Aug 19, 2012

History Around Us: Mary Jemison...The Massacre!!

        During the attack on their homestead by six Shawnee and four Frenchmen, Mary along with her parents Thomas and Jane, her siblings Robert, Mathew and Betsy were taken along with a neighbor woman and her 3 children who was staying at the homestead. Her oldest brothers Thomas and John who were working in the barn escaped.
The ten captives were led Northwestward en route to the Ohio Valley, the children being whipped when they did not keep up. On the second night thirty or so miles from their home they were not far from the area now known as Fort McCord, a private fort that was destroyed by a band of Indians led by Shingas about two years prior.

        Around this time Mary along with the other women's young son were given moccasins to wear by the Indians. As they were separated and led away from the rest of the captives Mary's mother cried out.
"Don't cry Mary...don't cry my child. God will bless you! Farewell...farewell!

The gorge where Mary and the boy traveled with their captors.
The monument

Some pictures of the gorge that Mary and the young boy traveled with their captors.

Stay safe

Aug 12, 2012

History Around Us: Mary Jemison "White Woman of the Genesee"

I've always been interested in the the local history of our area, especially the period of around the time of the French and Indian war. One of the most interesting stories are of Mary Jemison. Born in 1743 aboard a ship bound for Philidelphia from Ireland from the accounts I've read.
They settled in Buchanan Valley in what is now present day Adams County Pennsylvania. There her family settled and lived in relative peace until a fateful day when a band of Shawnee's and Frenchman attacked and took them from their home. My words can't do her incredible story justice but you can read a first hand account that was written by James E. Seaver:    Life of Mary Jemison

Here are some photos of a trip I took to the area.

The sign is along US 30 at the intersection of 234 at Tick Tock

Her monument not far from the homestead where she along with her family were taken, the rock base that the statue stands on was taken is supposed to be the hearthstone from the cabin.

In C.Hale Sipes book The Indian Wars of Pennsylvania  he describes the location at the confluence of Sharps Run and the Conewago Creek, I started to follow Sharps Run towards the Conewago but ran out of time but I'm fairly certain I was in an area that her family or the raiding party may have traveled.

 Someday I hope to find the exact location of her homested, but soon I'll be going to the area that her family was put to death.

Stay Safe

Aug 11, 2012

Pocket Knives, Don't leave home without it!


My love affair with knives goes back to when I was just a kid, before I even had a knife I would sit on the front porch and sharpen a popcicle stick to a point on the concrete. Why I did that I'm not       sure, maybe it was some primal inclination to or a move towards self relience. Nonetheless after I got  my first pocketknife at the age of seven or eight (which is the small faux pearl handled penknife)  I've had one in my pocket ever since. 

When I was in my early teens I started working on the neighbors farm stacking hay in the mow,feeding and helping to milk the cows.  A pocketknife was a necesity, a tool you carried and used everyday on the farm and at home.
I even carried a knife in school but back then almost everyone I knew carried some type of a knife to school and it never raised an eyebrow.In fact it wasn't uncommon to see shotguns hanging in the gun racks in the school parking lot during small game season and no one got stabbed or shot, but times have changed I guess.                                                 

When it comes to pocketknives the skies the limit and theres a style, size or specific use you can get one for. They can be works of art or mechanical wonders with a multitude of functions combined with a cutiing blade. For the most part they can be carried and used without raising unjustified alarm, well maybe unless your getting a patdown by the TSA.

Rant Warning:
There was a day and age I think when a man was expected to 'fend for himself' or at least try, you were expected to be responsible for yourself.  From one of the many books I've read I remember a quote "I wouldn't trust a man who doesn't carry a knife". Where I read that I can't remember but I think it holds true in that the unprepared expect they will benifit from those that are, that they really don't have to do their part...that someone will be there to bail them out and that they don't even have to try. 
 Like the Boy Scout Motto "Be prepared"
"Be prepared for what?" someone once asked Baden-Powell, the founder of Scouting,
"Why, for any old thing." said Baden-Powell.

Stay safe