Autumn: A Season of Beauty

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“Autumn……….the year’s loveliest smile.” – William Cullen Bryant/ Indian Summer

As autumn nears I get as excited as a child on Christmas Eve except I have visions of “frost on the pumpkin” in my head.  I can smell the wood smoke as it wafts through the cool crisp air.  I can smell the aroma of chili as it drifts upon the breeze and searches for an unsuspected nose.  Tis the season for beans and cornbread.  It will soon be time to don the hoodies.  Autumn, my season of choice by far.

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Autumn is a busy time for Mother Nature’s critters.  Squirrels and chipmunks are burying everything they can.  The tiny Hummingbird begins its trip south.  Geese can be seen in a “v” formation headed south for the winter.  Bear begin gorging themselves with food to prepare themselves for their long winter nap.  The days become shorter and the nights become colder as Mother Earth prepares for Old Man Winter to arrive.

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Final Autumn

Maple leaves turn black in the courtyard.

Light drives lower and one blue jay crams

our cold memories out past the sun,

each time your traces come past the shadows

and visit under my looking-glass fingers

that lift and block out the sun.

Come – I’ll trace you one final autumn,

and you can trace your last homecoming

into the snow or the sun.

                                                                                                                 Annie Finch

Autumn also signals the beginning of the holidays and family gatherings.  The smell of baked turkey and dressing, pumpkin and sweet potato pie.  Hot chocolate for those cold autumn nights and warm apple cider.  Friends gathered around a bonfire talking about what they did “last summer” and all ready making plans for the “new summer”.  Its sitting in front of the fire reading your favorite book.  It is the season of Thankfulness for all the things you have to be grateful for.  Autumn, my favorite season of all.

“Delicious autumn!  My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly above the earth seeking the successive autumns.” – George Eliot

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Yep, with autumn beginning we know Old Man Winter isn’t far off.  Thanks for reading my blog I really appreciate it.  I hope you enjoyed it.  Spread the love.

 

Could You Survive?

My friends, things are getting wild in the world.  Earthquakes, massive fires, threats of war, rioting, hurricanes, etc..  If a massive earthquake rattled our country or an EMP hit our nation and destroyed the nation’s infrastructure and you had to rely on yourself to survive do you think you would be able to do it?  Would you be able to grow your own food and preserve it?

“There are two problems for our species’ survival – nuclear war and environmental catastrophe – and we’re hurtling towards them knowingly.” – Noam Chomsky

I know some of you are rolling your eyes saying the old man has lost it saying,  “That ain’t ever going to happen.”  I hope it doesn’t.  But I would rather be safe than sorry.  Oh my gosh.  Just think about not being able to use your cell phone and no internet service.  People will be jumping out of the windows like they did during the stock market crash of 1929.  Imagine walking into the grocery store and the shelves are bare.  Chaos on the streets will be rampant.  TEOTWAWKI -the end of the world as we know it; so to speak.

I was lucky enough to grow up in the country.  My mom and dad were avid gardeners and my mom canned the vegetables.  Hunted and fished, so we always had meat in the freezer.  My grandma also canned fish and meat and taught me how to save seed for the next season.  We even canned sausage before the microwave.

Personally I think the schools need to add a few subjects in school such as gardening, canning and a basic survival course.  This is something that would be beneficial to our children.  Just think of the stories about people who got lost or their vehicle broke down and they were left stranded.  What if they would have had these courses?  Would the outcome have been different?  I don’t know for sure however it wouldn’t have hurt.

“We don’t even know how strong we are until we are forced to bring that hidden strength forward.  In times of tragedy, of war, of necessity, people do amazing things.  The human capacity for survival and renewal is awesome.”  Isabel Allende

Fires in California and Montana destroys thousands of acres.  Irma and Harvey mark the first time two Atlantic category 4 U.S. landfalls have occurred in the same year.  Mexico gets hit with its strongest earthquake in a century.  We have to be prepared for the unexpected.

The purpose of this blog isn’t to spread gloom and doom.  It is however an attempt to encourage you to be ready for anything mother nature or governments throw at you.  If you live in hurricane areas, have an escape plan worked out.  Have on hand at least a 30 day supply of food and water.

Thank you for reading my blog.  I appreciate it very much.  Again I stress the purpose of this blog isn’t to preach gloom and doom but is instead an attempt to get you to think, could I survive?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spread the Love!!

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“The best love is the kind that awakens the soul; that makes us reach for more, that plants the fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds.  That’s what I hope to give you forever.”The Notebook

Some one asked me the other day what I meant by “spread the love”.  What is your passion?  Is it reading?  Fishing?  Equines?  Cooking?   What ever your passion is “spread the love.”  Let the whole world know.

Don’t keep it to yourself.  Spread it around so everyone can see what your passion is.  If it is crossword puzzles or taking a horse back ride on a moon lit night.  I don’t care if it is “makeup artist” or librarian.  Keep a journal of the things you think are important.  Even if you think it is unimportant.  Maybe it is to you but someone may learn from your passion for fishing, mending fences or perfectly content sitting at home.  Maybe someone is depressed because they seem to be so content sitting at home doing nothing then they find out from you that you do too and all of a sudden because of the relief you provided them, they are ready to face the cold cruel world again.

Don’t be afraid to compliment someone.  That may be just what they need at the time.  Say “Hi” to people.  Be kind to others and help each other.  Read a good book lately?  If you have then share it with the people around you.  It is about you taking what you love and spreading it around and sharing it with others.  The sweet part about it is it doesn’t cost you a penny.  Nothing!

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So you ask, why spread the love?  What difference does it make?  Good questions.  You may never know if it touched anyone or not.  See the elderly couple sitting in the corner booth?  They look as if something is bothering them so when you go up to pay for your meal you also pay for theirs.  Then you leave without saying a word.  Did your act of spreading the love touch them?  You will never know.

See the young lady staring at you as you do some sketches in the park?  She seems really interested in what you are doing.  Art is your passion so you call her over and share your sketch with her.  You can see her face light up.  Did you sharing your artwork with her touch her life?  You will never know.  However, what if I told you that the day you showed that young girl your work she became so mesmerized with it that she grew up to be a famous artist?  Just because you took a few minutes to spread the love, you changed that young lady’s life.

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One of my passions is photography.  I usually have a pic or two in my blogs.  Sometimes they don’t even have anything in common with what I am writing about.  I put them in there hoping that they might inspire someone to pick up a camera and find a passion for photography.  Spread the love!

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I hope I have been able to impress upon you that by taking the time to “spread the love” you are making the world a better place.  Thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog.  I hope you enjoyed it.  Surround yourself with positive things and stay focused on your dreams.  What ever you do, when you are following that dream “spread the love”!

“I have no special talents.  I am only passionately curious.” – Albert Einstein

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friendship Explored

“The strong bond of friendship is not always a balanced equation; friendship is not always about giving and taking in equal shares.  Instead, friendship is grounded in a feeling that you know exactly who will be there for you when you need something, no matter what or when.” – Simon Sinek

Close your eyes.  I want you to think of your friends.  Bounce them off your mind and think of where you met them.  How long have you known them?  Out of all of them who is your BFF?  Do you do a good job of staying in touch with them?  Does your BFF live across the country or across the street?  How often do you get together with old friends?    Most importantly remember that distance is no excuse.  I know I have let that be an excuse myself.  As far as distance; it is only as far as we let it be.

“A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere.  Before him, I may think aloud.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson “Friendship”

“Two elements that go to the composition of friendship, each so sovereign, that I can detect no superiority in either, no reason why either should be first named.”   Truth and Tenderness, according to Emerson.

As I meander down the back roads of my life I have been lucky enough to forge a few friendships along the way.  I have seen friends turn their backs on each other, throw each other under the bus,  and much more.  Have you ever felt you were getting cheated by a friend?  That they just don’t give as much as you do to the friendship.  Then you really need to take a long hard look at yourself.

“There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.” – Thomas Aquinas

Then we have the fair weather friends.  You know the one that is there when everything is ok and you don’t need anything.  The friend that is always looking for a handout.  Let us not forget the one that stabs you in the back every chance they can.

I know I covered all these things in a blog I wrote a while back.  I decided to revisit friendship because I just don’t feel that folks really know what friendship involves.  I am not talking about a friend as in an acquaintance.  I am talking the BFF.  The kind of friend that you don’t keep track of who bought the last time.  The friend that needs a kidney and you are a match so the search is over.  The friend that mows your grass because you were laid up in the hospital.   The friend that you share your closely guarded deer sausage with.  The friend that you go read Emerson or Thoreau too every day not even knowing if they can hear you.

“True” friendship is to be cherished.  That kind of friendship is a gift.  Don’t abuse it.  Don’t take it for granted.  I see so many people who use “friendship” so loosely and lightly.  When is the last time you saw your “bestie”?  Can you remember?  Folks I would just like to point out that  there is no guarantee that your friend is going to “rise and shine” in the morning or for  a matter of fact, yourself.   You haven’t heard from your BFF, but YOU called last time and it is their time to call now.  Really?  Is this how you treat friendship?  Pick up the phone and call them.  I promise no one will put you on a hit list or in jail.  Warning: Tomorrow may never come.

Thanks for reading.  I appreciate it immensely.  Spread the love.

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Life Is What You Make It! Be Happy

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Equine Activities

“Learn to enjoy every minute of your life.  Be happy now.  Don’t wait for something outside of yourself to make you happy in the future.  Think how really precious is the time you have to spend, whether it is at your work or with your family.  Every minute should be enjoyed and savored.” – Earl Nightingale

Henry David Thoreau told us in Walden, “Our life is frittered away by detail.  Simplify, simplify, simplify!  I say let your affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand; instead of a million count half a dozen, and keep your accounts on your thumbnail.”

Now what an idea.  It seems we want our children to participate in every sport there is.  I think it is kind of sad that these young people do not really get a chance to really enjoy life going on around them.  They don’t have the time to watch a simple sunset or sunrise. Do they ever get the chance to participate in a family meal?

Then there are those who become workaholics and get so wrapped up in their work that they really never learn how fun life can be.  They miss out on so much in their family life and all because “they want their children to have it better than they did.”  Really?  Then start eating together and discussing each other’s day, start taking vacations in the great outdoors.  Hug your children and tell them you love them.  Most importantly teach them to love themselves and have confidence in themselves.

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Photography

“Happiness is not something you postpone for the future; it is something you design for the present.” – Jim Rohn

So many people look at happiness is a thing of the future, after Johnny graduates, when I get the time, when I get some bills paid off, etc..  Ok, when you get up in the morning, if happiness doesn’t exist in your life then I want you to look in the mirror and say, ” Today is going to be filled with happiness and the only way that can change is I HAVE to let someone change it.”  There are so many things you can fill your life with to nurture the happiness in your life.  I have posted some of those things under my pics.

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Kayaking


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Fishing


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Cooking

These are a few examples of what I do.  Believe in yourself and assign yourself a dream. A dream that will fill your heart, soul and spirit with pure joy.  Live for that happiness now and not for 20 years in the future.  You are your own boss and you are in charge of your happiness.  Surround yourself with people who are genuinely happy and will lift you up and not pull you down.  For those of you that suffer from no happiness in your life don’t give up. Find it. Nurture it. Discover the healing power of happiness. 

Thanks for reading my blog.  It means a lot.  To those of you who take the time to make comments, thank you so much for taking the time to do so.  Spread the love!

 

A Changing Society

“Society never advances.  It recedes as fast on one side as it gains on the other.  Its progress is only apparent, like the workers of a tread-mill.  It undergoes continual changes; it is barbarous, it is civilized, it is christianized, it is rich. it is scientific; but this in not amelioration.   For everything that is given, something is taken.   Society acquires new arts and loses new instincts.”  Self Reliance  Essays and Poems by Ralph Waldo Emerson

When I first read this I thought what do you mean society never advances?  Has Mr. Emerson lost his mind?  I spent the next couple of weeks hashing his writing over and over in my mind.  Then just like the cartoon, a light bulb went off over my head.  I have to agree with Mr. Emerson that “Society never advances”.  Oh my gosh I could hear all the eye rolls out there.  You think I have lost it now.

Let’s think about it.  We have had several technological advances over the years however, has our society advanced?  Our clothes, hair styles, automobiles, etc. have changed, but has society advanced?  I think not.  I know we could argue that point all day.  I could agree that in some areas it has advanced but it has digressed in a lot of areas too.  In today’s society it seems that human life was valued more 100 years ago than it is today.  Children were certainly better behaved then and knew respect.  Jobs were certainly harder and a handshake was better than a contract today.  Life was harder but at the same time it was simpler.

Christianity was even different.  Today a lot of religious faiths are more liberal than they were 100 years ago.  Religion wasn’t a big business then either.  My great grandfather was a minister and he had to have a job to support his family which was pretty much the norm then.  The Bible didn’t change, society did.  Society was open to a new set of beliefs and new interpretations of the Word of God.   Incomes became larger so they were able to give more money to the churches.  In essence the Word of God was interpreted differently to meet new life style changes that were happening in a changing society. Now please don’t get a bur under your saddle, I am not arguing religion and I am not saying that 100 years ago they were right and today they are wrong.  I am not taking sides.  The point of this blog is to bring awareness to Mr. Emerson’s works hoping that someone might pick up one of his books and read it.  If I offended anyone I apologize.

There have been many protests and riots throughout the years and it amazes me how society has changed so much in its view of such events.

On May 4, 1970 unarmed college students Kent State University were protesting the Vietnam War when 29 Ohio National Guardsmen fired 67 rounds at the protesters.  Four students were killed and nine wounded.  In the days that followed 4 million students, universities, high schools and colleges, went on strike in protest of the shootings.

On August 10, 2014, the day after Michael Brown was shot by a white police officer, riots and protests started and lasted for two weeks and two days.  The Missouri National Guard was called in but stationed some distance from the riots and were not used to stop the looting and destruction.  Eric Holder even got the DOJ involved and they confirmed that Officer Wilson shot Brown in self defense.  Then in June of 2017 Michael Brown’s family was awarded $1.5 million in a wrongful death law suit.

I could go on and on but I think these are examples of a society that are constantly changing.  It is also happening in the field of education, music, medicine, etc..  I want to thank you for taking the time to read my blog.  I hope you enjoyed reading and if you haven’t read Emerson yet, I hope you now have the desire to pick up one of his books.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Teach Our Children Well

“Do all the good you can and create a life that feels good on the inside, not one that just looks good on the outside.  It is the inner beauty which matters most.” – Dr Anil Kumar Sinha

We live in a society that places a lot of emphasis on beauty.  We become so mesmerized by the beauty on the outside that we fail to see all the ugliness on the inside.  Then when that ugliness rears its ugly head we just can’t seem to believe it.  We have all heard the stories of the beautiful movie star that was nothing but a witch hidden within a beautiful shell.  They did nothing but make the people around them miserable.  I think those people are so wrapped up in making the outside, “perfect beauty” that they forget to nurture the spirit within thus depriving themselves of being someone truly beautiful.  Now add to this the stress to keep the outside beautiful that manifests itself into anger, depression, anxiety and so on, to the point that now we have a real “Beauty (outer) and the Beast (inner)”.

“Some of us teach ourselves and our children to love the superficial outer; our looks, hair, skin, clothes rather than the greater beauty that resides within whereas it is that inner beauty that really defines you and who you truly are.” – Rassool Jibraeel Snyman

It is time that we throw away the so called “norm” and start teaching our children that true beauty starts within.   They need to be taught that beauty starts with a beautiful mind, beautiful heart and a beautiful soul and spirit.  We need to emphasize that beauty is created by who they are.  Teach them that true beauty comes from looking for the good in others, by being kind and respectful, by helping others, by not spreading negativity, by loving and treating everyone the same and most of all by loving themselves.

I remember watching one of those children beauty pageants one night and I was totally appalled by the disrespect that was shown by the children.  They had not been taught that true beauty lies within themselves.  It was quite sad actually.

Personally I think children of today are going to be facing some very rough times if we as the teachers don’t change some things.   They need to be taught love and respect.  They need to be taught how to survive, grow their own food.  Hate and racism needs to be removed from their vocabulary.  Most of all we need to be setting a better example and we need to start yesterday.  I apologize for getting off subject somewhat but what I see happening today makes my heart ache for the children of today.

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog.  It is deeply appreciated.  I hope you enjoyed it and walked away with something from it.  We don’t live in a perfect world so maybe we need to try to remedy that by teaching our children well.

 

 

 

Leave Negativity Behind

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When you look at this picture do you see a storm approaching and run to batten down the hatches or do you drink in all the colors and become mesmerized by the beauty?

“I realized that if my thoughts immediately affect my body, I should be careful about what I think.  Now if I get angry, I ask myself why I feel that way.  If I can find the source of my anger, I can turn that negative energy into something positive.” – Yoko Ono

I know I have written about negativity before in my blogs however, I don’t think enough has been said about it and the affects it has on peoples’ lives.  I see it enslaving so many people in these trying times.  It becomes their “master” and drags down their self-esteem and emotionally drains them and leaves them no hope of a life filled with joy.  Depression runs rampant in their life and once it takes control the downward spiral begins.

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Thunderhead or dragon head?

 

“Haters never win.  I just think that’s true about life, because negative energy always costs in the end.” – Tom Hiddlestone

I am a very negative person, how do I change?   First off I am no doctor, counselor or therapist.  I am just a “been there done that” kind of guy.  My first suggestion would be to sit down and  look at all the peeps you hang with.  Positive or Negative?   Don’t surround yourself with negative people.  Keep a journal of your day to day activities and thoughts.  At the end of the week, sit down and calculate how much negativity is in your journal.  Don’t dwell on the negative things n your life, past and future.

“People tend to dwell more on negative things than on good things.  So the mind then becomes obsessed with negative things, with judgments, guilt and anxiety \produced by thoughts about the future and so on” – Eckhart Tolle

Now I know there are those of you sitting there thinking,  “I know someone like this. What can I do to help?”  Every time they do something good, praise them.  Help them to regain their self-esteem.  Give them respect, love and something to bring them out of their depression.  Be their sounding board.  Be patient and don’t push them.

Remember folks that YOU decide what kind of day you are going to have.  Nobody is going to PP on your parade unless you let them.  You are going to have some tough times and decisions.  Once you get negativity under control and replace it with positive energy you will see a big difference in your life.

Thanks for reading my blog.  I hope you enjoyed.

Mother Nature

 

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“Nature will bear the closest inspection.  She invites us to lay our eye level +with her smallest leaf, and take an insect view of its plain.”  Henry David Thoreau

naturea creative and controlling force in the universe (Merriam-Webster)

Nature can be beautiful and peaceful, then without warning she can create a mile wide path of destruction in a few minutes and take lives along with it.  After the storm clears Mother Nature can leave one speechless with her painting skills by painting a beautiful rainbow in the sky.

She gave the spider the ability to build a web of precision and beauty, then it is used to trap an unsuspecting victim, at which time the spider scampers from its hiding place to kill its prey.  She painted insects colors that would blend in with its surroundings and male birds bright colors while she painted the females colors that would make it hard for enemies to see them.

Mother Nature use to keep things balanced in her world then along came man who thinks he is smarter than her.  He creates pesticides, herbicides, genetically modified seeds and levees along the rivers.  Then there is pollution and littering created by man. Roadsides are rife with litter and I don’t know how many sandbars i clean up along the river.  Man is one of Mother Nature’s biggest enemies.

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“Nature is full of genius, full of the divinity; so that not a snowflake escapes its fashioning hand.”  Henry David Thoreau

Every time my eyes feast upon the sight of fall foliage I think how lucky I am to be able to enjoy the works of rt created by Mother Nature.  I often wonder how long before litter dots the area that I am standing in.   We have all ready made a large area of the Gulf of Mexico uninhabitable for sea life.  When will the folks responsible for the litter and pollution start appreciating Mother Nature?  Are we going to ever learn how important she is to our own existence?

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I want to thank you for taking the time to read my blog.  I ask all of you to slow down and really observe what Mother Nature has given us.   Think before you throw that litter out of the window.  Learn to respect her and appreciate her and help her keep nature balanced.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let Us Not Bury the Past

 

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In Memory of

Thomas Robert Burnette

January 31, 1915 – November 14, 1992

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“Mining is a dangerous profession.  There’s no way to make a mine completely safe: These are the words owners have always used to excuse needless deaths and the words miners use to prepare for them.” – Tawni O’Dell

Mr Burnette was a resident of Flat River, MO and he worked in the lead mines.  He worked at the St. Joe Lead Number 9 mine in  Farmington, MO and at the Pea Ridge Mine. He dug ore for nearly 30 years.  When he worked in the mines they didn’t do blood tests to check for lead poisoning.   During his time in the mines he cut a finger off and got caught between two ore cars and suffered a broken hip that had to be pinned.  After he healed up, back in the mines he went and worked there until he suffered a heart attack and was forced to retire at the age of fifty-eight.  His daughter remembered seeing his checks and said he cleared fifty dollars a week.  He was married and reared five children.  He is just one of many who worked in the mines and his family is just one of many that have all the memories of their families working in the mines.

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The Old Lead Belt is located deep within the eastern Ozarks of Missouri.  The Southeast Missouri lead district is a major part of the lead belt and has been a major player in Missouri’s economic and social fabric for more than 280 years.  In early 1700 a European by the name of Pierre Charles LeSeur led the first mineralogical expedition into the Mississippi Valley.  Missouri’s ore deposits have made it the nation’s major source of ore for over 90 years.  The abundant ore deposits brought thousands of workers to Missouri, where over the years they created 1,000 miles of abandoned multilevel mine tunnels,  300 miles of underground mainline railroad tracks and a legacy of 108 years of mining operations in the area.

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Drum roll……………., I am stepping onto my soap box.  Here is my beef.  In 1923 St. Joe Lead CO. purchased the Federal Mill No. 3 lead-concentrating complex.  They all ready owned nearly 950 acres in Bonne Terre that was bought in 1864.  In late 1975 they donated the Federal mine mill complex and its adjoining lands to Missouri for the purpose of creating a state park.  The Missouri Department of Natural Resources took possession of the 8,244 acre tract in 1976 and named it St. Joe Park and in 1980 the 25 acre mine mill was designated as Missouri Mines State Historic Site.

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I just visited the site along with Mr Burnette’s daughter and step son.  I am appalled by the way the state is letting the old mill fall into ruination.  I know money is tight but they could do more.  This site holds a lot of memories for the miner families in Bonne Terre, Desloge, Park Hills and the surrounding areas.  People died in these mines. Why let it die off?  This could be an amazing tourist attraction for these towns.  This site has so many possibilities.  There is so much history here.  PLEASE don’t let it fall down and disappear into the past.

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The 16,00 square-foot mine-mill powerhouse is being developed into a large museum providing information and the history of the mining business in Missouri with displays and old mining machinery and a huge collection of minerals.  It is a start but the site has the potential for so much more.

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In 1981 Doug and Cathy Georgens bought the rights to the Bonne Terre Mine and invested their money in the mine and have built it into a diving mecca.  They have daily tours also.  I have took the tour myself and it is fascinating.  The state of Missouri could save the history of mines in St. Joe and should do just that.  I urge them to set up a fund that people can give to the mine exclusively.  I also urge them to start funding the mine and start rehabbing the buildings.  Please for the sake of those that worked in and died in the mines save the mine.

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In closing I ask for anyone’s help in saving this mine.  Please write your representatives and if you haven’t, take the tour.  Thank you for taking the time to read my blog.  Help save the history of Missouri’s mines.

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