Friday, February 28, 2014

The Tews of Oxfordshire, England -- Friday Fotos (February 28, 2014)

In 2004 we visited Scotland and England during the end-of-year holiday season and since this was our family's first trip abroad and to England, we had to visit Maidford in Northamptonshire.  As posted previously, Maidford is the village from which my ancestor, Richard Tew, left for New England in 1640.  See,

Not far from Maidford in the Cotswold Hills of the adjacent county of Oxfordshire are three small villages within about 3 to 4 miles of one another not far from Banbury of Banbury Cross fame. Together the villages are referred to as "The Tews" -- Great Tew, Little Tew and Duns Tew. As you can imagine, even though there is no known genealogical connection of our family to any of these three places, we had to make the pilgrimage to visit these faux eponymous villages. And as it turned out, they are very quaint little places with recent populations of mere hundreds each (156 for Great Tew, 153 for Little Tew, and a little over 500 for Duns Tew) and they are widely known for their structures with thatched roofs.

The Post Office and village store in Great Tew

The four photographs above are of thatched roof homes in the village of Great Tew

A thatched roof home in the village of Little Tew

The church in the village of Little Tew

Entering the booming metropolis of Duns Tew

The White Horse Inn, a charming restaurant where we ate in Duns Tew.
See interior shots and learn more about the Inn here

A December sunset in the Cotswold Hills
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All photographs by the author (December 2004).
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Thursday, February 27, 2014

"Posterity" by Dorie McCullough Lawson -- An Inspiration and Resource for All Genealogists (February 27, 2014)

From time to time I have used this space to recommend an article or book that I believe is of particular interest to those of us involved in genealogy and who are also interested in history.  [Can the two interests actually be separate in any real sense though??

This past Christmas our younger son's girlfriend very kindly gifted me with the book Posterity by Dorie McCullough Lawson, the daughter of David McCullough -- noted historian and author of The Path Between the Seas; Truman; and John Adams among other works. [Thank you again Beth!]

The subtitle of this very interesting book says it all -- "Letters of Great Americans to Their Children." Since those of us who actively pursue and record our genealogies, and/or blog about our family histories, are engaged in communicating with our posterity, this book gives us insight into the same interest and efforts by noted Americans across more than three centuries. From Anne Bradstreet's 1664 letter to her son Simon, to George Herbert Walker Bush's letter to his children in 1998, this book presents us with letters to posterity categorized by Dorie McC. Lawson into content areas designated as Continuity; The Developing Mind; Love; Good Work; Struggle; Strength of Character; The Pleasures of Life; Brace-Up; A Place in Time; Loss; Aging; and Rules to Live By.  

In the Forward to Posterity, David McCullough writes pointedly, perceptively, and perhaps presciently . . . "That so few of us write to our children any longer, that we so rarely write personal letters of any sort, is a shame. I think often of how little we will leave about ourselves and our time in our own words. Maybe some of the e-mail will survive, but I doubt it. How will future generations ever come to know us? Historians and biographers [and I would add genealogists] a hundred or three hundred years hence will have almost nothing of a personal kind to work with. Our story, consequently , will be a lot less interesting, less human, perhaps even impossible to write.

This book is a smorgasbord of genealogical subject matter that can be explored and sampled at leisure. I highly recommend it as not just a good read, but as an inspirational resource that I think should be an addition to every genealogist's library!
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As a special note to my blogging friend Barbara Poole of Life From The Roots blog -- who wrote recently about her encounter with famous photographer Ansel Adams, -- Posterity presents us with a letter by Ansel to his son Michael written from Yosemite National Park on Christmas Day 1953 as his son joined the Air Force while the Korean War was underway.

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Scan of the Posterity dust jacket from the personal copy of this blog author. 
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Wordless Wednesday (February 26, 2014) -- The Dr. Robert D. Jeffs Professorship in Pediatric Urology, Brady Urological Institute - The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

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Program cover from the dedication and installation of a Professorship in Pediatric Urology at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in honor of Molly's uncle, Dr. Robert D. Jeffs. From the family collection.
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Monday, February 24, 2014

Military Monday (February 24, 2014): Military Service and Genealogy -- Past, Present and Future

As noted previously here at The Prism, 2014 marks the 100th Anniversary of the start of World War I.  The "Great War" (sometimes referred to as "the war to end war") raged for four years -- from July 28, 1914 until November 11, 1918. It is said to be the fifth most deadly conflict in the history of the world with more than 9 million soldiers and sailors killed, but the deaths including civilian death from disease, starvation, and direct combat-related fatalities range from 15 million to 65 million. The war profoundly affected generations the world over, but it did not end war.

In genealogy, military service is accorded a significant place among the data points that every genealogy software application collects. In blogging it provides us all with an extremely popular and useful writing prompt such as "Military Monday" or some similar appellation.  Our military affects all of us -- directly or indirectly -- it always has and always will.  It is an important and even vital aspect of our national and world history, so it therefore is a part of the study of our genealogies. 

The military is a national necessity and thus it has both a demographic impact and an important economic expense, as this chart depicts for the United States from 1790 - 2006. 

The chart above provides us with an interesting -- if perhaps simplified -- snapshot of our military and economic history over a period of 216 years. At a glance, we can see that, as expected, the demands on our national productivity and wealth have mirrored demands on military service caused by war. The upward spikes represented by the Civil War, World War I, World War II, Korea and Vietnam indicate dramatic increases in the percentage of our population that enter military service and the concommitant surge in the percent of our GDP that goes to support the military and our war efforts. World War II stands out as a supreme effort by what has been dubbed "The Greatest Generation." Whereas prior and subsequent generation(s) have only had about 3% of the population in military service, the World War II generation(s) were called to service at almost three times that percentage (about 8.5%). At the same time, those generations were called to devote more than one third of the national productivity to supporting that war (about twice the demand for WWI).

The world remains a very volatile and dangerous place. As the chart below starkly indicates, the necessity and importance of military capability -- and the cost to this nation and the world -- are not likely to go away any time soon. The beginning of this century has unfortunately seen a near constant state of war for the United States; this is so even as the percentage of our population serving in the military has shrunk to about one half of 1% and the percentage of our GDP devoted to military expenditures has been on a steady decline since the early 1950s from about 13% of GDP to a 2006 rate of just over 4% of GDP.

For those of us involved in genealogy, the need to research military service records is not going away, but the nature and extent of that aspect of genealogy research is going to change in the future if these charts have anything to tell us! 

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Image of Flanders Field from

U.S. Military Personnel and Eexpenditures chart with permission granted at

Source for U.S. defense budget as compared to the next ten countries with the largest defense budgets in 2012 as shown in the chart.

For more information about the phrase "the war to end war," see  

For more information about World War I, see
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Scouting Movement and World Thinking Day/B-P Day/Founders' Day (February 22, 2014)


(L to R) Peter Baden-Powell; Robert S.S. Baden-Powell;
Heather Baden-Powell; and Olave Baden-Powell (1923)

In addition to being the birthday of George Washington (and my maternal grandfather, Everett S. Carpenter), today is the birthday of Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell born February 22, 1857 as well as his wife, Olave St. Clair Baden-Powell (nee Soames), born February 22, 1889.

Robert Baden-Powell, known to Scouts as "B-P," was the founder of the Scouting Movement. He was a Lieutenant General in the British Army and a war hero who wrote a book about the art and skill of reconnaissance and military scouting that became a hit with boys. In 1906-1907 B-P came out with a version of his scouting book aimed at boys and in 1907 he held a camp on Brownsea Island in England to test his ideas.  The next year he published Scouting for Boys and its popularity resulted in the formation of Scouting units across the UK.  The Scouting Movement was born and in 1910 the "Boy Scouts of America" was formed in the United States. The Girl Guides organization was also created in 1910 by B-P and his sister Agnes Baden-Powell.  [B-P's wife, Olave Baden-Powell, became the Chief Guide for England in 1918 and was later named the first World Chief Guide in 1930.] In 1912, Juliette Gordon Low founded the "Girl Scouts of the United States of America" after Low had a meeting with Robert Baden-Powell.

The Scouting/Guides Movement is the largest youth movement in the world. Today there are two organizations that form the global umbrella for the Scouting/Guides Movement: the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) largely for boys, and the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) largely for girls. Scouting/Guiding exists in some 216 countries today and there are about 42 million registered Scouts/Guides (32 million Scouts in 2010 and 10 million Guides in 2006). Indonesia has the largest Scout/Guide membership total at 17.1 million (7.2% of the eligible population) while the United States has the second largest combined membership at 7.5 million (2.4% of the eligible population).

In recognition of the founding efforts of Robert S.S. Baden-Powell and his wife Olave St. Clair Baden-Powell as the Chief Scout and Chief Guide respectively, Scouts and Guides around the world designate February 22nd (the Baden-Powells' joint birthday) as a day to celebrate the values and accomplishments of the Scouting/Guiding Movement.  For the Guides/Girl Scouts today is known as "Thinking Day" or more recently "World Thinking Day" and it is a time to contemplate the movement, its goals, accomplishments and fellowship among members. For Boy Scouts, today is largely known as "B-P Day" or "Founders' Day" and it is also a time to contemplate and celebrate the movement and its two founders.

As I have written previously here at The Prism, Scouting has played a significant role in the experiences of generations of our family. My father-in-law was a Boy Scout in the 1930s and later became a Scoutmaster. My mother-in-law was a Girl Scout leader for many years at the Council level.  My wife and her sister were both Girl Scouts and counselors for several summers at Girl Scout camps in New Jersey and the Adirondacks of New York respectively. My brother-in-law is an Eagle Scout.

I was a Cub Scout and Boy Scout until I reached age 18. My father was a Troop Committee Chairman. Both our sons were in Scouting from Tiger Scouts through the time they each became an Eagle Scout.  Molly was a Tiger Coordinator and Den Leader for seven years or more. I served in various adult roles for more than 20 years: Pack Chairman; Cubmaster; Webelos Den Leader; Assistant Scoutmaster; Scoutmaster; Crew Advisor; Order of the Arrow Chapter Advisor; Order of the Arrow Associate Lodge Advisor; Wood Badge Assistant Course Director; Jamboree Scoutmaster; Philmont Crew Advisor, etc.

A poster of all the Merit Badges that could be earned by U.S. Boy Scouts (circa 2000)

The family's Scouting Wall displaying the Eagle medals of our two sons, Order of the Arrow Vigil certificates, photos from four National Jamborees and other honors and memorabilia 

Like anything else, Scouting is not perfect.  It is always a work in progress with many aims and values worthy of continuing and improving where necessary.  In 2007 world Scouting celebrated its 100th Anniversary.  In 2010 the Boy Scouts of America marked the same milestone and the Girl Scouts of the United States followed with their centenary in 2012. Today is a good day to pause and contemplate the founding and huge success of the Scouting/Guiding Movement and to hope its inclusiveness and successes will grow in the future. On balance it is one of the most positive and influential youth programs in history.

Happy World Thinking/B-P /Founders' Day!  

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Photographs of Robert Baden-Powell, Olave Baden-Powell, and B-P and Olave with two of their three children from the author's personal copy of Tim Jeal's 1989 biography Baden-Powell

The fleur-de-lis upon a trefoil logo representing the international combination of Scouting and Guiding is from and is used under the permission granted there.

Photographs of The Merits of Scouting poster and the family Scouting Wall by the author from his personal collection.

For more information about the Scouting/Guiding Movement and some of its history, see  

For more information about World Thinking Day, see

For more information about Robert S.S. Baden Powell, 1st Baron of Gilwell, see,,_1st_Baron_Baden-Powell

For more information about Olave St Clair Baden Powell, Baroness Baden-Powell and first World Chief Guide, see
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Saturday Serendipity (February 22, 2014)

Saturdays often allow a more leisurely approach to life than work days. I can more easily post links to some blog posts or other materials I have discovered during the week, or even to those discovered during a Saturday morning coffee and extended surfing of the blogosphere/internet.

Here are a few recommendations for inclusion on your reading list this week .  .  .  

1.  As Heather Rojo explains in her wonderfully colorful post at Nutfield Genealogy, today is "World Thinking Day." Have a look in case you have never heard of Thinking Day. Also stop by A to Zophar blog by Wendy Grant Walter and Life From The Roots by Barbara Poole to see their thoughts on Thinking Day and Girl Scouts.  To learn more about the history of World Thinking Day see  
2.  If you have ever held a camera and aspired to take at least good photographs -- and you love  photographs of the beauty created by Mother Nature (even or especially in black and white) -- then you know who Ansel Adams is. Barbara Poole is a student of photography and she not only knew of and appreciated Ansel Adams, she met him, got his autograph AND had him pose for her!  Read Barbara's story here at Life From The Roots blog.  

3.  An "acrostic" is a poem or word puzzle or other composition that uses specific letters in each line of the work to form a words or words.  It comes from the Greek words akron meaning "end" and stikhos meaning "row or line of verse." Last week The Vault brought us an example of a Valentine acrostic in poem form composed by Virginia Poe for her husband, Edgar Allan Poe.  See the poem here and learn more about acrostical Valentines at this Colonial Williamsburg website to which The Vault links.   

4.  If you have not seen the graphic explanation of the fascination that is genealogy as depicted in "Your Family: Past, Present, and Future", then you REALLY need to have a look. Those of us who are "into genealogy" have seen or written about the revelations and concepts so cleverly depicted at this post on Wait But Why, but many of our non-believing family members and friends have probably not. As Diane Richard at Upfront With NGS put it in featuring this post and blog, "Consider sharing it with your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers and others.  It just might spark some interest in them to learn more about their own family.  They might learn what we already know, every family has some really neat stories to tell!"  [Notice how I have now added Wait But Why to my list of "Interesting Links!"]

5.  Here is an amusing and illustrative post by Laura Mattingly of The Old Trunk In The Attic blog. Is it really daunting enough to drive one to tears when faced with the discovery of such very common ancestor names as "John and Mary Smith?" See how Laura tackles the challenge and what the result is.  

6.  Genealogist vs. Family Historian. James Tanner at Genealogy's Star blog presents a nice internal dialog with himself about the issue and concludes, "Now which am I? A genealogist or a family historian? I guess I will never know." This is a thoughtful read, but I conclude the best goal to strive for is to become a smooth amalgam of both.  They are not mutually exclusive by any means IMHO.

7.  Judy Russell's interesting post about the law on recipes and copyrighting is well worth a read at The Legal Genealogist since every family has those special recipes they want to share -- well, except for those super secret ones.  

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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Friday, February 21, 2014

So What Is A Future Family Treasure Or Heirloom? (February 21, 2014)

Some objects can assume special meaning to their owners and thence possibly to family members in the future -- as I and others have pointed out in posts to genealogy blogs. [See for example, "Family Treasure Exists In The Simplest Of Objects."]

Most often the objects that become family treasures or heirlooms of one sort or another are the very objects that survived because of the special meaning and/or use they had for an ancestor. An ancestor kept the object around because it was functional . . . was an object steeped in habit . . . was an item of beauty . . . or in many cases was an object of some monetary/emotional value (such as an engagement or wedding ring).

It was an inquiry to the most recent "Wordless Wednesday" here at The Prism that led me to ponder the question, "What items or objects do I have today that could become objects considered family treasures or heirlooms by descendants?"  Barbara Poole of Life From The Roots blog asked what it was that I was holding in the Wordless Wednesday photograph.  It is actually my winter backpacking mitten (warmer than gloves), but the strap from my old daypack can be seen over my shoulder -- so it was not surprising Barbara asked if it was a "knapsack."

VERY coincidentally, I had just two days earlier unearthed my old daypack from a closet I was cleaning.  When I came upon it, memories of its purchase and use flooded back and I took the time to saddle soap its tired looking leather bottom and attachments.  The dear old piece of outdoor gear is pictured above.

I bought the daypack at a backpacking and outdoor gear store in Ft. Collins, Colorado when I was living there for about nine months in 1974 - 75.  According to a small, very faded sewn-in tag rolled upon itself inside the top compartment, the daypack was priced originally at $43.00!  This is surprising because in fall 1974 I only had a part-time job working in the sporting goods department of Sears Roebuck at the Foothills Fashion Mall in Ft. Collins. Forty-three 1974 dollars was a hefty sum for me, so I must have convinced myself that I really needed that daypack for all the hiking I was doing!

The old pack certainly does not owe me a penny. I used it from 1974 until about 2004 when I finally purchased a new and improved daypack for considerably more than $43.00 (about $120.00 if I recall correctly). The Old Daypack did service on my back during day hikes, hikes from base camp during backpacking treks, and tourist trips in such places as Colorado, Arizona, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Upstate New York, Virginia, Canada, Bermuda and places I am surely forgetting.  [Buried in the bottom compartment when I saddle soaped the old pack the other day was the free, blue plastic hooded rain covers they give when you ride the Maiden of the Mist to the foot of Niagara Falls!]

Old Daypack has been with me a long time and so it is no surprise it found its way safely into a closet and not into a swap box at a Scouting gear exchange or some such place. It is an item that means a lot to me because it served me so well for three decades -- and it is not going anywhere so long as I am around. So the question occurs to me, will Old Daypack perhaps become -- in the fullness of time -- a family treasure or heirloom? Will a descendant hold this dear old pack some day and find fascination in holding an item that belonged to and was used by a great grandfather?  You never know . . . but it surely will never happen if I do not keep Old Daypack and pass on just a bit of its story and its meaning. In fact . . .  maybe I just have.

Successor to Old Daypack.  Since 2004 New Daypack has been to Scotland, England,
 Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, Ireland, Switzerland, and
more than a few trips to the Adirondacks in Upstate New York and elsewhere. It is
getting ready for a trip to Iceland in July and back to the Adirondacks in August!

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Photographs by the author.
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Those Places Thursday (February 20, 2014) -- Christ Church in Lonsdale, Rhode Island

Christ Church in Lonsdale, Rhode Island was founded in 1833. At the time, Lonsdale was part of the town of Smithfield, but it is now part of Lincoln, Rhode Island. Episcopalians who worked in the mills in Lonsdale originally began meeting and holding services in the village schoolhouse, but in January 1834 they formally organized into the parish of Christ Church and later that same year they were accepted into the Diocesan Convention.

The majority of the members of Christ Church were employed by the Lonsdale Company and so in 1835 the company donated $2,000 to a building fund and contributed land where a new church could be built. The church was completed in 1835 and it has been a part of the greater Lonsdale community ever since. The original church burned down in 1883, but the Lonsdale Company almost immediately rebuilt the church for the parish.  It was larger than the original church and was located on the same site. The new church was completed in 1884. The undated antique postcard shown above is of the rebuilt church post-1884.

Generations of my family have been associated with Christ Church in Lonsdale. I was baptized at Christ Church on April 27, 1952.  My mother was baptized at Christ Church on September 9, 1928. My grandparents, Everett S. Carpenter and Ruth E. (Cooke) Carpenter, were married at Christ Church on Saturday, September 18, 1926. Both of my grandparents were baptized at Christ Church. My grandfather was baptized at Christ Church in 1891 and he was confirmed in the church on Maundy Thursday, 1907. My great grandfather, Samuel Eber Carpenter, was president of the Young Men's Parish Club of Christ Church for seventeen years and was a senior warden of the church.

Christ Church in Lonsdale (Sept. 2005)

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Photographs by the author -- September 2005.

Postcard source unknown.
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Wordless Wednesday (February 19, 2014) -- Backpacking in Poudre Canyon North of Ft. Collins, CO (Dec. 1975)


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Photograph in the personal collection of the author.
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Monday, February 17, 2014

Military Monday (February 17, 2014) -- CMTC (Citizens' Military Training Camps)

Between the world wars, the United States established a military training program for young men to provide basic military training without any obligation to serve on active duty.  This differed from the Reserves and the National Guard programs that carried with them the obligation for male citizens in the programs to serve if called upon.  The Citizens' Military Training Camps (CMTC) program was established by the National Defense Act of 1920 largely as a compromise to avoid establishing universal military training.

The CMTC program was an outgrowth of the camps that were set up by private citizens prior to the U.S. entry into World War I. The camps and the military training provided were on a voluntary basis and they were seen as a pre-enlistment program that was funded by the Preparedness Movement -- a group of American citizens that recognized the U.S. standing Army was much too small to contribute to the war should the time come.  Camps were first established by the Preparedness Movement in 1915 - 1916 as a way of quickly providing potential Army officers if the need suddenly arose. The largest camp that the Movement established was outside Plattsburgh, New York and as a result, the camps came to be generally known as "Plattsburgh Camps." Almost all the young men who attended the camps were college graduates and by the time the program was formalized into the Military Training Camps Association, some 40,000 men had attended Plattsburgh and other such camps to learn to march, shoot, and get physically fit for potential service. They did in fact later provide the nucleus for the wartime officer corps in World War I.

The CMTC camps, being voluntary with no obligation for service, did not have the same effect on the Army for World War II, but by the end of the program some 400,000 young men are believed to have been trained for at least one summer in a CMTC camp. The camps were a month long and were held at around 50 Army posts around the country.  The peak years were 1928 and 1929 when about 40,000 were trained.

Under the CMTC program, young men were able to receive a reserve commission in the Army as a 2nd Lieutenant IF they completed four consecutive summers of CMTC training, but this aspect of the program proved to be a disappointment because over the 20 years of the CMTC program (1921 - 1940) only about 5,000 reserve commissions were actually awarded. 

Among those who participated in the Plattsburgh/CMTC training programs were Chuck Yeager, Ronald Reagan, Harry Truman, Robert Penn Warren and . . . my father. The photo above is of my father at about age 16. It was taken during a summer at the CMTC established at Fort Adams in Newport, Rhode Island and was just about eight weeks before the devastating 1938 New England Hurricane drove up through Narragansett Bay.*

Fort Adams, Newport, Rhode Island (1936)

CMTC encampment at Fort Adams in the 1930s

CMTC Company A at Fort Adams in 1940, the last year of the CMTC program
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Photograph of Arnold G. Tew, Jr. at Fort Adams (1938) from the original in the collection of the author. 

*  See Item No. 5 in the September 28, 2013 "Saturday Serendipity" and the link provided there for more information about the Great Hurricane of 1938.  

Photographs of Fort Adams circa 1936, the CMTC encampment at Fort Adams in the 1930s, and CMTC Company A at Fort Adams in 1940 from

For more about the former Fort Adams in Newport, Rhode Island, see .
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Saturday, February 15, 2014

Saturday Serendipity (February 15, 2014)

Saturdays often allow a more leisurely approach to life than work days. I can more easily post links to some blog posts or other materials I have discovered during the week, or even to those discovered during a Saturday morning coffee and extended surfing of the blogosphere/internet.

Here are a few recommendations for inclusion on your reading list this week .  .  .  

1.  From The Legal Genealogist comes a real story about the Mann Act -- also known as the "White- Slave Trade Act -- surfacing in a woman's genealogy research. Read about it here. Also at The Legal Genealogist is Judy's very amusing and instructive read, "The cousin who isn't."  
2.  I was very impressed by a piece on NPR this week explaining why "Rhode Island based CVS drug stores" had decided to cease selling tobacco products.  As a result, I determined to switch my spending votes to support the CVS decision . . . and then came this timely post by Barbara Poole at Life From The Roots blog. It turns out CVS headquarters might be in Providence now, but Barbara recalls and photographs CVS roots elsewhere. Have a look!  

3.  The blog Holyoke is a specialized blog about all things Holyoke, Massachusetts.  Having lived there briefly and having started my formal schooling in Kindergarten there, I like to read the posts.  This week presented a story told as only a small local newspaper could do. It is about a Prohibition-era shooting/murder by an off-duty Holyoke police officer in February 1924. You will find it absorbing reading and probably wonder as I did . . . What was the rest of the story? Was the police officer convicted or not?  Maybe Holyoke has a follow-up post in store for inquiring minds who want to know?

4.  Heather Rojo of Nutfield Genealogy blog posted a very interesting story about Gove's Rebellion -- named for the only New Englander to be convicted of treason and then sentenced to death by being drawn and quartered. Read here how Edward Gove ended up in the Tower of London from 1683 - 1686 awaiting a gruesome death for treason.   

5.  It took a long time and a turbulent voting history from 1915 to 1920 before American women gained the right to vote with the passage of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.* My 1st cousin 3x removed, Anna Carpenter Spencer, nee Garlin, was an early suffragette (see, ) and so I have had an interest in the suffrage movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.  This week, The Vault, published a pamphlet that was entered in the Records of the House of Representatives in 1866 that refutes each common objection to giving women the right to vote -- and this a full 54 years before the 19th Amendment was finally ratified!  Read the very humorous and pointed 2-page pamphlet here

6.  This summer marks the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I, the "Great War" and the so-called "war to end all wars." We will undoubtedly see a lot of material published relating to WWI over the next few years -- and much of it will be re-discovered material of tremendous interest to genealogists.  This week The Weekly Genealogist of NEHGS provides a link to this NPR interview about a collection of over 100,000 letters written during all American wars from the Revolution on.  The collection is by historian Andrew Carroll and it is being donated to the Center for American War Letters at Chapman University in Orange, California. Who knows what some of us might find in this collection for our genealogies.      

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*  Read about the repeated votes to grant women the right to vote between 1915 and final ratification of the 19th Amendment in August 1920 in the Wikipedia article here.
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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Friday, February 14, 2014

Friday Fotos (February 14, 2014) -- Another Big Snowstorm Just In Time For Valentine's Day

The federal government offices in Washington, D.C. were closed yesterday.  It is the second time this winter that federal offices have been closed. The snowstorm that caused it this time came north after devastating the southern coastal states from Georgia on up. At last count sixteen deaths had been attributed to this storm.

As can be seen in the pre and post-dawn photos above, we received a foot or more of snow and it continued to come down heavily into the afternoon. There were virtually no cars on the road except a rare driver that, as Governor Nathan Deal of Georgia said, must have had his/her "stupid hat on" yesterday. 

The only sound outside was the sibilant fall of snow as it hit the pine needles and few dead leaves still clinging to the oak trees. The only movement was an occasional bird leaving some shelter looking for the feeders.

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All photographs by the author. 
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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