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Ponchatoula , Louisiana
December 26, 1985     The Ponchatoula Times
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December 26, 1985

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JAMES BUCHANAN Copyright 1985 An Original History by "The bachelor Bernard Vincent McMahon President who granted THE PONCHATOULA TIMES, DECEMBER 26, 1985, PAGE SIX a divorce to the North and ,_q 00uth" Part Two in a Series In 1859 the slavery cauldron boiled over. Out of the woodwork came fanatics whose actions against slavery and for slavery did not border on, but were definitely psychopatic. The most notorious was John Brown, a direct descendant of Peter Brown, a passenger on the Mayflower. On May 24, 1856 he and his three sons and four other henchmen slaughtered James Doyle and two of his sons. Afterwards Allen Wilkinson and Bill Sherman were murdered. "Slavery was sin and the wages of sin was death," said Brown. As there was no law in Kansas they went unpunished. Rich New England Abolitionists financed his raid on Harper's Ferry, the object and uprising of Negro slaves. He was captured and hung but now he was a martyr. Thousands of Union soldiers went into battle chanting, "John Brown's body lies a mouldering in his grave." The Edmund Ruffln Story The South's answer to John Brown was an equally colorful lunatic, Edmund Ruffin of an old colonial Virginia family, a genius at agriculture and a nut on secession. tle was on hand at Harper's Ferry when they hanged John Brown. From there he toured Southern state capitals imploring legislatures to secede from the union. Next he showed up Charleston to pull the lanyard on the first cannon aimed at Fort Sumter. As an enlisted man in the Palmetto Guards at the tender age of sixty seven, he was the oldest soldier in the Confederate Army. Unfortunately he fell asleep exhausted at the foot of a ten inch mortar which was fired with a roar over his head making him temporarily stone deaf. lie sailed over to Fort Sumpter on its surrender and picked up a piece of sharpnel found on the parade ground and mailed it to Jefferson Davis. Sending his three sons off to the Confederate service he retreated to his plantation firmly believing the war would be over in three months. Rumors about an impending battle at Bull Run (Manassas Junction) aroused his martial ardor and he entrained for Richmond in his Palmetto Guards uniform and there boarded a troop train for Bull Run. Here he was welcomed by his old company but couldn't keep up with their hikes so returned to Manassas Junction. Awaiting a train home he heard the artillery rushed back to the front. Again the artillery battery he joined at Charleston let him fire their first shot at the retreating Union army under McDowell. He combed the battlefield for souvenirs and collected trophies. In the late spring of 1862 in the Battle of Seven Pines he gloated over the Union dead until a Confederate officer brought him to his grandson's body. The Union army whose men were'well acquainted with Ruffin's military actions swarmed over his plantation, completely vanalizing it. Bad news came then. His son Charles was a deserter, Another son. Julian, was killed in battle. His favorite daughter, Mildred, was dead. Lee had surrendered the war was over on Sunday. June 18, 1865. In despair over the lost cause Ruffin put the muzzle of his musket in his mouth and with a stick pushed the trigger. His son Edmund sent a letter to his sons: "The Yankees have killed your grandfather." The nation moves apart In the midst of the heated presidential campaign who should show up but his royal highness, the Prince of Wales. Edwart Albert, later King Edward the Seventh, who served as Prince of Wales longer than any other heir apparent to the English throne. Buchanan who hated playing cards allowed card playing but no dancing on the White House unit. Retiring to bed he found all the beds occupied and had to sleep on a coach. The next day they cruised on the Potomac where there was music and dancing to and from Mr. Vernon. The presidential election campaign was noteworthy in that Stephen A. Douglas got on a train and toured in the South where he did more damage to the Union cause by smearing Breckinridge. Lincoln's election was extremely Iobsided. He polled roughly 1,800,000 votes to the combined opposition of over 2,800,000 votes. Electoral colle'ge: Lincoln, 180 votes; Breckinridge, 72; Bell, 39; Doualas. 12. Only 39,8 percent cast "Before he departed the White House seven states seceded from the Union..." ballots for Lincoln. Buchanan, hearing the news retreated to the White House library, picked up a Bible and opened it to Ecclesiastes and read, "vanity of vanities. All's vanity. What does a man gain by all the toil at which he toils." Before he departed the White House seven states seceded from the Union led by South Carolina. followed by Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas. Forming the Confederate States headed by their president, Jefferson Davis. Buchanan took the position that although secession was illegal, the federal government lacked the constitutional authority to force any state to remain in the union. In January 1861 he dispatched the unarmed merchant ship "Star of the West" with supplies to Fort Sumpter after Charleston merchants cut off food deliveries. Confederate shore batteries drove it away. Shortly after this Major Anderson, out of supplies, and after a brief cannonade, surrendered the garrison. This action inflamed the North who up to this time were not taking the Confederacy seriously. Warning the South secession was unconstitutional Buchanan added in this message to Congress: "All that is necessary (to settle the slavery question)...And to all for which the slave states have ever contended, is to be let alone and permitted to manage their domestic institutions in their own way. As sovereigfl,states, they and they alone, are responsible before God and the world for the slavery existing among them. For this the people of the North are not more responsible and have no right than with similar institutions in Russia or' Brazil." The Associated Press carried a wire story in August 1985 reported that a community of blacks asked that their hamlet be declared an historic site. They claim to be descendants of slaves smuggled into the Southern states in 1859 contrary to a federal law enacted in 1801 forbidding this trade. The law was not enforced by the federal government or U.S. Navy. To say that President Buchanan was not aware of this illegal trade is preposterous. To understand the murkiness of Buchanan's mind, consider this sentence in his message to Congress: "Secession is neither more nor less than revolution. It may or4t may not be a justifiable revolution, but still it is revolution". Finally he asked Congress to call a constitutional convention containing three points: (one) an express recognition of the right of property in slaves in the states where it now exists or may hereafter exist; (two) the duty of protecting this right in all common territories throughout their territorial existence, and until they shall be admitted as states into the union, with or without slavery, as their constituents may prescribe; (three) a like recognition of the right of the master to have his slave, who has escaped from one state to another, restored and 'deliver up" to him. The heat was not on Lincoln to offer a program avoiding secession and he did a strange thing. He clammed up. Nolnterviews, no speeches. Buchanan wrote to Hiram Swarr, "The black Republicans say nothing and I fear will do nothing to arrest the imPending catastrophe. These remarks are strictly private," Attorney General Black listened to Buchanan tell Northerners and Southerners Putting away your decorations And best wishes for a happy d hohday season. May you an yours enjoy the fun and friendship that make this ume of year so special. It has been our pleasure to serve you over the past years and our sincere wish to serve you even further m the coming new year. You are specml to us and your needs are our number one priority. Seasons Greetings! 345-7801 Hammond 748-9837 Amite Although putting away the holiday decorations usually isn't as much fun as putting them up, a little planning now can save you a lot of time in looking forward to next year's Yuletide cele- bration. "Think about how you decorate your house," says Dr. Karen Behm. family resource management specialist with the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service. "Do you put everything ul at once or are you constantly rummaging through boxes trying to find a few things at a time? By packing in reverse order from the way you unpacked, the decorations needed first will be on top." Some people find that a separate box for each room that's decorated is help- ful, Behm adds. That way, one can put each group away without having a lot of extra packing boxes sitting around. This makes it easy to do a little bit each evening after work, she says. Check decorations before putting away to see what needs to be thrown away or replaced, Behm suggests. By making a list, you will know what you need to replace during the after-Christ- mas or next year's pre-Christmas sales. Be sure to write down the size, type and color of light bulbs, the length of additional light strings needed and any other details that might be needed. It's often hard to remember the size of wreath needed when you come across the perfect one in September. Leave your boxes within easy reach if you plan to shop the after-Christmas sales. That way any new decorations, cards, wrapping paper, etc.. can be packed. If that's not possible, be sure to make a note on your December 1986 calendar so you will know where you put them next year. Before storing, label each box with the specific contents. Behm says. If you are storing in the attic, be sure there is nothing that will melt over Louisiana's hot and humid summer. Candles are obvious, but some plastics also may soften and bend out of shape if they are not packed carefully in an appropriate place. Dried arrangements, including straw wreaths, attract insects and should be packed separately or replaced each year. If no one wants the job of taking down the decorations, make it the focus of a family party for New Year's. As the ornaments are removed from the tree, each family member can share one highlight from the past year. After the boxes are packed is a good time to talk about family goals for the coming year. Often during the holidays family members are so busy with their own friends that a quiet time together at the end of the holidays can be an important part of maintaining good family.relationships. And. who knows? Maybe an untrim- the-tree party may be the most popular one of all! maL.times, "Neither secession nor coercion (an executive order for an armed mvaslo of a state ... to put secession down) were comprehended in the federal constitution, and to say so was not the mere partisan expression of one president. In a 1962 poll of American historians Buchanan ranked 29th of 31 presidents and last of 6 "below average" presidents. He ranked above Grant, below Pierce. Yet these all-knowing pedagogues can't or won't tell their students what is their recommendations for a 1861 solution to secession or coercion to the slavery question or as it was referred to by polite Southerners as "That peculiar institution" President Harry Truman once said. "Any schoolboy can give a hindsight solution to a problem but I dare them to give a forsight solution." My solution would be to give citizenship and voting rights to black property owners, professional men, merchants, etc. and educate blacks. Stop the illegal slave trade with African tribal chiefs and enforce it by the use of the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard; education of black children both academically and trade. Outlaw the breakup of families wherein the husband was sold to one buyer, the mother to another and the children to a third. Legalize marriages and births (slave wives were known as "broad wives." where the term broad originated).. End Part Two Care for a Rockwell or a tour of the Atchafalaya" Why not treat your art club to a short film on Watercolor as a painting medium or give them a look at Norman Rockwell's World to see the great illustrator as a man and an artist? Perhaps your garden club would like to tour Atchafalaya as photographed on film by C.C. Lockwood, or to see some of the great plantation houses in Yester- day and Tomorrow. The Great Gardens of Louisiana are also available on film. If you are a silent movie fan, y,ou will enjoy The Railrodder with Buster Keaton. Maybe you find Nature fasci- nating--try Seal Island, one of the Walt Disney Nature Series films or Volcano Surtsey, a f!!m record of the creation of i land resulting from the eruption of a volcano near Iceland. If 19th Century i American literature is one of your interests, get Nathaniel Hawthorne for dramatized excerpts as well as a wealth of detail about all aspects of his life. These are only a few of the 16mm films sent for our November film deposit collection. Films can be borrowed by groups and organizations or by individual, responsible registered library patrons. To get further information about the selection available or to order a film, call or come by your branch library. Attention , 1 For 57 years we have attempted to fulfdl all the d/smnt o perts purchases and service wm'k. automotive needs of the area public. We think we  fer is extended to all (I0 years old or older. have been very suc, csful, and attritmte a great dt complete the brief applicatioa below, return deal ol our succ"-s to the patronage of our elderly to us, and we'll issue your "Scni CiUze Dia- customers, As a teken d our great aptio  count C-,ard" to be presented when your  our elderly friends, we'd like to offer a 10 percent is made. Name Date eL Birth Addre- tit-/ State , 7Jp-------- Year, make, model of present automobile Phone Sil,atl,u'e ,  Retlltn to: Hood Moto Co. 501 S. Ist St. Amite, La. "F/rst/n eusWme'r safaetion!" 501 $. First St, Antte 748-7118 2296217 NS-lg15 878-4786 i I II If you were to die before your mortgage was paid off, could your family afforJ the mortgage payments? If not, you ought to consider ilfi I our Mortgage Protector Plan- designed to insure that your family will have their home free and clear if you do not live to pay off the mortgage. MORTGAGE 0NI00 . . YOU? HOME OWNERS INSURANCE - WHY PAY MORE? wo,m, ,=,= so,.,g'   u on W:mdent opon and om u on tt  c  ttbW JACKSON-VAUGHAN AGENCY 121 W. Pine St. Ponchatoula iNmwam II I IIIIII I