Saturday, June 27, 2015

The Making Of A Rebel

Erik Erickson from South Dakota and Mike Cannon from Los Angeles California - Tuslog Detachment 93 (The Hog) Erhac Turkey

  I can't remember exactly when or how I became interested in the Civil War. Maybe it was the pictures of the Civil War in our World Book Encyclopedias. Or the day that my mother picked me up from school and just the two of us went to see a movie called the Horse Soldiers with John Wayne and William Holden. Two of my all time favorite movie stars. The Horse Soldiers was Hollywood's version of an actual Union cavalry raid during the Vicksburg campaign. Although Hollywood mostly gets it wrong when it comes to history, a movie can inspire a child's interest in the subject. Hopefully they will be inspired to seek after the truth. In Mrs. Hearn's sixth grade class, at Charlotte Park elementary, we were assigned a class project. We were allowed do it on any subject that interested us. After completion pictures would be taken and sent to a 6th grade class in South America. Mother bought me a sheet of plywood and I set it on two saw horses in the back of our class room. I created a realistic Civil War battlefield using dirt and my Blue and Gray Civil War play set. 

  When Debbie and I were dating we went to the Belle Meade theater to see Gone With The Wind. The movie had been re-released many times since it's original premiere in 1939 but this was my first time to see it. I was in awe and have seen the movie at least a thousand times since. A movie that the New York Times has suggested should be banned. I will never forget the scene at the Atlanta railroad yard when Scarlett Ohara is walking through a sea of wounded Confederate soldiers. The scene slowly expands to reveal a tattered Confederate flag waving in the breeze while an inspiring rendition of Dixie is playing in the background. That scene usually brings tears to my eyes and makes the hair stand up on the back of my neck. I decided then and there that I wanted a Confederate flag. When Debbie and I were married on June 21st 1968 we spent a weekend in Atlanta and Chattanooga. While at Six Flags Over Georgia I found a 3x6 Confederate battle flag in a souvenir shop. 

  On August 5th 1968 I was inducted into the Air Force. After basic training I received orders for Kingsley Field Oregon in Klamath Falls. Like an idiot I sold my car so I would have enough money to take Debbie to Oregon with me. She was pregnant and starting to show. If I had been smart I would have driven my car to Oregon and lived in the barracks until I could have saved enough money to send for her later. I didn't want to be away from her that long however. We boarded a Greyhound bus and endured a tortuous three day trip to Oregon. When we arrived our ankles were swollen to twice their size. We were as broke as a young married couple could be. After checking into a cheap motel Debbie immediately started to cry from homesickness. She would cry a lot over the next six months. We eventually found a place at Shasta View Apartments. It was akin to living in the projects. The two of us walked everywhere we went. I was an Air Force Security Policeman and the base was about ten miles away. At first I would walk to work hoping that some kind soul would offer me a ride. Sometimes they did and sometimes they didn't. After a month or two I was able to find an old 1955 Pontiac. It would break down about as much as it would run. In April Debbie gave birth to my son Robbie. Luckily my car was running and I was able to get her to the hospital that morning.

  There was a black guy in my unit named Ceronie Robinson. He was from Atlanta Georgia. Ceronie, along with his wife Paulette and little girl lived at a modest but nice string of apartments. They were owned by a kindly rancher in Klamath Falls. Ceronie talked me into moving there, which was a good decision for us. We were much happier and formed friendships with not only Ceronie and his wife but several other military couples. This is where we would live until I left for Turkey in April 1970. For much of this period I was pretty much without a car. My Pontiac was always broken down. Ceronie and I were on the same Security Flight and he was kind enough to give me a ride to work. His car was reliable but it was old. Everything was working but the horn.

The Robinson Family

One day on our way home from work we were stopped by two Oregon State Troopers. Ceronie was driving the speed limit and he wasn't driving erratically. A Trooper asked to see his license and Ceronie wanted to know why he was being pulled over. The officer never answered him but asked to see if everything worked. The turn signals, emergency flashers, headlights, back-up lights and the horn. It was as if he was trying to find something wrong. The Trooper gave him a ticket for the horn. They may have been following normal procedure but I have always felt that Ceronie was pulled over because he was black. Usually when a black person screams racism I am skeptical but this is something I witnessed for myself. Another day we were on a 72 hour break. Ceronie was looking for a used car and he asked me to go along. He noticed a car sitting in a front yard with a For Sale sign on it. As he walked up to the car a man ran out of the house and angrily grabbed the sign. " The car's not for sale" he said and walked back into the house. These experiences in the military opened my eyes to the fact that racism was not confined to one region of the country. There are rednecks everywhere.

  I arrived in Istanbul Turkey after midnight on June 1st 1970. The flight from New York had been a long and harrowing experience. The 747 Jumbo jet had just come on line earlier that month. I never expected to fly on one until I saw that big ole plane sitting on the ramp. About an hour out of JFK I was awakened out of a deep sleep by an explosion in the number four engine. The pilot turned the big plane around and after dumping fuel to reduce the chances of fire in the event of a crash, we made an uneventful emergency landing in New York. After repairing the plane and a long layover we had a routine nine hour flight to Heathrow airport in London. Because my Pan Am connection was interrupted I flew a Turkish DC9 nonstop to Istanbul. Disembarking from the plane reminded me of a scene from a movie. The terminal was old and dingy but even at that hour it was a hub of activity and jammed packed. There was a unique smell that I have never smelled before or since. As I walked toward customs a gang of shabbily dressed men and boys crowded around me speaking Turkish. I had no idea what they were saying. One boy grabbed my duffel bag, moved it a few feet, and set it down. He then held his hand out. In English he said fifty cents. Not knowing what else to do I handed him two quarters.

  In this strange environment I was pretty nervous and feeling lost. It was about this time that I spotted two black Airmen about my age standing nearby. I made a beeline over to them and they were as happy to see me as I was to see them. They told me that they were going to Incirlik AFB, which was where I was headed. At that we decided to travel together. All through the morning hours we tried to get a flight to Ankara but kept getting bumped. After daylight we walked, rode taxi's, or buses all over Istanbul trying to find the American consulate. Around dusk we were able to board a Turkish F-27 prop job to Ankara. When we arrived there it was the same problem all over again. We couldn't get a seat to Adana where Incirlik AFB was located. Late that night we met a white MSgt and a white Captain in the terminal. Both were from Ohio. They were also going to Incirlik. For the sake of safety we decided to hang together. There was a hotel across the street from the American Embassy which had broken windows from an anti-American demonstration earlier that day. After checking in we decided to walk to a nearby bar. Everybody but me had a beer. I ordered a coke. In Turkey they would bring you a coke in a bottle that was already opened.

  We walked back to the hotel and as I placed my foot on the stairs leading to our rooms my head started spinning. I had to lean against the wall. A wave of panic swept over me as I thought, did someone drug my Coke? We were only able to rent two rooms and both rooms had one double bed. The two Airmen walked into one room and I turned to follow. The MSgt grabbed me by the arm and both men tried to talk me into staying with them. They asked me why I would want to sleep with the black guys. I was pretty naive about things just then and I didn't realize what they were getting at. I told them that we had been together since arriving in Turkey and I felt that since I was closer to them in rank and age I should stay with them. The MSgt kept shifting his eyes in the direction of their room and about that time it hit me. They were wanting to segregate by race. That made me mad. I walked into our room, shut the door, and climbed into bed right between the two black guys. It hardly mattered because my head was still spinning and I felt like I was walking on mattresses. I felt this way for about three days. The next morning at breakfast the two white guys were giving me the cold shoulder. They told us that they had decided to go their own way. Again we spent all day looking for a flight out of Ankara. Late that afternoon we walked over to the military terminal and were able to catch a hop out on a C-130 that took us straight to Incirlik. After spending a few days there processing in I left for my base at Erhac in eastern Turkey. For about a month I was a Flight chief because the Security Police Squadron was short on SSgts. During this time I was assigned to a two man room with my assistant flight chief. My Confederate flag was at the bottom of my duffel bag and after unpacking I hung it on the wall over my bunk.

  There was a black guy from Memphis named Rogers. He walked into my room and spotted my flag. He said "You a rebel huh". I said "No, I'm just proud to be from the South". After visiting for a while he turned and walked out of the room. Two new SSgt's arrived in the detachment and I became an assistant to a black SSgt. He was a strange bird. As his assistant I should have had the best posts instead he was putting me on the worst posts. Then I noticed that he was disrespecting me when he made out the duty roster. He would list everyone by their rank but my name was just Segroves. I endured this treatment for a few weeks but resolved myself to do something about it. On a midnight shift we were being posted in the Nuclear Alert Area. When our truck arrived I waited for everyone else to leave the vehicle. Then there was just him and me. After stepping out of the passenger side I looked him straight in his face and said " I don't know what your problem is, but starting tomorrow I expect to be treated with the respect of my rank and my proper name and rank had better be on the duty roster. If not I will go to the NCOIC of security" I was armed with an M-16 and a pistol and he was also armed. The man came unglued and cussed me out. He used every word in the profanity vocabulary and had pure hatred in his eyes. As I walked through the main gate shack to my post he was still screaming at me. Quite frankly I was scared that he was going to shoot me in the back but I looked straight ahead. My gate shack was the size of a telephone booth and as I sat down he was standing over me and spewing out profanity. I never said another word after I left the truck. Abruptly he turned and stormed off. I called our dispatcher and had him call our NCOIC of Security to wake him up. When he later called me I told him how he was treating me. The next day TSgt Wright moved me to another Flight and I became the assistant to a black SSgt named John Miliken. He treated me very fairly and we became good friends. SSgt Miliken and SSgt Charles at Kingsley Field, who was also black, were the two best sergeants that I had in the Air Force. Charles was like a father to me.

  I couldn't understand why this sergeant had treated me so badly. One day I was talking to a friend and he said "Greg, think about it. You have a Rebel flag on your wall". I seriously had not considered this. For a few days I debated taking it down. I knew in my heart that I was anything but a racist. When I analyzed my past I knew that I was not a perfect person but I had never used a racist slur or mistreated anyone of color in my life. I was virtually raised around black people, had played with black children, and regardless of their station in life, if they were adults, I never addressed them except with the respect I would show any adult, white or black. So I stood my ground. The flag would stay. As the months went by in Turkey I saw a softening in attitude by the black sergeant that had mistreated me. I believe that he came to realize that I wasn't what he thought I was. He was judging a book by it's cover. By the time he left Turkey we were on speaking terms. This experience taught me a lifelong lesson. Be true to yourself. If you are right don't be afraid to stand your ground. That is one reason that I have a tremendous appetite for learning. Knowledge is power and no one can take that away from you. It gives you the inner security and strength to confidently take on ignorance. It hurts to be judged unfairly or to be mislabeled. This is why so many fair minded people back down to liberal bullying. Nobody wants to be called a racist. As conservatives we must be prepared to be called racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic and every other name under the sun. Yet we must strive not to be those things. Political correctness is a means of cutting off debate.

  What we are seeing today in regard to the assault on the Confederate flag and other Confederate symbols is a type of cultural cleansing that we have seen in Communist and Muslim countries. The Communists have destroyed the symbols of capitalism while the Muslims have destroyed symbols of what they consider heretic religions. The radical left is not only trying to bring about a cultural cleansing they are turning our colleges and schools into reeducation centers. They are molding the minds of our young people. Yes Obama has fundamentally changed America. However a fundamental change has been taking place under our noses for many years. The only thing that stands in their way are the pesky conservatives who bitterly hold on to their guns, and their religion. The ones who are slowing them down. Marx would call that dialectics. Karl Marx believed that Capitalism would fall of it's own weight but it's fall must be helped along. That is the role that the radical left is performing in America today and they are very good at it. Marx believed that the fall of capitalism is inevitable. I believe that our generation is seeing Marx's vision coming to fruition.





Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Nightmare Scenario

James Madison

Thomas Jefferson

  Our illustrious supreme court ruled that the Obamacare subsidies are legal today. The nightmare scenario of our Founding Fathers has come to pass. We are in a perfect storm of constitutional chaos. Our government is ruled by a corrupt despot of a president who completely ignores the Constitution. A cowardly and impotent Republican Party who refuses to stand up to him on all fronts. An activist supreme court that makes law up out of thin air. Of course it all works for the good of Obama and to the detriment of our country. The Founding Fathers gave us a system of checks and balances for a reason. For just such times as we are living yet there are no checks and balances. All we are left with is tyranny. The Founding Fathers have no clout with Obama and the Democrats. They were just evil white men who either owned slaves or condoned slavery. To these Communists running our government they are irrelevant. Yes, I believe that they are Communist. That is if your not too apathetic do a little research and find out for yourself who they are and the people they hung out with You are known by the company you keep.

.People listen up. We are all that stands between these people and tyranny. Nobody is doing anything about it. It is up to us. All we do is complain and the rest of us are ignorant and apathetic. I am tired of hearing people tell me that they are leaving it in Gods hands or when I mention some daily assault on our country by the left I am met with blank stares. Then there are the talk shows and all they do is talk about what is wrong but it just bounces off apathetic ears. We are the majority here people and do not have to take this. What is going to happen when because of our apathy we have to watch our friends, neighbors and relatives go to jail when they finally do grow a backbone but it will be too late then. The left grows stronger and more confident every day. Polls don't matter anymore. They don't care what we think.

My two favorite quotes of all time are from the introduction to William Lloyd Garrison's anti-slavery newspaper The Liberator in 1831 and Lincoln's Lyceum speech in 1838. I repeat them here because they are so relevant to what is going on today.

I am aware that many object to the severity of my language; but is there not cause for severity? I will be as harsh as truth, and as uncompromising as justice. On this subject, I do not wish to think, or speak, or write, with moderation. No! No! Tell a man whose house is on fire to give a moderate alarm; tell him to moderately rescue his wife from the hands of the ravisher; tell the mother to gradually extricate her babe from the fire into which it has fallen;—but urge me not to use moderation in a cause like the present. I am in earnest—I will not equivocate—I will not excuse—I will not retreat a single inch—AND I WILL BE HEARD. The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal, and to hasten the resurrection of the dead.

—William Lloyd Garrison, "To the Public," from the Inaugural Editorial in the January 1, 1831, issue of The Liberator

Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant to step the ocean and crush us at a blow? Never! All the armies of Europe, Asia, and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest, with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force take a drink from the Ohio or make a track on the Blue Ridge in a trial of a thousand years. At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer. If it ever reach us it must spring up amongst us; it cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time or die by suicide.

Lincoln's Lyceum address

Sunday, June 21, 2015

What If They Gave A Race War And Nobody Came?

Emanuel A.M.E. Church, Charleston S.C. during the 1800's
  As gospel singers my brother Mark and I have visited many different black churches over the years. No matter what church we attended the people were always very friendly and they bent over backwards to make us feel welcome. Many times we were the only white faces in the church. One of the sweetest and most authentic Christian ladies that I have ever known was Mrs. Sally Hicks who frequently invited us to sing at special church events and homecomings. I have to believe that Dylan Roof was warmly welcomed into that church by the very people that he later killed. How could he be received with such warmth and an hour later shoot them down in cold blood?  I can't imagine someone being that heartless. On top of that the victims family members faced this punk only hours after the shooting and God was glorified because they had the strength to forgive this guy. I question whether I could have that kind of faith. This is the difference from Christianity and all other religions in my view.
Emanuel Baptist
Emanuel Baptist today

  It is amazing to me that a people that have been as historically oppressed, as the black race in America, have not been more vindictive and violent toward white people. Many times white slave owners were oppressive out of fear more than anything else. They felt that the more ignorant their slaves were the safer they were. It was against the law to teach a slave how to read and write in most slave states. That is why the left indoctrinates rather than educates the masses today. It is easier to control us when we are ignorant. Starting in South Carolina in the 1500's there was a string of slave uprisings. The most famous was Haiti starting in 1791 and ending in 1804. It was a successful revolution in which the minority white population of 5,000 was massacred between February and April 1804. After the Haiti rebellion American slavery began to take on a harsher tone. Especially after 1820 as slavery expanded into the newly acquired cotton lands of Alabama and Mississippi.  In 1822 Denmark Vesey, a founder of the Emanuel A.M.E. church in Charleston tried to organize a slave revolt. Vesey was exposed by a fellow slave. He, along with 34 other slaves were hung. The plan was to kill white slave owners in Charleston, steal a ship and escape to Haiti. This news spread panic throughout the South.
The Haiti Rebellion

Denmark Plesey

  The bloody reprisals and revenge experienced in Haiti never came to fruition in the United States however. Nine years later there was the Nat Turner Rebellion in Virginia. Turner and his followers brutally killed about 70 white people. This spread shock waves of terror throughout the South. In 1859, John Brown, a white man, took over the Harpers Ferry arsenal in a forlorn attempt to spark a slave rebellion throughout the South and this was one of the many incidents that helped trigger the Civil War. Like Dylan Roof, Brown was a deranged man. The only difference was that, unlike Roof, he was on the right side of the issue. Most of these rebellions were an attempt to start a nationwide slave rebellion or a race war. The same thing that Charles Manson and Dylan Roof wanted to start.
The Nat Turner Rebellion
John Brown

  The blood letting of Haiti never happened in the U.S. because of the influence of the Christian church in America. It was faith like we have seen on display by the victims family members in Charleston. Because of the example set by Jesus they are willing to forgive rather than be consumed by hate. We must remember that Denmark Vesey and Nat Turner were preachers as well as Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson. Much bad has come from the churches however. The message that most slave owners wanted their slaves to learn from the Bible was that they were to obey their masters. As so many people do even today it was an attempt to take the Bible out of context so as to justify an evil. The slave on the other hand saw the hope of the children of Israel who had been in bondage for 400 years, The slave was looking for his deliverance through their own Moses. The message of Jesus love toward his oppressors sustained them through those many years of injustice. It was also the white church in the North that began the abolition movement in America. The black church was the driving force behind the modern day Civil Rights movement of Martin Luther King. Racists whites look at King as a troublemaker in the same way as they look at Jackson and Sharpton. King however was the antithesis of these men. When other black leaders were encouraging violence and disorder King was trying to unite fair minded blacks and whites by an appeal to their conscience. He used the Bible, along with the non-violent philosophies of Ghandi and Thoreau. White people, and America as a whole, should be thankful for the peaceful influence of Martin Luther King and the church in America.
Martin Luther King

  We have a president however whose goal is to divide us. In his speech the day after the shooting he started out on the right note but then stooped to the base level of pushing his political agenda of gun control. He made it sound as if every white person in America collectively pulled the trigger on Dylan Roof's .45 caliber semiautomatic. We should focus on this tragedy in a healing way but instead today we are fuming over the words of this evil man. Our outrage is focused on him and Dylan Roof. The same thing happens every time there is a national tragedy. Whether it is Sandy Hook, Ft. Hood, or this tragedy. The Democrats can't even wait until the bodies are removed from the crime scene before they disrespect the dead by crassly exploiting these tragedies. They love it when these incidents happen so they can push their gun control agenda. If a Muslim terrorist had done this, we would have to find out on our own that he was even a Muslim. In addition we would be cautioned not to leap to judgement. I am sure it would be classified as work place violence or some other misleading term. It would be dropped from mainstream news coverage as quickly as they could get away with it. Since a white racist male did this it will be headline news for weeks and months because this is gold for the Democratic mainstream press.
Dylan Roof

  During the Civil Rights struggles of 1940's, 50's and 60's, American presidents were embarrassed by racial strife here at home. America was trying to sell itself as a Democracy that was standing as an example against Communist totalitarianism. Yet the dictatorships of the world were correctly pointing their finger back at America and asking how we could be the shining light of Democracy when we treated our black people as second class citizens. In my view Obama wants racial division in America. He is mostly responsible for the racial divide today and he is not only dividing us along racial lines but along gender and economic lines. Obama is the most divisive president in American history. This man had a golden opportunity as the first black president to unite us as no other president. This evil man is not embarrassed by our problems. If anything he is proud of them. Obama wants us to appear on the world stage as the most violent country in the world when we are not. This is so he can push his anti-gun agenda in the UN. He also makes us out to be the most racist country when we are the least racist country in order to establish a national police force. Everything that the Community Organizer in Chief does is based on some agenda with the intent to divide. There is nothing more inspiring than to read the words of Lincoln or to listen to past presidents such as Kennedy or Reagan. I loved Lincoln's Malice Toward None speech and Kennedy's inaugural address. Reagan's speeches still give me goosebumps and bring tears to my eyes. Obama words fill me with rage and I can't stand to even look at him. It has nothing to do with the darkness of his skin but everything to do with the darkness of his soul. It is only because of the gospel, the same gospel that sustains the relatives of these shooting victims, that keeps me from hating Obama in a personal way. My prayer is that God will work a miracle and create in him a new man. .      

Thursday, June 18, 2015


Gun grabbers are so predictable. Never let a crisis like the Charleston Church shooting go to waste, huh Barack. If ever there was a situation that cries out for doing away with gun free zones it is this shooting. Where is it written that you can't carry a gun with you to church? If one or more people in this congregation had been packing this boy could have been stopped. At the very least they could have minimized the damage. Without guns they allowed themselves to be a target rich environment.

The media began calling this a hate crime before they had any facts. When someone walks into a predominately white church, a Buddhist temple,a mosque, synagogue, or a black church and starts wasting people, that is worthy of the death penalty in my view. At the very least a life sentence without parole. What difference does it make if this guy killed these people because he is a white supremacist, a psycho, ISUS, or a radical environmentalist wacko? Innocent people are still dead. If a jury decides that he deserves the maximum sentence of death then what good is a hate crime law? When a black man was dragged to death behind a pick-up truck in Texas, by three white racists, they were all sentenced to death. The left criticized then governor George W. Bush for not signing hate crimes legislation. What else could have been accomplished by hate crimes legislation? I guess everybody gets to stand around and spit on their grave after they are dead? That, I'm sure, would make everyone feel so much better about themselves.

Years ago white juries in the South would let guilty white supremacists go free after killing black people. Such as in the case of Medgar Evers. The 1964 Civil Rights Act established the means by which the Federal government could prosecute a state criminal case if it was believed someones civil rights had been violated in the state trial. I don't have a problem with that. However I do not agree that the Feds can declare a case as a hate crime and prosecute it without first giving the state a shot at doing the right thing. This is a violation of States Rights in my view.

If a person kills me what difference does it make if he does it because he hates me or he just doesn't care whether I live or die? There are no hate laws, or love laws. Just like there is no hate speech or love speech. There is just speech. The problem with all this is that elites get to decide what laws are hate laws and what speech is hate speech. In 1996 a nineteen year old white man named Michael Westerman was shot to death in Guthrie Kentucky by several black teens because he was flying a Confederate flag from the bed of his pick-up truck. Not once did I hear a government official or anyone in the media describe this as a hate crime. If a similar crime happened today I doubt very seriously that the Feds or Obama's justice department would even notice The men who were charged with this crime received life sentences. Would a hate crime charge produced a different result? I rather doubt it.

Monday, June 15, 2015


  America is going to hell in the proverbial hand basket. What is up, is down, and what is down, is up. Right is wrong and wrong is right. The left is fundamentally changing America by religiously following the Saul Alinsky playbook. They can get away with it because there is no opposition party representing the interests of right thinking Americans. Personally I have been fed up for a long time. I have made the threat since 2000 that I would not vote for another Republican presidential candidate until a valid conservative was nominated. Conservatives such as myself have been enablers far too long. I always vote for the loser progressive Republican candidate using the worn out logic that at least he will be better than the even bigger loser Democratic candidate. I swear on my mothers grave this time that the cycle will end for me in 2016. I will never again vote for a Jeb Bush, Lindsey Graham, Chris Christie, John McCain, Bob Dole, George W. Bush, or Mitt Romney kind of Republican. If the Republicans nominate another progressive candidate I feel certain that far too many people like myself will stay home. The Republican may get many Independent votes but they wont have a dogs chance in hell of winning without the support of the Conservative base. The establishment Republicans sound like a broken record. They continue to warn us that a conservative can't win. However it was a true conservative, Ronald Reagan, who established the modern conservative movement. He won big in 1980 and 84. Reagan became the best president of my lifetime. It was also the conservatives who demolished the Democrats in 1994 and 2010. In 2014 it was Republicans making conservative promises that regained the senate. Although there is nothing conservative about this bunch it is funny how they say that Conservatives can't win but at election time they constantly remind us how conservative they are, Remember Lamar Alexander's campaign commercials.

  Obviously, elections alone are not getting it done. It is time for the "Silent Majority" to be heard. In 1999 and 2000 I was a small part of the movement that stopped a Tennessee State income tax and eventually led to a super majority of Republicans being elected to the Tennessee State Legislature ending the historical domination of that body by the Democrat Party. I was a horn honker and sign waver who was at every demonstration in that struggle until the final victory. We scared the hell out of those people. I was there on the day they carried several legislators out on gurneys because their blood pressure spiked. The same arrogance displayed by the Democrats on the state tax issue has been shown by Obama and the Democrats on so many issues. We have seen the same treachery exhibited by the Republican congress that I was seeing in Tennessee governor Don Sunquist. A man that campaigned against a state income tax but three days after his inauguration came out in favor of it. I will never forget, as long as I live the feeling of triumph on July 12, 1999 when thousands of people drove down to the state capital and virtually surrounded it. Thousands of car honkers and protesters demanded entrance. The tax supporters tried to sneak in the tax after everyone had left for the day. Tears welled in my eyes and the hair stood up on my neck at this display of grass roots democracy. We could not have done this without the help of two local talk radio stations. WLAC AM and WWTN FM. Talk show hosts Phil Valentine, Dave Ramsey, Steve Gill and Daryl Ankarlo. led the charge.  These men were the Paul Reveres and William Dawes of this tax revolution.

  We could duplicate this on a national level if syndicated national talk radio would step up to the plate and lead like our local talk show hosts did back in 1999 and 2000. All we do is talk, and complain but nothing ever gets done. If our anger could be marshaled as it was then it would start a grass roots movement unlike anything we have ever seen. Glenn Beck seems to be going down that path but not enough are getting on board. I plan to attend Becks (Never Again Is Now) Rally on August 28th in Birmingham. I encourage like minded Americans to do the same. We could turn back Obamacare, illegal immigration,deficit spending and push back against the on going ridiculous assault by the left on law enforcement in America. Stop the slaughter of innocents in the Middle East by ISIS.. The over all goal would be to restore common sense to America. In the Tennessee Tax Revolt the majority of Tennesseans were against the tax but the legislature arrogantly thought that they knew what was best for us. However it only took a few thousand Tennesseans to put the fear of God in them. I am convinced that the majority of Americans would also support a similar movement to restore our liberties.




Saturday, June 6, 2015

The Frogge Family

Isaac (Ike) Frogge and his wife Della Smith Frogge 

  My maternal grandmother was Ella Belle Frogge. Everyone called her Belle. The Frogge family is by far the most colorful and I have found a wealth of information about them. The name Frogge is Scottish. The original spelling was Froedge. I have traced the family back to the Wallace Clan in Scotland but I haven't been able to trace them directly to the Sir William Wallace of Braveheart fame. I believe that my family was closely related to William Wallace because most of them came from Wallace's hometown of Elderslie Renfrewshire Scotland. Sir William was born in 1308 and I have traced my line of Wallace's all the way back to 1117. John Wallace was a contemporary of Sir William Wallace and was born in 1315. I have found three Sir William Wallace's in my line that were born after Braveheart's death. Maybe this is why I value liberty. It is in my blood.

  Colonel John Frogge was born in Aberdeen Scotland sometime in 1709. He traveled to America and would die in Bath Virginia on August 19, 1794. I am reading a great book right now called the Frontiersman. It parallels the life of one of our greatest frontiersman Simon Kenton and the great Indian leader Tecumseh. Colonel Frogge's son Captain John Frogge was killed October 10, 1774 at the decisive battle of Point Pleasant Virginia, which is now in West Virginia. The battle was a costly victory for the Colonists. They lost three times more men but the Indians abandoned the battlefield. They retreated after discovering re-enforcements enroute to the aid of the Colonists. The battle of Point Pleasant was the only battle in what became known as Lord Dunmore's war. The Indians consisted mainly of the Shawnee and Mingo's led by Shawnee Chief Cornstalk. Tecumseh's father was killed in this battle. The Frontiersman describes the battle and how decisive it was. Lord Dunmore, the Royal governor of Virginia negotiated a treaty with Cornstalk that would confine the Shawnee to the Ohio side of the Ohio River. Until the outbreak of the American Revolution in 1775 settlers would flood much of the Ohio Valley. Captain John Frogge's mother was Elizabeth Strother. It is through her that I am related to two presidents. John Tyler and Zachary Taylor.

  The first settler in the Valley of the Three Forks of the Wolf River which would later become Pall Mall Tennessee was Conrad or Coonrad Pyle, the great-great grandfather of Alvin C. York. The second settler was my great-great-great-great grandfather and War of 1812 combat veteran Arthur Robinson Frogge. Some of Alvin York's best friends and worst enemies were Frogge's. At some point my great-great grandfather James McKinley Frogge moved to Paducah Kentucky from Fentress County. There he would serve as a Union soldier and raise sixteen children. One of which was my great grandfather John Clayton Breckinridge Frogge. A few months ago I let an HVAC technician from Frogge Air Conditioning and Heating Service on to the roof of the mall. I noticed that his last name was Frogge. I told him that we may be related because my grandmother was a Frogge. He didn't seem that interested but about thirty minutes later he called me and said that his father James wanted to talk to me. James is 81 years old and he said that he knew my grandmother Belle. He was a wealth of family information. A couple of days ago I talked to him again and found out that he is the grandson of my grandmothers brother James Arthur Garfield Frogge. He started off by saying that my great grandfather John Frogge, who he called "Cap" moved to Nashville with his family because he had killed several men who were trying to take his saloon from him. I have tried to verify this but haven't been able to. If this is true however it could shed some light on the mysterious deaths of my Uncles Garfield and Isaac Frogge. Then again their deaths could be just tragic coincidences.
William Frogge & his wife - Son of Arthur Robinson Frogge
and brother of my great great great grandfather Evan Frogge

Frogge Mountain In Pall Mall Tennessee

James Mckinley Frogge

1st on the left, bottom row - The foreman and my great grandfather John Clayton Breckinridge Frogge,- my grandfather Marcellus Brown, 4th from left on the back row, my uncle Elby Morse 2nd from left on back row.

  Garfield was a tough character. He was born on October 28,1880 and I assume was named after James Abram Garfield who would be elected about a week later in November and shot in the back by an assassin on July 2, 1881. The president would linger until his death on September 19, 1881. There are a few things that I recently found out about Uncle Garfield. When the Spanish American War broke out on April 25, 1898 he was 17 years old and would become a private in the 3rd Kentucky Volunteer Infantry Regiment. The 3rd Kentucky, under the command of Colonel T. J. Smith was from Western Kentucky. The regiment was mustered into Federal service from May 21 to 31, 1898. Attached to First Corp of US Army, at Camp Thomas, Chickamauga, Georgia, where the regiment was issued uniforms and arms. Transferred on July 27, 1898 to Newport News, for assignment to Puerto Rico expedition. The 3rd Regiment was left behind due to an epidemic of measles and mumps. The regiment was mustered out on May 16, 1899, at Savannah, Georgia. Kentucky raised four volunteer infantry regiments during the war. Of the four only the 1st Kentucky Volunteer Infantry made it overseas. All four were destined for Puerto Rico but the outbreak of disease prevented all but the 1st from deployment. Out of total casualties of 3,289 men who died in the Spanish American War 2,957 died of disease. At that time the measles, which we consider as a simple childhood disease today, was a deadly killer in the 1800's. It would not be until World War II that more men would die from combat wounds than disease.

On October 7, 1903, at the age of 22, Garfield was working for the Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis Railroad as a Flagman. He was on one of two trains that collided on a railroad trestle. The following is from two newspapers, The latter being the The Paducah Sun.


Fire Caused by Collision Destroys Trestle and Fourteen Cars of Freight

Paducah. Ky., Oct. 8. , 1903

Two men were burned to death In a wreck on the minds Central, sixteen miles from Paducah Garfield Frogge of Paducah were painfully Injured. All through passenger trains are running over the Louisville and Nashville.

Additional source: The damage will amount to a great deal to the road, many thousands of dollars being lost in the wreckage. The engines are reported to be total losses and over a dozen cars with contents were destroyed.

Later today it was learned that C. L. HUTON is the name of the unknown fireman who was learning the road last night when caught in the wreckage, and his home is in Cumberland Furnace, Tenn. The remains of either the engineer or fireman, this the trainmen being unable to state positively were recovered this morning shortly after nine o'clock by the wrecking crew. A portion of the lower limbs and body were recovered but are burned so badly there is nothing that might lead to identification. The legs were taken from under the wreckage near the engine.

The wrecking crew is laboring hard to repair the trestle and was making good headway at last reports. The noon train No. 102 was annuled and did not arrive here, being sent around via McKenzie over the L. & N. as were the trains last night. It is not known how soon the road will be in operation but it is thought the trains will be enable to run through by night.

DULANEY had been here a few days only, having come from Minnesota, and boarded at the Bailey house on West Broadway. He has a young wife here and had been an engineer a short time only, having been examined last week and passed. Last night was his second run out. It is reported that a fireman named BEALER was the regular fireman on the engine but the railroad callers say they called EDEN, who was DULANEY'S regular fireman. Later reports from the wreck show that when the collision was seen to be inevitable Engineer DULANEY called for brakes and remained at his post while his fireman, EDEN, jumped as also did Engineer SCARBROUGH and Fireman HODGES of the 151. HODGES was bruised and EDEN injured about the head in alighting. HUTTON the fireman learning the road, was caught and could not escape. His watch was found in the wreckage and had stopped at 1:20 o'clock. Flagman GARFIELD FROGGE running extra, was injured in the shoulder and ankle but not seriously. The damage is estimated at $30,000 and it will require over 26 hours to clear the wreckage. 

This wreck in Italy might have looked like the Kentucky wreck

Of course 30,000 dollars was a lot of money in 1903. Then barely more than a month later this article appeared in the newspaper. Garfield Frogge employed at the Paducah Traction company car barns was struck in the chest by a 20 pound sledge hammer which slipped off the flatter.

Paducah Sun, 11 Nov 1903

I am not sure what a flatter was. James Frogge also told me that Garfield was a professional fighter. The following articles are from the Paducah Sun.

Boxing The Paducah evening sun

February 27, 1909 Paducah, KY 

Sparring Match:

A six-round sparring match between Sam Goodman and Garfiedl Frogge came next on the program of sports. Both men are local boxers and the best in the city, and from the start of the first round both men used all their knowledge in their actions. Frogge seemed to have the force behind his blows, while Goodman was the agressor most of the time. The bout was decided a draw by Harry Lloyd, the referee.

Princeton's Boxer Is Out In State Challenge. 1 Jun 1910 Paducah,KY-The Paducah Evening Sun

Garfield Frogge the blacksmith-boxer, of Princeton, is anxious for a sparring exhibition with some good boxer. In order to secure it he has challenged any boxer in the state for a sparring match. The only condition is that the weight must be fixed at 150 pounds. Jerome E. Smith is Frogge's manager, and will sign articles for a bout with any scrapper of the right weight, and who looks of the right kind to make it interesting. Frogge claims he is in grand condition and with his knowledge of the game, says he can outpoint anybody of his weight in the state. He says that he can not make any weight under 150 pounds, and it is doubtful if he and Goodman will meet.

The following is Garfields marriage announcement in the paper.

Miss Katie M. Lehrer and Mr. Garfield Frogge will be married this evening at 8 o'clock at the home of Mrs. Katterjohn, 1101 South Eleventh street. Miss Gussie Koch, of Cairo, will attend the bride and Mr. George Engmert, of this city, the groom. There will be only a few friends and relatives present. Tomorrow morning they will leave for Lexington, Tenn., to reside. Mr. Frogge is employed by the N.C. and St. L. 

'This marriage produced at least two children. Margueritte Frogge (1907 to 1973) and James Hamilton Warrick Frogge, 1910 to 1971. James Warrick Frogge was the father of the James Frogge who is the owner of Frog air conditioning and heating company and the source of much of my information. James told me that Garfield had a drinking problem but was a heck of a preacher. I told him that my Uncle Doug was a preacher but he also had a drinking problem. He said that my uncle Douglas Brown, who was my mothers older brother, was a mean drunk. Doug once chased his father with a pistol, firing at him six times but missing him. Another time they were fighting and Doug held his head down on a railroad track in front of a moving train but his father was able to get away. My aunt Didi also told me several times how Doug chased her with a pistol when he was drunk in California during World War II. Garfield's drinking on the other hand finally caught up with him. He was found face down on the bank of the Cumberland River near the Tennessee Central Railroad blacksmith shop with his hat placed neatly on his back. It was believed that he was drunk and fell into the river and was drowned. However nobody knows who pulled him out of the river and placed him on the river bank. He was 52 years old.

My grandmother had another brother named Isaac (Ike) Bradford Frogge born on June 24, 1883 in Paducah and died on January 27, 1917 in Nashville. Whenever Ike's name came up she would tell me how he was shot in the back while riding on a troop train. The bullet severed his spine. Supposedly a soldier was cleaning his rifle and the gun accidentally fired, hitting Ike in the back. He was alive but paralyzed. The army brought him home and mama, as we called my grandmother, nursed him during the last few days of his life, which was just over a week My grandmother died in 1964. In the late 60's I became closer to my grandfather who was nearly deaf. One of the reasons that we had never been close was because his deafness isolated him from everybody. It was very difficult to communicate. After the death of my parents and my grandmother I grew to depend on him more and more. I would stand behind his easy chair and cup my hand over his ear. Being naturally curious I would ask him questions about family history. One day the subject of Uncle Ike came up. I told him my grandmothers version of the story. Granddaddy said that Ike's death was no accident. He was shot in the back while trying to desert. Over the years I have learned that my family had a bad habit of trying to keep unpleasant facts from being revealed and somehow I wasn't surprised when I heard this version of the story. The discrepancies have driven me to find out the truth. I ordered a copy of Ike's death certificate and a third possibility became apparent. Ike was murdered. The death certificate listed the cause of death as a homicide.

I discovered that Ike was not in the regular army. He belonged to Company D, 27th Tennessee Cavalry, which was a National Guard outfit. In addition he died on January 27, 1917. America didn't declare war on Germany until April. I can't see how they could shoot a guardsman for desertion unless we were at war. Ike was a scrapper according to relatives and wasn't afraid of a fight. I have heard that he also had a drinking problem. This doesn't surprise me because alcoholism has been a curse in our family. On October 19, 1908 night riders abducted and killed Captain Quentin Rankin an attorney and shareholder in the West Tennessee Land Company at Reelfoot Lake. Ike's militia unit was activated to put down this rebellion. The following is from Wikipedia. 

In the early 20th century the Reelfoot area was marked by widespread lawlessness and "Night Riding", which resulted in the deployment of the state militia by governor of Tennessee Malcolm R. Patterson.The troubles began when a group of landowners purchased almost the entire shoreline of the lake. They formed the West Tennessee Land Company to enforce what they saw to be their legal rights, including the ownership of the lake itself, and most importantly its fishing rights. Most of the Night Riders were from families that had derived much of their living from fishing the lake for generations, joined by their friends and supporters.

Two attorneys engaged by the West Tennessee Land Company to enforce its claims were seized by the Night Riders. A contemporary front-page account in the Nashville Banner tells that one lawyer, Captain Quentin Rankin, was murdered by being hanged and then shot, while the other, Colonel R. Z. Taylor — grandfather of author Peter Taylor — escaped by swimming across the lake in the dark while being fired upon by Night Riders. Colonel Taylor was first reported killed, but later confirmed to have escaped. This violence in 1908 caused the governor to call out the militia to restore order. The alleged murderers were arrested, unsuccessfully tried, and charges were eventually dropped. The lake was soon declared to be part of the public domain, which guaranteed the right of the public to use it regardless of who owned the land adjacent to it. A system of parks, wildlife refuges, recreation areas, and public boat ramps was eventually developed through federal-state cooperation.

Reelfoot Lake Night Rider

Tennessee Militia with two Night Rider prisoners

While Ike was on this duty he met and fell in love with Della Smith. This marriage announcement was entitled Love and War.

Isaac, son of John Clayton Frogge and Martha Mayfield. Married (1) Private I.B. Frogge, of Co. I Nashville and Miss Della Smith, daughter of J.F. Smith, were married at Union City, Obion Co., TN Dec 8th as a culmination of a romance which had its origin in the occupation of the night rider district by soldiers.

As far as I can tell Ike was married twice. I believe that his first marriage ended in divorce. Whether he was divorced before he met Della I can't tell or if his romance with Della caused the divorce. The new information that I learned from James Frogge is very interesting but I am no closer to solving the mystery of their deaths than I was before. I will continue fishing for facts however I am curious if their deaths were the result of some vendetta related to the men that my great grandfather John Clayton Frogge killed in Kentucky or just the result of tragic circumstances. I will continue to seek the truth wherever it leads me.