Sunday, July 21, 2019

Tah Chee: Lone Warrior of the Tellico Bird Clan

My 4th great-grandmother on my mom's side, Elizabeth Franklin Boles, also known as "Be'toc'e," was the daughter of a full-blooded Cherokee Indian. Her grandfather, Da-Tsi (Tah Chee) "the Long Warrior of The Telico Bird Clan," was a child when his parents joined the first Cherokee party to move west of the Mississippi River, from an indian village on the Coosa River, in what is now Alabama, to the St. Francis River in Arkansas.

Throughout his life, Tah Chee, also known as William Dutch, was known as a fearless warrior, becoming a major political force in the old settler party, fighting many fights with the Osage Indians who lived near the Cherokees. The treaty the Cherokee made with the United States in 1828 so infuriated Tah Chee that he led several families to the Red River country. To keep the frontier peaceful, the Army ordered both nations to stop their raids, an order Tah Chee refused to recognize. Tah Chee fought a one-man war with the U.S. Army for years, but eventually became a scout for them, where he reached the rank of Captain.

Tah Chee (Captain William Dutch) and his wife, Aisley of The Paint Clan, were my sixth great-grandparents. Their daughter, Rose of the Tellico Bird Clan, was the mother of Elizabeth Franklin Boles.

Tah Chee died in Cherokee indian territory at Park Hill, Oklahoma on March 12, 1848.



Sheriff John Boles was a Radical

The Nashville Union
April 22, 1866

Dear Editors:

"State of Affairs in Overton County"

If you should find room and consider the following worth publishing, the writer hereof will be greatly obliged. The writer hereof desires to give to the public some facts transpiring in the notoriously represented county of Overton, that she has been frequently and generously represented for the last six months as being a den of returned Rebel guerrillas, and that only a small number of her citizens were loyal and worthy of any of the rights and immunities of citizens, I have no doubt but by whom these representations have been made.

Have, as a general thing, those who have served in the Federal army and returned home and living quietly within her limits, made these representations? Did Col. Garrett, the late representative from this county, so represent affairs? Did gentlemen who have been engaged in the oil business in this county represent that the county is infested with returned Rebel desperados? I would just say in answer to these questions, "not so far and heard from."

The question, then, very naturally comes up, who are making these representations? I would answer that they are men who, but few of them have ever been in the Federal army, and in all composing a small number known in this county as radicals, but as it happens holds some of the offices in the county, who obtained these offices, not from the choice of citizens but by appointment, and men who believe in furnishing our sheriff (Boles) with a guard of from five to fifteen men and paying them (cost of subsistence and all) $52.50 per month each out of the county treasury; and this too when our revenue collector last year, a discharged Federal soldier, rode through the county without a single man with him, and collected the taxes with better success than usual, and was never molested by these believed to be Rebel guerillas.

This same sheriff also refused to hold the election last March, as by law he should have done, and openly declared that he would arrest and carry to Nashville any magistrate or other person who should presume to open and hold the elections. But however, the election was open and held in all of the districts but one, by law, so far as I was informed, and he has not arrested any person yet; but he went right off to Nashville swearing he would break the elections all up, and accordingly, on last Monday, the first Monday of April, those who were elected made application to be installed into office by the County Court, when Sheriff Boles (Deputy Governor, as he styles himself) rose and produced and read to the Court, a paper writing, purportedly to be an order from Governor Brownlow, by Secretary Fletcher, to the honorable John Boles, sheriff, directing or commanding him to allow no Rebel officers to be sworn into office, or something to that amount, and concluded with a harangue to the court that if one of them voted to install a man who had been elected into office, he would most certainly arrest him and carry him to Nashville, whereupon the court unanimously (except two Magistrates who were, I suppose, afraid to vote against it, and did not vote at all) declared the March elections null and void, and authorized or empowered Sheriff Boles to appoint constables throughout the district; and this, too, when there were men demanding to be installed into office who were Union men.

The court then, upon motion, declared the certificates which had been given to authorized voters by the County Clerk, whom the governor through Sheriff Boles, had appointed some 12 months ago, all null and void; and that voters must get new ones before they could vote again. This same party, sometime since, there being a vacancy in the Legislature, occasioned by the resignation of A.E. Garrett as representative, in convention in the town of Livingston, nominated Sheriff Boles as the radical candidate for that position. John Q. A. Sproul, G.A. Overstreet and Dr. Meadows were also candidates. I suppose of their own will.

The election went off, and the result is that Sheriff Boles is badly beaten, and Mr. Overstreet, a straight out Union man, is elected, while Mr. Sproul, also a Union man, and Dr. Meadows, an ex-rebel, are also beaten far behind - Dr. Meadows being behind all. Now, it looks like this notorious Rebel gang in Overton are not so quite hostile to the government and Union men when they come up to the ballot box; those who are permitted to vote and elect a Union man and reject a Rebel, but yet they are not quite loyal enough to elect a radical. So, Sheriff Boles still presides as Sheriff, etc.

Now in conclusion, I desire to say that I have served in the Federal army; have been residing in this county for the past six months, yet I have not for once seen or heard of a rebel-returned soldier molesting any Union man. I have been through the county some and find the people all friendly and hospitable and engaged in useful pursuits of life. I have, more than once, seen on public days men, professing to be very loyal, some of them, I believe, composing the Sheriff's guard, armed and intoxicated, drive every man who had ever been considered a Rebel out of town, beating them up scandalously, and yet they did not resist this kind of abuse. I have not heard of an instance in which a man who had been a Rebel, attempted to resist the civil law.

As regards to the certificate matter, I have only to say that I suppose the county court clerk complied with the law to the best of his knowledge and ability, and if elections are to be set aside and broken up, and declared illegal, by anyone, I think that some legal cause should be shown for so doing and legal proceedings had; and further, if elections are not to be regarded, at once say there shall be none, and do away with the trouble of holding them, and say to the people that, though they have elected a Union man to the legislature and rejected an ex-rebel: "You are not radical yet enough to be allowed to vote."

But I am ever confident that the present state of affairs will not last long; that those who persist in the idea of further persecuting those lately in rebellion, will discover their error and desist, and that peace and good will yet reign.

Signed by: A Citizen

During the Civil War, John Boles served as Captain in his brother-in-law Tinker Dave Beaty's Independent Scouts. His sons Robert and George (my 3rd great-grandfather) were also members of that guerilla unit. Before the war, John was a politician, serving as state representative for Overton County from 1851 to 1853, and as state senator of Fentress, Morgan, Overton and Scott Counties from 1853 to 1857. He was the first post-Civil War Sherriff of Overton County, from 1865-1867. John was born in Blount County, TN on June 16, 1802 - the son of James Boles and Elizabeth, Jennie Franklin. Elizabeth, aka Be'toc'e," was a full-blooded Cherokee Indian, the granddaughter of Tah Chee "Dutch" - "the Long Warrior" - of The Telico Bird Clan, and  Aisley of The Paint Clan.

John's wife, Matilda, was the sister of Union guerilla Tinker Dave Beaty. John died on March 18, 1869, at the age of 66. He and his wife are buried at Bolestown Cemetery near East Port Marina. The American flag flies nearby.

John Boles


Hige Boles Proved To Be An Excellent and Efficient Official, who had the Respect of all Law-Abiding Citizens


From: The New Era newspaper, Albany KY
Date: March 3, 1926

"Our Sheriff"

Sheriff A.H. Boles is a native of Fentress County Tennessee, but at the age of ten years his parents moved to Clinton County, where he has resided since that time. For a number of years he lived at Hobart, but about 12 years ago he moved to Albany where he now lives. Most of his life has been spent on a farm and he now owns a fine farm in the Albany graded school district. He is now forty four years of age and is married and has an excellent family. He is a member of the Methodist Church here, a Mason, a progressive citizen and a staunch Republican. In the August 1925 primary election, Mr. Boles received a plurality of 407 votes and was elected in the final election by a majority of 735 votes. Although he has been in office only a short while, he has proven himself to be an excellent and efficient official, who has the respect of all law abiding citizens.

The above article was reprinted in the Clinton County News in 1965 under the headline "A.H. Boles Sheriff in 1926." By that time, Hige was 83-years old and was very active in the real estate business. During a twenty year period between 1914 and 1933, Hige was either sheriff or deputy sheriff for sixteen of those years. He was sheriff from 1926 to 1929, and he served as deputy sheriff during Sheriff Charles P. Huff's term from 1914 to 1917, during Sheriff Billy Felkins' term from 1922 to 1925, and during his cousin Sheriff Willie Winningham's term from 1930 to 1933.

Ahijah "Hige" Boles was born at Bolestown in Fentress County, TN on March 19, 1882, one of ten children born to George and Deborah Smith Boles. He died on March 22, 1975 at Sparta, TN. He is buried at Cedar Hill Cemetery in Clinton County. Hige followed in the footsteps of his grandfather, John Boles, who was the first post-Civil War Sheriff of Overton County, TN from 1865 to 1867.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

The Apollo 11 Mission: Fifty Years Ago


Where were you the day men walked on the moon? It was on July 20, 1969, fifty years ago today, that the world collectively held its breath as astronaut Neil Armstrong slowly backed out of the Lunar Module Eagle and cautiously climbed down a nine-rung ladder before stepping foot on the surface of the moon. “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind,” were his now immortalized words. In the photo, his fellow astronaut, Buzz Aldrin, salutes the U.S flag during the Apollo 11 mission.



Friday, July 19, 2019

Does the Appollo 11 Flag Still Fly on the Moon?


One of the most iconic images from the Apollo 11 mission is of Buzz Aldrin saluting the American flag on the surface of the Moon. It was a standard 3-by-5-foot nylon flag, with the only modification being a hem sewed along its top edge to allow a metal rod to slide through – that gave the flag rigidity in the windless environment so that it appeared to wave. The flag was attached to an 8-foot flagpole, gold-anodized aluminum tube, that the astronauts planted into the lunar soil.

HOW WAS THE FLAG AND ASEMBLY CARRIED TO THE MOON?

According to NASA, the overall Lunar Flag Assembly, including a stainless steel case to protect the flag against temperature extremes, weighed 9 pounds 7 ounces. The assembly was attached to the forward landing leg of the Lunar Module Eagle three days before launch.

The video here shows Apollo 11 astronauts Neil A. Armstrong and Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin deploying the flag on the lunar surface on July 20, 1969. The split screen shows the live TV downlink on the left, synchronized with film taken by an automatic camera set up inside the LM on the right.

SO WHAT ABOUT THE FLAG TODAY?

The flag left by Apollo 11 cannot be seen in recent years by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and is presumably no longer standing. The film taken from inside the lunar module as the astronauts lifted off from the Moon begins after the module is already airborne and the flag cannot be seen, but Aldrin claims he caught a glimpse of the flag getting knocked over during liftoff. But, over the next three years, five more flags joined the one left by Apollo 11. Photographs show that the flags left by Apollo 12, 16 and 17 appear to be still standing. On the later landings, astronauts planted the flags farther from the lunar module. The status of the Apollo 14 and 15 flags cannot be determined conclusively, although it looks like the Apollo 14 flag took quite a beating from the lunar module engine exhaust during liftoff.

ALL WAS NOT LOST!

The good news is that, flag-wise, all was not lost from the Apollo 11's trip to the moon. The flag that Apollo 17 left on the Moon was a flag that went to the Moon and back on Apollo 11. It had hung on a wall in Mission Control until it made a return trip to the Moon, this time to stay.

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Attention Band Leaders, Do Not Play My Song


"There's A Star-Spangled Banner Waving Somewhere" is a patriotic anthem written in 1942 by Paul Roberts and Shelby Darnell (a pseudonym for producer Bob Miller). The song enjoyed great popularity during the World War II years. So why did Miller threaten to sue big-name band leaders if they played it?

It was because Miller was all about hillbilly music. When the song hit its third million in record and sheet music sales he placed an ad in Variety magazine, asking big-name band leaders not to play it, and when the song made the Hit Parade he threatened to sue if they did. He explained that his reputation as a writer and publisher was at stake. "This music," he insisted, "must have the common touch. It is violated unless done by a true son of the soil, one to the manner born."

The title of the song has a significant meaning. The word "somewhere" appears to signify heaven, for, as the lyrics state, only the great heroes of Uncle Sam get to go there. The narrator states he'll see the likes of Lincoln, Custer, Perry Washington and Hale. He adds that he is willing to die to "be a free American" and wherever that Star Spangled Banner is waving is where he wants to be living when his time to die is at hand.

My 1942 recording of this song by Arthur Fields (Hit Records) is among the first recordings after the song was written.

There's a star spangled banner waving somewhere
In a distant land so many miles away
Only Uncle Sam's great hero's get to go there
Where I wish that I could live someday

I see Lincoln, Custer, Washington and Perry
Nathan Hale and Collin Kelly too
There's a star spangled banner waving somewhere
Waving ov'er the land of hero's brave and true


Wednesday, July 3, 2019

From Whence Our True Freedom Comes


Did you know that ''The Star Spangled Banner'' wasn't actually adopted as the official national anthem of the United States until 1931? Before that, the nation had a few de facto national anthems, and ''The Star Spangled Banner'' wasn't even the most popular. That honor goes to ''America (My Country, 'Tis of Thee)." For a century, this was the most beloved 'unofficial' anthem of the nation.

The story of this popular hymn begIns in 1831, when Samuel Francis Smith, a student at the Andover, Massachusetts Theological Seminary, who would later become a Baptist preacher, journalist and author, was asked to translate the lyrics in some German school songbooks into English. The "God Save the Queen" melody caught his attention, but rather than translate those lyrics, Smith was moved deeply by the desire to create a national hymn that would allow the American people to offer praise to God for our wonderful land. And so, in just thirty minutes, he wrote his own words to the melody and "America (My Country, 'Tis of Thee)" was born.

The first three verses of this patriotic hymn encourage and invoke national pride, while the last verse is a petition to God for His continued favor and protection of the United States of America. "Long may our land be bright with freedom’s holy light," it says. 2 Corinthians 3:17 says “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty (aka freedom)," which is to say Christ is where true freedom is found. It is a freedom that lasts for an eternity, not anything temporary. The kind of freedom we will never have to worry about being stolen or taken away.

It was William Penn who wrote: "Men must be governed by God or they will be ruled by tyrants." And, while America strives to provide freedom, let us pray that we never lose sight of from whence our true freedom comes.

Morgan's Kentucky Raid Began at Cumberland County


On July 2, 1863, Confederate General John Hunt Morgan and his troops crossed the Cumberland River at Burkesville, KY, where a skirmish with Union foes took place. Morgan's Rebels were able to drive the Yankees back to the nearby Marrowbone community, but another skirmish occured just beyond the community of Waterview. This time, however, the Union forces used artillery and fresh men to push Morgan back.

Morgan's whole purpose in conducting raids into the north was to create diversion to keep Union troops and resources away from the ongoing Confederate operations at Vicksburg and Gettysburg.

From Kentucky, Morgan's Men raided across southern Indiana and Ohio. At Buffington Island in Meigs County, Ohio on July 19, 1863, Union Maj. Gen. Ambrose Burnside ordered out all available troops for a battle that ended with the capture of over half of the 1,700-man Confederate force, including my grandmother Vada Boles' 3rd cousin, Samuel Washington Frost, who had grown up at Gap Creek in Wayne County and had enlisted in Co. H 7th KY Cavalry at the onset of the Civil War.

Samuel and hundreds of other prisoners who had fought at Buffington Island were sent to Camp Douglas prison camp in Chicago, where he died on March 26, 1864. It has been estimated that more than 6,000 Confederate prisoners died there from things like smallpox, dysentery, pneumonia, starvation and torture.

They are buried in the Confederate Mound at Oak Woods Cemetery, located in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago. It is one of the largest mass graves in North America. Near the southwest corner of the cemetery stands a 30-foot granite monument dedicated to the thousands of Confederate soldiers who died at Camp Douglas. 

As for General Morgan, less than a month after the skirmishes that had taken place in Cumberland County, he surrendered, although, he escaped to fight again, only to be killed about a year later.

Three Cheers for the Red, White & Blue, But Not The Yankees


In 1974, a radio and tv commercial began airing that claimed there was nothing more American than "baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet." I'm not sure if fifty-four years earlier writer/composer Louis Hirsch would have agreed.

In 1914, Hirsch, who was born in New York City, was one of the nine founders of ASCAP, which stands for "American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers," a non-profit performance-rights organization that protects its members' musical copyrights by monitoring public performances of their music and compensating them accordingly.

In that same year, 1914, Hirsch composed a patriotic love song entitled, "The Red, White and Blue," which was recorded and released on Victor Records by The Peerless Quartet. It is one of the disks in my 78rpm record collection.

Being a native of New York, Hirsch loved the Yankees, but in 1920 he sued the baseball organization for $100‚000 because of an incident which happened at a game on May 24th that year. To avoid sitting next to a cigar smoker‚ Hirsch switched seats with his brother, but an usher informed him it was against the rules to do that and ordered the two brothers to switch back. Hirsch refused and had to be forcibly ejected from the stands.

The Peerless Quartet, a popular ensemble organized in 1906, recorded The Red, White on June 4, 1914.

Your lips are so red
Such a beautiful red
I just love to see you smile
Your teeth are so white
Like the stars in the night
or the pearls from a southern isle
The blue of your eyes
Like the midsummer skies
Form a color I just love to view
So no wonder I say
When I'm looking your way
Three cheers for the
Red, White and Blue


Sgt. York was a Symbol of American Courage and Sacrifice

On this day in 1918, then Cpl. Alvin C. York and sixteen other soldiers under the command of Sergeant Bernard Early were dispatched before...