Friday, September 03, 2010

Rua do patrocino Blog

I was looking at some of the more artsy blogs today and found this, which is an interesting question. Now local art galleries tend to have more women painters than men painters, but I do agree that in larger museum-like-galleries the painters are mostly men. This was picked up from the blog Rua do patrocino. The blog also has an amusing video called the Jane Austen's Fight Club

The Laurel School Board and Bill Hitch

Those who follow my blog are aware how much the Bill Hitch issue bothers me. Bill Hitch stole an amount of money, that now no one seems to be able to determine how much, from the Laurel School District over an eight year period. The Attorney General of Delaware made a settlement with him in which he received no jail time, no fines, no penalties only a promise to pay back the stolen money. Now the Laurel school board which reluctantly said it would suit Bill Hitch in Civil Court for the money stolen are saying they filed that suit in May 18, 2010. They are now waiting for Bill Hitch to tell them how much money he stole - what the hell did the state auditor do? There is no indication they intend to collect the money instead they are only doing it so once they have a judgement they can file a claim with the state insurance office to recover the amount of the judgement under the fidelity bond held by the state to insure against the loss of funds due to employee theft. Talk about a Good Old Boy system in Laurel this is a prime example on it. That entire school board and supervisor needs to be removed. I hope the voters in Laurel vote down this school referendum they have coming up once again just in protest against this group of assholes. Once they are dumped maybe the people can do something about the schools in Laurel. People of Laurel you can continue to swallow shit or do something about your school board. Send them a message in the referendum.

Delmar Heritage Day Festival - Sept 25th

The Delmar Heritage Day Festival is coming up. Once again money is going down on rather it will pour down raining and be a bust or be a great fall day with exciting events. It has a history for both. Food and craft vendors can register for a spot by contacting William Hardin at 410-896-2777. Besides food and crafts there will fireworks and a car show.

Have you noticed the increased number of car shows there are? My theory is it is the baby boomers generation finally retiring and as a hobby they buy and restore old cars to keep them busy.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Samuel Batson Hearn - the Delmar Confederate

Samuel Batson Hearn was the son of Kendal and Elizabeth Hearn. He was born in 1841 on the Hearn homestead which was located between what would become Delmar and the area that would become known as "Bacon Switch." Samuel grew up as every other boy did in southern Delaware - with strong feelings that individual states had their rights and the Federal Government should stay out of the issues of those rights. As things grew hotter between the states, Civil War broke out. On August 19th of 1862 he backed those convictions with action and left his family and Delaware to join the Confederate forces in Richmond. On August 30th 1862 he was with the First Battalion of Maryland Cavalry. From Richmond he went to a training camp in Charlottesville. After training camp he was with the Army of Northern Virginia and was stationed in the Shenandoah Valley near Winchester.

It is related that in Samuel's first engagement in battle he shot his first Union soldier. However, not wishing to see him die, he rushed to the now wounded man to give him assistance. In gratitude for this help, the soldier gave to Sam his pocket watch! He followed Captain Emack of the First Maryland Cavalry into battle in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania led by General Robert E. Lee. Surviving that he fought again at North Mountain, Brandy Station and Second Manassas.

It wasn't until February of 1864 that Samuel was allowed to go home for leave. He and Braxton Lyons returned to the Eastern Shore for ten days. His father was less than pleased about his joining the Confederate forces and his mother had to hide him in a blanket chest until she could convince him to see his son again.

As Braxton Lyons, John R. H. Embert, and Samuel Hearn were recrossing the Chesapeake Bay after their leave was up they were captured by Union forces at the mouth of Hollin's Straits and were tried, convicted and sentenced to be hanged as spies.

It was by way of intervention by the Gittings family to President Lincoln that Lincoln granted a pardon to the three men on August 29, 1864.

The Adjutant General, E. D. Townsend, on August 31, issued this order:

"The sentence to be hanged by a military commission, promulgated in General Order N. O. 61 Headquarters Middle Department 8th Army Corps, Baltimore, Md. August 8, 1864, in the case of Samuel P. (B.) Hearn, Braxton Lyon, and John R. H. Embert, citizens-- is commuted by the President of the United States to confinement at hard labor in the Penitentiary during the war. The Penitentiary at Albany, N.Y. is designated as the place of confinement to which the prisoners will be sent under suitable guard by order from this department commander and delivered to the warden for execution of their sentence."

For some unexplained reason, there was no promulgation of President Lincoln's commutation of Embert's, Lyon's, and Hearn's sentence before the men were marched to the gallows at the hour designated for their execution. Then they were show the boxes prepared for their burial, and the reprieve was for the first time read to them.

The three prisoners were transferred to the Albany Penitentiary was notified by the commissioner general of prisoners to send them to Fort Monroe for exchange. Their parole followed, and on July 12, Adjutant General Townsend announced in General Orders the remission of their sentence and immediate discharge upon taking of the oath of allegiance.

The prisoners were exchanged for Union prisoners and Samuel tried to join up with General Lee again only to find Lee had surrendered. Hearn was discharge in Richmond.

Samuel Hearn stayed in Virginia after the "War." He married Miss Mary Virginia Gibbs, daughter of Charles E. and Elizabeth Gibbs, on December 21st, 1869 at Port Royal Virginia. When his father died the inheritance allowed him to buy a farm that was located between Port Royal and Bowling Green, Virginia.

His name was added to the Delaware Confederate Monument in Georgetown Delaware on May 12, 2007.

Delmar Delaware Property Tax Credit

If you are age 65 or older you can take a 5% credit on your town property tax. This applies to the property tax only not the garbage collection charge. You have to fill out a tax credit form, that is at town hall, before you take the credit and it has to be done before September 30th.

The Great Fire of London

On this day in 1666, the Great Fire of London began, enkindled by the King's baker when he failed to damp his oven properly (at that time however it was blamed on the Catholics as a plot cooked up by them). While only sixteen people died, eighty per cent of the City was razed over four days, leaving 436 acres leveled and 100,000 homeless. The Diary of Samuel Pepys is by no means the only eye-witness record, but it describes the event in compelling human detail, from the first horrified sighting of "an infinite great fire" on the 2nd to a walkabout on the 5th "with our feet ready to burn."
By the second day he is removing his own "bags of gold and plate...riding myself in my night-gowne in the cart"; by the third day he reports digging a pit in his garden for "my Parmagan cheese, as well as my wine." In the end, the fire came to his street but not as far as his house.

The Faithful Steward Sinks - 1785

The Faithful Steward, bound from Londonderry, Ireland to Philadelphia with 249 passengers, ran aground near Indian River Inlet, Delaware on the night of September 1, 1785. When a sounding was taken, it was found the ship was only in 4 fathoms of water, though there was not the slightest appearance of land. Every exertion was used to run the vessel off shore but all failed.

On the morning of September 2, the ship was near Indian River, about four leagues to the southward of Cape Henlopen. Every effort was made to save the unhappy sufferers, who had remained on the deck during the night. The ship was only 100 yards from the shore. On the evening of Sept. 2, the ship broke to pieces. The long boats that had been put into the water drifted ashore before they could be manned. All relief was cut off. The only chance of survival for the remainder of the passengers was by swimming ashore, or using pieces of the wreck as life rafts. By dawn's light only 68 of the 249 passengers had survived. The inhabitants from Lewistown (present day Lewes, DE) came to the beach to plunder the bodies of their goods. Of the 100 women and children aboard, only 7 were saved. Among the cargo aboard the ship were 400 barrels of half pennies and gold rose guineas.

The State of Delaware had posted a historical marker in the general area where the Faithful Steward went down (SC-73), but I understand it has since been removed. It was located at Delaware Seashore State Park. On Haven road, first road on right, north of the Indian River Inlet Bridge.

For 135 years, English half-pennies, struck with a bust of King George III, have been washing up on the beach about one-fourth mile north of Indian River Inlet. Most of the coins were stored in barrels, purportedly 400 of them, below deck. Those that didn’t break open eventually rotted and cast millions of coins across the sandy bottom. The wreck is close enough to shore--just beyond the surf line--that coins are still swept in by heavy seas and riptides. Storms, such as Hurricane Earl, are signals to grab your metal detector and head for Coin Beach. Fittingly named years ago, the area is even designated Coin Beach on some souvenir maps. They say you don’t even need a metal detector, but I have never found anything there. Matter of fact due to the lack of markers on the beach front indicating where the parking lot is on one occasion I have walked past the parking lot entrance and had an extra hour wandering the beach wondering where the parking lot was.

There is an interesting genealogical story about the Faithful Steward located here and here. The stories remind us that the "Faithful Steward" is not just a Delaware tourist item but was a real life wreck in which some people died and some survived and those that survived have descendants that are in the USA today.

And as it happens speaking of shipwrecks, today in 1985 The wreckage of the British luxury liner 'Titanic' was located 73 years after it sank.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Under Hurricane Watch

Sussex County now under hurricane watch

Hurricane Earl still expected to pass off Delaware coast, but 40 mph winds, large waves, beach erosion remain greatest threat


The National Hurricane Center has issued a hurricane watch for all of Sussex County, as Hurricane Earl continues its journey toward the mid-Atlantic region and promises to bring with it gusty winds, large waves and beach erosion by late Thursday into Friday.

Forecasters continue to call for the center of the Category 3 storm, now with sustained winds of 125 mph, to pass approximately 170 miles off the Delaware coast late Friday morning or early Friday afternoon, before quickly departing the region later in the evening. In its wake, skies should turn sunny for Saturday and the rest of the Labor Day weekend, with temperatures in the 70s.

Sussex County’s coastline, though, will nonetheless feel some of Hurricane Earl’s wrath in the next 48 hours, with 35 mph to 40 mph winds, 5- to 10-foot waves in the surf zone, deadly rip currents, minor tidal flooding and as much as an inch of rain. Because the storm’s structure is so tightly wrapped, inland locations may see nothing more than breezy and drizzly conditions.

The Sussex County Emergency Operations Center again reminds the public to prepare in advance of the storm. Have a supply kit ready, and know where you might relocate in the event an evacuation is ordered.

“The message to the public remains the same: take this storm seriously, and prepare yourselves in case conditions turn out to be more serious than the current forecast predicts,” said Joseph Thomas, Sussex County EOC director. “We still expect this storm to spare the region its greatest effects, but forecasts can change very rapidly, so everyone should make the necessary preparations while they still can.”

Forecasters believe Hurricane Earl’s current predicted track will keep the heaviest rains and winds well of the coast, but some minor tidal flooding is possible in low-lying areas along the oceanfront and near the mouth of Delaware Bay. Rough surf, rip currents and beach erosion continue to pose the greatest threat to the area, beginning in advance of Earl and lasting throughout the weekend as the storm departs and Tropical Storm Fiona churns farther out in the Atlantic.

Sussex County reminds residents and property owners to secure loose objects, such as lawn chairs and trash cans, to prevent storm winds from turning those items into potential projectiles. Also, residents in low-lying tidal areas should make sure submersible pumps are working and check storm drains to ensure they are clear of debris.

The Sussex County EOC encourages residents and visitors to continue monitoring the tropics and conditions as they deteriorate. For updates, stay tuned to local television and radio stations, the Sussex County EOC Web site at, and the County’s Twitter feed at The public should also monitor the National Weather Service, at, for the latest forecast.

Sussex County is encouraging those planning to visit the area for the upcoming holiday weekend to carefully monitor conditions and exercise caution if going out onto local beaches. Swimming may not be advisable in the days ahead. For those who do venture into the water, always swim where lifeguards are present and obey any advisories or closures.

For helpful tips on what to do in preparation for a hurricane, including evacuation maps and preparedness brochures, visit

So Goes The Passenger Pigeon So Go We

Today in 1914 Martha, the last surviving Passenger Pigeon died about 1:00 pm on September 1, 1914 at the Cincinnati Zoo, the species having been commercially hunted to extinction.

The Passenger Pigeon, which numbered once in the tens of billions, lived in North America east of the Rocky Mountains.

Their flocks, a mile wide and up to 300 miles long, were so dense that they covered the entire sky for hours as the flock passed overhead.

Population estimates from the 19th century ranged from 1 billion to close to 4 billion individuals.

Total populations could well have reached 5 billion individuals and the passenger pigeon comprised about 40% of the total number of birds in North America

This may be the only species in the entire world for which the exact time of extinction is known down to the moment it happened

Passenger Pigeons

Slowly the passenger pigeons increased, then suddenly their numbers

Became enormous, they would flatten ten miles of forest

When they flew down to roost, & the cloud of their rising

Eclipsed the dawns. They became too many, they are all dead

Not one remains...

— Robinson Jeffers

Logger of The Year Award

The Maryland Forest Association is looking for candidates for their Logger of the Year award. This award is given to recognize excellence in forestry and is open to all independent wood fiber harvesting or logging contractors. Anyone can submit a nomination. Payne's Logging in Delmar received this award in 1996.

The Delmar Daily

I have been told by Tom that his blog "The Delmar Daily" was accidentally deleted while he was tweaking and making improvements to it. He said he would be back up and blogging in a couple of days.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The New House Update

Wow! we were away for a week and we came back yesterday to find framing up. Brian Adkins (not sure how he spells it) and his crew are doing the framing. By the end of this week a roof might well be on the house.

The August Joint Council Meeting

The August Delmar Delaware and Delmar Maryland Joint Council meeting took place last night. The only missing member was Delmar, Delaware Mayor John Outten. The place was packed and I was pleased to see this much of a citizen's turn out.

The Council members looked very dapper tonight with most of the men wearing ties. I thought perhaps the TV station was going to show up and that was the reason for their dress.

some of the crowd

The Joint Council gave a certificate to the Seniors Allstars for their accomplishments

The Joint Council gave the 11 year olds Allstars a certificate for their accomplishments. Then everyone left. Only the usual attendees to the meetings remained

But wait, didn't the girl's softball team do really well this year? Why didn't they get a certificate? Is this gender discrimination?

Three of our Police Officers were promoted to Corporal; Lueders, Esham, and McCahill

There were two candidates for Wicomico County Council in the audience and they spoke. David Goslee talked briefly about his experience. Joe Ollinger talked and talked and talked and finally came to an end and stopped.

Now We all tend to poke fun and make remarks about elected office seekers and holders but in truth they are getting off their ass and trying to do something. Unlike the vast majority that sit back and complain, but sit home watching TV, instead of taking part in council meetings. The Norman Rockwell Freedom of Speech painting showing an ordinary citizen standing to express his opinion in a group is a rare thing in Delmar. It is even more rare for a citizen to run for office. The town has a larger number of Hispanics and Indians in it now and I rarely see any at a council meeting unless they want something for personal gain. Now is a good time for a Patel to come forward and file for the Delmar Delaware Mayor position or one of the two council positions open.
Qualifications for Mayor and Council Members are that they shall (a) be a citizen of the United States, (b) be at least twenty-one (21) years of age on the date of the General Elections,(c)have no felony convictions, (d)reside in the State of Delaware for at least one (1) year prior to the date of the General Election, (e) reside in the corporate limits of the Town of Delmar for at least one (1) year immediately preceding the date of the General Election, (f) be a qualified voter of the Town of Delmar on the date of the General Election and (g)each of the qualifications for Town Mayor and Council Person shall be a continuing qualification to hold office and the failure of any of the Mayor or Council Persons to have any of the qualifications required during the terms of his or her office will create a vacancy of that office. Anyone declaring their candidacy must fill out a Certificate of Candidacy form at the Town Hall no later than 4:30 p.m., Friday, September 10, 2010. .

The Freedom of Speech is perhaps the most important of the Four Freedoms. When a citizenship is able to express itself and demonstrate any dissatisfaction, that country will tend to remain free.

Wayne Barrell did so tonight when he spoke of the problem his neighborhood has with a homeowner who has dogs. Barrell said the smell was finally cleaned up but the barking at all hours of the morning continues.

Chris Hardy, the new animal control officer for Delmar, was introduced.

Vice Mayor Houlihan spoke about Resolution 2010-08-30 the Hazard Mitigation Plan. This is an outcome of the 911 and Home security. On the table by Vice Mayor Houlihan is "the book".

The Book is the plan Delmar must approve in order to receive some Federal Money. You are welcome to stop by town hall an read it, but since you couldn't attend the meeting, I doubt if anyone in Delmar is going to be reading "the book."

Mary Lee Pase talks about the Wildcat Golf Tournament.

The Maryland side talked about the tax differential.

There was a resolution to have the Highway User Revenue Reinstated to the towns.

Changes were suggested to the towns policy on the use of the Taser Guns.

There will be a basketball tournament at the park at 4Pm on Sunday.

David Ring said the cut to the High School Band for travel expenses to attend out of town games was about $8,000. I understand Contributions from the public has almost made up the $8,000. I think this is great and it shows the support of the town for the band, however will this support continue if the school next year does away with that travel money once again? A one time contribution is one thing but every year another issue.

The meeting was over with at 8:30 PM, now really couldn't you give an hour and a half of your time to make sure the town is run to your expectations. File for an elected office, it's your turn to carry your share of the load.

The August Utility Commision Meeting

The August Utility Commission meeting was held last night at 6:30 PM at Town hall. All members were present. Among the items discussed were;

The Old Building Blocks building was granted a reduction in EDU's (equivalent dwelling unit) from 12 to 6 EDU's. This was with the understanding that any new business moving into the building (it is currently up for sale) would be re-evaluated for EDU consumption.

Yorkshire Estates is once again getting ready to start developing houses. It was mentioned that the new developer did not think the row of townhouses next to Stage road fit in well with their plans and they may be selling them very reasonably.

Public Works has been working on water leaks at East East street and again at Rail Road avenue.

Well 2A is back on line. When the media filter material was changed well 2A was taken off line and only well 3A supplied the Town with water. Now the two wells are being alternated.

Progress is coming along at the Waste water Treatment plant. Equipment is being cleaned and repaired.

Tidewater Utilities has sent the town a letter to the effect they still want to provide sewage handling to the east side of town and have already spent a large amount of money on this project. With the economy the way it is they have had no commitment from developer on the east side of town for utility services.

Kimberly Johnson of Delmar Arrested

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NEWS RELEASE: Incident: First Degree Assault
Date of Incident: 27 August 2010
Location: 900 block of East Road, Salisbury, MD
Suspect: Kimberly M. Johnson, 39, Delmar, MD

Narrative: On 27 August 2010 at 4:13 PM, a deputy from the Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office investigated an altercation that occurred in the roadway in the 900 block of East Road in Salisbury. Upon arrival, the deputy met with a victim who advised that she was involved in a verbal altercation with Kimberly Johnson when Johnson allegedly got into a vehicle and intentionally backed up onto the sidewalk and struck the victim.

Johnson, who was still on scene having a verbal altercation with the victim upon the arrival of the deputy, was subsequently placed under arrest. The deputy transported her to the Central Booking Unit where she was processed and taken in front of the District Court Commissioner. After an initial appearance, the Commissioner detained Johnson in the Detention Center in lieu of $30,000.00 bond.

Charges: Assault 1st Degree
Assault 2nd Degree
Reckless Endangerment

One of The Four Freedoms

In his 1941 State of the Union Address, President Franklin D. Roosevelt expressed four freedoms that should serve as a foundation not only for the U.S. but for the world: Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Want, and Freedom from Fear. Two years later, in 1943, the weekly Saturday Evening Post magazine published, in four consecutive issues during February and March, the four famous posters created by Norman Rockwell that visualized — in his unmatched depiction of everyday American life — Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms. Altho 69 years have past since Roosevelt expressed his four freedoms and we, as citizens of the United States, have allowed those freedoms to be eroded and lessen by our refusal to take control of our government we still feel those freedoms may still exist, if not in reality, at least in our mind.

Let me comment today on one of those freedoms

The second Freedom in Roosevelt's Speech was "freedom of every person to worship God in his own way." It is my opinion that if the Muslin's want to build an Islamic center near Ground Zero in New York City they have every right to do so and I have no ideal why there is such an outcry against this center being built. I recently took a trip thru Western Pennsylvania and Western New York State. It seems like every small town I went thru had American Flags lining the streets. Now at first this seems like a good way to express your pride in America but there is a point in which too many flags makes you wonder if the mindset of the community is so extreme that any expression against what the majority thinks would be labeled as un-American.