Friday, August 12, 2016

History: The Year is 1848

I've uploaded year 1848 to the TSP Wiki...

Here are some one liners...

The California Gold Rush -- John Sutter establishes a New Switzerland in California but then gold is discovered and they turn California into Swiss cheese.

Save Lives First, Obey Laws Second -- A cholera epidemic forces the congregation to eat on the fast day of Yom Kippur. I talk about how saving a life is more important than reading expiration dates on medicines.

In Other News -- The Washington Monument, the Communist Manifesto and the Associate press.

The California Gold Rush

Shhh! Don't tell anybody about the gold! The folks at Fort Sutter are trying to keep this a secret for a few weeks as the Mexican territory of California transitions to a United States territory. God only knows what might happen if anyone found out that there is gold at Sutter's Mill. In the 1830s Yohan Suter arrived from Switzerland and changed his name to John Sutter. He settled in Mexico's California to establish New Switzerland which encompasses present day Sacramento and Yuba City. He builds Fort Sutter for protection against Indian attack. Settlers make it the first stop as they come over the Sierra Nevada mountains and New Switzerland prospers. Sutter needs lumber for expansion so he hires James Marshall to build a water-powered saw mill and that is where the problem starts. Marshall finds gold nuggets in the stream. So why is that a problem? John Sutter has been promoting the region as a place of agricultural riches.... not "riches" riches. He is wholly unprepared for the 300,000 people that will be arriving in California over the next 7 years looking for a fortune in gold and turning California into Swiss cheese as they dig the place up. In reality he has a year before the real rush begins. It won't be enough. [1] [2] [3] [4]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
If you recall early television programming there was some kid named Timmy who was always falling down a well or mine shaft, and his collie dog named Lassie would run for help. In California falling down a mine shaft remains a real danger in some areas. During the gold rush, if a miner was digging an exploratory shaft looking for gold, he didn't always bother to back-fill if he didn't find what he was looking for. In some areas the hills are riddled with tunnels intersecting each other like an underground city. The open shafts have long since been overgrown with brush. They are virtually invisible until it is too late, so the State of California has hired people to find these abandoned mines, map them and then fill them with an artificial mix that acts as both a plug for the hole and a marker. As a teenage boy I would camp around Yuba City every summer with our Boy Scout Troop. The region was part of the New Switzerland land grant. It is truly a beautiful place, but watch your step. OK? [5] [6]

Save Lives First, Obey Laws Second

The cholera epidemic has reached Lithuania on the holiest day of the Jewish calendar, Yom Kippur. Normally it is a day of fasting and prayer. No work is done. Even the hired help must rest, but the needs of the sick require that some people violate the rules. Not only must the sick violate the rules, but so should the healthy in order not to become sick from the cholera. It is too dangerous to weaken the body even for the sake of Heaven, so Rabbi Salanter stands before the congregation on the holiest day and eats. His congregation eats. To save a life is the law. [7]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
OK. We are talking about emergencies here. One should not assume sub-standard preparations as a starting point. If you are storing medicines, make sure they are well within their expiration dates, and rotate them regularly but in an emergency we should not be spending a lot of time looking at expiration dates. Saving a life, even with out-of-date meds seems reasonable to me if I have nothing else. A while back I was listening to a TSP episode where Doc Bones was explaining how to stop bleeding and he mentioned a coagulant made from some sort of pork product. I am Jewish so that made me cringe a little. I know that some people would hesitate to use such a life-saving procedure simply because it contains pork, but the principle of saving a life applies. No one is asking me to EAT the coagulant, but simply apply it. If I need to apply it, that means something has gone VERY wrong so I should act without hesitation. This Friday's podcast comes before an important Jewish holiday of fasting, but saving a life still applies. I am actually ill, so I must eat. It's not exactly life and limb on the line, but a lot of leeway is given. I use my head. I live by certain rules, but I try not to die by them nor injure myself. All things in moderation. [8] [9]

In Other News

  • Associated Press is founded. People are starving for war news so several news agencies form a cooperative to save money. [10]
  • The cornerstone of the Washington Monument is laid. The capstone will be set in December of 1884 and dedicated early the following year. [11]
  • The Communist Manifesto is published. The world shudders. A lot of people are going to die for a principle that can't work without Divine intervention and they sure aren't going to ask for that. [12]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1848, Wikipedia.

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