of the year, over one hundred tents were scattered about the creek and the settlement was referred to as Angels Trading Post, later shortened to Angels Camp. Toady the town of Angels Camp is our county's only incorporated city.

If Angels Camp rings a bell, Mark Twain set his story The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County in Angels Camp. The story goes that a young Samuel Clemens, a young man who would write under the pen-name Mark Twain, overheard a story in a hotel bar he frequented in Angels Camp. 

It's said that he lived in a small cabin up on Jackass Hill. And it was there during the fall of 1865, that Mark Twain penned the now famous The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County. It was the literary work that made Mark Twain a household name. 

Of course today our county hosts an annual fair and Jumping Frog Jubilee, featuring a frog-jumping contest, to celebrate the association with Twain's story.

Besides gold, Mark Twain, and the jumping frogs, Calaveras County is famous for its lode and placer mines. But also, for many years it was the principal copper producing county in California. And yes, for years now, cement production from its vast limestone deposits has become one of the county's major industries in recent years.

As for placer mining, a lot of folks don't realize that the gold above ground played out pretty quickly. It's true, since at one point in Angels Camp's early history there were as many as 4,000 miners working the claims. The Surface gold however, quickly diminished, leaving only the hardrock mining industry which flourished until recently.

Because the surface gold was disappearing, there was an extensive gold-bearing quartz vein of the area's Mother Lode located by the Winter brothers during the mid-1850s, and this brought in the foundations of a permanent town. Believe it or not, the Winter's vein followed Angel Camp's Main Street from Angels Creek up to the southern edge of Altaville. Five major mines worked the rich vein: the Stickle, the Utica, the Lightner, the Angels, and the Sultana.

Of course there are other stories similar to the Winter's vein. Such is the story of the vein of gold bearing quartz which was discovered accidentally by a man with the unique name of Bennager Raspberry. 

The story goes that while out hunting one afternoon near Angels Camp, pioneer Bennager Raspberry took some time out to clean his rifle. Soon after starting the process, his ramrod became lodged in the barrel.

So now, Bennager Raspberry thought that the best way to free the stuck ramrod was to simply shoot the gun. So, it's said that he aimed his rifle at a nearby squirrel and fired. He missed the squirrel and sent his ramrod into some bushes. 

After going into the bushes to get his ramrod, he noticed on the tip a small piece of quartz rich with gold. It is said that that afternoon, he dug up $700 worth of gold using only his ramrod as a shovel. The following day, better prepared, he pulled out $2,000 worth of gold and $7,000 on the third day. 

Such was the way of life before the Angels Camp area mines reached their peaks during the 1880s and 1890s when over 200 stamp mills crushed quartz ore brought in by hand cars on track from the mines. By the time hard rock mining was done in that area, five mines there had producing a total of over $20 million in gold.

But besides Angels Camp, the following places were early day mining communities in Calaveras County: Mokelumne Hill, Glencoe, Calaveritas, Old Gulch, Douglas Flat, Vallecito, Murphys, Sheep Ranch, San Antone, Rich Gulch, Campo Seco, Copperopolis, West Point, Middle Bar, Carson Hill, Robinson's Ferry, Jesus Maria, Mountain Ranch, El Dorado, North Branch, Camanche, Railroad Flat, Blue Mountain City, Telegraph City, Petersburg, Gwin Mine, Fourth Crossing, and Jenny Lind.

The largest gold nugget found in the United States was taken from the Morgan Mine at Carson Hill in November of 1854. When weighed on Adams Express Company's gold scales in Stockton, it balanced the scales at 214 pounds and eight ounces Troy.

Another interesting fact about gold and Calaveras County is that the gold "telluride" mineral "calaverite" was first recognized and obtained in 1861 from the Stanislaus Mine, Carson Hill, Angels Camp, in Calaveras County. Yes, it was named for the County of origin by chemist and mineralogist Frederick Augustus Genth who differentiated it from the known gold telluride mineral "sylvanite", and formally reported it as a new gold mineral in 1868.

The first grove of Big Trees, "Sequoia Gigantea," discovered in California was the Calaveras Grove of Big Trees. Credit for the discovery of giant sequoias here is given to Augustus T. Dowd, a trapper who made the discovery in 1852 while tracking a bear. Dowd was a hunter for the Union Water Company which was at that time building an aqueduct from the Stanislaus River to the town of Murphys.

Calaveras County is home to Calaveras Big Trees State Park, a preserve of Giant Sequoia trees, which is located in the county a few miles east of the town of Arnold just off of Highway 4. And in case you were wondering, when the bark from the "Discovery Tree" was removed and taken on a tour around the world, the trees soon became a worldwide sensation and one of the county's first tourist attractions. 

Besides big trees, Calaveras County has a number of deep caverns. And also, a California Department of Forestry report lists the county's area in acres as 663,000, although the exact figure would be 663,477.949 acres of forest.

Court was first held in our county in a large tent in Double Springs. Later a small court house was built with camphor wood imported from China. The old building is still standing at Double Springs today. 

Calaveras County was one of the original counties of the state of California, created in 1850 at the time of admission to the Union. It  incorporated on February 18th, 1850. Parts of the county's territory were reassigned to Amador County in 1854 and to Alpine County in 1864. 

The county seat was moved to Jackson in 1850 where it remained until 1852 when Jackson was about to become part of Amador County. Yes, the town of Jackson was actually in Calaveras County first. 

In 1852, the county seat of Calaveras County was moved to Mokelumne Hill where it remained until 1863. After an election in 1863, San Andreas was declared to be the county seat. Legal action followed this election, and it was not until 1866 that the county seat was actually moved to San Andreas where it has stayed to today.

The Calaveras Chronicle, the first weekly newspaper published in California, was first published on October 28th, 1851, in Mokelumne Hill. And besides the first weekly newspaper in California, the first three story building erected in the interior of California was in Mokelumne Hill.

And if you want to know how truly tough the town of Mokelumne Hill really was back in 1851, imagine a town so tough that there was a killing every week for 17 straight weeks. Yes, it was a lot rougher than most towns in the Old West.

Don't think so? Then tell me what other town in the Old West had merchants actually dig underground tunnels for their customers to use just so they would be able to get from one side of the street to the other. All so that they wouldn't be shot crossing the street in broad daylight. None to my knowledge. No other town went through that. But then again, I covered that in Mokelumne Hill was bloodier than Tombstone

While many of my regular readers have seen me mention where I live, and can surely tell just how much I love this place, you probably don't know that I'm not very fond of the quality of some of the new people moving here. And no, it's not just Glencoe. I'm not real keen on some of the people moving into this county.

Frankly, you may be surprised at what you find out about what's taking place today in Calaveras County. I will have that information for you in upcoming articles. To give you a hint of where I'm coming from, I wouldn't recommend anyone moving to this county right now -- and certainly not in the near future.

In the near future, I will be writing more about Calaveras County. I will explain why things are getting bad around here. I'll explain who is coming in and why they have to be stopped. I promise you, you will be surprised.


Tom Correa






Thursday, September 22, 2016

Frank Stilwell -- How Newspapers Reported His Murder 1882

Frank Stilwell was in Tucson because he was subpoenaed to appear in front of the Grand Jury on March 21st, 1882. That is a matter of record.That is indisputable.

Whether Stilwell saw the Earps upon arrival there and then wanted to do them harm in some way, frankly no one will ever know that real answer to that. We do know that his presence at the train station was enough to make the Earps believe that he was there to kill one of them.

These things are for certain, just as there is also no doubt that Wyatt Earp and his men murdered Frank Stilwell on March 20th. Wyatt bragged about doing so on a number of occasions.

While he always said that he was the only one who killed Stilwell, we know from the Coroner's report that his men also shot Stilwell. Remember, the Coroner's examination found evidence of Stilwell being shot with 5 different caliber weapons. If one were investigating this, it's a safe bet to say that that's proof positive that he had accomplices.

If one studies the actions of Wyatt Earp, it's now wonder folks back then saw what he was doing as no different than what other outlaws were doing. After all, outlaws murdered at will in the same way as Earp and his men had.

Of course today there are people who somehow make the excuse that Wyatt Earp and his men needed to take the law into his own hands. They somehow believe that Wyatt and Warren Earp, Doc Holliday, Sherman McMasters and John Johnson, were in the right for taking law into their own hands.

A number of Earp fans have written me to say that "Wyatt was fed up with the Court system, and he felt that he couldn't get justice in the courts." One of my readers wrote me an angry letter demanding that I prove that the courts were fair at the time. And yes, he too wanted to remind me that "Wyatt did what he did because he couldn't get satisfaction in the courts. And don't forget that he was avenging his brother's death."

While I've always understand the urge to take the law into your own hands when the courts fail us, should we all just throw the rule of law out the window when it doesn't go our way? Yet at the same time celebrate and say that the system works when it does? Isn't that being a little hypocritical.

Can you imagine what sort of society we would have if we all decided that we should be judge and jury, and executioner? Can you imagine if we all decided that the law simply didn't do what we needed, so we should take the law into our own hands?

I've studied vigilance committees a great deal, and I truly understand why people took it upon themselves to tell the law to step aside. And frankly, in more cases than not, I understand and agree with what they did. I know for fact that lean sentences and a corrupt justice system made people take the law into their own hands and do what they believed was right. And though I understand and agree with many of the cases where vigilantes did what needed to be done, that's still doesn't mean they were right in doing it.

As for those saying, ""Wyatt did what he did because he couldn't get satisfaction in the courts," I think the idea that the court system didn't work for the Earps is a pretty bogus claim. Remember that Wyatt and his brother all though the court system in Tombstone worked perfectly fine when it worked in their favor.

Please remember that the Earps and Holliday were charged with murder after the shootout at the lot near the OK Corral. Remember, they were charged with murder and found not guilty by Judge Spicer. It's also said that while Judge Spicer was even handed throughout most of those proceedings, that he made at least two decisions specially to specifically benefit the Earps' and Holliday defense.

Earps getting preferential treatment in Spicer's court didn't go un-noticed. Remember that Spicer's decision stopped the Earp's and Holliday from going on to a full trial. Ike Clanton and William McLaury said that they "couldn't get satisfaction in the courts" and actually attempted to get a change of venue and have the Earps tried in nearby Contention City.  But as we know, that didn't happen because the Grand Jury accepted Judge Spicer’s ruling and refused on more than one occasion to indict Holliday and the Earps.

So the question becomes, knowing that the Earps had preferential treatment in Spicer's court, does the claim that they couldn't get justice really hold water? I don't think it does.

Why should people, either back then or in today's world, allow some to flaunt the law while the rest of us restrain our urges and act civilized and adhere to the law?  Why should anyone applaud someone who does as he or she wants to do, just because they can get away with it?

And no, I'm not talking about some politician breaking the law and getting away with it, I'm talking about people today seeing what the Earps and his men did as being somehow OK when in fact they were breaking all sorts of laws doing it.

Shouldn't facts matter? The fact is that Frank Stilwell was in Tucson to testify in front of the Grand Jury and not there "specifically to assassinate" the Earps, as the Earps claimed. Shouldn't the fact that Wyatt Earp and his supposed lawfully deputized posse fled the scene after killing Stilwell matter? When do law enforcement officers act like that? Shouldn't that matter?

Shouldn't actions matter? Shouldn't we all judge the actions of others on what they do and not the excuses they use for doing it?  In Earps' case, Wyatt never justified taking the law into his own hands yet people gave him a pass.

If you wonder if there are double standards in history, look at how the story of Wyatt Earp's actions are portrayed. Since the term "lawless" means "not restrained by or under the control of legal authority," Wyatt Earp and his men were as lawless as any other group of outlaws of the time.

Wyatt Earp got away with it because he had friends in the right places. They protected him from extradition and prosecution. They helped him and his men get away with multiple murders. 

Below you'll find a number of articles that were in various papers about the Stilwell murder. You may find a big difference between how the pro-Earp Tombstone Epitaph reported the killing versus other papers.

The Arizona Star, March 21st, 1882:

"Without any provocation a band of four or five slayers pursued a lonely man in the dark and without a word of warning murdered him in cold blood and then hied to their stamping grounds as unconcerned as though they had when out on a hunting expedition, or like so many blood-thirsty Apaches rejoice over their crime."

The Tombstone Epitaph, March 22nd, 1882:

"The people of Tombstone were startled this morning with a report from Tucson that Frank Stilwell, a well know personage in this county as late deputy sheriff at Bisbee, and as one of the alleged Bisbee stage robbers, as also suspected of having killed an old man at the Brunckow mine some two or three years ago, had been found dead from the effects of a charge of buckshot, near the Porter House, at the depot in Tucson.

As the dispatch says, there are two theories of the killing here as at Tucson. One is that the comrades of Stilwell, fearing that he might turn states evidence, have silenced him and the other, that it is the work of the incensed Earp brothers for the assassination of Morgan, it being stated that there is positive evidence that Stilwell was in Tombstone Saturday night at the time Morgan Earp was murdered; and that he rode into Tucson on horseback Sunday. In either case his taking off verifies the saying that “the way of the transgressor is hard."

The Tombstone Daily Nugget, March 22nd, 1882:

"Tucson, March 21- This morning at daylight, the track man at the Southern Pacific Railroad depot found the body of Frank Stilwell about one hundred yards north of Porter’s Hotel at the side of the track, riddled with bullets.”
When George Parsons heard about the demise of Frank Stilwell in the Tucson rail yard, he wrote in his journal, “a quick chief attraction until a few more accompany him.”

The Arizona Daily Star, March 22nd, 1882:

"Sheriff Behan yesterday received a telegram from the authorities at Tucson, requesting him to arrest Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday, Sherman McMasters and one Johnson and hold them until further advice. Shortly after the receipt of the telegram, Sheriff Behan went to the Cosmopolitan Hotel, where he found the two Earp brothers, Wyatt and Warren, Holliday, Texas Jack, Johnson and McMasters. The sheriff informed the party of mission, when, in an instant each one leveled a six shooter at the officer, and peremptorily refused to submit to arrest. The sheriff retired, and immediately took measures to raise a posse to enable him to accomplish his duty. 

Scores of volunteers proffered their services to aid in enforcement of the law, and arms for a sufficient number were quickly obtained from the store of P. W. Smith & Co. Immediately upon the enforced retirement of the sheriff from the hotel, the Earp party, six in number, also left the premises, all heavily armed, and betook themselves to the corner of Allen and Third streets, where their horses were, ready saddled, and quickly mounting, they rode rapidly out of town, in the direction of Contention. 

The sheriff, finding that the time consumed in arming and equipping his posse had enabled the other party to secure at least a half an hour’s start, concluded not to commence the pursuit until this morning at 5 o’clock. Sheriff Behan was extremely careful never to catch up to the Earps and Holliday where he would be forced into a confrontation with an angry Wyatt Earp and a revenge-minded Doc Holliday. When he did blunder into their vicinity he quickly found his duties required his presence far away."

The Tombstone Dally Nugget, March 22nd, 1882:

"The assassination of Frank Stilwell in Tucson Monday night was, there is little doubt but another act in the bitter faction feud which has worked untold harm to the interests of Tombstone and Cochise County during the past six months. As all well informed persons were satisfied that the killing of Morgan Earp in this city Saturday night was the natural and legitimate sequence of preceding acts of violence, so, in regard to this latter assassination everybody conversant with the facts is equally well satisfied that it was but the natural outgrowth of the same causes. And as all right thinking and order-loving citizens denounced and deprecated the unlawful killing of Earp, so will the murder of Stilwell, which is surrounded by all the cowardly fiendishness of the former, create a feeling of loathing for the perpetrators and horror at the deed in the breasts of every man possessed of the common instincts of humanity or any regard for the preservation of organized society. 

The Nugget condemned in words of no uncertain meaning the dastardly act of Saturday night, and it now denounces the red-handed assassins of Stilwell and places them in the same category as the skulking murderers of Earp. It is to be earnestly hoped the cowardly perpetrators of two of the foulest, ghoul-like assassinations that ever disgraced any community, may be speedily identified, that justice, stern and unrelenting may be swiftly meted out to them."

The Arizona Daily Star, March 22nd, 1882:

"It is openly boasted by some that they will not deny the crime, and that their mission to our city was for no other purpose than to kill Ike Clanton, brother to William, who was recently assassinated in Tombstone by quasi-federal officials, and failing in their purpose, sought his next best friend and reeked the disappointed vengeance on him.

The boldness of the act, right at the depot in a peaceable city, around and amid the bustle of visitors at the train only adds to the offense, and effrontery of these desperadoes in transferring their enmity to those who were in our city under orders from the court, or had come here as a place of safety from these thirsty bloodhounds, is as provoking and outrageous to our citizens as it is damned in the sight of heaven.

It has been stated that Stillwell (sic), the unfortunate man, who fell victim, was a bad dangerous man. This may all be true. He has been twice or thrice arrested, once charged with murder, and once on suspicion of stage robbery, but in both cases the court, or examining magistrate pronounced him innocent. Let us give the man who is silenced in death by the assassin’s bullet the benefit of the courts’ judgment. He cannot answer his accusers now. Let his faults, no matter how grievous they were, be interred with his body, for it must be remembered that those that slew him were his accusers in these crimes. They failed to lock him in dungeon, but they did not fail in his taking off.

But admitting that he was all that even his sworn enemies alleged, that was no excuse for the crime. He was not an outlaw. He was within the jurisdiction of the courts and the officers of the law, and could have been taken at anytime without the slightest resistance. The presumption seems to be all in his favor.

In regard to the Earp party, no doubt but what they have some warm friends who are good citizens. And undoubtedly it is this fact which has given them so long suffrage in Tombstone. If one-twentieth part of what is said of their record is true they are certainly no desirable acquisition to any community They are a roving band; their path is strewn with blood.

Strange as it may seem, wherever they halt in a settlement stage robberies follow and human life ceases to he sacred. Their late escapades at Tombstone are only their records repeated in other frontier towns, and if we judge the honest sense of justice and peace abiding disposition of our citizens, they will never dare another such foul murder as was committed last Monday night.”


-- end of newspaper articles.


Now, to answer my reader who said, "And don't forget that he was avenging his brother's death."

First, here's something that I've wondered about.  It was only speculated that Frank Stilwell was part of the men who shot Virgil and killed Morgan, but we know that Ike Clanton's hat was found in the area after the ambush of Virgil. Some say that was proof enough that Ike was actually in on it. If that was the case and there was proof, why is it that Wyatt never went after Ike who was actually connected to the crime scene? Why didn't he?

And what if the tables were turned and someone went hunting for Wyatt Earp for killing Frank Stilwell, and in fact killed him because he killed his brother Frank Stilwell? Would that have been OK?

What if that person felt that the law was "too friendly to the Earps", as demonstrated in what has become known as "the Spicer hearing," and decided to take the law into their own hands? Would that be OK?

Remember that the whole thing, the whole drama of the Earps versus the Clantons reads a lot like the Hatfields and McCoys, revenge and revenge and revenge. From the political double cross over political appointments that started the whole thing, to revenge for killing killing cowboys to revenge for killing Morgan, it didn't stop. And to make one side or the other sound like angels is bullshit. They were both at fault.

Remember when Frank Stilwell's older brother arrived later looking for the Earps because he felt that he couldn't "get satisfaction" from a rigged court made up of friends of the Earps? Would it have been OK for him to kill Wyatt and Warren Earp, and the others who were in on executing Frank? Was it OK for him to hunt them down and want to kill them in the same way that the Earps killed Frank, execution style?

That situation actually took place when Frank Stilwell's brother Deputy U.S. Marshal Comanche Jack Stilwell arrived in Tombstone to find and kill Wyatt and Warren Earp for murdering his brother Frank. Sadly by the time Camanche Jack got there, Wyatt was long gone and in the safety of Colorado where he was fighting extradition back to Arizona.

I can't help but wonder if people today would have made the same excuses for Comanche Jack killing Wyatt Earp as they do for the Earp today? Would they have called Comanche Jack killing Wyatt a "vendetta" like they do today in regards to Wyatt killing Frank and the others?

Would they claim that his actions were justified because of some bogus claim that he couldn't get justice in the courts and that's why he acted the way he wanted to? There are others in history not as lucky as Wyatt Earp. Unlike Earp, they've been held accountable for their crimes.

I think it is ironic that it was all about revenge, revenge, revenge, and so on.

Virgil was shot and Morgan Earp was murdered because the "cow-boy" faction wanted revenge because they did not get justice in the court system after the Spicer hearing set the Earps and Doc Holliday free after what took place at the lot near the OK Corral. Wyatt and Warren Earp and their men, went on their killing spree because they wanted revenge because they did not get justice in the court system after after Virgil was ambushed and Morgan was murdered. Comanche Jack Stilwell showed up looking for the Earps and the others who killed his brother Frank. His intention was to kill them because he wanted revenge because they did not get justice in the court system. He felt that he wouldn't get justice in a court system to friendly to the Earps.

As for the murder of Frank Stilwell, as I stated before, I believe that Wyatt Earp and his men wanted to kill Stilwell and the others. To get away with it, I believe they used their badges at first. Then when they became wanted men, they used the excuse that they couldn't get justice in the courts even though the courts previously had been shown to be friendly to them.

And like I said previously, Wyatt Earp got away with avoiding prosecution because he had friends in the right places. They protected him from extradition and prosecution. They helped him and his men get away with multiple murders.

And yes, that's just the way I see it.

Tom Correa






Saturday, September 17, 2016

Grave Robbers In Golden Gate Cemetery 1908


Since I've written about how the city of San Francisco had banned cemeteries and essentially evicted all buried there. Those interred were supposedly dug up and moved to the city of Colma just south of San Francisco.

But have you ever wondered about what was going on when San Francisco was actually in the process of removing all of those buried there? Well, this will give you some insight into what was taking place.
The San Francisco Morning Call, December 16th, 1908:

GRAVES DESECRATED IN GOLDEN GATE CEMETERY

Vandals Wreck Tombs and Expose Bodies in Old Burial Ground 

Supervisor Payot and Coroner Leland visited the site of the old Golden Gate cemetery yesterday to investigate the acts of vandalism committed about the exposed graves. 

Mrs. E. H. D'Donnell and Mrs. C. H. Rockwell, officers of the Richmond women's improvment club, had called Payot's attention to the desecration of many of the graves, particularly that of the tomb of Russian woman, Mary Gribbich, whose body, brought from Sacramento, had been interred in a handsome marble lined vault in 1892. 

The massive slab covering the tomb had been broken and pried away, revealing the costly garments and the rings worn by the dead woman in her last resting place.

Mrs. O'Donnell reported that curious crowds had been visiting the spot and unknown persons had cast rubbish upon the remains until the body was almost covered from view by the stuff.

Other exposed remains, she said had been similarly treated. Payot notified the police to use more vigilance in guarding the plot, and the coroner ordered the tomb of Mrs. Gribbich restored and resealed."

-- end article.

Editor's Note: 

I posted the above article unedited just as it appeared when first published just two years after the 1906 San Francisco earthquake took place. It was a small article in the San Francisco Call that probably didn't get very much attention.

The reason that it probably didn't get very much attention is that theft and vandalism was going on while the graves were being dug up to be removed to Colma and this sort of behavior was fairly common place. It was not out of the ordinary for grave robbers to loot the open graves of those being moved.

The grave robbers, the vandals, the ghouls, who saw nothing wrong with rifling through the remains of some long dead pioneer and steal the buttons off their clothing, a broach, a ring, their clothing, and what have you. It was a constant and didn't only take place on a few occasions.

Isn't it amazing that this sort of thing went on 1908? After all, from everything we are told, it was supposedly a time when people had more reverence for the dead. Of course if they did have reverence, one can't tell that by what was taking place in San Francisco at the time. 

Tom Correa




Friday, September 16, 2016

Bat Masterson's Sister Murdered -- Or Was She?

On September 10th, 1893, the Kansas City Times called the crime a "Murder Most Cruel" while The Daily Journal newspaper headline simply used the word "Strangled."

While both papers were talking about the gruesome murder of a woman who was strangled to death, it was the Kansas City Times that stated she was "a sister of Bat Masterson."

As for Mrs. Jane Wright, her son's account of her life was one that the public found interesting only that it lent insight into the Masterson family. And of course, Bat. 

In brief, the article read:

Mrs. Wright was born Jane Masterson in Toronto in about 1837, the eldest of five children, one of whom was Bat, who was said to be "an unruly boy" who ran away from home and got a severe whipping from his aunt.

Jane was married at 17 to a wealthy slave-owning planter from Louisiana and sent money to bring Bat and his siblings to Buffalo: "He drifted out west," said the son, "and we often heard of him since as an officer of the law and a referee at prize fights. We have written to him several times, but he never answered our letters."

Jane’s husband died of yellow fever in 1853 and, illiterate, she was cheated out of her inheritance. She migrated to Cincinnati, where she married again. After her second husband deserted her, she came with her son to Kansas City and opened an employment bureau. Business was apparently good – her office was said to always be crowded with job seekers – but it was a dodgy and even dangerous sort of business. Wright kept a revolver in her office, another at home, and kept her money on her person.

She didn’t trust banks, and for good reason: bank runs were occurring across the country in the depression of 1893. The Kansas City Safe Deposit Bank failed in March, ruining many of its depositors. In July, the National Bank of Kansas City suspended operations.

Speculation about the motive for her murder included not only robbery, since her habit of carrying her money with her was known, but revenge: “Many Italians have recently been deceived and defrauded by employment agents in Kansas City.” -- The Kansas City Times.

Some believed it was a crime of revenge, while others thought robbery, and some even thought that she "may have deceived some woman, whose brother or relative sought revenge." Both Kansas City newspapers reported all of the speculations, including the that the robbers accused each other of being the one who actually strangled Mrs. Wright.

Bat Masterson was not the subject of the news article about a woman who was murdered, but her being his sister was an opportunity that newspapers at the time wouldn't pass up the chance to mention. Papers mentioning Bat Masterson, or any known gunman, was known to be great for business and was always used as an attempt to increase circulation. Because she was his sister, the Kansas City Times publicized the association between Bat Masterson and the murdered woman without shame.

As for Masterson being mentioned, the article was said to have focused more on him. For example, the paper stated, that "Masterson is one of the most noted men in the West, known as a desperate fighter and said to have a record of more men killed than any man on the frontier."

And yes, that same reporter noted that "Masterson is known throughout the country as one of the land-marks of Dodge City in its most palmy days." 

In a separate piece, that same reporter profiled Bat Masterson by writing:

"A man probably 38 years of age, although looking two or three years younger; about five feet, nine inches tall. He wore a black derby hat and a spring suit of clothes, light in color and beautifully made. He was not flashy in any respect and yet he looked like a gambler or sporting man. He is extremely polite in manner, talks well and easily and uses very good English. This is a man who is said to have killed as many men as any other of the noted border characters, and yet never a one by unfair advantage, and who now has a reputation on pugilism and a man who is willing to back his judgment as long as his money lasts."

The Twist In The Story -- The Murdered Woman Was Not Bat's Sister.

Weather or not Jane Wright was from Canada and a "Masterson" of some sort other than related to Bat Masterson's family is anyone's guess. We know from her son that she told him and friends that she was Bat Masterson’s sister. But, once Bat and his siblings were informed that there was a pretender out there, her claims were immediately disputed by Bat Masterson's family.

The Daily Journal was quick to take a jab at its rival, the Kansas City Times' report, by running an article stating that the Journal had received a telegram from Masterson's brother in Wichita denying that the murdered woman was their sister. His family consisted of 5 brothers and 2 sisters

The Kansas City Times also reported on the denial by the Masterson family in Wichita. They stated that they received a telegram from Bat Masterson disclaiming any knowledge of Mrs. Wright. The telegram also stated that the testimony of Charles Bassett is that he had never heard Masterson speak of having a sister in Kansas City. 

And while one would think that a simple newspaper correction would have taken cared of the matter, it's said that the Kansas City Times was absolutely unwilling to concede its error -- especially to its arch-rival in the Kansas City newspaper wars.

The Kansas City Times instead ran an article that stated that "perhaps Jane Wright of Toronto, child bride, widow, abandoned wife, and hard-scrabble businesswoman in a society hostile to independent women, had a more practical reason for claiming an association with the famous gunslinger -- the same reason she kept a revolver in her office and another at her home." 

And that, that was under the Times' story with the subtitle "Everything lends to show Bat Masterson and Mme. Wright related," where it promptly repeated the claim by Mrs. Wright's son that his mother was the sister of Bat Masterson because she was from Canada. Imagine that.

Tom Correa



Thursday, September 15, 2016

We can stop the BLM execution of 45,000 Wild Horses


BLM execution of 45,000 Wild Horses is hitting the Mainstream Media

The New York Post headline reads:
Uncle Sam may kill 45,000 wild horses

People Magazine headline reads:
Government Plans to Kill 45,000 Wild Horses

The New York Daily News headline reads:
Federal government may kill 45,000 wild horses

The Telegraph (UK) headline reads:
US Government could kill 45,000 wild horses

The FoxNews.com headline reads:
Wild horses should be killed or sold, government board decides

September 14, 2016

The U.S. government is coming under fire from animal rights activists amid concerns that almost 45,000 wild horses could be euthanized in an attempt to control their numbers.

Last week the Bureau of Land Management’s National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board recommended that the Bureau euthanize or sell “without limitation” excess “unadoptable” horses and burros in the BLM’s off-range corrals and pastures.

An “unadoptable” horse or burro is typically at least 5 years old, making them less attractive for purchase or adoption. The bureau has more than 44,000 horses and more than 1,000 burros in off-range pastures and corrals.

The recommendation prompted an angry response from The Humane Society of the United States. “The decision of the BLM advisory board to recommend the destruction of the 45,000 wild horses currently in holding facilities is a complete abdication of responsibility for their care,” said Humane Society Senior Vice President of Programs & Innovations Holly Hazard, in a statement.

Under the terms of the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act, the BLM manages, protects and controls wild horses and burros. The law authorizes the agency to move wild horses and burros off ranges to sustain the health of public lands. In addition to the off-range animals, the bureau estimates that more than 67,000 wild horses and burros are roaming on BLM-managed rangelands in 10 Western states.

With virtually no natural predators, wild horse and burro herd sizes can double about every four years, which means that thousands of the animals are removed from the range each year to control herd sizes and protect the land. The BLM has its own off-range holding corrals in states such as Nevada and California, as well as contracts with private ranches in locations such as Kansas and Oklahoma.

The Bureau has not yet made a formal response to the board’s recommendation, although, in a statement, it said that it will continue to care and seek good homes for animals that have been removed from the range. “What this means is that we will continue with our current policy, which is not to sell or send wild horses or burros to slaughter,” it said.

A BLM spokesman told FoxNews.com that the animals are protected. “These are public lands and the horses are a symbol of the history of the Old West,” he said. Since 1971, the BLM has adopted out more than 235,000 wild horses and burros, according to the spokesman. “We screen buyers and we screen adopters,” he added.

The agency also noted that the Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board is an independent panel comprised of members of the public.

The bureau spent $49 million caring for off-range animals during its fiscal year 2015, which accounted for two-thirds of its wild horse and burro budget.

However, the Humane Society has slammed the agency’s efforts. “Over the past 20 years, the BLM has maintained round-up and removal as a primary management strategy for wild horse and burro populations on America’s western rangelands – an effort which has led to a financially unsustainable Wild Horse and Burro Program,” it said, in its statement. “By focusing massive efforts on removing horses and burros from the range, without treating those horses remaining on the range with any form of fertility control to limit population growth, holding facilities throughout the United States have become overburdened.”

-- end article on FoxNews.com

While I don't trust the Federal Government at all these days, and frankly think the BLM would say anything to pacify the general public, we need to take action and stop this from taking place.

Friends, this getting out on the Mainstream Media is good for us because it helps us stop it. This means the word is getting out and the public is not happy at all about the way the BLM is "taking care" of America's Wild Horses.

It means that while our petitions go unnoticed and thrown in the trash at the White House, our voices are still being heard. This all means we may be able to stop this injustice and get those animals freed one way or another. 

President Obama is looking at the money spent on America's Wild Horses versus how much money he wants to give to Muslim "refugees" to resettle her. Friends, if left to Obama the Wild Horses will be killed. 

Yes, besides pressure from Environmentalist to keep horses and cattle off public lands, Obama sees the money spent on the BLM budget for Wild Horses and Burros as better spent on his pet project of bringing in Muslims from Syria and resettling them in the American heartland.

Ever wonder why all of the Muslim refugee settlements are in rural America in Red States and not in Blue States in the Liberal cities? Liberals have the clout to keep the refugees out and the Democrats want more Muslims in what has been traditionally "Christian America". And while I feel that there's a tie between what Obama wants to spent on Muslim refugee and what's spent on our Wild Horses, I'm sorry to say that that's a subject for another day! 

Right now, we can feel good that the word is getting out and that there may be outside pressures put on the Obama administration to give these horses and burros a reprieve, but let's not get our hopes up too far and stop getting this word out to as many people as we know. 

We need to call our television and radio stations, and our newspapers, and hit them with questions. We need to generate interest to save these horses. We need to ask them why this is being done to save money -- yet the money to care for the horses and burros has already been allocated? 

If they are slaughtered, than the law will have again been broken and nothing will be done about it. So ask them why aren't people in the Obama administration following the law and truly protecting those horses? Ask how is it that the law protecting the Wild Horses is not being adhered to, and instead is being manipulated behind the scenes to create this genocide?

Ask why this is considered the BLM's "final solution" when they created this problem in the first place when they round them up for adoption? Ask about other alternatives, including taking the 45,000 horses and turning them loose all over the 22 contiguous Western states?


Friends, turning 45,000 horses loose throughout the 22 states West of the Mississippi river means putting 2,045 horses in each state to fend for themselves. Now, no one can tell us that 2,045 horses and burros running free spread out over hundred's of thousands of miles in each Western state would be an environmental impact to anything, or a budget problem. If someone tries to tell you that -- you know they're lying!  

And as for where do we get the money to transport these 2,045 horses to each state? Well how about we use the $49 Million that are already allocated and will be used to house and feed them in the holding pens that they're in right now. Besides, once they are gone -- the problem is solves and no horses die needlessly.

If the BLM says it can't be done, than ask if that BLM political appointees, or any other BLM officials, have any connection to those slaughter contractors wanting to buy the horses for slaughter? Is there corruption here? I believe there is! 

This has happened on a much smaller scale, but it has happened where BLM officials were getting kick-backs from horse slaughter contractors. Yes, bribes and payoffs have taken place in the past? 

If we find connections to slaughter contractors or any other conflict of interest, that find out why they aren't being investigated and in prison? Friends, this has happened before and nothing was done about it because of political cover. But this time, this is huge! Yes, killing 45,000 horses is a very big deal.

So what else can we do? Well, most of all, we need to contact our Congressmen and women -- and ask why isn't Congress investigating this before it takes place? Their investigation can save the lives of those 45,000 horses. 

Let's get after this and not let the Obama administration kill 45,000 of America's Wild Horses! 

Tom Correa
    

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Environmentalists to have BLM slaughter 45,000 Wild Horses


Within the last week or so, a number of articles report how the BLM’s advisory board just voted to kill off 45,000 wild horses in their care. Yes, that appears to be their idea of "taking care" of America's wild horses -- kill them off.

After back-checking this, I found that with only one "NO" vote, the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board has indeed voted in favor of killing all of the 45,000 Wild Horses currently in their short term and long term holding facilities. And yes, that's 45,000 horses.

As one report stated, the BLM uses the term "euthanasia" but that is incorrect since what they want to do does match the definition of "euthanasia." They must not understand that euthanasia is "the act or practice of killing or permitting the death of hopelessly sick or injured individuals, as with people or domestic animals, in a relatively painless way for reasons of mercy." But those 45,000 wild horses are not "hopelessly sick or injured."

They have been rounded up by the BLM to be "cared" for -- not murdered because they have become "too expensive" to care for. Besides, they became "too expensive" because of the government got involved with them. Fact is, the BLM is the reason that the wild horse program is "too expensive" to maintain.

The BLM decided to round them up instead of allowing them to live out there natural life cycle where they belong, but Environmentalists wants them off public lands. 

The intent behind this vote is to make it OK to simply kill the 45,000 wild horses. And yes, it is apparent that this is what the BLM sees as their final solution for America's Wild Horses.

And no, since the Federal government breaks the law every day these days, it doesn't matter to them that the wild horses are protected by an act of Congress. The hard truth behind the law protecting America's wild horses is that the law was made to protect them against the public -- but not the Federal Government in the form of the Bureau of Land Management. And yes, the BLM is the biggest threat to our wild horses.

And no, I still can't get past the idea that the BLM is supposed to be protecting them and not rounding them up for extermination which is exactly what they are doing. And by the way, the Obama administration's 2017 budget for the BLM directed them to slaughter and/or sterilize America's wild horses instead of spending what is needed.

Before someone writes to tell me that the wild horse program "needs Millions of dollars." The truth is that they only need Millions of dollars because BLM bureaucrats have created this expensive program. A program that doesn't work, but one that they keep dumping money in.

Now while I known that people who read my blog know full well that I have not been for any of the policies out of the Obama administration, there will be some who will surely say, "here he goes again!" But friends, this is the sort of mindless policy that has me at odds with Obama and those he puts in charge of agencies like the Bureau of Land Management.

First the BLM came up with the idea of rounding up our wild horses and putting them in an adoption program long before they even knew if there would be enough good people out there who could afford to keep a wild horse. That, my friends, is called putting the cart before the horse.

It was absurd to round up a bunch of horses with no idea if there would be people ready to adopt them -- that is other than killers who "adopt" wild horses to sell them for slaughter. And also, with the economy as bad as it is, there are people who may have the $125.00 to adopt -- but not the funds to house, feed, and care for a wild horse. 

That's why a lot of wild horses become a burden after they're adopted by well-meaning people. These are wild horses and a lot more horse than must understand. Go to auctions and you will find them after the owner realizes that his or her adopted horse was more than he or she could handle. I've been there and seen them. 

The adoption program has been a failure, but the BLM has rounded up all of these wild horses. So now the BLM is stuck with thousands of wild horses in waiting pens. Yes, "waiting pens." The pens that they were supposed to be in while waiting to be adopted are now pens used as while they wait to be executed. 

So the adoption program hasn't worked, next thing the BLM has tried is to sterilize the wild mares. They started with the mares at the Burns BLM Facility in Oregon. And no, that hasn't worked so now the BLM just wants to kill them so that they will be within their budget for fiscal year 2017.

Remember that I said the Bureau of Land Management’s Budget Proposal for 2017 is the cause of their ability to slaughter 45,000 wild horses. Well, in the budget proposal, there is a clause that would remove the protection for wild horses and burros from being sent to slaughter.

Yes, it's another end-run by the Obama administration. Don't believe me? Well, here is Section 110 of President Obama's Interior Budget Request:

TRANSFER OF EXCESS ANIMALS

SEC. 110. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary of the Interior may transfer excess wild horses or burros that have been removed from the public lands to other Federal, State, and local government agencies for use as work animals: Provided, That the Secretary may make any such transfer immediately upon request of such Federal, State, or local government agency: Provided further, That any excess animal transferred under this provision shall lose its status as a wild free-roaming horse or burro as defined in the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act.

You can look at the whole document here:
https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/budget/fy2017/assets/int.pdf

This extremely disturbing proposed change to the Wild Free-Roaming Horse and Burro Act puts the vast majority of our wild horses at risk of being slaughtered by the BLM.
The BLM may say that this is to expedite the transfer of horses to other agencies that might have jobs for the horses, but in actual fact, stripping the protection of the Act from the horses makes them a target for slaughter, with no over site, and no responsibility taken by the BLM. Remember the 1794 wild horses sold under the sale Authority Act, without limitation, to Tom Davis that ended up at slaughter? The same thing is going on here.

Given that state and local authorities in many states have repeatedly called for the slaughter of wild horses in holding facilities, it is easy to see that once they remove the protection for wild horses and burros -- they will in fact be sold for slaughter. This nasty final solution, that is reminiscent of how the Nazis slaughtered the Jews, is the BLM's way of getting rid of what some in the BLM call their "Wild Horse problem".

Americans don't want the wild horses slaughtered. The vast majority would like to see wild horses remain wild and free on our public lands, and managed on the range, not rounded up with helicopters, warehoused in holding facilities, and secretly shipped off to slaughter by crooked BLM officials.

Yes, Americans would like to see wild horses and burros managed humanely, not experimented upon and sterilized and then slaughtered. And since wild horses are in only 12 percent of our public lands, and there are currently more wild horses that are captive in holding facilities than on the range, the actions of the BLM has been deceitful, dishonest, and designed specially to eliminate wild horses from public lands.

So why is the BLM doing this? 
In short, Environmentalists, money, and corrupt politicians.

The Bureau of Land Management is under fire after deciding to slaughter 45,000 unadopted wild horses which they have been keeping in holding facilities across the Western Untied States. The wild horses were removed from their natural habitat by the BLM, but why?

Let me make something really clear, since the BLM has been at war with cattle ranchers for more years than most realize, I think it is a bullshit lie to say that the wild horses are being gathers off public lands so that ranchers can have more land to allow their cattle to graze on for profit. That makes absolutely no sense at all when considering how the BLM has been forcing privately-owned cattle producers off of public lands.

This is taking place because of Environmentalists and their money! 

Environmentalists have long held that cattle and horses destroy the earth. They believe that they ruin the ground and eliminate the ability for plants to flourish.

Environmentalists say the threats wild horses pose to the environment are serious, with the grasslands they occupy covered with "biotic crusts" that hold desert soils down, preventing them from being blown away. They say wild horses "trample and pulverize this crust with their hooves, damaging the earth."

Friends, these are some of the same Environmentalists who want to eliminate cattle and horses but want to reintroduce bison to public lands. They refuse to acknowledge their contradictions in that bison and cattle are both bovine animals. And as for the wild horse, they have been in North America since the Spanish landed here in the 1500s. Yes, over 500 years ago.

What the Environmentalists don't say is how there were millions of bison, which of course are in the bovine family, here for thousands of years. And no, their hooves did not damage the earth. In fact, they refuse to admit that science have proven that their hooves help break that crust so that plants are able to flourish by getting pass the crust. So frankly, their argument of horses trample or pulverizing the earth is all just bullshit!

The hypocrisy of the Environmentalists is that they refuse to acknowledge that the manure of wild horses, like that of cattle, returns needed nutrients to the earth. They refuse to acknowledge that, and also that wild horses are essential to the ecosystems which they have become a part of.

Friends, Environmentalists only see is their own self interest. And sadly since they have lots of money and political clout in Washington DC, they are the reason that the Obama administration will ensure that the BLM does away with America's wild horses.

There are about 33,000 wild horses running free in the United States. There are approximately 45,000 in BLM holding pens. If the wild horses were people, then the mass extermination of the horses in those BLM concentration camps holding pens would be considered genocide. But Environmentalists don't care that they want over have of the entire population of wild horses killed for their own self interest.

And frankly, Environmentalists will get their way simply because they own the Obama administration, the Democrat Party, and even a few Republicans. They will get their way and have those horses killed because they know that they can buy politicians who prostitute themselves for campaign donations.

Our only solution is to get those politicians out of office and replace them and these policies with people who will use some sanity when making policies. To couple that, another huge solution that should be applied, and I have no idea why it is not, is to make ALL policies regarding these herds in accordance with existing laws which are already in place that are meant to preserve America's wild herds. Work with the laws in place. Adhere to the legislation that has already been passed to protect the herds. By doing this, then maybe we can arrange things to keep the herds.

We cannot keep the herds safe as long we have Liberal politicians in office and positions of authority in federal agencies who are more concerned about filling their pockets with big money from Environmental groups that want to see the horses killed. That's the bottom line.

That's just the way I see it.

Tom Correa








Monday, September 12, 2016

America's White Elephant


A "white elephant" is a possession which its owner cannot dispose of and whose cost, particularly that of maintenance, is out of proportion to its usefulness. And yes, like me, I'm sure others have had their white elephants.

The term derives from the story that the kings of Siam, now Thailand, who were accustomed to making a present of one of these animals to someone who attends a royal court as a companion or adviser to the king or queen and is obnoxious. The tradition of doing so was to heap the cost of maintenance of the animal on the person and hopefully ruin them financially.

In modern usage, it's an object, or scheme, or business venture, facility, that's considered without use or value. And yes, I believe a white elephant can be someone who we contract to preform a service for us but doesn't and yet we are stuck with him or her contractually.

As for some thing that is considered a white elephant, during World War II, the "Spruce Goose," actually designated the Hughes H-4 Hercules, was often called Howard Hughes' white elephant before and even during the Senate War Investigating Committee. In fact, it is said that Howard Hughes associate Noah Dietrich called it a "plywood white elephant".

The Cincinnati subway was a white elephant in that it was supposed to be the answer of getting people into the city from the outskirts, but never was. Voted for by residents in 1916, the subway's original 6 Million dollar budget was shot to pieces by cost overruns, inflation, and some say rampant corruption that lasted for more than a decade. The underground train system planned for Cincinnati was said to be a casualty of the Great Depression. In the end, it was only half built extending only 11 miles of the planned 16-mile route was completed, and no trains ever went anywhere.

And yes, even the Communist have their white elephants. Chinese officials reopened the airport on the sparsely populated Dachangshan island off China's northeast coast after a refurbishment that cost them 6 Million dollars in 2008. Their plan was to welcome 42,000 passengers in 2010 and another 78,000 in 2015. But data from China's civil aviation authority showed that fewer than 4,000 passengers passed through its gates in 2013. Yes, that just 10 a day.

For Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel is Germany's White Elephant. Since 2005, they have elected her. In 2015, she was just named the Time Person of the Year. Electing Merkel was supposed to be a good thing for Germany, but she has preformed in ways that is substandard to the needs of the German people.

So yes, the German people who have contracted to preform a service for them by way of electing her now see her as their white elephant. In fact, now, a year after German Chancellor Angela Merkel's decision to open that country's borders to Muslim refugees, her political party has been voted out of power and it's come in third place during recent elections there.

Why, you ask? It is because her open border policies has made her personally responsible for the murders, rapes, and beatings of Germans by Muslim refugees which she has allowed in that country. And because of her polices in office, an overwhelming number of Germans see her actions as treasonous. 

While Merkel is certainly Germany's white elephant, Obama is certainly America's white elephant. Americans contracted Obama to preform his duties as the Constitution requires, yet he has become America's white elephant because he has neglected his duties, flaunted the Constitution and subsequently broken the law -- and we're stuck with him until January of 2017.

Obama was elected with the hopes of finally proving to the world that America's past as a nation divided by color was truly behind up. His election proved that anyone can be President of the United States, even a man who was born out of wedlock to bi-racial parents.

While many of us questioned his qualifications and his far-left ideology, noone questioned his sincerity. What we didn't know was that he was sincere about attacking America in ways that would shock the world.

He not start his presidency encouraging Americans and lifting our spirits during the recession of 2009. He did not reassure America like Franklin Roosevelt did in the days of the Great Depression, saying, "let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself."

No, instead of praising America -- he has consistently blamed and demonized America. And yes, he has accused us of being the worse nation on the face of the planet because of events in history that are long past.

Here is a taste of Obama's Hate America rhetoric which he has put out just within the last few weeks. Yes, this is what President Barack H. Obama has to say about the United States of America:

1. He says, "there are still too many poor children in the United States."

But, he does nothing about it. In fact, increases the unemployment rolls through over regulation -- especially in the energy sector.

2. He says, "too many children in America are not getting enough to eat."

Yet, his wife has created minimal lunches because she feels children are too fat.

3. He says, "despite America’s wealth, we’re not providing sufficient educational resources in poor communities."

Why does he say such a thing and cut funding to states who are spending their resources to meet Federal government mandates?

4. He says, "America lacks the political will to help poor inner cities that have suffered discrimination."

But he is president and he can do something about it, if he wanted to. Fact is, he lacks the desire to help inner cities and specifically impoverished Black Americans.

5. He says, "Americans are lazy in thinking we don’t need to learn about foreign nations."

The statement is asinine since American youth know very little about our own nation. How about we increase educational requirements instead of teaching children to accept deviant social behavior such as pedophilia and drug use. 

6. He says, [Referring to a millionaire football player who refuses to stand for our National Anthem] "Colin Kaepernick is justified protesting the National Anthem, as the NFL star is raising real, legitimate issues about things America needs to be talked about."

Obama failed to state what he thought America "needs" to talk about, or if using in a disrespectful manner is the proper forum to discuss his claims of racism by police departments. Obama should have asked Kaepernick if Baltimore's overwhelmingly black police department is racist? 

7. He says, "America suffers from racism, conflicts between ethnic groups, and discrimination against immigrants."

He says this while encouraging divides and conflicts based on ethnicity and class warfare. As for discrimination against immigrants? Our nation welcomes immigrants. We do not welcome foreigners here illegally. Illegal Aliens, according to United States law codes, are not immigrants. They are foreigners here illegally. They are law breakers. Yes, criminals.

8. He says, "Criticisms of America being imperfect and having problems with racism discrimination are accurate."

America bashing by our president is not needed. It does not inspire. While no nation is perfect, our imperfection should be addressed -- not apologized for to other nations. As for problems with racist discrimination? This should also encompass whites being targeted and beaten because of the color of their skin. 

9. He says, "America still has situations where women are not treated equally."

I found this hypocritical since his administration does not pay his women staffers the same as his male staffers. It reminds me of the fact that good leadership means setting the proper example for others to follow.

10. He says, "America didn’t think through our policy in Vietnam War, as dropping cluster bombs proved counterproductive to winning hearts and minds."

Since Vietnam was run by politicians and not the military, it shows his mentality on Vietnam is the same as those politicians back then in that he thinks he knows more than the military professionals.

11. He says, "America’s treatment of Native Americans was tragic."

While it was, Obama's administration did nothing to help Native American poverty, drug use, illiteracy, to name a few things going on today.

12. He says, "America struggled to stay true to our founding ideal that all men are created equal."

While he is referring to blacks, he probably doesn't realize that America has struggled to stay true to treating others equally as well. That's including upon the arrival of the Irish, the Italians, and the Chinese for example. 

13. He says, "When the environment is destroyed in America, it’s because the private sector is being lazy."

I find this statement laughable since the biggest environmental disaster during his administration was created by the EPA in Colorado. The 2015 Gold King Mine waste water spill was an environmental disaster that began at the Gold King Mine near Silverton, Colorado, when Environmental Protection Agency personnel, along with workers for Environmental Restoration LLC (a Missouri company under EPA contract to mitigate pollutants from the closed mine), caused the release of toxic waste water into the Animas River watershed. After the spill, the Silverton Board of Trustees and the San Juan County Commission approved a joint resolution seeking Superfund money, but the Obama administration denied their claims. Also, the Obama administration did nothing to fix the problems with the drinking water in Flint, Michigan.

14. He says, "The United States is still to this day learning how to develop industry without destroying the environment."

Maybe he should understand that that's how progress works. When developing an industry, problems that rise up need to be addressed. For example: when the rivers in the California Gold Country became polluted because of the mining in the 1850, it was the mining industry and not the government that cleaned it up once the problem became known. When President Nixon created the EPA, he did so help industry address problems -- not become the killer of industry.  

15. He says, "Due to industrialization, America used to have terrible pollution … everywhere."

So did the entire world, but we have a cleaner America today through efforts being made to clean these up as we go along. The world's biggest polluters today is China and India, the Middle East and Europe.

16. He recently stated, "America’s role in the Vietnam War led to mass displacement of people from their homes. America dropped more bombs on Laos than on Germany and Japan during World War II … more than 2 million bombs … the bombs fell like rain. More bombs, on several occasions, were dropped on Laos per capita than anywhere else in the world. We bombed the simple homes of civilians in Laos. Villages and entire allies were obliterated. The ancient Plain of Jars was devastated. Countless civilians were killed."

Yes, this is what Obama said in only the last few weeks while overseas recently. Yes, while overseas. Of course he doesn't mention that his administration has neglected to help the inner cities, or the homeless, repair the bridges and roads. He does not acknowledge that he has spent almost 10 Trillion Dollars since being elected, more than all of the other president combined, and has not helped improve our educational system, the lives of Native Americans, women, and those who are jobless and cold and hungry in America. He fails to tell people that under his administration he has doubled the number of Americans on Food Stamps, Welfare, and now in poverty.

He completely fails to note that his administration has spend the accumulated wealth of Ten Trillion Dollars with nothing to show for it. My question, where did all of the money go? What was it spent on? Who pocketed it?

As for dividing the races, while we were on a road to the color-blind society that many of us want to see, Obama has been not the President of All Americans -- just Black Americans. All while encouraging hate for White Americans and division. Yes, that's Obama' idea of fixing things -- make them worse than ever. And because of his actions on race, he will go down in history as America's first Black president who only wanted to be President of Black America and not all of America.

And as for his other statements, if ignorance were money -- Obama would be wealthier that all of us. His ignorance and total lack of education when it comes to the facts is only superseded by his hate for us. And no, he has never let his ignorance, or those writing his teleprompter, stop him from saying such things in the past. His hate for us is unmistakable. 

Thankfully he only has a few months left in office. Yes, thankfully America's White Elephant will be gone in a few months. And please don't fool yourself, Obama has proven himself to be a "White Elephant."

He is America's White Elephant because he has cost us a great deal to maintain while his worth to our country has been completely out of proportion to his usefulness as our President. In modern terms, he as been a business venture of sorts that's been completely without value. He has lent nothing to our greatness and everything to our detriment. It is no wonder that America's enemies see him as a joke and buffoon -- selfie stick and all.

After he is gone, he can spent the rest of his miserable life criticizing America. As I'm sure he will. Yes, he can spend all of the time that he wants to -- just talking about his revulsion and disgust for America, our people, our flag, our culture, and our traditions.

Our only justice in this matter, our small bit of solace, is that he, our White Elephant, will never ever be able to fix his legacy. 

It's true. None of the major news media and universities will be able to hide the fact that Obama is the most inept, the most corrupt, the most vindictive, hateful, racist, that has ever occupied the White House. None will be able to cover-up his actions and speeches where proves himself to be the hate monger who despised the nation which he was voted to lead.

Yes, his legacy will be that of the Great Divider, the Great Con Artist, The Crook, the jerk who detests our nation. And though he has been too incompetent to lead in a positive manner, he will be known for his loathing our nation as no other ever has.

His speeches will be examined, the same as with his policies and deeds. Many will wonder why he wasn't Impeached? And while his excuses for his contempt for us will become numerous and worn out, he will attempt to rewrite his own history with a book deal.

Of course, once examined, his rhetoric will prove him to be someone who reached the position of President of the United States only to use that position to attack Americans -- in especially White Americans.

Would he call me a racist for pointing out his hate for us just as if he were a White man? You bet he would! And when it comes time, he will certainly call those of us who pointed out how he tried to destroy us, "racists."

But friends, even that tired label has gotten old and now refuses to stick. And frankly, that's no surprise because the term "racist" has in fact been used so much that it has lost it's meaning. Obama is the biggest racist that I've ever seen. He even beats out Al Sharpton and Jessie Jackson. And yes, because Obama has used his position as president to divide our nation by race while encouraged hate -- and that's something only a person in his position can do.  

Once out of office, the Liberal Left will celebrate his entry to celebrity dinners. They will sit salivating as they wait for his speeches filled with more of his hate of us. His fans will be those who willingly and without question accept his animosity for America. 

Their like minds see no goodness in our nation. And yes, like Obama, they only see what they can take while whining about how they are oppressed and "disenfranchised". Yes, that's who worships individuals like Obama. It is only those who believe that they should take what's given and demand more. 

Obama proves that white elephants can be hard to get rid of. And frankly, while I really believe that it may be worth it to pay him off to leave, he won't leave because he would miss the many opportunities that he still has left to tell the world how screwed up we are.

Hillary Clinton, George Soros, Democrats, Liberals, the Left, the Mainstream Media, Hollywood libs, they all love those Obama speeches that are so filled with malice and which deepen the divide that he has created in America. They are the ones who will worship him when he is gone.

It certainly won't be me. The day he leaves is the day when America's biggest threat is gone. Yes, the day we get of Obama is the day we get rid of America's White Elephant and celebrate!  

And yes, that's just the way I see things.

Tom Correa   



Saturday, September 10, 2016

The 1873 Colt Single Action Army

Colt Model 1873, U.S. Artillery Model
Dear Readers,

Before we start talking about the Colt Single Action Army Revolver (SAA), we have to note that Samuel Colt died on January 10th, 1862. I bring this up because some folks are under the false impression that Sam Colt himself invented the Colt 1873 Single Action Army. 

So now, if he didn't, who did? Actually, more than anyone else that distinction should go to a gunmaker, engineer, designer, inventor, William Mason. 

While the Colt Single Action Army Revolver is also known as the Single Action Army (SAA), Colt's Model P, the Peacemaker, the M1873, and of course the Colt .45 pistol, the story of its creation goes to how Colt's Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company turned to two of their best engineers, William Mason and Charles Brinckerhoff Richards. Their mission was to design a pistol specifically meant for the U.S. Army's Service Revolver Trials of 1872.

Because of Rollin White's patent #12,648 of April 3rd, 1855, and not wanting to pay a royalty fee to Smith & Wesson, Colt could not begin development of bored-through revolver cylinders for metallic cartridge use until April 4th, 1869.

Who was Rollin White you ask? He was a former employee of the Colt's Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company. He was the first in America to come up with the concept of having the revolver cylinder bored through to accept metallic cartridges. Initially Samuel Colt refused this innovation, and subsequently Rollin White left Colt and went to work for Smith & Wesson so that he could "rent" a licence from them for his patent.

It was his influence that enabled the S&W Model One to see the light of day in 1857. And thought White's patent expired in 1869, it wasn't until 1870 that Smith & Wesson competitors were able to commercialize on the design to make their own revolving breech-loaders using metallic cartridges. Once it was legal to do so, Colt submitted it's creation at the United States Army service revolver trials of 1872. 

Colt's Single Action pistol won that contract over Smith & Wesson who was the first to have an Army contract for a single-action pistol. With that contract Colt's Single Action Revolver was adopted as the standard military service revolver starting in 1873. 

Not long after winning the government contract, production began in 1873 with the Single Action Army model 1873, designated by the Army as the M1873. It was also referred to as Colt's "New Model Army Metallic Cartridge Revolving Pistol". 

By the mid-1870s, the Army had purchased a significant number of Smith & Wesson Model 3 Schofield revolvers which chambered a shorter .45 S&W round. Because logistical problems took place as a result of the .45 S&W ammunition not interchangeable the U.S. government stopped orders for the longer .45 Colt cartridge.

The Army opted to use the Smith & Wesson round in spite of the fact that the Colt revolvers would accept the shorter round, but not vice versa. Because of that, the S&W Schofield was soon retired and sold to the civil market.

The Colt Single Action Army revolver, along with the 1870 and 1875 Smith & Wesson Model 3 "Schofield" revolver, had replaced the outdated Colt 1860 Army Percussion revolver. The Colt SAA quickly gained popularity with the troops and gained favor over the S&W because of the knock down power of Colt's .45 caliber cartridge. 

By the end of 1874, serial no. 16,000 was reached. And yes, by then, just a year after production started, it's said that 12,500 Colt Single Action Army revolvers chambered for the .45 Colt cartridge had entered military service with our Army, Navy, and Marine Corps. The remaining 3,500 revolvers were sold in the civilian market at the time.

While the Colt Colt Single Action Army was officially adopted in 1873, it remained the standard military service revolver for all three branches of our military until 1892. It was replaced by the Colt Model 1892, M1892, which was a double-action revolver with swing-out cylinder. The M1892 used a .38 Long Colt cartridge which later turned out to be horribly ineffective as a man-stopper. 

Here's some trivia, the very first production Single Action Army, the pistol with the Serial Number 1 was found in a barn in Nashua, New Hampshire in the early 1900s. Thought lost for many years after its production, it was chambered in .45 Colt which was a centerfire cartridge containing charges of up to 40 grains of fine-grained black powder and a 255-grain roundnose bullet. 

The .45 Colt is powerful if fully loaded. And yes, the .45 Colt cartridge was re-designated the .45 Long Colt after the creation of the .45 ACP for the M1911 Colt Semi-Automatic Pistol. 

As for the specifications of the 1873 Colt Single Action Army which was adopted by the United States military, the pistol with 7½" barrel is 12½" long overall and weighs 2½ pounds. An 1873 Colt with a with 5½" barrel is 11" overall and a few ounces lighter. 

The Colt Single Action Army is a single-action revolver that holds six metallic cartridges. And while I read where over the years the Colt SAA has been offered in over 30 different calibers and various barrel lengths, the most popular calibers have been the .45 Colt and the .44-40 WCF. Another bit of trivia is that from 1875 until 1880, Colt marketed a single-action revolver in .44 rimfire Henry caliber in a separate number range from number 1 to 1,863.

As for the barrel lengths, the Single Action Army was available in standard barrel lengths of 4¾", 5½," as well as the Cavalry standard which was the original 7½" barrel. The shorter 4¾" barrel revolvers are sometimes called the "Civilian" or "Gunfighter" models. The Artillery Model has the 5½" barrel. 

Of course, there was the "Sheriff's Model" which was also called the "Banker's Special" or "Storekeeper" model. It came with 3½" and 4" barrel without ejector rods. In the Old West, these lengths were not offered until Colt found out that lawmen were chopping off the barrels to make them shorter so that they could get their pistol out and into action faster of needed. As soon as Colt found out, they immediately starting producing the "Sherff's Model" as special orders.

As for other models? Besides the Sheriff's Model and others, Colt offered a "Flattop Target Model" in it's catalogs from 1890 to 1898. Colt manufactured 914 of these revolvers with a frame which was flat on top and fitted with an adjustable leaf rear sight. The front sight consisted of a base with an interchangeable blade.

Even though smokeless powder was invented in 1884, it wasn't until 1900 and the dawn of the 20th Century that a Colt Single Action Army pistol with the serial number 192,000 became the first to be certified for use with smokeless powder.

Some Old West trivia on the Peacemaker

It was smart to only load 5 rounds and leave the hammer on an empty chamber, just so if dropped your Colt won't go off accidentally. And yes, it was the way of doing things.  

Yes, in the Old West, the hammer of a revolver of the time would be kept on an empty chamber so that it wouldn't fire accidentally when bumped or dropped. Wyatt Earp learned about that very thing. He actually experienced a dropped-gun accidental discharge, and it was reported in the January 12th, 1876 edition of The Wichita Beacon which read: 

"Last Sunday night, while policeman Earp was sitting with two or three others in the back room of the Custom House Saloon, his revolver slipped from its holster, and falling to the floor, the hammer which was resting on the cap, is supposed to have struck the chair, causing a discharge of one of the barrels (sic). The ball passed through his coat, struck the north wall then glanced off and passed out through the ceiling. It was a narrow escape and the occurrence got up a lively stampede from the room. One of the demoralized was under the impression that someone had fired through the window from the outside."

Story has it that a gunfighter might leave the sixth chamber unloaded and stick a tightly rolled up $20 bill in it in case he was killed. The idea was that the undertaker would find the $20 bill and that would pay for a good funeral. But no, I haven't been able to verify that that sort of thing actually took place.

Also, maintained in the Colt Manufacturing Company archives is a letter from Bat Masterson ordering a new revolver. Yes, it was written on July 30th, 1885, on the stationery of the Opera House Saloon in Dodge City, Kansas.

His impromptu letter to Colt's Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company reads:

"Please send me one of your nickel-plated short .45 Calibre revolvers, it is for my own use, and for that reason I would like to have a little Extra pains taken with it. I am willing to pay Extra for Extra work. Make it very easy on trigger and have the front sight a little higher and thicker than the ordinary pistol of this kind, put on a gutta percha handle and send it as soon as possible. Have the barrel about the same length as the Ejector rod is. Truly Yours, W.B. Masterson."

Bat Masterson had the 1885 .45 caliber Colt Single-Action Army (SAA) revolver custom-made with a specially-made hammer that was exceptionally fast on release. The front sight was also a little taller and thicker than on the ordinary model. The "gutta percha" handles preferred by Masterson consisted of a tough plastic substance from the latex of several Malaysian trees which resembles rubber. This was his personal preference.

So there you have it, just a glimpse into the story of the 1873 Colt Single Action Army in the days of the Old West. I hope you enjoyed it.

Tom Correa