Friday, November 28, 2014

Native Earth

We made it up to southwestern Idaho for my dad's 80th b-day celebration tomorrow. The Best Western, Caldwell Inn and Suites, gets good ratings so far. Very large rooms. A pool the grandkids are enjoying. My son is enjoying the hot tub with the Westminster Women's Basketball team here for a tourney. Free internet. It's a win-win-win-win.

My usual travelogue about the pioneer trails and old Highway 30 (particularly with Bliss that used to have cool, cement dinosaurs - kinda like Vernal, UT). And the features on top of Mountain Home mesa (no mountain and not my home). I pointed out to the south and west how we could see to Nevada in the peaks of the Owyhees (I've been to Duck Valley Rez on business) and the far end being in Oregon. As the sun set I tried to explain how the Easterners have it all wrong pronouncing a "gone" at the end of my native state. It hasn't "gone" anywhere. And it has to match the rhyme of the state song, "Land of the Empire Builders/Land of the Golden Sun/Hail to Thee, Land of Freedom/My Oregon."
Vintage Bliss

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Thanksgiving - Henry Vaughan

From my Cousin Poet, Henry Vaughan, the Silurist (1621-1695)

O lead me, where I may be freeIn truth and spirit to serve Thee!Where undisturb'd I may converseWith Thy great Self; and there rehearseThy gifts with thanks; and from Thy store,Who art all blessings, beg much more.
Give me the wisdom of the bee,And her unwearied industry!That from the wild gourds of these days,I may extract health, and Thy praise,Who canst turn darkness into light,And in my weakness show Thy might.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Orienting/Indexing the Tithing Maps of Wales, 1843

Thanks to Twitter at: Archives Wales retweeted
New tithe maps website
I just did the coolest thing!

The Welsh National Archives are asking for our help to index and orient the tithe maps of Wales from the 1840s! I was able to locate several data points that matched a modern Ordnance Survey map with the 1843 Tithe map for Llanfoist, Monmouthshire! (By the way, I also learned that Welsh spelling for Llanfoist is Llanffwyst. It makes a difference.) You can see my work here. Click on "visualize" and you will see the overlay based on my data points.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

James Island: The Original - More Family Totems

Now we wrap long-standing friendships into our family totems. My old friend I've known pretty much since birth (and maybe before) took some excellent photos of oil paintings that my dad gave to his family and another friend from Seattle days.

Evidence of the lengthy friendship is here:

And the paintings are here:

Missionary Gratitude - Happy Thanksgiving!

This just came in my son's latest email from Japan:
Lots of other cools things happened this past week, but because Thanksgiving is coming up, and because I am a missionary, I figured I could get away with doing tacky things, so I made a list of 100 things I am grateful for as a missionary. I will try to write some explanations as time permits. Here it goes.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Mechanism and Meaning - Book Report

Usually I would wait until I finished reading before recommending. No wait necessary with the kindred spirit I've found with Dr. Sam Brown's new book, First Principles and Ordinances: The Fourth Article of Faith in Light of the Temple (Maxwell Institute, Provo, Utah 2014). I just read a paragraph that I have to share:
. . . . Mechanism is not meaning.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Strangers in a Strange Land - Immigration, 1860

Here is one more view of Mormon immigrants in Carson Valley from our correspondent to the San Francisco Herald, July 25, 1850:
Considerable number of immigrants have already arrived in this country from Salt Lake; but I regret that they are not generally of a class that we can welcome, being mostly Mormons, or apostate Mormons. As far as I have been able to observe in a three years’ residence in Utah, I see but little difference between the regular Mormon and the apostate; they are all, or nearly all, of the very lowest class of English, Welsh and Danes.