Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Bernie Sanders Storms the Senate Floor

and Challenges Congress’ Koch Whores

see more posts by Jason Easley

  The American people are angry.  click to play

In a must see 25 minute speech, Senator Bernie Sanders took to the Senate floor and challenged Congress to break free of its billionaire masters and work for the American people.
Here is the video:
Sanders said, “The American people are angry. They are angry that the middle class is collapsing because of the Wall Street-caused recession, they are angry that unemployment is sky high, that 50 million people lack health insurance, and that working families can’t afford college for their kids. Meanwhile, the wealthy and the largest corporations are doing phenomenally well and now billionaires and their congressional friends want to balance the budget on the backs of the elderly, the children, the sick and the poor.”

The Vermont senator discussed income inequality, “Today,” he said, “the wealthiest 400 individuals own more wealth than the bottom half of America – 150 million people. Today, the six heirs to the Wal-Mart fortune own more wealth than the bottom 30 percent. Today, the top one percent own 40 percent of all wealth, while the bottom sixty percent owns less than 2 percent. Incredibly, the bottom 40 percent of all Americans own just 0.3 percent of the wealth of the country.”

Sanders also debunked the Republican talking point that millions of Americans aren’t paying taxes, “And I know we have some of my colleagues coming up here saying look not everybody in America’s paying taxes. Got millions of people who are not paying any taxes. No kidding? They don’t have any money, because all of the money is at the top.”

Sen. Sanders pointed out the hypocrisy of bailing out Wall Street whole doing nothing for average Americans, “The same politicians who were yelling and screaming about how important and how appropriate it was for our government to bail out the crooks on Wall Street, are nowhere to be heard when it comes to having government help average Americans.”

The high point was Sen. Sanders calling out Congress for putting their rich donors ahead of working people, “Now in my view working families all over this country are saying enough is enough. They want this Congress to start standing for them and not just the millionaires the billionaires who are spending unbelievable sums of money in this campaign. So it seems to me Mr. President that what we have got to do is start listening to the needs of working families. The vast majority of our people, and not just the people who make campaign contributions, now I know that’s a very radical idea, I do know that. But you know it might be a good idea to try a little bit to reaffirm the faith of the American people in their democratic form of government. Let them know just a little bit that maybe we are hearing their pain, their unemployment, their debt. The fact they are losing their houses, the fact that they don’t have any healthcare. The fact they can’t afford to send their kids to college. Maybe just maybe, we might want to listen to them before we go running out to another fundraising event with millionaires and billionaires.”

The speech is 25 minutes of dynamite that sums up where millions of Americans find themselves today. I wish that we had dozens of representatives and senators flooding the media’s cameras and microphones with this message, but instead our media is dominated by bogus scandals like Fast and Furious while the American people continue to suffer.

It is my hope that every American will talk to the members of Congress who are supposed to representing them and demand that they discuss income inequality and Citizens United. There needs to be a collective groundswell that storms town hall meetings across the country and demands accountability from those that they have elected.
Bernie Sanders has done a great service by giving voice to the voiceless, but every single American who has been devastated by this recession needs to issue an ultimatum to this Congress.
Either speak for us, or get out.

Related Posts

Mondragon shows an alternative to capitalism by Richard Wolff.

Yes, there is an alternative to capitalism: Mondragon shows the way

 by Richard Wolff.

Published on June 25, 2012 This article originally appeared on The Guardian's website
There is no alternative ("Tina") to capitalism?
Really? We are to believe, with Margaret Thatcher, that an economic system with endlessly repeated cycles, costly bailouts for financiers and now austerity for most people is the best human beings can do? Capitalism's recurring tendencies toward extreme and deepening inequalities of income, wealth, and political and cultural power require resignation and acceptance – because there is no alternative?
I understand why such a system's leaders would like us to believe in Tina. But why would others?
Of course, alternatives exist; they always do. Every society chooses – consciously or not, democratically or not – among alternative ways to organize the production and distribution of the goods and services that make individual and social life possible.
Modern societies have mostly chosen a capitalist organization of production. In capitalism, private owners establish enterprises and select their directors who decide what, how and where to produce and what to do with the net revenues from selling the output. This small handful of people makes all those economic decisions for the majority of people – who do most of the actual productive work. The majority must accept and live with the results of all the directorial decisions made by the major shareholders and the boards of directors they select. This latter also select their own replacements.
Capitalism thus entails and reproduces a highly undemocratic organization of production inside enterprises. Tina believers insist that no alternatives to such capitalist organizations of production exist or could work nearly so well, in terms of outputs, efficiency, and labor processes. The falsity of that claim is easily shown. Indeed, I was shown it a few weeks ago and would like to sketch it for you here.
In May 2012, I had occasion to visit the city of Arrasate-Mondragon, in the Basque region of Spain. It is the headquarters of the Mondragon Corporation (MC), a stunningly successful alternative to the capitalist organization of production.
MC is composed of many co-operative enterprises grouped into four areas: industry, finance, retail and knowledge. In each enterprise, the co-op members (averaging 80-85% of all workers per enterprise) collectively own and direct the enterprise. Through an annual general assembly the workers choose and employ a managing director and retain the power to make all the basic decisions of the enterprise (what, how and where to produce and what to do with the profits).
As each enterprise is a constituent of the MC as a whole, its members must confer and decide with all other enterprise members what general rules will govern MC and all its constituent enterprises. In short, MC worker-members collectively choose, hire and fire the directors, whereas in capitalist enterprises the reverse occurs. One of the co-operatively and democratically adopted rules governing the MC limits top-paid worker/members to earning 6.5 times the lowest-paid workers. Nothing more dramatically demonstrates the differences distinguishing this from the capitalist alternative organization of enterprises. (In US corporations,CEOs can expect to be paid 400 times an average worker's salary – a rate that has increased 20-fold since 1965.)
Given that MC has 85,000 members (from its 2010 annual report), its pay equity rules can and do contribute to a larger society with far greater income and wealth equality than is typical in societies that have chosen capitalist organizations of enterprises. Over 43% of MC members are women, whose equal powers with male members likewise influence gender relations in society different from capitalist enterprises.
MC displays a commitment to job security I have rarely encountered in capitalist enterprises: it operates across, as well as within, particular cooperative enterprises. MC members created a system to move workers from enterprises needing fewer to those needing more workers – in a remarkably open, transparent, rule-governed way and with associated travel and other subsidies to minimize hardship. This security-focused system has transformed the lives of workers, their families, and communities, also in unique ways.
The MC rule that all enterprises are to source their inputs from the best and least-costly producers – whether or not those are also MC enterprises – has kept MC at the cutting edge of new technologies. Likewise, the decision to use of a portion of each member enterprise's net revenue as a fund for research and development has funded impressive new product development. R&D within MC now employs 800 people with a budget over $75m. In 2010, 21.4% of sales of MC industries were new products and services that did not exist five years earlier. In addition, MC established and has expanded Mondragon University; it enrolled over 3,400 students in its 2009-2010 academic year, and its degree programs conform to the requirements of the European framework of higher education. Total student enrollment in all its educational centers in 2010 was 9,282.
The largest corporation in the Basque region, MC is also one of Spain's top ten biggest corporations (in terms of sales or employment). Far better than merely surviving since its founding in 1956, MC has grown dramatically. Along the way, it added a co-operative bank, Caja Laboral (holding almost $25bn in deposits in 2010). And MC has expanded internationally, now operating over 77 businesses outside Spain. MC has proven itself able to grow and prosper as an alternative to – and competitor of – capitalist organizations of enterprise.
During my visit, in random encounters with workers who answered my questions about their jobs, powers, and benefits as cooperative members, I found a familiarity with and sense of responsibility for the enterprise as a whole that I associate only with top managers and directors in capitalist enterprises. The easy conversation (including disagreement), for instance, between assembly-line workers and top managers inside the Fagor washing-machine factory we inspected was similarly remarkable.
Our MC host on the visit reminded us twice that theirs is a co-operative business with all sorts of problems: "We are not some paradise, but rather a family of co-operative enterprises struggling to build a different kind of life around a different way of working."
Nonetheless, given the performance of Spanish capitalism these days – 25% unemployment, a broken banking system, and government-imposed austerity (as if there were no alternative to that either) – MC seems a welcome oasis in a capitalist desert.

Permission to reprint Professor Wolff's writing and videos is granted on an individual basis. Please contact to request permission. We reserve the right to refuse or rescind permission at any time.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The “Robin Hood” campaign: a Tiny Tax

Robin Hood would not be happy if he happened upon our incredibly top-heavy modern world. But the new campaign to levy a tax on speculative trading would most certainly have him smiling.

The most lavishly paid bank CEO in America, Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase, sashayed back to Capitol Hill last Tuesday for still another congressional hearing on JPMorgan’s billions in speculative trading losses this past spring.
Dimon didn’t have much trouble fending off the few tough questions that came his way from lawmakers on the House Financial Services Committee. But Dimon and his fellow Wall Streeters may have much more trouble handling a new campaign — for taxing financial speculation — that launched the same day Dimon testified.
The goal of this new “Robin Hood” campaign: a tiny tax on the ever-churning financial transactions that have made the Jamie Dimons of our time fabulously wealthy.

This Robin Hood campaign for a financial transaction tax actually began two years ago in the UK and quickly spread to over a dozen other nations. The U.S. branch of the campaign launched last week comes with some high-profile champions.
Actor Mark Ruffalo — a star in the hit film The Avengers — introduced the campaign on Tuesday with a video now bouncing all around the online world.

A follow-up came Thursday, when over 50 top financial industry professionals from around the world endorsed the financial transaction tax notion in a letter to the leaders of the world’s 20 top nations economically.
The volume of global speculative trading, these financial industry experts pointed out, now exceeds — by 70 times — the size of the entire real global economy, the actual goods and services that people use everyday.
This massive speculation endangers the entire world. But a tiny tax on every trade, the financial professional letter notes, could moderate that speculation.
The Robin Hood campaign is calling for a 0.5 percent tax on stock trades — the equivalent of a 50 cent tax on every $100 of trading — and a smaller levy on Wall Street's heavier-volume, casino-style trading in derivatives, currency, and other speculative instruments.

All told, this level of financial transaction taxing would raise over $300 billion a year from Wall Street, money, notes the Robin Hood campaign, that could “stop foreclosures, fund new jobs, and help repair the social safety net.”
Article image
Those Wall Streeters who would bear the vast bulk of the Robin Hood tax burden, nurses union leader Rose Ann DeMoro pointed out last week, can certainly afford to pay a new tax. The pay pools at JPMorgan Chase and the nation’s six other largest banks totaled $156 billion in 2010.
JPMorgan CEO Dimon alone last year pulled in $23.1 million, a sum that Adriana Vasquez, a 37-year-old janitor at the JPMorgan Chase tower in Houston, would have to work over 2,400 years to match. Vasquez and her union confronted Dimon in Washington last week after his congressional testimony.

Vasquez took home $9,000 in 2011, and the contractor that manages JPMorgan janitorial work in Houston is currently offering only a 10 cent-an-hour raise over the next five years.
In Europe, the Robin Hood campaign has already gained serious political momentum, even support from Angela Merkel, the conservative German chancellor. In the United States, two lawmakers — Rep. Peter DeFazio from Oregon and Senator Tom Harkin from Iowa — have a transaction tax bill pending.
A tax on speculative trading, DeFazio said last week, would dampen Wall Street volatility and “drive some of these hedge fund speculators out of the market.”

“These people are getting filthy rich by driving up the price of commodities,” added DeFazio. “They don’t care how they affect the real economy. They don’t care if they drive up the price of oil. They’re just there to trade something 1,000 times a minute with super-computers.”

DeFazio’s financial transaction tax bill calls for just a 0.03 percent tax on speculative trades, a tax rate that runs 321 times smaller than the typical sales tax on a tube of toothpaste.

Most all movers and shakers on Wall Street, not surprisingly, oppose any tax whatsoever on financial transactions, no matter how tiny. They contend that any such tax would cripple investment.
But the United States has a long history of taxing financial transactions. The federal government started taxing stock trades and transfers in 1914 and had a financial transaction tax on the books until 1966.
Getting the tax back on the books will take real effort. GOP leaders in Congress remain dead set against the notion, and the White House is offering no support either. The push will have to come from the grassroots, and that pushing began last week with rallies at JPMorgan Chase offices all across the nation.
In San Francisco, pediatric nurse Martha Kuhl called on Wall Street's finest “to pay their share.” Added the activist: “If JPMorgan can squander billions in speculation, something is wrong.”
In Washington, D.C., activists protesting JPMorgan CEO Dimon’s Capitol Hill appearance last Tuesday put the matter a bit more rhythmically.
“Jamie Dimon, you’re no good,” the campaigners chanted. “The people need a Robin Hood.”

Author pic
ABOUT Sam Pizzigati
Labor journalist Sam Pizzigati edits Too Much, an online weekly on excess and inequality, and also serves as the co-editor of Inequality.Org, the Web portal to all things online related to the economic gaps that divide us.
Currently an associate fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C., Pizzigati has written widely on economic inequality, with op-eds and articles in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and a host of other newspapers and periodicals.
Pizzigati played an active role on the team that generated The Nation magazine 2008 special issue on extreme inequality, an effort that won the 2009 Hillman Prize for magazine journalism.
A co-editor of the primary text on trade union journalism, Pizzigati has edited publications for four national unions. He spent 20 years directing the publishing operations of America's largest union, the 3.2 million-member National Education Association.
Pizzigati's latest book, Greed and Good: Understanding and Overcoming the Inequality that Limits Our Lives (Apex Press, 2004), won an "outstanding title" of the year ranking from the American Library Association's Choice book review journal.
Pizzigati lives in Maryland. He has served on the boards of directors of Progressive Maryland, the state's most respected voice for working families, and United for a Fair Economy, the Boston-based national economic justice advocacy group.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Melungeons: A Singular People

 The Salt Lake Herald, June 18, 1893, Pag. 4, Salt Lake City, UT

People in this part of the country have probably never heard or at any rate know very little about the Melungeons. That is not the title of a new or old religious order. It is the name by which a body of people are known who live in the mountains of eastern Tennessee. It is but fair to them to state that they repudiate that name and declare with some show of dignity that they are Portuguese. Very little is known of their origin, but that they are of a different race from the poor whites or richer Southerners as also from the darky dwellers in that region is evident from their color, their general appearance and their ways. 

They have an account of their history which briefly epitomized is this: Many years ago some Portuguese settlers on the coast of Virginia desiring to be free from the restraints of the government, moved to the mountains of Tennessee. They made friends with the redskins, lived a free life, paid no attention to marriage ceremonies, neglected all kinds of religious observances, intermixed with the Indians and chiefly subsisted upon corn.

Of course they are now under the jurisdiction of the state government, but they are regarded as a distinct people and so treated by the rest of the population. They are tall, dark, well formed men and women, with Circassian features. They are easily excited to a quarrel, but are brave and hospitable. They despise religious forms, have no preachers and care nothing for the questions that agitate the social and political world. They now have a form of marriage but separate at will, and such easy divorce entails no disgrace among their own people. Why they are called Melungeons does not appear, but that is what they are called by the surrounding people who have little or no association with them.

 It is singular that at the close of the nineteenth century, a separate and distinct body of people can maintain their isolation and identity and be so entirely free from the influences advancements of modern civilization. Whether in their case “Ignorance is bliss” is a doubtful question. Knowledge undoubtedly brings wants and woes as well as powers, but few enlightened people will subscribe to the saying, “it is folly to be wise.”

Timeline for Henry Skaggs (Brother of John), from

  • 1700sVA, KY
  • Timeline of Henry Skaggs
    Added by LisaMay70 on 10 Jun 2007

    1748    "History of Shannondoah Valley" by John Wayland, page 538, a story on three Harman brothers being among the first settlers at Drapers Meadow (Blackstone) form this place the Harmans and his associates, Michael Stoner, Casper Mansker, Henry Skaggs, James Skaggs and others operated into Kentucky and Tennessee, especially Kentucky and Harman's station on the Louisa River was established.
    1761    "History of Pittsylvania County" page 89, As soon as the state of affairs with the Cherokees and Catawbas would admit hunting in the wilderness, Elisha Walden and a party of 18 men, made up of friends and neighbors formed themselves into a company for the purpose of taking a long hunt.  Henry Scaggs was listed as being in this group.
    1764    Daniel Boone lived in Yadkin (Note:  this was also the year after George Haworth and _______ Haworth came to Yadkin.  Perhaps they were part of this long-hunting party, hence the old story of their association with Daniel Boone.), came among the hunters that year saying he was hired by Henderson Company  to explore the country, Henry Skaggs (father of Nancy Skaggs who married Peter Despain) was afterwards employed by Henderson for the same purpose.
    1767    Henry Skaggs listed on Augusta County Virginia tithables.
    18 MAR 1767 Augusta County, Henry Skaggs and others to view road from Vance's by Ingles Ferry to Peck Creek on north side of New River.
    1769    Henry Skaggs listed as being on a long hunt into Kentucky (Collins/Leslie).
    25 APR 1769   Henry Skaggs 100 acres from Francis Riley for 100 lbs. on Little River a branch of Woods River, Augusta County, Va. (same to James Skaggs in 1751 by same person).
    1770    Henry Skaggs was located on Clinch River, Plum Creek, in Baptist Valley.
    1771    Henry Skaggs and Knox made a station on a hunt, their camp was plundered by a half-breed Indian named Will Emery.  When they returned to find the result of their winter labor gone, they carved into a tree "1500 skins gone to ruination".
    01 JUL 1773    Henry Skaggs and Jacob Lorton ordered to view nearest and best way from Sinking Springs to Peak Creek, Fincastle County, Va.
    1776    Found in the Reminiscence of History of Virginia.
    1770/1790 by John Redd:        “Henry Skaggs being some 50 years of age (1726), slightly grey, slender frame, dark skin and some three inches taller than Pitman (who was 6 feet tall) I know not where he and Pitman came from originally but both lived on New River and they remained there until their deaths, both had families.”
    1777    enry Skaggs listed on Montgomery County Virginia tithables.
    1779    Henry Skaggs and Charles Skaggs in court 169 lbs.
    NOV 1781      Henry Skaggs and Aaron Skaggs in court, Washington County, Va.
    1782/1787       Henry Skaggs was list on Montgomery County Taxpayer list.
    21 AUG 1784  Henry Skaggs and wife Mary to William Greyson 100 acres for 300 lbs. on Little River a branch of Woods River.
    1784    Henry Skaggs and wife Mary in deed Book, Montgomery County.
    1784    Christainberg Survey for Rachel Skaggs 14 Sept. 1781, written on survey was:  “Platt given up and transferred to Henry Skaggs, May 1784, 150 acres land by virtue on an entry on a certificate from the Commissioner of the District of Washington and Montgomery Counties for 400 acres lying in Montgomery County on Little River a branch of New River.”  (it goes on to explain the land by it's boundaries)
    19 OCT 1789  grantor Skaggs Deed Book 1, page 92, 215 acres Clinch Mountain grantee John and Priscilla Arthur.
    1789    Henry Skaggs was list on Montgomery County Taxpayer list.
    SEP 1790        Book 1 page 113, 215 acres from Henry Skaggs and wife Mary Madian Spring Fork on Clinch River to Simon Jackson.
    Henry Skaggs Rev. War Pen. # S.30701
    Henry Skaggs, son of James Skaggs with grandfather Thomas Skaggs, left children James, Jeremiah, Stephen, Sally, Joseph and Nancy.  (Please note that these are the same names of children of old James Skaggs the Long Hunter), from Olive Bush.
    Draper said of Henry Skaggs - that he and his brothers Charles Skaggs and Richard Skaggs were a family of noted hunters and nothing but hunters who kept pace with the advancing settlements.
    From The SW Virginian, Vol. 1, #3, Wise, VA, page 29, transcribed by Rhonda S. Roberson.

    This is a petition asking the House of Delegates of VA to place a line "fixed along Clinch Mt. and Montgomery line to the Carolina line" to separate them from Washington Co.  These inhabitants include those of Clinch River, Mocason Creek, Powels Valley, north branch of Holstein River, and "others."  Dated Dec. 9, 1785. Washington Co., VA, is in the far southern section of VA, just before the border into TN and not far from NC.
    Alexander SEAL, James SHEWMAKER, John SHOEMAKER, John SHORT, Thoms. SHORT, David SKAGGS, Solomon SKAGGS, John SKAGGS, Henry SKAGGS, Edwd. SMITH, H. SMITH, John SMITH, Enius SMITH, Elijah SMITH, Wm. SMITH, Wm. SMITH, Eli SMITH, Evens SMITH, Jr., Edward SMOTE, Tom STACY, Masheck STACY, Meshack STACY, Sammuel STALLARD, Edward STAPLETON, Edw. STAPLETON, Isaiah STILLS, Yeah STILS?, John TATE, Thomas TATE, Robert TATE, Jr., Rober TATE, Sr., Richd THOMPSON, John THOMPSON, Wm. THOMPSON, John THOMSON, Saml VANCE, John VANDYETHE
    21 July/24 Aug 1784, A 325, Henry Skaggs and Mary Skaggs, to William Grays on, 100 acres, (Monetary terms), Little River, branch of Woods River; witness, James McCorkle, John Kirk, Robert Currin, John Grayson, and William Christian. (Montgomery County, Christianburg Courthouse)
    Henry, the Long Hunter, died 1809-1810, and his will is recorded in Green Co., Book 1, p. 48.
    In W. R. Jillson's Kentucky Land Grants, Henry SKAGGS obtained 400 acres on Pitman Creek, Nelson Co., March 15, 179 1. Pitman Creek begins in present-day Taylor County and runs southwest in to Green County where it empties into the Green River.  He lived in the northeast sector of present day Green Co.
    Taken from an on-line family tree:No. 44.                        Henry SKAGGS died testate in Green Co KY, will dated 5 Apr 1809, probated 4 Dec 1810, naming grandson, John, son of James, sons, David and James, daughter, Sarah; Sylvia ROARK, Stephen SKAGGS; children:  Solomon, Lucy STACY, Rachel RAY, Nancy D. SPANE [sic], and Polly Combs. (Green Co KY Will Book, p. 56). Henry's daughter, Lucy, had m John STACY (see below), but Polly SKAGGS Combs' husband has not yet been identified.  All are found in Russell Co VA prior to Green Co KY.  One Henry SKAGGS is found in Mar 1767 in Augusta Co VA (Chalkley's Chronicles), and one (the same?) is found in Jun 1767 on the same Pittsylvania Co VA Tax List as one Mason Combs (possibly No. 70 below?).  Nancy SKAGGS had m Peter DESPAIN, s/o John DESPAIN & Susan SCOTT.  The DESPAINS were living on Saddle Creek, a tributary of the New River in Montgomery County, VA in 1787 when Peter DESPAIN was fined for not attending muster.  He did not appear on the tax list of that year, and apparently had left the area.  Henry SKAGGS family had migrated to Virginia from Maryland, were originally from Ireland. (History of Madison Co, MO, provided by Researcher Barbara Stacy Mathews).No. 49 John DESPAIN, m Susan SCOTT, and their son, Peter, married in Nelson Co KY in 1791, to Nancy SKAGGS, d/o No. 44, Henry SKAGGS.  Peter DESPAIN was seventeen years old when he enlisted in a Virginia Regiment and is on the official roll of "troops who joined at Chesterfield County Court House lines on 1st Sept, 1780".  He was 5 feet, six inches tall, had brown hair and gray eyes.  He also stated that he had enlisted in Montgomery Co VA

    5 APRIL 1809
    Will Book 1 pp. 56-57
    In the name of God Amen, I HENRY SKAGGS of the County of Green and state of Kentucky do make this my last Will and Testament in manner and form following (To wit) I leave all my Estate both real and personal to my beloved Wife to be enjoyed by her during her life, and after her death, the tract of Land whereon I now live I give to my Grand son JOHN SKAGGS son of JAMES SKAGGS; my Negro man Bob I give to my son DAVID SKAGGS; my negro woman Lucy I give to SYLVIA ROARK; I give to my Daughter SARAH SKAGGS a negro girl Rachel; I give to my son JAMES SKAGGS the rest of my negroes, Jinney, and all her Children except (Rachel) and her further increase should she have any during either my life time or the lifetime of my Wife.  The ballance of my Estate is to be sold, and I give one Dollar to STEPHEN SKAGGS, the Ballance to be equally divided amongst my Children hereafter named, SOLOMON SKAGGS, LUCY STACY, RACHEL RAY, NANCY D SPANE, POLLY COMBS what I have here left to each of my Children is in addition to what I have heretofore given Lastly I do appoint my son JAMES SKAGGS and ELIAS BARBEE Executors to this my last Will Revoking all others heretofore made by me.  In testamony where of I here unto set my hand and seal this fifth day of April in the year of our Lord 1809.
    HENRY SKAGGS (mark) (seal)
    Signed, sealed and puplished in the presence of
    At a County Court held for Green County on the 4th Monday in december 1810 .\
    This will was produced into Court and proven by the oath off LARKIN DURRET, JAMES RAFFIRTY and JOHN BARBEE and ordered to be recorded which is done accordingly by Clerk JOHN BARRET DC
    fiddlestix2007added this on 26 Sep 2007
    A timeline for Henry Skaggs in VA, KY. Metions James Skaggs and John Skaggs among others

    Timeline for Henry Skaggs (Brother of John), from




The writer of this letter is Loafer Redhorse, a son-in-law 
of the Titon Chief, Swift Bear, whose band have colonized
 as homesteaders along the Niobrara River near the mouth of
 Keya Paha River.
Their colony is one hundred and thirty miles from 
Rosebud Agency, to which they belong.Their settlement 
we call Burrell Station in honor of Dea. Burrell, of Oberlin, 
who gave the money to build the school-house and home 
for the teacher. Mr. Francis Frazier, son of Pastor 
of Santee, has now been their teacher two years. 


Loafer Redhorse
       Loafer Redhorse is anything but a loafer. He is one of the most

industrious men. He is one who would naturally be first in war, as he

says, and now also is first in following the plow, and learning the ways

of the white man. Among other things it is interesting to know what he

thinks of prohibiting the use of the Dakota language.

MY FRIENDS: Let me speak now. I am sad because of one thing which I will

now speak of. Since our school-house (the Burrell station school) was

built, I, with my children, have attended with a glad heart just as if

it were my own. And now I hear that it is likely to be closed, and I

will speak about that. And this is why I have something to say. The

scholars who go out from the Brules to go to school, come back without

knowing anything, for the reason that they don't teach them anything

except to work. That is the reason they don't know anything, I think.

And I will tell how it was with us under Indian customs since the time I

had understanding. Then the Indian tribes were happy. Into whatever

country was good they roamed just as they pleased. At that time,

although there were many Indians on all sides, there was a great country

in between full of buffalo. It seemed to be the buffalo's country. And

the Indian people were made happy because of the buffalo. The people

would move their camps and pitch their tents again and the buffalo would

come right in among their tents with a great noise. Then it was that the

people had great joy.

And there was another thing that the people rejoiced in greatly. I will

speak of that also. That was in war. When they went to war and came near

the enemies' dwellings and saw the enemy there they would choose out

about ten of the bravest young men and dispatch them to kill some of the

enemy. Then they would draw near to the houses, and soon though there

might be five whose hearts were not able for it, the others would go on

and kill a man at his house. And the great joy that I spoke of was thus:

of the five who had killed an enemy but only four of them could take the

glory, but their names would be praised throughout the whole Indian

nation; they would be glorified and considered as chiefs. But most of

all, he who first killed the enemy he would be the chief. And then when

they had returned home even the women would rejoice greatly. They would

dance night and day, all of them. And as I, myself, was chief, I

considered this the very greatest joy. Such were our customs.

But now from the place I now occupy, I look back and remember these

things. And though the Indian people had all of these customs, I know

not one of them that made the people prosper or brought life to them. I

have not seen that brought life to the people. And thus from where I am

now, I am always looking to the future. On this account I am looking

forward. The Indians have been told the words of the Grandfather, (the

President). And they tell us that by these words the people will


"Plant; by that you shall live," the Grandfather told them. And now I

know a little that the Grandfather spoke the truth. The Grandfather

gives me food for six days, but even though I eat a very little each

day, in three days I have eaten it all up. But now I have raised corn

and though I abide here eating nothing else, by it I live. And also to

go from my place to where the Grandfather gives me rations takes one

week to go and the same to come back and I stay over a few days to rest

when there, and so it altogether covers over three weeks or more.

Therefore, though I have settled here and desire to busy myself in all

the white man's ways that I am able, I have not yet become independent.

And therefore, I earnestly wish, if it were possible, that the

Grandfather would enable us to receive a year's rations at a time, and

then we would make speedy progress in the white man's way.

And because of this also, the children do not advance much in their

learning. For when we go after the food they also go along. If they

should stay behind, food is scarce, therefore they go along.

And now I hear it said that schooling in the Dakota language is to be

altogether stopped, and on this account I am sad. For in the

school-house here they learn well and also they pray. It is because they

do these things in the Dakota language that we have been brought to

understand them and to love them, and gladly live in accordance with

them. Then also if it was all done (the teaching and praying) by a white

man we would understand nothing about it, and so I do not think it would

be well.

And now this is the last thing I want to say. The Grandfather has for

his own the Indians all over the land, and he always helps them

according to what may be for their welfare. Now he is measuring off the

land for them, but I hear it said that he measures it very, very small,

and I am sad about that. If only he would have mercy and measure it off

for them largely, that is what I think. A good while ago the Grandfather

made a treaty with the Indians and promised to give them three hundred

and twenty acres, and according to that I have chosen my homestead and

that suits me. Therefore I prize the Grandfather's word and measure

myself by it. And thus I possess myself and my children.

Although we are not many people here, yet I always command them to give

heed to the words of the Grandfather. And I bear witness to their

constant attendance at the house (the school and church) that stands

here. Although I am wholly an Indian, yet these are my judgments and so

I tell them. And I write them in order that some may think about the

Indians. My friends, I wish you to hear these words and so I write them.

I shake hands with a good heart.

LOAFER REDHORSE, Burrell Station, Rosebud Agency, D.T.
Sioux County, ND - 1900 Census (Partial)Surnames Index  
NTHIUS ?         Parry          13                  260a-02a
PATERSON            Anton A.    19                  260a-02b
PFEIFFER            Louis M. H. 81                  260a-02b
REED                Daniel W.   82                  260a-02b
RHOADES             Elmer F.    83                  260a-02b
REE ?               Nettie      36                  260-53b
REED                George W.     40                260-01a
REEDY               Thomas        6                   260-22a
RENOWN ?            W. Mrs.       24                 260-43b
RIVERS              Anthony       11                  260-26a
W-DE-KA-TOW       wife            21                   260-38a
MAZA                Suite          5                   260-40a
McALLISTER          Geo. W.        44                  260-01a
          Son                      24                  260-28b
SHOOT PLENTY        none           12                  260-49a
SHOOT THE BEAR      Martie & Ottilia 34                  260-40b
SHOOT THE BUFFALO   none            1                   260-28a
SHOOT THE ENEMY     Thos. & Josephine 26                  260-43b
SHOOT THE ENEMY     none               9                   260-36a
SHOOT THE GYI ?     none               36                  260-35b
NG HEART        none                   26                  260-35b
STUPID-CLOUD        John               31                  260-13b
SUNDAY OR PHILIP    Richard & Mary     30                  260-45b
         Mrs                            9                  260-48a
RED THUNDER         ???? & Josephine   31                  260-37b
       Taman ? & Maggie            6                   260-43a
RATTLING THONGS ?   Edward & Louisa   26                  260-32b
RECLINING BEAR      Joe             27                  260-45b

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

JOHN ENEAS McCALLISTER: born in Henderson Co.Ky Oct. 14th, 1805

History of Henderson County, Kentucky by Edmund L. Starling, 1887 Reprinted
Unigraphic, Inc., Evansville, IN, 1965, pp 617-623.  Henderson Co

     JOHN ENEAS McCALLISTER was born in Henderson County October 14th,
1805.  His ancestors were of Scottish origin, and remarkable for their
personal courage.  His father, Eneas McCallister, was a native of
Pennsylvania; his mother, whose maiden name was Kinkead, was also from the
same State.  His great-grandfather, Samuel Kinkead, prior to Braddock’s
defeat, was tomahawked [sic] by the Indians on the Potomac River, in
Virginia, and his wife, two sons and a daughter, captured and carried away
to the territory of Ohio.  Samuel Kinkead, the oldest son, then about
fourteen years of age, effected his escape and afterwards joined
Washington’s army.  Mrs. Kinkead was separated from her children, some time
after their capture, and taken by the Indians to the territory of Illinois,
near the Mississippi River.  During this time a treaty had been effected
between the government and the Indians, and a large number of them came
into Pittsburg [sic].  With the Indians were the two Kinkead boys and their
sister, who had, during her captivity, become the wife of one of the
chiefs.  A short time after their arrival, the three were discovered by
their brother Sam, who was then a Captain in the American army.  He
persuaded the two boys to desert the Indians, but failed in all his efforts
to reclaim his sister, she refusing to give up her wild Indian life and
return among the whites.  The mother, who was a captive, as before stated,
in the Illinois territory, had often been importuned to marry one of the
chiefs, and had as often positively declined.  She offended one of the
chiefs in some way not known, and, for this reason, was ordered to be
burned at the stake.  The French, who then occupied the Missouri territory,
and had built the town of Kaskaskia on the opposite side of the
Mississippi, were on friendly terms and carried on a large trade with the
Indians.  A French merchant of Kaskaskia, named Larsh, was over among the
Indians, and, discovering a white woman packing fagots and sticks,
involuntarily made inquiries concerning her.  He soon learned her history,
and also that she was packing wood, whose leaping flames were that very
night to burn her mortal frame and waft her spirit into eternity. 
Horrified beyond measure, this Frenchman determined to thwart the decree of
the heartles [sic] monster and at the risk of his own life effect her
escape.  He met Mrs. Kinkead, and by signs and secret whispers, warned her
of her approaching fate, and begged that she fly with him.  This she
consented readily to do, and as good fortune would have it, the two
succeeded in reaching Kaskaskia.  Larsch [sic] was a man of considerable
means and unmarried.  Owing, perhaps, to the exciting and dangerous
incidents through which the two had passed, a mutual attachment sprung up
between them which ultimately resulted in their marriage according to the
rites and forms of the Catholic church.  Mrs. Kinkead had been raised a
Protestant, and, even after her marriage to Larsh, held to that faith.  By
some means, she managed throughout her entire captivity to save to herself
a Protestant Bible, which she read day by day.
     Kaskaskia was a Catholic settlement, and Larsh, her husband, was a
devoted member of the church; yet she held firm to her Bible and would read
it whenever an opportunity offered.  One day, while she was thus engaged, a
priest happened in, and, discovering her with the book, seized hold of it,
and, wrenching it from her hands, turned and threw it in the fire.  Her
husband was absent at the time, but upon his return, she told him what had
happened.  The story so enraged him that upon the return of the priest, he
rushed upon him and, denouncing him, said:  “I do you as you do my wife’s
book;” with this he seized the priest and threw him in the fire.  Larsh,
knowing the penalty that would be visited upon him and his wife when this
fact became known, seized a mattress from off of one of the beds and with
her retreated hurriedly to the river, where he improvised a raft, upon
which he placed the mattress, and the two made the perilous journey across
the Mississippi River, where they claimed the protection of General
Clarke’s army of Kentuckians, which had arrived in pursuit of the Indians.
Larsh, as before stated, was a man of considerable means, but, after his
flight, and discovery of what he had done, became known, every vestige of
property to which he set claim was confiscated by the French.  Captain
Samuel Kinkead, of the American army, then stationed at Pittsburgh, hearing
of his sister’s escape from the Indians and subsequent escape from
Kaskaskia, to General Clarke’s army, obtained a leave of absence and, in a
canoe, paddled down the Ohio to Cairo and thence up the Mississippi to
Clarke’s army, where he found his sister.  After relieving his fatigued
limbs, he, with his sister and Larsh, her husband, took passage in the
canoe and paddled down the Mississippi and up the Ohio to Pittsburgh, and,
although both banks of the Ohio at frequent places were occupied by
Indians, they made the journey successfully without encountering a single
Indian or meeting with any serious obstacle.  Larsh and his wife afterwards
removed to Ohio, where they raised a family of children who proved worthy
of their brave and noble parentage.  The Larsh boys became, in after years,
immensely wealthy, and one grandson died a leading man of Cincinnati
commercial and local circles.
     Captain Samuel Kinkead, who had braved all dangers for the relief of
his sister, whom he loved better than his own life, remained in the
American army until its disbandment, when he returned to Virginia and
married.  In the year 1794 or ’95, he immigrated with his family to
Lexington, Kentucky, where he remained about five years, then removing to
Livingston County, settling in that part of it which fell to Caldwell in
the formation of that county.  In the year 1804, Miss Jane, daughter of
Captain Samuel Kinkead, and Eneas McCallister, Jr., the father of the
subject of this sketch, met at one of those great religious camp meetings,
so frequently held in early times, and, at first sight, became victims to
that incomprehensible of all incomprehensibilities [sic], “love.”  Shortly
thereafter they were married and settled for life in Henderson County.
     As to the paternal ancestors of John E. McCallister, his grandfather,
Eneas McCallister, who was a wealthy man in the city of Pittsburgh, and not
only wealthy himself, but of close affinity with others of great wealth,
hearing glowing stories of the riches of the Cumberland River country,
determined to go hence and establish a mechanical village, he himself being
an expert blacksmith.  With that end in view, he loaded a keel-boat and,
with his family, embarked on the placid Ohio for the mouth of the
Cumberland River.  Reaching the mouth, he poled up to the point where
Clarksville is now situated, and there disembarked.  In 1809, he served as
Treasurer of the County of Montgomery, Tenn.  The Indian wars coming on,
and other reverses pressing hard upon him, he was forced to surrender to
the inevitable, after losing all that he had in the world.  Friends and
relations whom he left behind at Pittsburgh, urged him to return, and after
having lived ten years in that wild country, he concluded to do so.  Her
therefore procured him a large sized boat called a Perote, a boat made of
the largest sized tree, by digging out the center and rounded off its ends,
and in this he embarked with his wife and sons, John, Eneas, Jesse,
Archibald, Clark and Joseph, and daughters, Catharine, Polly, Betsy, and
Sally.  His boat he propelled with oars and poles.  The trip was not only a
dangerous one, but from the nature of circumstances, an exceedingly
fatiguing and worrysome [sic] one.  After weeks of hard work from the mouth
of the Cumberland, in stemming the current of the Ohio, the party succeeded
in reaching the “Red Banks,” now Henderson, where they were met by heavy
floating ice and compelled to take the bank.  Here he secured a vacant log
house on the river front and set to work to make himself and family
comfortable for the winter.  At the time of Mr. McCallister’s arrival at
the Red Banks, there were but few settlers, among the number being John
Husbands, John Kuykendall, John Haussman and Jake Sprinkle.  Mr.
McCallister was a man of great piety and very strict in his family
concerning the proper observance of the Sabbath.  He would not associate
himself nor permit his family to associate with any of the settlers on this
day.  As a consequence, Kuykendall and some of his friends, who had no
faith except that in accord with the devil and his works, determined to run
the old man off, and on a certain night secretly approached his cabin and
fired a volley into it.  They had mistaken their game, for their fire was
returned and they were forced to retreat.  During the winter, Eneas, Jr.,
the father of John E. McCallister, Esq., and his brother, Jesse, kept the
family well supplied with wild meat, frequently, when in search for buffalo
and bear, extending their hunt twenty miles out.  It was on one of these
excursions that they discovered a lick upon the bank of Highland Creek, and
this being reported to the father, determined him to give up his return to
Pittsburgh, and to remove in the spring with his family to that spot for
the purpose of opening a well for the manufacture of salt.  Mr. McCallister
did settle there, and for years manufactured salt at a great profit. 
During the time he located, entered and had patented large tracts of land
for himself and sons.
     Eneas McCallister, Jr., upon his marriage, settled the William C.
Green farm, one mile this side of Rock Spring, and two and a half miles
from Cairo, where the subject of this sketch, John E. McCallister, was born
October 14th, 1805.  Mr. McCallister raised seven children:  John E.,
Samuel, Eliza (who married Furna Cannon), Lorraine (who married Evans
Barnett), Orinda (who married Benjamin Talbott), William M. and Joseph. 
John E. and William M., who now live in Owensboro.
     Eneas McCallister, Sr., as before stated, was a devoted churchman and
for years was an Elder in the Rev. James McGready’s church.  In 1810 he was
appointed one of the Territorial Judges to the Indiana Territory, and,
removing there, held the first court for the counties of Vanderburg and
Warrick, in the town of Boonville.
     John Eneas McCallister was ambitious during his youth to obtain a
thorough education, but met with many obstacles in endeavoring to gratify
his early aspirations for knowledge.  He attended the common schools of his
home until he had mastered all the branches taught in the country schools
of those early days.  His father could not furnish him the means to enjoy
the advantages of a course in the more advanced colleges of the country,
but contrived to raise funds sufficient to enable him to obtain tuition in
the High School at Bowling Green, Ky.  Here our subject made rapid progress
in his learning, giving particular attention to the study of Latin.  Having
for a long time entertained a desire to become a lawyer, he was at least
enabled to begin the study of his chosen profession, in 1826, in the office
of George Morris, at Henderson, Kentucky.  After passing two years in the
preliminary study, he was duly admitted to the bar, and, in 1828, went
South to establish himself in his profession, but, after a short absence,
he was taken sick and obliged to return to his home.  Upon his recovery, he
was reluctantly compelled to abandon his profession of the law, and
thereafter engaged in occupations more conducive to the enjoyment of
physical vigor.     About this time his father died, and a large family was
left in destitute circumstances.  He at once went to the assistance of his
widowed mother, who was left struggling with adversity; and, by his
indefatigable efforts, and the help of his brothers, the family soon
rapidly advanced in prosperity.  He embarked in the business of a flatboat
trader in produce, along the Ohio and Mississippi River, and remained in
this business for about seven years with great success.  Upon giving up
flatboating on the rivers, he purchased a large tract of land, and
entered upon its cultivation, and soon became the leading farmer of his
vicinity.  His great ability and numerous excellent qualities gained for
him the highest respect of all his neighbors; and such was the confidence
reposed in his judgment and sagacity, he was constantly called upon to
discharge the duties of some responsible trust, in which his management
always met with the unqualified approval of all parties concerned.  He
possessed considerable knowledge of medicine, having devoted considerable
time to the study of this science, and thus was enabled to act as the
physician for his locality.  He was the largest landholder of his region of
the county, and all of his farms were models of excellence, and conducted
upon the most approved methods of agriculture.  He was freely consulted by
the neighboring farmers in regard to the planting and then the disposal of
their crops in the best markets, and his counsel was invariably followed. 
With his acquaintance of the law, many accomplishments, unquestioned
integrity and rare judgment, he became the confidential advisor of the
citizens for a large area of country surrounding his home, and the utmost
reliance was placed in his decisions.  His high standing in the community
and his eminent ability well fitted him for a seat in the councils of the
State, and he, therefore, was accordingly selected by his fellow-citizens
to represent them in the State Legislature, being chosen to that body in
1846.  He was for a number of years a Director in the Farmers’ Bank, and,
upon the resignation of Joseph Adams, was elected President, serving with
great credit to himself and benefit to the bank up to the fall of 1882.  He
served as Magistrate under the old Constitution from 1835 to 1851
inclusive.  He was married in 1832 to Miss Elizabeth Scott, a native of
Wilmington, Delaware, but suffered the misfortune of losing his wife, by
death, after having been married but ten months.  He was again married in
1838 to Miss Elizabeth Talbott, daughter of Benjamin Talbott, a worthy
farmer of Henderson County, and had three children by this marriage, none
of whom survive.  He was again married in December, 1867, to Mrs. Fanny
Stanley, a highly accomplished lady, daughter of Josiah Jenkins, of
Buffalo, New York.  He is a prominent member of the Episcopal church, and
evinces the deepest regard for the welfare of his church.  Mr. McCallister
is a highly cultured and refined gentleman, possesses a kindly disposition
and great suavity of manners.  Throughout his long and eventful career, he
has always shown the greatest philanthropic and benevolent spirit, ready
with his assistance, and willing to make sacrifices to promote the well-
being of others.  His course has won for him the highest esteem and
veneration of his fellowmen.  Mr. McCallister at this day is known and
recognized as one of Henderson County’s wealthiest citizens.  In addition
to a handsome residence, and four large storehouses in the city, he is the
owner of thirty-two hundred acres of most valuable farming lands in the
county, four hundred acres on the south side and twenty-seven hundred and
fifty acres on the north side of Green River.
     Since writing the above, Mr. McCallister died August 7th, 1886, at 2
o-clock p.m., and was buried in Fernwood from St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.

McCallister Kinkead Braddock Washington Larsh Clarke Husbands Kuykendall
Haussman Sprinkle Green Cannon Barnett Talbott McGready Morris Adams Scott
Talbott Stanley Jenkins
PA VA OH IL MO Livingston-KY Caldwell-KY Montgomery-TN Vanderburg-IN
Warrick-IN DE NY