TOMORROW - PRO TRUMP RALLY IN RALEIGH
The event will take place starting at Noon til 4 p.m. at Halifax Mall behind the Legislative Building in downtown Raleigh.
There will be guest speakers that will address the crowd about issues that our President Donald J. Trump is fighting for in Washington.
We are here to show the support of the people and by the people for our President. We elected him to do a job and he is doing his utmost to accomplish those very promises he made. Very refreshing to have someone like that as President once again! Speakers TBA after we are sure who is going to be in the line up.
COUNTY SELLING CONFEDERATE MONUMENT ON CRAIGSLIST
In follow-up to our report that Montgomery County, Maryland was going to relocate its Confederate soldier statue that was vandalized with graffiti to an "undisclosed location." Now we've discovered that one of the County Commissioners had listed the statue for sale on Craigslist. The posting has since been deleted.
Council member Tom Hucker placed the statute up for sale for a measly $1,000 on Craigslist.
"What would you do if it were in your garage, and you didn't want it anymore? That's how I looked at it," Hucker said.
Hucker said relocating the statue would, "cost money that would likely take funding away from schools or parks."
The other County Commissioners have determined that Hucker had overreached his authority by posting the Craigslist ad.
On Tuesday, Montgomery County issued a press release that the monument will be moved from its current perch outside Montgomery County's historic Red Brick Courthouse to a historic ferry on the banks of the Potomac River.
"I fully understand that the statue reflects a piece of County history and that many County residents are proud of the sacrifices and bravery shown by their ancestors," the news release quoted County Executive Ike Leggett, who is black. "Nonetheless, as originally enacted, it was not, and is not, part of the heritage of all of our residents. When originally constructed and placed on County property, it failed to reflect both sides of this unfortunate struggle in our history.
That is why I strongly opposed keeping this statue on County property and wanted to move it to another location in the County that would be accessible to County residents," Mr. Leggett added.
, the company that operates a vehicle ferry from Dickerson, Maryland, to Leesburg, Virginia, will now own and maintain the monument.
"I am happy to provide a place for the statue to be relocated," White's Ferry attorney R. Edwin Brown said. "Those who wish to visit it will be able to do just that."
Sitting on the Potomac alongside the historic C&O Canal, White's
is a popular picnic and rest stop for hikers, canoe rentals and cyclists, as well as a popular river-crossing point that averages about 600 vehicles daily, according to the ferry's Facebook
Named for Elijah White, an ex-Confederate cavalry officer who purchased the operation after the War, the ferry has been running continuously since it started in 1782.
is the only one in operation on the Potomac River and just one of three ferries remaining in operation in Maryland, according to the state's tourism
SCHOOL DECIDES NOT TO BAN FLAG
A North Carolina school board has voted not to ban the Confederate Flag from school grounds, rejecting two pleas from a local chapter of the NAACP to establish the policy.
The News & Observer of Raleigh reports
the Orange County Schools Board of Education decided instead on Monday to establish an equity committee to advise the board on several issues, including symbolic speech. Board chairman Steven Halkiotis said board members will not tolerate hate speech, bullying or intimidation.
"We believe our principals are best equipped to monitor and respond to issues of bullying, harassment or other disruptive conduct..." the Board said in a release. "The Board and administration believe the best way to effect positive change in the behavior of students is through the programmatic steps it is taking and not by banning a particular symbol."
THIS WEEK IN ARKANSAS
We have reported back in January that Arkansas' skalywag Governor is working extra hours tio eliminate the State's Robert E. Lee holiday.
Governor Asa Hutchinson said Wednesday that he is going to get it done heading into the final month of the legislative session.
Before the start of the session in early January, Hutchinson declared that ending the holiday would be among his legislative priorities. But the holiday, which fell on Jan. 16 this year, came and went with no bill being filed to change it.
On Tuesday, legislation was filed in the Senate to remove Lee's name from the holiday, and honor him with a separate state memorial day in October, the month the general died in 1870. The sponsors of the legislation are Sen. Dave Wallace, R-Leachville, and Rep. Grant Hodges, R-Rogers.
Hutchinson held a news conference Wednesday to announce his support for Senate Bill 519.
Democrats are opposing the Bill because it gives General Lee a different holiday uniquely his own and the Legislature's Black Caucus is saying that it will oppose any Bill that gives Lee a holiday or recognition of any kind (even if it is on a separate date).
Members of the Sons of Confederate Veterans will travel to Little Rock to oppose any legislation removing Lee's name from the current holiday, said Arkansas division commander Robert Allan Edwards of Benton. He added that he had no intention of celebrating Lee's holiday on the second Saturday in October. "That's the day he died," Edwards said.
Also note that the proposed Lee holiday is on a Saturday eliminating the need for the State to pay workers who elect to take it as one of their holidays.
VIRGINIA FLAGGERS RAISE ANOTHER ONE
A Confederate Flag is flying high near the Chesapeake Expressway toll plaza and it's getting a lot of attention.
It's on private property near the Virginia and North Carolina border line.
ABC News spoke to Stephen Etzell who lives on the property. He said the property belongs to his brother-in-law and he's the one who coordinated putting up the flag.
"My brother-in-law he lives up in the Richmond area and he's a member of Sons of Confederate Veterans and apparently the Virginia Flaggers contacted him to put a flag out there," said Etzell.
The flag waves high in the air and is hard to miss. Marrisa Styron said seeing it in the area is common. "It's common down here you're out in the country, back roads and everyone has one up," Styron said.
Etzell said he's overwhelmed by all the attention the flag has gotten flying outside his home.
NEW THEORY - WHERE IS THE CONFEDERATE GOLD?
The whereabouts of the Confederate treasury have been a mystery since the end of the War, but two West Michigan men believe they've solved it. They are putting forward their own theory, one that feels like a real life "National Treasure" movie in which many seemingly unrelated events are brought together into one narrative. At the center of it is Muskegon, Michigan's most generous philanthropist.
Charles H. Hackley, a lumber baron, is arguably the Lake Michigan community's most influential historical figure. Although he has been dead for more than 100 years, his name lives on through his many gifts to the community, including Hackley Park, Hackley Public Library, Hackley Hospital and the Hackley Administration Building.
Yet, Hackley's legacy contains a mystery of its own. When he died in 1905, his net worth was about $10 million, or $261 million in today's dollars, according to the Hackley and Hume papers at Michigan State University.
But a biography Hackley authorized in 1899, in which he gave notes to author Lois Haight, says that he earned $3 million in his lifetime. What accounts for the gap?
The difference is found in Confederate Gold, say Kevin Dykstra and Brad Richards. And they say they've done the research to prove it.
"We really think this is breaking news in history," Richards said.
Michigan historian Larry Massie said there were rumors that President Jefferson Davis had the entire Confederate treasury with him while fleeing the Union Army but they've been "pretty well proven" not to be true. Dykstra and Richards' theory starts with the assumption that the treasury, in gold and silver, was with Davis.
Massie lives in Allegan County, the home of Lt. Col. Benjamin Pritchard, the man who led the Michigan 4th Cavalry that captured Davis.
The Confederate Gold in West Michigan theory is 150 years in the making
Some key dates involving the Confederate Gold and Charles Hackley are listed.
So who is right? Did the Confederate Gold end up into the hands of Charles H. Hackley?
"In a project like this, the research always is paramount," Dykstra said. "If it's not documented, it's just two crazy guys talking. I've always told people, if it's easier to believe that we're just crazy, then believe that. If you believe that the research ... is strong, then we have totally solved it. And that's where we're at."
Davis is captured
The story begins with the capture of Jefferson Davis on May 10, 1865, in Irwinville, Ga., officially ending the War.
Twenty-three hours prior to the capture, the U.S. War Department recorded that the Davis party was traveling with $10 million in gold, valued at $142 million today's dollars.
When Pritchard and his men arrived, there was no gold. No one has been able to say for sure what happened to it - but Dykstra and Richards are convinced the gold was nearby.
Michigan cavalry captured Confederate President Jefferson Davis this week in 1865
It was May 10, 1865 when the unit commanded by the Allegan native captured the he fugitive Jefferson Davis
Davis was captured with eight wagons and 25 to 30 mules, Dykstra said he found in War Department records.
Sixteen mules would have been needed to pull eight wagons, he said. Twenty-eight mules would have been sufficient for 14 wagons.
"Everybody has overlooked that for years," Dykstra said. "I worked with mules, they're not fun - you don't take any extra."
Dykstra says that is proof that six wagons were missing, and located nearby. He believes they were full of gold, and hidden in the woods.
Scott Kuykendall, president of the Allegan County Historical Society, acknowledged it's an intriguing detail but "we need to see more proof."
The society has high interest in Davis' capture - it maintains the revolver Pritchard pointed at the Confederate president. The society allowed Dykstra and Richards to use its archives for their research and Kuykendall has seen them present their theory.
He called it "fascinating" and "possible," but added, "We're going to need a little bit more before we jump on the bandwagon."
'WikiLeaks of the day'
Dykstra and Richards say their evidence goes beyond a few extra mules.
"Out of the 128,000 pages of the war records, I found one sentence when I was looking to see who buried the gold," Dykstra said.
A telegram from Pritchard to T.A. Scott shortly after Davis was captured said: "I returned to the site last night."
Dykstra and Richards believe the correspondence was meant for T.W. Scott, who worked for Secretary of War Edwin Stanton. They theorize that Pritchard was relaying that he had returned to Irwinville and buried the gold.
It's clear that many telegrams were deleted since there are numerous cases in which a reply can be found, but not the original thought or question, Richards said.
"The ones that were actually left in there are like the WikiLeaks of the day," he said.
'Two points on a map'
Richards is a history teacher at Ravenna High School and a board member of Calvary Christian Schools in the Muskegon County community of Fruitport. Dykstra is the facilities director at Calvary Christian Schools and he brought Richards into the project about two years ago.
In 1973, a relative of a Union Army officer supposedly claimed in a deathbed confession that a box car full of $2 million worth of Confederate gold was at the bottom of Lake Michigan.
Confederate treasure in Lake Michigan? Despite skeptics, divers pursue fantastic story
A boxcar full of Confederate gold is supposedly sunken off Frankfort. As far as treasure stories go, it's a doozy. But is it credible?
Dykstra said that tip was eventually passed to him and seven years ago he started searching for the gold, and researching how it got there - if it is there at all.
His search for large caches of missing gold led him to the theory of the Confederate Gold.
Dykstra then looked for large expenditures in Michigan around that time period, which led him to Hackley.
"I was given a unique opportunity that no one else in the country has ever been given," Dykstra said of the information about the confession. "The advantage I had was, I had a cache of gold that I was trying to find a source. It gave me two points on a map."
Those two points were Irwinville, Georgia, and Muskegon, Michigan. The communities were connected by railroad in 1869, four years after Davis' capture.
A family connection
Railroad development boomed following the War.
By 1869, the Albany and Brunswick Railroad was close enough to Irwinville to transport the gold via wagon under the cover of night, Dykstra said.
The railroad was south of Irwinville, and ran through Tifton, Ga., about 17 miles away. That's where the Confederate Gold could have been loaded onto rail cars over several trips from 1870-76, Dykstra said.
Gen. Robert H.G. Minty worked on the Albany and Brunswick Railroad, Dykstra says employment records show. Minty was Pritchard's commanding officer during the War when Davis was captured.
Minty was married to the sister of George Alexander Abbott, a friend and employee of Hackley's - so Minty and Hackley also would have known each other, Richards said.
Also in 1869, a railroad line was under construction from Ferrysburg to Muskegon, which Dykstra and Richards say was funded by Hackley and went directly to his office. William M. Ferry Jr., who platted Ferrysburg, was also involved in that railroad connection, they said.
However, Meredith Slover, curator at Tri-Cities Historical Museum, did not find records of Ferry being involved in any railroads.
Michigan Lake Shore Rail Road Ferrysburg-Muskegon line was opened during December 1869.
The first railcar arrived in Muskegon - at Hackley's office backdoor - during December 1869, in what Dykstra believes was an initial test run.
Railcars would have also stopped in Allegan to deliver gold to Pritchard before reaching Muskegon, he said.
Dykstra and Richards believe Hackley orchestrated the transport and cover up of the gold, which is why he would have received a share.
Laundering the gold
What would they have done with the gold once it arrived?
"The Confederate Gold ... would have went to the national banking system, and laundered into currency," Dykstra said.
Pritchard, Hackley and William M. Ferry's brother Edward P. Ferry were involved in or founded banks during 1870 and 1871 and those banks and others would have been used to launder the gold, he said.
Around 1874-75, a new building was completed for Muskegon National Bank, of which Hackley was a director. It was re-chartered as Hackley National Bank in 1890. Multiple publications and advertisements say the bank had five vaults.
Dykstra said he believes the vaults were needed to store the Confederate Gold treasure.
First National Bank of Allegan was founded by Pritchard in 1871.
At that time, banks would ship gold bullion to the U.S. Treasury Department, and receive paper currency with the bank name in return, Dykstra said.
"Most national banks, during their lifetime, would print less than $250,000 worth of currency. If a national bank got to $500,000 worth of currency, that was considered excessive," he said.
Muskegon National Bank printed $295,000 from 1870-1890, according to Antique Money. Hackley National Bank printed $4,666,000 from 1890-1935. First National Bank of Allegan printed $797,000 from 1871-1927.
By comparison, First National Bank of Grand Rapids printed $516,000 from 1864-1883 while First National Bank of Ann Arbor printed $367,000 from 1863-1882.
According to advertisements found by Dykstra, Hackley was a stockholder in 14 banks, which he says could have also been used to launder the treasure.
"They were in the banks because that's how they laundered the gold, but they felt that their duty as citizens of the United States was to promote in a positive way," Dykstra said.
Tribute to the Confederacy?
The intersection of West Webster Avenue and Third Street downtown Muskegon is a gathering of Hackley gifts: Hackley Park, Hackley Administration Building and Hackley Public Library. Other large donations include Hackley Hospital and the former Hackley Art Gallery, now Muskegon Museum of Art. Hackley and his wife Julia Hackley also donated multiple endowment funds.
Dykstra and Richards believe there's proof hiding in plain sight that Hackley Park was made possible by Confederate money. They also point to clues in a speech Hackley wrote for the park statues' dedication in 1900.
Looking back at Hackley Park, a gift to the city in the late 1800s
Hackley Park was gifted to Muskegon by Charles H. Hackley in 1890.
The park features five large monuments and a layout of curved and diagonal sidewalks.
"How did Charles Hackley pay tribute the Confederacy? Because he would have -- he would have almost felt duty-bound to do it," Dykstra said. "But he would do it in such a way that people wouldn't pick up on it, unless they knew to look for it."
An aerial view of the park gave it away, he said. Its diagonal crossed sidewalks could be seen as an outline of the Confederate Flag.
The curved sidewalks are a bit trickier, but Dykstra has an explanation: "It's a Bible. That's why the sidewalks were rounded."
In their presentation, Dykstra and Richards show a video that transforms an aerial view of the park into a Confederate Flag and an open Bible.
Hackley Park's design is nod to Confederacy, researchers say
The theory is that Charles Hackley paid tribute to the Confederacy with park's layout.
"Within your sight stands a library built and endowed by part of that same fortune, which the donor regards as a trust for the people with whom he has been associated for more than 40 years," reads a speech written by Hackley for the dedication of the statues.
"If mistakes have been made in appropriating the money generously tendered to the public, those mistakes have been mistakes of the head, not of the heart," reads another portion of the speech.
Dykstra says the way Hackley refers to the money and donations suggests he doesn't view them as his own.
There are also clues in the Haight biography, which was published in 1949, they said. Haight received notes from Hackley in 1899, and was told the book could be published 10 years after his death.
The book states that Hackley made $375,000 -- or $7.2 million in today's dollars -- in one day during 1872, the time that Dykstra and Richards believe the gold was moving.
"Make no mistake, this is a confession from Hackley," Dykstra said.
"When you have a secret, and you think you can be caught at any time, you think one little clue will just tell everybody everything," Richards said. "He's giving huge clues, but only if you can figure that out."
More presentations planned
Richards and Dykstra have presented the theory to the public twice at Calvary Christian Schools, and plan to do so again at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 22.
So far, audiences seem convinced and hungry for more, the duo agreed.
The April presentation will include more research, Dykstra said.
"They have good evidence," said Dr. Thomas Watkins, Calvary Christan Schools board president, who was among the first to hear the theory during November in a private presentation. "I believe what they are telling me. It's too much information that would all be happenstance for it not to be true."
Larry Houseman, of Norton Shores, listened to one of the presentations and said he is anxious to hear more.
"It's an interesting concept - I guess that's all it is right now," he said.
Jaime Christenson, of Muskegon, was even more convinced after hearing of the presentations.
"Not only do I think it's possible, I think it's probable," Christenson said. "I don't believe in coincidences."
Dykstra believes the theory is "bullet proof" and reveals the true story of Charles Hackley and the missing Confederate Gold.
"I don't want to seem overconfident," he said, "but I know what I know."
Local historians remain skeptical.
"We don't feel there are a lot of facts in there cited from primary literature," Soler said. "They're going to have fun with it ... I'm sure it will bring up a lot of interest. It's very speculative, a lot of conjecture tying a lot of loose pieces together.
"We are not believers that the story has merit as of yet."
THE REBEL GOLDSEEKER - a $5 film offer
Remember The Rebel starting Nick Adams? This week we are offering a copy of the Film GOLDSEEKER staring Nick Adams as The Rebel to everyone who donates $5 or more to Dixie Heritage.
Receive your copy of the classic film GOLDSEEKER:
I went to my mailbox Wednesday and there was another package with a smart phone donated for the Cuba Project.
We had hoped to give 30 iPads and 30 smart phones. We are half-way there.
I'd also like to give 30 suits to 30 Cuban pastors. I've purchased 8 myself and we have a total of 12.
We also still have an immediate need for just under $1,300 to reach the goal. I'm not concerned. I know that God will provide. But I want to give you an opportunity to be a part of this great missionary effort and to be blessed by the Lord for giving.
Would you prayerfully give $25 to the Cuba Project today?
Give $10 to the Cuba Project:
Our friend H K Edgerton was done in south Florida and submits the following report about a recent City Council meeting that he attended attended in Hollywood, Florida:
When a young Black woman came forth to speak wearing a Black Lives matter button; she had like the rest of, heard the rules of the facilitator: community folks would speak first, 3 minute time limit, and at 8:PM, the allotted time for the public would come to an end, because of time constraints on closing the building.
A total of three times the Facilitator would ask this woman; is this your correct address on the provided card. Each time she would attempt to speak without answering his question. Finally, on the fourth time, she would approach him, read the card and answer no that she had submitted false information.
The Spanish contingent, and the five or six people that had accompanied her began to chant; let her speak, let her speak. The wise Mayor, and his Council relinquished, and handed her some more rope.
She promptly turned her back on the Council, and began addressing the community. The facilitator would tell her; young lady, you must address the Council. Her retort was; I thought this was a community meeting. ( over 10 minutes had passed ) She turned sideways, never directly looking at the Council, and asked the audience for a show of hands from those who supported the name changes of the targeted streets. Only the five or six people who had accompanied her would raise their hands.
She would be admonished for doing this. However, this charade had take up more than 12 minutes of the total allotted time for all the speakers to speak.
A young Black minister would come, and express his desire that the youth of the community should not have to pass street signs every day that bore the names of men who fought to maintain slavery, and the usual lies about General Forest of which the United States congress in committee had exonerated him of. He also talked about building churches; like the Honorable Rev. Mack Lee, the body servant of General Lee had done, he would soon learn.
To this young Pastor's credit, after Mr. McCallister who knows about the Bible, and other religions, and could have taught him a great deal on that subject matter; and would quote the scriptures as he had done. And, would tell those present not to push the Table of Brotherhood too far away. The young Pastor would express his apologies, and that he needed most for his parishioners and his community to learn about the things Mr. Mccallister, and I had talked about. And, that just maybe he had spoken too soon about the name changing of the streets.
I have to applaud the Mayor, the Honorable Josh Levy for having the courage to correctly identify, and point out that it was the actions of Nikki Haley that has led the witch hunt against all things Confederate. Something that I so wanted to speak about in the 3 minute allotted time; only to go off subject because of the assassination of the character of General Lee, and those of his General's who had befriended the African people.
And while I, nor Mr. Mccallister ever felt threatened, I want to thank the young Police Sgt. who would escort me away, and into another room to in his words; just to let you cool off a little Mr. Edgerton. And to his Chief who would too escort Mr. Mccallister , and I to our car, and the entire Police force that showed everyone a great courtesy, and kept us all safe.
And not to forget the Honorable Council Woman, Ms. Sherwood who pushed time to the side, and fought so bravely for everyone to be heard , and to all the Council members who heard and honored her plea.
I can only hope that the powers to be will make it possible for Mr. McAllister and I to stand before this Councill for their next Commission In The Community forum on April 26, 2017 at the Hollywood City Hall. God bless you !
Honorary Member of the Augusta Jane Evans Chapter 2640 of the United Daughters of the Confederacy
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SENATE RECOGNIZES BLACK FEMALE CONFEDERATE VETERAN
A Black Confederate Veteran with ties to Aiken County, South Carolina was recently recognized by the State Senate after her family discovered what they describe as a remarkable story.
The Senate presented a resolution on Feb. 21 to the family of Lavinia Corley Thompson, of Salley, to honor Thompson, who served in the Confederacy during the WBTS.
Thompson is the only known female black Confederate Veteran in the state of South Carolina, said Tonya Guy, with the Old Edgefield District Genealogical Society.
Thompson was born June 3, 1844 to Robert Staley and Phillis Corley, according to information provided by Guy from the Old Edgefield District Genealogical Society.
Thompson served as cook for the Confederacy in Company A, 1st Regiment of the Reserves. She served continuously from Sept. 1, 1863 to the end of the war in 1865.
Thompson, whose occupation was in farming, applied for a Confederate pension in 1923 and the pension was approved.
Thompson died at the age of 84 on June 4, 1928 in Aiken County, Tabernacle Township and was buried at an unmarked grave at Smyrna Baptist Church in the same community. Guy said there are efforts to get a Confederate tombstone on her grave.
Several of Thompson's family members and supporters assembled at the Statehouse for her recognition.
The South Carolina division of The Sons of Confederate Veterans and the State's United Daughters of the Confederacy both supported the resolution along with the State's African-American Chamber of Commerce.
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SLAVERY IN THOSE "MAJORITY MUSLIM" COUNTRIES
It was (and still is) more widespread and brutal than the American counterpart.
It is common to call the enslavement of black Africans "America's original sin" the uniquely devastating evil from which all American, and especially Southern, failures have flowed. In fact, American slavery was benign compared to the much more extensive, vastly crueler practice of slavery in the Middle East.
Because there are so few people in the region with black features, it would be plausible to assume that hardly any black slaves were brought in. Nothing could be further from the truth.
The United States abolished the importation of slaves in 1808. Before that, 361,000 African slaves had been imported into English-speaking North America. Through natural increase, their number in the United States rose to 1.75 million in 1825 and 4.5 million in 1861. By contrast, from the time of the Arab conquest of the Middle East in the seventh century, approximately 14 million black slaves were imported into the area that extends from Morocco through Iran.
The first reliable census conducted in the Middle East was in Egypt in 1798. It recorded a total population of 2,400,000. When reliable population data first became available for the entire Middle East, Egypt accounted for about a quarter of the region's population. So in 1800, the population of the area from Morocco through Iran was probably about 10 million.
Why had the Middle East not become overwhelmingly black and mulatto?
One reason was extremely high slave mortality.
As the Encyclopedia of Islam (second edition, 1960, volume I, page 36) notes, "The high mortality rate which overtook these coloured men in Persia prevented them forming an important element of the population." I will provide two examples of this-one from North Africa, the other from Iraq: "Of the Saharan salt mines it is said that no slave lived for more than five years;" and "the black slave gangs that toiled in the salt flats of Basra [Iraq] . . . numbering some tens of thousands . . . were fed, we are told, on a few handfuls of flour, semolina, and dates."
In addition, casual mating was not permitted and marriage was discouraged. Consequently, of the 3,000 female slaves emancipated in Zanzibar in 1860, only five percent had ever had a child. Many of the children born to slave women were murdered. In 1856, the Anti-Slave Reporter observed that in Constantinople, the murder of the babies of black slave women was practiced "as a matter of course and without the least remorse." As a result, in Constantinople, "it was commonplace for Turkish gentlemen to have numerous [black] concubines, [but] it was rare to see a mulatto."
As for slave men, many were castrated. Castration was lethal for the large majority of slaves on whom it was inflicted, especially blacks. White eunuchs were produced by merely cutting off their testicles, but blacks were subjected "to the most radical form of castration . . . level with the abdomen . . . based on the assumption that blacks had an ungovernable sexual appetite;" "every [black] eunuch represented at the very least 200 Sudanese done to death;" and at the beginning of the tenth century the caliph of Baghdad alone had 7,000 black eunuchs.
Approximately five percent of the maternal ancestry of Middle Eastern Arabs is African (as determined by mitochondrial DNA), but nearly none of their paternal ancestry (as determined by Y chromosomes). So, some of the offspring of mating between Arab men and black slave women survived, but nearly no offspring of black slave men.
This disregard for the lives of black slaves reflected their low value. In Arab and Persian armies, white slaves-Turks, Slavs, Berbers, Kurds-were the cavalry; black slaves were occasionally infantry but more often did menial non-military work. Barracks and residences were racially segregated, and white soldiers sometimes slaughtered blacks for behaving disrespectfully. Among domestic slave women, blacks performed menial work while whites tended to be personal attendants of their owners. White slave women cost between three and ten times more than brown-skinned Abyssinian women; black slave women cost half to one-third the cost of brown slave women. In 1825 a British traveler in Egypt wrote, "It is the fashion here . . . to consider the Negroes as the last link in the chain of humanity, between the monkey tribe and man in intellect." In fact, "To the present day, in North Africa, a man with Negroid features, even of the highest social status, is sometimes described as ould khadem, 'the son of a slave woman';" and "In Arabia even a pariah tribe like Hutaym disdains miscegenation."
Middle Eastern slavery was horrific not only because of its savagery, but also because it persisted so long. Journalist John Laffin recorded a slave auction he attended in 1956 in Djibouti, to which Arab slavers had brought black captives. Dealers from Arabia bought them for the slave markets of Jedda and Medina.
Men, women and children were brought from the warehouse and paraded on a raised platform . . . . A trader would nudge a slave's jaw with a stick and the man would open his mouth to display his teeth. Another probe with his stick and he would flex his muscles. Young women were forced to expose their breasts and buttocks. A dispute arose over the virginity of a tall young ebony woman and during an hour-long argument she was forced to squat while one of the most prominent buyers examined her with his fingers. She was terrified; her trembling was visible fifty yards away. Occasionally children were sold in batches. . . . [T]hey held tightly to one another and kept looking around as if for help. Boys of about ten or twelve had their anuses examined; homosexual buyers are fussy about disease. . . . [P]erhaps 200 slaves changed hands while I was present.
Black slaves continued to be imported into the Arabian Peninsula into the 1970s, since slavery remained legal until then in the Sultanates of Muscat and Oman.
There are still slaves in some countries, most notoriously Mauretania, which did not abolish slavery until 1981 and made it a crime only in 2007. And yet, somehow, it is the United States that is said to be permanently scarred by a practice that ended a century and a half ago.
The 20th annual Salisbury Confederate Prison Symposium, sponsored by the Robert F. Hoke Chapter 78 of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, will be held April 28-30.
The symposium will provide seven historical lectures relating to the Confederate military prison, two public memorial services, a banquet, displays and books.
Over the three days, programs are held in several locations. Anyone interested in attending is invited to register. The Salisbury Confederate Prison Association's annual meeting will take place at the conclusion of the Saturday lectures.
Friday, April 28, activities begin at 5 p.m. in the Landmark Church fellowship hall with the reunion of descendants and friends. Light refreshments will be served, and displays will be set up.
At 6 p.m. Friday, participants will introduce themselves and talk about any connection they might have to the prison. Veterans also will be recognized with music and lapel ribbons. This Friendship Banquet will be catered for the 20th year by Debbie Suggs.
The keynote address will be given by Kevin Cherry, who will speak on resources available for research on the Salisbury Confederate Prison.
Cherry is deputy secretary of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources and director of the Office of Archives, History and Parks. He serves as the secretary of the N.C. Historical Commission and the State Historic Preservation Office.
Saturday's six lectures will be held in Tom Smith Auditorium of Ketner Hall on the Catawba College campus.
Gary Freeze, American history professor at Catawba, will give an overview of the history of the prison. Freeze holds all his degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and has become nationally noted as a historian of the North Carolina Piedmont.
Author and historian Robert Carpenter of North Carolina will share from letters written by Salisbury Prison guard Daniel Haynes Dellinger.
Historian Ron Nichols of Wisconsin will talk about his Salisbury prisoner-of-war ancestor, Edward Nichols, who belonged to Company C, 36th Wisconsin Infantry.
Archaeologist Ken Robinson of North Carolina will show slides and talk about the 2005 and 2012 studies of the prison that he led for the Salisbury Confederate Prison Association Inc.
Robinson is an archaeologist with more than 35 years of professional experience in the field, and he served as director of public archaeology at Wake Forest University for 12 years.
Historian and prisoner descendant Geoffrey Ryder of Colorado will talk about post-traumatic stress disorder among prisoners.
Author and Historian James R. Tootle of Ohio will speak about the game of baseball during the Civil War and at the Salisbury Confederate Prison. Tootle is a baseball historian and volunteers with the Ohio Historical Society as a member of the Ohio Village Muffins, a vintage baseball team that played exhibition games in Salisbury during the 10th annual Salisbury Confederate Prison Symposium in 2007.
Tootle has written two books on baseball - "Vintage Base Ball, Recapturing the National Pastime" and "Baseball in Columbus."
On Sunday, April 30, there will be two public memorial services: a 10 a.m. service for prisoners at the Salisbury National Cemetery and an 11 a.m. service for guards at the Old Lutheran Cemetery.
Among groups participating in the services with the Robert F. Hoke Chapter of the UDC will be the Charles F. Fisher Chapter 73 of the Children of the Confederacy, Salisbury Confederate Prison Association, Order of the Black Rose, Gibbon-Burke Camp 2 of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, 4th Iowa Independent Light Artillery and the 40th North Carolina, Orange Light Artillery.
Later that afternoon, there will be a tour of the prison site for registrants.
Registration for the symposium is $65 per person, when postmarked by April 7, and $75 afterward.
There is a $15 charge for refunds after April 14 and no refunds after April 21.
Send checks to Robert F. Hoke Chapter 78, UDC, P.O. Box 83, Salisbury, NC 28145-0083.
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