Friday, August 23, 2013

This is the 151st Anniversary of Minnesota's great Sioux Uprising of 1862

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Thursday, August 22, 2013

Colonel Henry Sibley's Description of the Great Sioux Uprising of 1862

151 years ago this month, the great Sioux uprising occurred in Minnesota. Read "Blood on the Prairie: A Novel of the Sioux Uprising" in your choice of formats at Amazon at the link below. The kindle select version is presently on a free promotion.

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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Exactly one hundred and fifty one years ago this month, the great Sioux massacre, or Dakota Conflict as it is now known, occurred in the southwestern section of the new state of Minnesota. More civilian non-combatants were killed than in any other Indian war in U.S. history, 1,000 by the count of Henry Hastings Sibley, leader of the Indian Expedition. On December 26th of 1862, 38 Sioux warriors were hung at Mankato. This remains the largest mass execution in U.S. history.

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Thursday, August 8, 2013

Last Blog of "Hawkins County" Serial - 1970's Americana

At the end of this blog, you will know not only the character that is Jack Johnson, but also his story line in "Hawkins County."

The possibilities for Dave's future caused Jack to pause. He knew this meant his pal would be heading into battle in a jungle far away and the odds were against him coming back in one piece. In fact, the odds were better than fifty-fifty that he would come back in a body bag.

"Well, at least you know what your future will be for a while, and don't forget that you'll have the G.I. Bill to look forward to." Jack nodded his head. "You can milk that baby for four more years."

Dave shrugged and took another swallow out of his drink. "Yeah, I guess."

"So, what do you two sweethearts have planned?" Rosie said, steering the conversation toward a more comfortable topic. "Jack, now that you're both college grads, are you going to make an honest woman out of Marianne, or what?"

"Rosie Martin! Some friend you are," Marianne giggled.

Everyone at the table chuckled uncomfortably and played with their drinks. Their minds were still on Dave and the war. Jack felt he needed to lighted the mood and get the focus back on himself because after all, this was his graduation party.

"Hey, that's a mighty expensive situation right now, so we really have to be practical, Marianne and I." Jack looked up at the ceiling and scratched his chin as though searching for the right choice of words in the asbestos tiles up there. "We, ah, we need to evaluate our assets and develop a utilitarian plan."

"Oh, wow!" Dave and Rosie said together.

"Don't tell me," Rosie said, pinching the bridge of her nose. "It's coming, yup, Professor Crochrow, Economics 101, right?"

"Old Professor Crotch-rot, that's right," Jack replied.

"Jack!" Marianne said. "Am I going to have to put a muzzle on you?"

Jack lisped as he limp-wristed Marianne, "Oh, promises, promises, only id it matches my studded dog collar and my leash, you silly girl."

Everyone sipped a drink and laughed at Jack's clowning around. Pleased that the conversation was going his way, he said, "No, now seriously, I've evaluated our assets, Marianne's and mine."  He leaned over and kissed Marianne. "We have a first class lover."

Dave and Rosie oohed together as they watched Jack and Marianne embracing.

"And," Jack sat up straight at the table, importantly, "someone with an excellent business head, so it's obvious we need to work the streets for a while. Maybe we'll go to the cities where the pickings are better. After five or six months at, say, ten grand a month, we'll see where we stand."

Marianne rolled her eyes at Dave. "I don't think I'll be able to stand the pace."

"Who said anything about standing?" Dave smiled as he said it. He smiled even more broadly as everyone at the table laughed.

"David, you too?" said Marianne. "Help! I'm outnumbered here."

"I guess you're right Dave," Jack said. "I'll have to break down and buy Marianne a calculator."

The whole table laughed hysterically. Dave slapped his hands on the table and leaned forward, shaking his head as the girls covered their mouths with their hands. Jack feigned seriousness as the others laughed. "What? You thought Marianne - oh no, it is I, Jackie Boy Wadd, that's my stage name you know, who shall perform the erotic services."

Finally recovering his ability to speak, Dave said, "Do yourself a favor old boy and apply for that Juvenile Probation Officer job over there in Hawkins County."

"Yeah, it was in today's Tribune," Rosie said. They're taking apps."

"PO job, huh? Hawkins County," Jack said, circling his finger at the waitress. "Have to look into that. Miss, another round for this table please."

This is where the "Hawkins County" serial blog ends. You now have been introduced to Pat O'Connor, the delinquent boy from Hawkins County, and his story line: "How long can Pat O'Connor outrun the law?" You have also met Jack Johnson, the nerdy jock and legend in his own mind, and by the foreshadowing in this blog entry now know his story line to be: an Jack Johnson land the job of Juvenile Probation Officer in Hawkins County, and can he bring Pat O'Connor to justice?

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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Serial: "Hawkins County" Chapter 2 - 1970's Americana (continued)

"Hawkins County" has a dual story line until well into the second act. You have already met Pat O'Connor, the delinquent teenage boy on the run from the law. The premise of his story line: Can Pat O'Connor continue to elude capture by law enforcement for probation violation? Now in chapter 2, you will meet Jack Johnson, a nerdy college student whose life becomes enmeshed with Pat O'Connor's in way the two can not yet imagine. This is the second story line and character development, with Jack Johnson being the antagonist to the protagonist Pat O'Connor.

Dave smiled at Jack as he sipped his drink. The Green Beret tried college for three years but, unable to keep his grade point average up, the military draft finally caught up with him and he ended up in the Army Special Forces. The past year he was learning how to conduct guerrilla warfare, but since his leave happened to coincide with Jack's graduation, he and Rosie were able to come to the ceremony. 

Of all the guests who showed up, seeing Dave and Rosie was the most pleasing to Jack. When the couple got married six months ago Dave asked Jack to serve as his best man, and Jack considered it such an honor that he made the trip with Rosie to Fort Bragg for the wedding. Since Rosie had her nursing degree and worked full time at the hospital in Mankato, they now rented an apartment not far from Marianne's in Dovetail Falls. 

Jack ordered  another round for the table and paid for it out of the hundred dollar bill he got as a graduation gift from Esther and Senior. As he pulled out his Zippo and lit up a Marlboro, Marianne removed a Paxton from her purse and caught a light. Neither Rosie nor Dave smoked; they never developed the habit because Rosie was a nurse and they were both very sensitive to the cancer risk. 

"Dave, you and Rosie looked simply fab out there," Jack said.

"Thank you, Mister Johnson," Dave replied.

"Oh, you don't have to call me Johnson," Jack quipped. "You can call me Jack, or you can call be Big J, or you can call me JW, or you can call me Jackie Boy, or you can call me Jack Junior, or you can call me just plain Junior, but you sure don't have to call me Johnson." The whole table laughed as Jack stood and did his version of a pirouette.

"Say, Big J, where are your folks?" Dave asked. "I want to thank them for the meal. That was fabulous ham." 

"They were right over there a minute ago," Jack said, looking toward the bar. "They probably decided to call it a night. Tomorrow is a work day for dad." He took a gulp out of his drink. "Gots to make the reels don't ya know, otherwise all those yummy bullheads will swim away."

"Well, Rosie and aren't calling it quits," Dave said. "We're going to make a night of it. They'll have to kick us out at last call."

Rosie took Dave's hand into her own. "This is probably the last dancing we'll be doing for quite a while." 

"That's right, Dave, you're U.S. choice meat now, aren't you?" Jack said.

Marianne slapped him on the arm. "Jack! What a thing to say!"

Jack laughed and took a drag off his cigarette. "When do you report back to Fort Bragg?"

Dave looked at Rosie and kissed her. "The day after tomorrow at fifteen hundred hours." 

"Wow, that's coming up quick. It seems like you just got home."

"Time flies when you're having fun, but training time is over," Dave said. "Sometime within the next two months, they won't tell me exactly when for security purposes, I ship out to 'Nam."

"Holy cow, really?"

"Yup, they want to get their money's worth out of me, I guess." Dave sipped his drink. "But, I can't blame them. That's what this war is all about. That's why the Special Forces spent all that time this past year training me how to survive over there, and how to kill Viet Cong." (to be continued)

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Thursday, August 1, 2013

My great-great uncle, Captain Mathias Ulmen (photo 2) immigrated to the USA in the 1840s. In the late 1850's he and his wife, Elizabeth (photo 3) made their way to Mankato Minnesota, where he built and operated the Union House hotel (first photo). He earned the title of Captain because he was one of the leaders of volunteer militia in Mankato, much like today's national guard. The hotel was located between elm and spring streets in Mankato, within sight of the huge gallows upon which were hung 38 Sioux warriors after the Dakota Conflict of 1862. This was the largest mass execution in the history of the United States. The hanging was ordered by President Lincoln during the civil war  and was carried out by the Union Army on December 26, 1862.

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YOUR SUPPORT OF THIS TITLE AND YOUR FEEDBACK IS APPRECIATED. 2012 was the 150th anniversary of the great Sioux uprising of 1862.