Crossing of the Delaware

2018-02-13_10-07-26.pngOne of the first things that most school children are taught about American history is Washington’s crossing of the Deleware River.  Since it happened in the dark of night the day after Christmas in 1776 it was a rather dramatic event.  It was also an important victory for the fledgling American army who had suffered mostly defeats up till then.

If you are ever near Trenton New Jersey you should stop in at the Washington Crossing Historic Park and hear the full story.  The museum there is full of artifacts. Nearby is also the Old Barracks Museum showing things about military life during that period. Both are well worth your time.


Trenton NJ-3.jpgTrenton NJ-4.jpgTrenton NJ.jpg


A New Start…

Trenton, NJ — Crossing the Delaware

The picture above hangs in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. The victory at Trenton signaled a new life for the War for Independence. Likewise it signals a new direction for this blog. Not only will I be giving you quick one-shot glimpses of what I found to be the heart of America, I will also be putting up detailed reports to my visits to several places around the country. These visits will be accessed by clicking on the button selections at the top of the home page.  I will announce each new entry with a blog post here.

The Resignation…

Washington DC – Resigning His commission

Lets finish up this year with the famous picture as described below. It hang in one of the many galleries in DC.  Here is what the government website says about it:13

The painting General George Washington Resigning His Commission by John Trumbull is on display in the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol. This painting depicts the scene on December 23, 1783, in the Maryland State House in Annapolis when George Washington resigned his commission as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army. The action was significant for establishing civilian authority over the military, a fundamental principle of American democracy.

George's Home…

Mount Vernon, VA – First Presidential Home

I have visited Mount Vernon on three separate occasions now and I think I see something new each time.  This time they provided more info about the slaves of the estate.  It is nice to see that done. Yes, many of our founders were from Virginia and all of them had slaves even Thomas Jefferson who at least via his writings believed in the equality of man.  Until recent time presidents were left on their own after they vacated the Oval Office. There was no pension, secret service agents or such….

Washington Is Broken… But How To Fix It???


Source:  Deal or No Deal, Washington Debacle Will Linger Into New Year – ABC News.

StormyWashington is now broken beyond the point where bold individual leadership can even fix it. The forces at play are bigger than the ability of the president, House Speaker John Boehner, or any other person or persons to turn them around without the certain promise of a revolt in the party ranks that would leave them out of effective power.

The cliff metaphor suggests a jump into a void, but at least one that has a bottom. Yet as the nation watches this slow-motion wreck, the depths of dysfunction have yet to be fully explored.

I didn’t think it was possible to find someone who has a darker attitude towards those in Washington than I do but Rick Klein who wrote the above article certainly seems to beat me at that game. I have been accused by some of putting all the blame for the current dysfunction on the Republicans but I realize that it takes two to play the idiotic games they play in that city.  But I must insist that much , but certainly not all, of the blame belongs with the GOP and that is because of their adamant fixation on one word, “never”.   The other fundamental part of the problem is the lack of great leaders.

Read more

The End Justifies The Means….and Thomas Jefferson

I recently read an article in the October 2012 Smithsonian magazine about Thomas Jefferson and slavery.  I think most of us remember his infamous words that “All men are created equal”. That seems to give him an emphatic view of slavery but this article showed that has now been found to not be the case. It ends up that after studying the numerous documents left by him that he viewed slavery very much as a profitable situation to be engaged in. In 1792 he wrote Washington the now famous, at least among historians, “4% Letter” in which he talked about just how profitable being a slave owner was. He also recommended to some of this friends and relatives to move away from tobacco farming (he said it destroyed the land) and get into the more profitable area of owning slaves. Read more

The 1% (in Washington) – Ed Stein

Source:  Mind the Gap |

Interesting story yesterday about how wide the economic gulf has become between members of Congress and their constituents.  According to the New York Times, the median net worth of the folks in Congress grew 15 percent from 2004 to 2010, while the public saw its net worth drop 8 percent. Senators and representatives have always been richer than the average American, but the gap has grown precipitously in recent years. The average member of Congress has a net worth almost ten times that of the general public; half of all members are millionaires, and many are much, much wealthier than that. Why does this matter? Do you honestly sense that anyone in Washington genuinely empathizes with the people who are suffering in this economy? Does anyone there really understand what it’s like to lose a job, watch precious savings evaporate, be unable to afford health insurance, apply for job after job with no success, lose a home to foreclosure? You wouldn’t know it by the words and actions–or lack thereof–coming out of the nation’s capital.

I happened across Ed Stein’s website that contained comments about the editorial cartoon I posted last week. It seems that he does a pretty good job of investigating before he draws his cartoons.  I certainly envy him for his talents and artistic abilities. I will be a regular reader of his blog in the future. Click on the source above to go there yourself. Thanks Ed for all your talents.