Sunday, July 29, 2012

Where is Stonewall's Arm?

Where Is General Stonewall Jackson's Arm Buried? - National Parks Traveler

The Curious Fate of Stonewall Jackson's Arm - NPR

 'He has lost his left arm; but I have lost my right arm.'
—General Robert E. Lee

General Thomas 'Stonewall' Jackson.

Although no doubt my great grand uncle, Private Lewis Simpson (click here for blog posts about Lewis and his brother Justus)), would have wanted to get a shot at Stonewall Jackson, it was actually the General's own troops that accidentally shot him in the arm.
Private Lewis Simpson, 89th New York Volunteers, Company K. Courtesy of the Frazier Farmstead Museum
  'He [Stonewall Jackson] will wake up some morning to find his stonewall all gone to thunder and his soul singing rebel anthems with the Devil and his Angels in Hell.'
Private Lewis Simpson

From Eighty-Ninth Infantry
SIMPSON, LEWIS L.—Age, 19 years. Enlisted, September 17, 1861, at Unadilla, to serve three years; mustered in as private, Co. K, October 21, 1861; discharged for disability, February 5, 1863, at Frederick City, Md. Rosters of the New York Infantry Regiments during the Civil War

Lewis was wounded in the left leg at the Battle of South Mountain. As with General Jackson and so many Civil War soldiers, amputation was at that time the best and most effective means of saving a life. Lewis' left leg was not amputated in a field hospital. Instead, the surgery took place three days after he was wounded and had been evacuated to the U.S. Military Hospital in Maryland. Hopefully conditions were at least somewhat more sterile. 

Tombstone for "Stonewall" Jackson's left arm.

The Civil War
Amputation Kit

How a Civil War amputation was performed.

Amputation of the leg 

Amputation of the arm 

Friday, July 20, 2012

"Preserving the stories behind Idaho law"

Copyright ILHS
A recent online article in the Idaho Statesman reminded me once again of the Idaho Legal History Society (ILHS). The ILHS was formed in 2005, the 100 year anniversary of the assassination of my great-grandfather, Governor Frank Steunenberg. Hence, I was very pleased with the design chosen for their logo. Although many important legal events and individuals are scattered throughout the state's history, it seemed appropriate that Idaho's crime and trial of the century would be the focal point of the societies inception. Their sponsorship of the stage play,  The Gate on 16th Avenue, and support and participation in Idaho Public Television's production of Assassination: Idaho's Trial of the Century, was a fitting start to the societies preservation efforts. I was fortunate to have attended both the play and and the premiere of "Assassination" and continue to enjoy a lifetime's worth of memories and historical interests connected to those events. By all means, yes, thank you ILHS for "preserving the stories behind Idaho law."

Preserving the stories behind Idaho law 
The Idaho Statesman

Idaho Legal Historical Society Website

Some Highlights from the ILHS website:
The Trial of Big Bill Haywood

ILHS Newsletter Winter 2012 (Sheep versus Cattle, "Stocky" Stockslager, "Diamondfield Jack" Davis, etc.)

The Advocate December 2006 (other great issues too but I will always be partial to this one).   

Byron S. Johnson Award   

Oral Histories

Flashback Blog Posts:
Sunday, February 15, 2009  
The Idaho Legal History Society

Sunday, February 15, 2009
A Legal History Lesson from 1901

Saturday, June 27, 2009
Visit to the The Idaho Pen - 11/8/2007

Friday, September 25, 2009
A Couple of Personal Notes I Received Regarding the Frank Steunenberg Assassination & Haywood Trial Historical Events/Projects of 2005-2007

Monday, June 29, 2009
More of Premiere Night - Assassination: Idaho's Trial of the Century

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


Don't forget to check out my Fold3 pages now and then. I suggest clicking on "Spotlights." Those receiving this as an email update may not see the above image. Click instead on: Recent Spotlights.

For a good July 4th activity, explore the Revolutionary War Collection. Some aspects of navigation on Fold3 will be limited for non-subscribers.

Monday, July 4, 2011
The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America

Have a safe and happy Independence Day.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Idaho Penitentiary

As you may know, I always have a fascination with the Idaho pen. Here is a different view on an old real photo postcard (RPPC) that I have not seen before.
John's Collection
Pinpointing where Harry Orchard's cabin outside of the pen walls was located seems to garner several different viewpoints. I do have a copy (obtained from the ISHS) of an old schematic diagram of the pen and grounds that purports to show the location. I will have to dig that out and see how it compares to an enlargement of this photo. I believe the small cabin was located on the nearest side of the pen shown above. Any ideas let me know.

Clearly visible in the back ground, when I enlarge the image and play with the contrast, is the Boise Natatorium (above).

John's Collection
Here we have an inside and outside view of the Natatorium. This card is postmarked December 19, 1905. Eleven days later Frank Steunenberg will be brutally assassinated by Harry Orchard.
John's Collection
And another recently acquired and more common RPPC view of the pen taken from I believe up toward Table Rock. Correction 7/2/12: Amber Beierle, Education Specialist at the pen, tells me this view is more north from Castle Rock. Thanks Amber.  Visit the Old Idaho Pen

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Idaho boys in Spanish-American war.

Here is an interesting old stereoscopic photograph. I will continue to post a few old photographs, postcards, etc., without too much dialogue. Playing catchup with a few items I have had sitting here for awhile.
John Richards Collection
I am always interested in Idaho items and information from the Spanish-American War, be it to share or for sale. Someone out there has to have an old Krag-Jorgensen or Trapdoor rifle that belonged to the Idaho 1st. That looks like a Krag nearest the camera in this photograph.

Brief History of the 1st Idaho Volunteer Infantry

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Monday, May 19, 2008