Archive for June 12th, 2012

What it Was, But is Not

June 12, 2012

What it Was, But is Not.

From the Paris (Ill.) Beacon and Blade.

The old Democratic party, under whose banners we rallied in days gone by, and bore with pride our share of the conflict, rejoicing in its victories, and bewailing its defeats, was in truth a gallant organization, with blood and bone in its composition. It was a great party; one to be feared in a canvass, and entitled to the love of its friends and the respect of its foes. In power, the country was safe in its hands; out of power, its influence was still felt, and in spite of he great destructive element which for so many years controlled its administration of affairs, and finally culminated in a bloody war, we believed that it was in the main right, and best calculated to secure the greatest good to the greatest number.

We could have forgotten a thousand errors, save that of luke warm friendship to our country’s flag in times of peril, and tacit abetment of treason.

This high crime sunk the party, a disorganized mass, too low for resurrection; but out of the odds and ends there vegetated into action another organization that seized hold of the old name, and being drawn together by the cohesive power of plunder into something approximating unity of action, they set up in antagonism to Republicanism.

The distinctive differences between Democracy that was, and Democracy that is, may be summed up as follows:

Old Democracy advocated a specie basis.

New Democracy takes its success on greenbacks.

O.D. was patriotic.

N.D. abets traitors and despises loyal blue.

O.D. was expansive and progressive.

N.D. disfranchises students.

O.D. gave the ballot to the negro.

N.D. denies the ballot to crippled soldiers.

O.D. was decent and respectable.

N.D. reads and relishes Brick Pomeroy.

O.D. was feared and respected.

N.D. is laughed at and despised.

The rapid and startling changes daily going on in the principles of the new Democracy, will enable us to extend the above differences ad infinitum.

Alton Weekly Telegraph (Alton, Illinois) Jul 3, 1868

Image of Brick Pomeroy   from Wisconsin Historical Society

The following excerpt is from:
M.M. “Brick” Pomeroy: Forgotten Man of the Nineteenth Century
By Ruth Ann Tucker, 1979
Murphy Library Digitized Sources


M. M. “Brick” Pomeroy was a nineteenth-century American journalist whose active career spanned more than three decades, from the late 1850’s through the 1880’s. He was a highly controversial figure associated with many facets of American life, including Democratic politics, the Tweed Ring, the Greenback movement, Spiritualism, and western mining and tunnel building. Though a vile racist, he was a staunch supporter of workers and women and had a close affinity with farmers. He was acquainted with a number of noteworthy contemporaries, including Stephen Douglas, Henry Clay Dean, Benjamin Butler, Horace Greeley, William M. Tweed, and William F. Cody. He was a popular journalist, particularly in the rural Midwest and South, and for a time his La Crosse (Wis.) Democrat attained a larger circulation than any other newspaper in the country.

The Hillsdale Standard (Hillsdale, Michigan) Sep 1, 1868

“Well, Jericho Didn’t Last Forever.”

June 12, 2012

Image from National Archives

25 Years Ago Today:

BERLIN (AP) — Standing under iron-gray skies at the Berlin Wall dividing East and West, President Reagan on Friday challenged Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev — if he truly seeks peace, prosperity and liberalization — to “come here to this gate … tear down this wall.”

Reagan’s emotional declaration that “there is only one Berlin,” spoken in German, was greeted with roars of approval from more than 20,000 flag-waving spectators, and was carried by loudspeakers to several hundred East Berliners trying to listen from beyond the Brandenburg Gate, on the other side of the concrete and barbed wire barricade.

“This wall will fall,” Reagan declared in the speech, broadcast to Eastern Europe as well as Western Europe and North America. “For it cannot withstand faith. It cannot withstand truth. The wall cannot withstand freedom.”

The president and Nancy Reagan returned to the White House at 9:45 p.m. EDT, where the family dog, Rex, scampered out the door to greet them. Mrs. Reagan scooped the spaniel up in her arms and carried him inside.

Nearing the end of a 10-day, 10,135-mile journey that took him to Venice for the annual economic summit of seven major industrial democracies, the president challenged Gorbachev to extend his liberalizing domestic policy of “glasnost” to ending East-West divisions symbolized by the Berlin Wall.

Accompanied by West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl, Reagan stood behind a bulletproof glass shield on a raised platform and gazed over the wall at the Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag, the former German parliament building. The two leaders stood directly opposite an East German guard tower.

Asked by reporters if he thought Gorbachev would accept his challenge to tear down the wall, Reagan replied, “Well, Jericho didn’t last forever.”

The Gettysburg Times (Gettsyburg, Pennsylvania) Jun 13, 1987

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Previous Posts – Ronald Reagan:

Presidents’ Day Feature: Ronald Reagan

Ronald Reagan to the Rescue

Happy 100th Birthday, Mr. President

Assassination Attempt – 1981

Deadly Cloudburst Hits Tennessee Mountains

June 12, 2012

Image from the Stoney CreekerThe Lewis Farm Historical Photos



Twenty Miles of Southern Railway Washed Out and Thousands of Acres of Farm Lands Are Ruined.


Johnson City, Tenn., June 14. — Twelve known dead, four seriously injured, more than a dozen houses, barns and mills demolished. 20 miles of the Appalachian division of the Southern railway made impassable and thousands of acres of farm lands ruined, constitute the toll of the most disastrous cloudburst ever recalled in this section.

It appeared to have its center near Hunter, Siam and Carden’s Bluff, and on Little Stony creek and Blue Springs creek, where a house in which two families lived, went to pieces, taking nine lives.

The storm came without warning Friday night and early Saturday.

Aside from the impassable condition of roads the section is very mountainous, cut by precipitous bluffs, coves and many streams. Most of the houses and farms are in the valleys and lower lands, in the path of the rising streams, which feed the Watauga and the Doe rivers.

Unconfirmed reports from other sections told of persons missing and believed to be dead. Relief parties have started from Elizabethton and Hampton and from this city. Broken roads, however, prevented them penetrating further than the outer edge, except by primitive modes of travel. Telephone and telegraph lines are down.

No word has been received from Fish Springs and Butler, Tenn., good sized villages believed to be in the center of the devastated area. The cloudburst came as a climax to a day of heavy intermittent rains, swelling streams already raging torrents and sweeping everything before them.

The stricken area is partly traversed by two branch line railways, both of which are badly damaged and by highways which were not the best in dry weather and now no longer exist.

A telephone message from Elizabethton, the nearest point to the stricken area gave as known dead as follows:

Mrs. Pearl Lewis and her children, William, 14; Mary Lou, 4, and a 2-year old son, and an infant daughter; Lum Smith and wife and their son, Willard, 7, and a 6-year-old daughter of W.G. Ellis, a farmer.

The Lewis and Smith families lived in the same house. The Ellis family lived in the Stony creek section near Hunters.

Members of a second family named Smith and another named Norton also are reported missing.

Unconfirmed reports from Carden’s Bluff indicate eight known dead. Impassable roads and lack of telephone wires have prevented verification of this report.

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Image from Stoney Creeker


Atlanta, Ga., June 14. — Upon receipt of a news dispatch that the towns of Hunter and Carden, Tenn., had been virtually wiped out by a cloudburst, southern division headquarters of the American Red Cross here announced they had dispatched a staff representative to the territory to take charge of relief measures.

Billings Gazette (Billings, Montana) Jun 15, 1924

And on the same page of the newspaper:

Down East.

Just got back from an eastern town,
Where mornings are dark, where rain comes down
And washes corn from the listed rows —
Down where the muddy Missouri flows.

Got out of bed at my usual hour,
In the chill and damp from the midnight shower,
Dressed in the gloom of the early light,
Wished for the warmth of sunshine bright.

Wanted to travel the open spaces,
Tramp along where the Yellowstone races
Down from the heights, from melting snow
Where clouds ride high and warm winds blow.

I saw no distant mountains where mighty rivers rise
From snows that fall in winter, or where the eagle cries;
I saw no rugged rock rims across the valley floor,
Nor heard the river dash and churn in restless midnight roar.

— H.S. Tool, Billings.

Billings Gazette (Billings, MOntana) Jun 15, 1924