Johnny Clem – The Drummer Boy of Shiloh

John Lincoln Clem (1851-1937).

In June 1861, a small lad in Newark, Ohio gazed at Union troops marching through his town and his where too young age, he wanted to join up and fight in the Civil War. The boy's name was John Joseph Klem.

Early, Klem tried to enlist in the 3rd Ohio Infantry, but because of his age and small size, young Klem was turned away. Johnny Clem (he would be known by this name and spelling, later he would be called Johnny Shiloh, and officially he changed his name to John Lincoln Clem) was persisted with his desire to join the army, so he trailed along with the 22nd Massachusetts as it marched through Newark.

The 22nd Massachusetts made Clem its mascot and drummer boy. A sawed-off rifle and a small uniform were provided him, and officers of the Massachusetts unit pooled together to pay Johnny the regular soldier's pay of thirteen dollars a month. Johnny was not yet even 10-years-old, but now he was a drummer (but, not necessarily a good one!), Unofficially fighting for the Union.

Two years later, Johnny Clem would be allowed to enlist. On May 1, 1863 Johnny officially became a musician in Company C, 22nd Michigan. A nurse describes Johnny Clem; "was a fair and beautiful child … about twelve years old, but very small for his age. Johnny Clem was one of the youngest soldiers for either the Union or Confederate armies, to fight in the Civil War. Johnny would go on to fame in the Civil War, and make the army his career.

It has been common for Johnny Clem to also be known as "Johnny Shiloh." A story goes that young Clem was at the 1862 Shiloh battle and his drum was broken by an art projectile, and then he picked up a gun for the fight. This story was very popular and eventually a poem, a play, and a song were all named "The Drummer Boy of Shiloh." Clem at Shiloh however, is questionable history.

There were others who claimed to be the actual "The Drummer Boy of Shiloh," but a study by the National Park Service showed Clem to be the most likely one. Clem's service indicates he was with the 3rd Ohio, the 22nd Michigan, and the 22nd Wisconsin. The trouble is, is that the 3rd Ohio was not at Shiloh, and the 22nd Michigan, and the 22nd Wisconsin were not organized until after Shiloh. At this time, Johnny Clem was not yet officially a soldier, he was a young boy dressed up as a soldier trying to play the drum. He would not have been reassigned to any units that were at Shiloh. This writer will leave it up to the reader to decide if Johnny Clem is also Johnny Shiloh. We will see that there is no reason to doubt Johnny Clem's bravery.

At Chickamauga on September 20, 1863 Johnny Clem rode to the front of the battle on an art caisson, carrying along his cut-down rifle. As the course of the battle played out, the Union troops had to retreat and during this Confederate colonel encountered young Clem and demanded his surrender. Johnny Clem halted as if to complain, but then raised his cut-down rifle at the enemy officer and fired, wounding him.

On learning of Johnny's exploits, General George H. Thomas promoted Johnny to the rank of lance corporal. Newspapers told Johnny Clem's story and he earned celebrity status, becoming known as "The Drummer Boy of Chickamauga."

In October, 1863 Johnny Clem was detailed as a train guard in Georgia when Confederate cavalry captured him. Johnny was freed two months later during a prisoner exchange, but the Confederate newspapers used his capture to ridicule the Union with this barb; "what sore straits the Yankees are driven, when they have to send their babies to fight us."

Johnny Clem was assigned to General Thomas' staff as a mounted orderly in January, 1864. During the Atlanta Campaign, young Johnny was twice wounded. On September 19, 1864 he was discharged from the army. President Grant brave Johnny Clem an appointment to West Point, but Johnny had spent his youth and times as a soldier. His lack of formal education prevented him from passing the West Point entrance exam.

President Grant came through for Johnny Clem again by making him a second lieutenant of the 24th Infantry, a unit of black soldiers, in 1871. Johnny thus began his second army term. He advanced to the rank of colonel in the Quartermaster Corps. Clem was able to remain on active duty long enough to become the last Civil War veteran still on duty in the Armed Forces.

John Lincoln Clem completed his military career when he retired in 1916. At his retirement, a special act of Congress made him Major General John Clem. He passed away at age 85, and is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

A history of the Civil War is incomplete, except it includes Johnny Clem's story.

Source by Jonathan R. Allen

Frotteurism in Public

One of the unfortunate side-effects of the growth of urban populations has been the emergence of non-conventional sexual assault violations in areas too crowded to pinpoint the culprit. In particular, a crime known as frotteurism has become an issue in urban centers with massive converging populations. This is a common problem in cities like Tokyo and Delhi, and certainly has been cited as an issue in crowded areas in America.

Although the terminology may not be well-known, frotteurism defined as sexual assault in the form of non-consensually touching another person. In particular, those who engage in this behavior will rub up against another person in order to gain some sort of sexual gratification.

Some people may have preconceptions about how frotteurs are, and, specifically, that only men engage in this kind of behavior. However, there are reported instances of female frotteurs, as well as no particular limitation to heteronormativity, meaning that female frotteurs may assault other females and male frotteurs may assault other males. Despite the possible diversity of those who engage in this illegal behavior, it is true that the majority of cases can be blamed on male culprits.

If frotteur is caught, the sending is not particularly harsh in most jurisprudence. However, due to the crime's status as a sex crime, there are certain punishments that may accompany with a guilty verdict. In particular, a sex crime in the United States will generally add the convicted individual to a sex crimes registry list, making their crime public to those living around them and their potential business associates. In addition, a small penalty, usually in the form of a fine, may be levied against the offender.

For more information about sexual assault, contact a sex crimes attorney.

Source by James Witherspoon

Estate Tax Rates Increased to Pay For Economic Stimulus – What’s Coming and What You Can Do About It

Many people are aware that there are currently laws that are scheduled to lead to a death tax repeal in 2010. However, this is one area of the law where significant changes should be expected over the next year. President Barack Obama has already announced plans to prevent the estate tax from disappearing in 2010. Due to the current economic emergency, the ability to transfer wealth tax free to the next generation may be reduced to $1 million in 2010 rather than in 2011.


Many are aware of the importance of eliminating the completely avoidable Massachusetts estate tax on all estates over $1 million. This tax cost families approximately $100,000 in 2008 and that increases to approximately $230,000 in 2009. This tax is completely avoidable if the proper steps are taken to eliminate it. However, eliminating the Massachusetts estate tax is not your family’s only concern– the president and congress have announced plans to reduce the Federal tax free estate threshold. With large projected budget shortfalls over the next years due to the economic crisis, the federal estate tax is a potential source of revenue $324 billion over the next ten years.


If the Massachusetts estate tax will effect your family, you must also address the much larger problem in the scheduled increase in federal estate taxes that will affect many possibly as soon as next year. When you look at your projected estate tax amounts factoring in an increase in your net worth from today’s level, even at a very modest 4% rate of growth, the federal and state estate tax can be quite large– the combined rate is 50%. While a return to growth in the value of your assets is good, it creates a big tax problem when the applicable exclusion is reduced to $1 million. Now may be a good time to review the current value of your assets as well as to consider your tax savings opportunities.


This combination of a reduced applicable exclusion (the tax free amount), only $1 million in 2010 or 2011, and an increase in value of your investments and other assets creates a major tax problem for many clients. It is important to be aware of this and begin to take steps to increase the gift and estate tax free amounts for both federal and Massachusetts state tax purposes. There are techniques and planning opportunities available that should be considered, especially with values at lower levels, the opportunity to save gift and estate taxes is much sweeter now. Most people we help do not wish to pay more in estate taxes than absolutely necessary. We are available to review these tax saving opportunities with you.

If you do not take advantage of the annual tax-free amounts, the opportunity is lost as each year goes by. Another problem is, due to IRS regulations, some of the tax reduction planning involves a three-year waiting period to be effective. Because of the combination 3 year waiting period and the 2010 or 2011 reduction in tax free amounts to $1 million, it is critical to evaluate your situation now to see if there is a possible tax problem and if so, take immediate steps to reduce or eliminate it. The time to address and act on tax reduction opportunities that you have is now. Please call our office at 781-237-2815 to review your situation to see if you have a growing tax problem, and if so, develop a plan to reduce or eliminate taxes.


In addition to estate tax considerations, you may wish to review your investments. In a turbulent market it is more important to review your investments to make sure that you are properly positioned to meet your financial goals and objectives over the coming years. Working with a collaborative team of professionals can help develop a comprehensive approach for their tax, retirement, estate and investment planning.

If you wish to protect you retirement and investment assets, while saving more in taxes, please review your situation and consider a current review of your estate tax liability, both at today’s estate tax rates and a projected estate tax for life expectancy. It is also vital to determine that your assets are owned properly so that you will be entitled to the maximum state and federal applicable exclusions.


Growing concerns for many clients includes protecting homes and other assets from increasing medical and nursing home costs as well as from lawsuits and other claimants. The 2006 law increased the cost of nursing home and other medical care for many of our clients (currently about $400/day, $12,000/month which equals $720,000 for a 5 year stay at today’s rates). Please call our office at 781-237-2815 if you would like information on the provisions of this law and how it makes it more difficult to protect your life savings from nursing home costs. We will help you evaluate what steps you can take to protect yourself and develop a plan to deal with this possible problem.


Because the rules for IRA’s, Roth IRA’s, 401K’s, etc., have changed, methods can now be implemented to protect these investments, enabling you to provide significant protected tax deferred growth for children and grandchildren. The results of careful wealth management can be significant. The retirement plans inherited by children and grandchildren can even be protected from lawsuits, divorce and financial problems. Provided your IRA is properly managed and coordinated with your estate plan, it can be a powerful tool to build wealth and pass it on to heirs and beneficiaries.

Source by Dennis B. Sullivan, Esq.

A New Lawyer's Best Friend – Pre Drapted Legal Forms

A newly admitted lawyer to the Massachusetts Bar, has several options upon receiving his or her license to practice law. They can apply for an associate position with a big firm, and conduct research for the next five years; they can apply to work in a small firm and do all the work the senior lawyers do not want to deal with; they can hang their own shingle. This article will take the perspective of the later, ie, a recent law school graduate with an entrepreneurial spirit, a little cash on hand, and a desire to start his or her own practice.

Forget about the fact that marketing and obtaining clients is going to be the most difficult aspect of the new venture. Forget that the new attorney must choose an area of ​​practice, for even a general practitioner who can not work in every field of law. Once the client walks in the door and the attorney wants to accept the case, the flood-gates of paperwork will open.

The first document a new lawyer must draft is a fee agreement. There are several internet sites out there that have these types of legal contract, as well as other legal forms, but those legal documents are very general in nature and likely do not satisfy the Massachusetts General Laws. However, a quick look in any Lawyer's weekly will show a host of legal software companies who have created word documents specifically crafted for Massachusetts, or whatever ever state your practice requires.

Next is the whole process of filing a complaint or answer if a law suit is involved, drafting HUD statements if real estate is the issue at hand and so forth. One new Massachusetts Probate Attorney, recently said, "I did not know where to start before I had the direction of my document generation software and my online research tools." She went on to state that, "but for the form generating software, I would have had to consult for hours the Massachusetts Practice Series and other form books".

Once a case has been filed, the real onslaught of paper work and forms hits the fan – DISCOVERY. There are interrogatories, request for production of documents, requests for medical records, requests for police reports, subpoenas' for depositions, etc. There are motions for summery judgment, motions to compel, and so many more. A new lawyer who has never drafted these documents has actually no where to turn, but to the form books for hours and hours of unbillable research time.

The biggest problem for new lawyers is that they did not learn to try cases in law school. Rather, they are more equipped to argu an appeal in front of the United States Supreme Court then they are to handle a simple will contest, or personal injury matter. The bottom line is, in order for a new attorney to be efficient, they can either purchase one of these up to date, form generating software packages, be lucky enough to have a mentor, or put their dreams and aspirations on hold for two or three years, while working for a small practice. In the case of the young probate attorney, she decided to purchase the software, and was lucky to have one of the premier real estate and probate attorneys in the state as a mentor. However, not all new lawyers are so lucky, and if you are going to spend 30 hours a week researching what forms are needed to follow procedure, you will be hard pressed to find time to actually represent your clients, let alone conduct legal work that can be justified as billable hours.

The gist of all of this is that it would be highly advisable to look into the technology that is available today if you are a new lawyer, and in fact, even if you are an experienced lawyer, this technology allows you to stay current with any changes in the law and procedure for state courts in your document library.

Source by Michael A. Goldstein

4 Good Reasons to Have a Roofing Contractor Roof Your Home in the Winter

If you live in an area of the country, such as Massachusetts, with harsh winters you might be wondering why anyone would consider roof replacement in the winter time. Well, it’s not as uncommon as you might think. Many roofing contractors offer their services year round even in cold and snowy regions like Massachusetts, which is where I’m from. Roofing Massachusetts homes during the winter is no different for a roofing contractor than doing it any other time of the year, with a few exception, and some roofing contractors and there crews even say that they prefer it. First let’s go over what makes roofing more difficult this time of year and the arguments against having a new roof installed right now.

It’s too cold outside for a roof replacement.

This argument just doesn’t hold any water. It may be cold out now but who cares? Your roof doesn’t care. The crew installing your roof doesn’t care. Don’t worry about the guys doing the installation. If the cold weather bothered them that much they wouldn’t be up there installing your new roof in the first place, they would be working an indoor job. I know a lot of guys that prefer roofing in cold weather just because it is cold. Try roofing a black roof in the middle of the Summer. Lots of fun, let me tell ya. In the Summer if it is 90 degrees on the ground it feels like 110 degrees up on that roof (and sometimes is).

There is too much snow on my roof to have it replaced right now.

This, my friend, is why God created snow shovels. It is really not a big deal to shovel the snow off of a roof. It usually takes a half-hour to an hour to remove the snow and most roofing contractors don’t even charge you extra for this as long as they are there to replace the roof and not just shovel snow (a service which many roofing companies provide in the North East). Does the crew need to be careful while doing this to avoid falling? Of course. However, the crew needs to be careful in every regard when it comes to roofing a house, this is nothing new. These guys are professionals and safety should always comes first, and does always come first with a responsible roofing company.

Alright, I just gave you 2 reasons why many people think roofing shouldn’t be done in the winter and why they aren’t really very good reasons at all. Now let me give you the 4 best reasons you should consider having your roof replaced this time of year.

1.) Ice dams causing leaks.

The winter time in Massachusetts tests your home and roof in ways unlike any other time of year. The most common cause of roof leaks during the winter is the dreaded ice dam. An ice dam is formed over the eaves of a house from built up snow melting and running down the roof only to refreeze at the very edge of the roof line. Here in Massachusetts, as well as other cold climate areas, roofing contractors use a product called “ice & water barrier” together with proper drip-edge flashing techniques to prevent ice dams from damaging your home and causing leaks. This technique, when done properly, provides added protection for at least 3 feet up from all edges of the roof. Many older roofs do not have “ice & water barrier” installed. If your roof is leaking because of ice dams this could be a great time to have the roof redone properly and insure that ice dams will not be bothering you and your home again.

2.) Winter conditions, in general, make a bad roof worse.

If you had a bad roof before winter hit it is only going to be in worse shape once spring arrives. There are many factors that adversely affect your roof in the cold weather. I already discussed ice dams but there’s more. During the winter as the temperature fluctuates it makes your shingles expand and contract causing curling and cracking in older shingles. Now let’s say some of your old roof shingles curl a bit, then you get a nice wet, heavy snow and the weight of the snow causes some of those curled shingles to crack. Now you have a potential new roof leak. Also, when that wet, heavy snow then freezes it will possibly cause even more damage to your old roof shingles. The thawing and refreezing that occurs throughout the winter time is nothing but bad for old shingles. Old roofs hate the cold winters.

3.) Faster service on your new roof installation.

It’s a simple fact that Massachusetts roofing contractors, and roofing contractors in general, are not as busy during the winter. What this means for a homeowner needing a new roof is that the roof contractor you choose might be able to install your new roofing in a matter of days from the time that you sign the contract as opposed to waiting weeks, or even months sometimes, if you hold off until the spring, summer, and fall months. For many homeowners this reason alone should be enough to have your roof done in the winter time.

4.) Save money by taking advantage of a slow time of year for roofers.

Who doesn’t want to save as much money as possible especially when it comes to an expensive home improvement project such as re-roofing. For the same reasons that you may be able to receive faster installation service on a new roof from a roofing contractor during the winter, you will also probably receive a better price than you would during the warmer months. Most professional roof installers will provide you with the same labor warranty for a roof installed in winter time as a roof installed any other time of year. The material warranty is provided by the shingle manufacturer and will be the same regardless of what season the roof was installed. Roofing contractors want to keep their crews busy and will give you a better price just to avoid having to lay off employees during the winter slowdown.

So what are you waiting for? If you have a house with an older roof that needs replacing get in touch with a local roofing contractor and find out for yourself why roofing Massachusetts homes or a home in any other area is a perfectly viable option in the winter time and often a bargain!

Source by Josh Johnson

Anne Bradstreet, "To My Dear and Loving Husband," A Discussion

"To My Dear and Loving Husband" was written by America's first female poet, the Puritan, Anne Bradstreet. In fact, Anne Bradstreet is one of only a handful of female American poets during the first 200 years of America's history. After Bradstreet, one can list only Phillis Wheatley, the 18th century black female poet, Emma Lazarus, the 19th century poet who famous words appear on the Statue of Liberty, and the 19th century Emily Dickinson, America's most famous female poet.

"To My Dear and Loving Husband" has some standard poetic features. One is the two line rhyme scheme. Another is the anaphora, the repetition of a phrase, in the first three lines. And a third is the popular iambic pentameter.

Iambic pentameter is characterized by an unrhymed line with five feet or accents. Each foot contains an uncontested syllable and an accented syllable, as in "da Dah, da Dah, da Dah, da Dah, da Dah."

The subject of Anne Bradstreet's love poem is her professed love for her husband. She praises him and asks the heavens to reward him for his love. The poem is a touching display of love and affection and extraordinarily uncommon for the Puritan era of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in which Anne Bradstreet lived.

Puritan women were expected to be reserved, domestic, and subservient to their husbands. They were not expected or allowed to exhibit their wit, charm, intelligence, or passion. John Winthrop, the Massachusetts governor, once remarked that women who exercised wit or intelligence were apt to go insane.

Anne Bradstreet was born Anne Dudley in 1612 in England. She married Simon Bradstreet when she was 16 and they both sailed with her family to America in 1630. The difficult, cold voyage to America took 3 months to complete. John Winthrop was also a passenger on the trip. The voyage landed in Boston and the passengers joined the Massachusetts Bay Colony.

The men in Anne Bradstreet's family were managers and politicians. Both her father and her husband became Massachusetts governors. Her husband, Simon, often traveled for weeks through the colony as its administrator.

Anne Bradstreet's poem, "To My Dear and Loving Husband," was a response to her husband's absence.

Very little is known about Anne Bradstreet's life in Massachusetts. There are not portraits of her and she does not even have a grave marker. She and her family moved several times, each time further away from Boston into the frontier. Anne and Simon had 8 children during a 10 year period, and all the children survived healthy and safe, a remarkable accomplishment considering the health and safety hazards of the period.

Anne Bradstreet was highly intelligent and deeply self-educated. She took herself seriously as an intellectual and a poet, reading broadly in history, science, art, and literature. However, as a good Puritan woman, Bradstreet did not make her achievements public.

Bradstreet wrote poetry for herself, family, and friends, never meaning to publish them. Consider that her friend, Anne Hutchinson was intellectual, educated and led women's prayer meetings where alternative religious beliefs were discussed. She was labeled a heretic and banished from the colony. Hutchinson ever died in an Indian attack. Is it any wonder that Anne Bradstreet was hesitant to publish her poetry and call attention to herself?

Anne Bradstreet's early poems were secretly taken by her brother-in-law to England and published in a small volume when she was 38. The volume sold well in England, but the poems were not nearly as accomplished as her later works.

Bradstreet's later works were not published during her lifetime. Her poems about her love for her husband were private and personal, meant to be shared with her family and friends group only.

Although her health was frequently a concern, especially during childbirth, Anne Bradstreet lived until 60 years of age.

Enjoy "To My Dear and Loving Husband," a remarkable accomplishment.

To My Dear and Loving Husband

If ever two were one, then surely we.

If ever man were lov'd by wife, then thee;

If ever wife was happy in a man,

Compare with me ye women if you can.

I prize thy love more than whole Mines of gold,

Or all the licenses that the East doth hold.

My love is such that Rivers can not quench,

Norought but love from thee, give recompence.

Thy love is such I can no way repay,

The heavens reward the manifold I pray.

Then while we live, in love let's so persever,

That when we live no more, we may live ever.

Source by Garry Gamber

14 PharmCAS Pharmacy Schools That Do Not Require the PCAT For 2010 and Tips to Gain Acceptance

The PCAT is the Pharmacy College Admissions Test used by most pharmacy schools as one of the admission criteria. Luckily, not all pharmacy schools require the PCAT. In fact, there are many students every year who do not have to study nor pay for the PCAT and only apply to schools that do not require it. For these Pharm.D. programs that do not require the PCAT, other factors such as your grade point average (GPA), work experience (not mandatory but strengnts your application), interview performance, letter of recommendations, ECs, and other factors (which I discuss in my other article) determine your eligibility for acceptance.

Pharmacy Schools in the US that do not require the PCAT:

1. California Northstate
2. University of California – San Diego
3. University of California – San Francisco
4. Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences – Boston MA
5. Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences – Manchester NH
6. Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences – Worcester MA
Oregon State University
8. University of the Pacific
9. Pacific University Oregon
10. University of Southern California
11. Purdue University
12. Touro University – California
13. Washington State University
14. Western University
(Currently all California Pharmacy Schools do not require the PCAT).

Some application tips:

-Find out if the schools you are applying for are on a rolling admission system. If they are, it is imperative that you turn in your application as soon as possible as it will increase your chances of gaining an interview and in turn, a nice envelope with your acceptance.

-Prepare for the interview by going over previous interview questions. These can be found on Student Doctor's interview feedback section. I have also listed the most common interview pharmacy school questions in another article. During your preparation, do not make your answers sound rehearsed but natural and well-thought out.

-Gain Pharmacy Work Experience. Although not mandatory, what better way to show an admission committee that you are serious about pursuing this career path than working in a pharmacy. You may want to consider obtaining a pharmacy technician license to have more responsibilities at a pharmacy. Without a license, you can still volunteer or work as a pharmacy clerk in most states.

-If you are an international student, you may also want to check to see if the school require the TOEFL by checking the required tests chart on the PharmCAS website.

Source by David E. Thompson

Dances With the Daffodils

My Cambridge, Massachusetts neighborhood, hard by Harvard University, is accredited to the brightest of regalia, gowns, flags, pennants; they all catch the eye and remind all our pageantry is of an ancient type and all our own. Even so, we take particular notice when the daffodils parade, outfitted in the vibrant yellow hues once reserved for the Chinese emperor alone. They are always sharp, chic, dramatic,
their presence announced by its central trumpet from which one expects Handel or Purcell at least and would not be surprised at all to hear them, sharp, regal, ceremonious. The daffodil lookss tailor-made for this.

For the last several days, house bound with a cold, I have been impatient to bear the arrangements progress, the persistent growth of the stalks, the bulging stems where, very soon, the yellow trumpet will emerge to capture every eye.

There is an excitation in the air.

I feel it, and am glad to see these lordly daffodils hard at their work … for them come but once a year and but so briefly stay. They are right to call to me and remind that their time is coming, and I must be ready; ready to behold, to enjoy, to savor, their time brilliant, memorable, but always far too short.

Named after the most beautiful boy in the world.

Daffodil is the common English name for this stylish flower. But it is not its real name. Like noblemen treading carefully in our democratic days, daffodils possess a sense of when to employ their common name, while never forgetting their true pedigree. They are in fact Narcissus, the botanic name for a genus of mainly hardy, mostly spring-flowering, bulbs in the Amaryllis family native to Europe, North Africa, and Asia. The publication "Daffodils for North American Gardens" cites between 50 and 100 wild species.

The story of Narcissus comes from Greek mythology. There a comely youth of unsurpassed beauty became so obsessed with his own absorbing looks that, when observing himself in a pool of water, he fell in and drowned. In some variations of the myth, the youth died of starvation and thirst because he could not bring himself to do anything but marvel at himself.

We all know such people. . . but the gods did not commemorate their mesmerizing looks and foolishness as they did Narcissus' by marking the spot where he lay with the stunning Narcissus plant.

The daffodils, cautious, sensitive about Narcissus' foolishness, relate this story (and their true identity) to uncritical admirers only; they are just "daffodils" to all the rest. I am such a vetted admirer, sensitive; so they have shared with me, discretely but with pride. It is rare, they say, to be so commemorated by the gods of Olympus, and so it is.


As every daffodil attests, theirs is a good looking appearance, a "stunner". It features a central trumpet-, bowl-, or disc- shaped corona surrounded by a ring of six floral leaves called the perianth which is united into a tube at the forward edge of the 3-local ovary. The seeds are black, round and swollen with hard coat. The three outer segments are sepals, and the three inner segments are petals.

Of course, while every daffodil knows these facts precisely (and many more), they understand that you may not be of a botanical turn of mind. Thus, they demand but one thing from you: unqualified admiration. It seems little enough to require for such a luxuriance of color and joy. Should you demur, they are not above reminding that all Narcissus varieties contain the alkaloid poison lycorine, mostly in the bulb but also in the leaves. A hint of this usually garners the deferred compliment. Daffodils are inured to lavish compliments, and are not above reminding you should yours prove insufficient. It is often such with the abundantly, extravagantly, dazzlingly beautiful, constantly lauded. . . they have their high standards to maintain, making sure we adhere. We give them unqualified obeisance; they cast the benediction of their beauty on us. We are glad to do so; such beauty is rare and too soon gone.

The love affair between daffodils and poets.

Poets, for whatever a thing of beauty is a joy forever, have but to see a field of daffodils to wax, well, poetic. In 1807 William Wordsworth published in "Poems In Two Volumes", words he had first written in 1807.

Every daffodil knows, and joyously too, these magnificent words of beauty, optimism, and contentment:

"I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er Vales and Hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd
A host of dancing Daffodils;
Along the Lake, benefit the trees,
Ten thousand dancing in the breeze.

The waves beside them danced, but they
Outdid the sparkling waves in glee: –
A poet could not but be gay
In such a laughing company:
I gazed – and gazed – but little thought
What wealth the show to me had bought:

For of when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude,
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the Daffodils. "

Other poets, and those of hopeful, poetical tendencies, have presented the daffodils with their efforts, too.

Amy Lowell (d 1925) was not as sleek and stylish as daffodils prefer; her words were heavy laden in the Victorian manner.

To an Early Daffodil. . .

"Although yellow trumpeter of laggard Spring!
Thou herald of rich Summer's myriad flowers. . . "

It is not their favorite poem. . . but they honor the
poet notwithstanding. She meant well.

They prefer Robert Herrick's (d. 1674) To Daffodils

"Fair Daffodils, we weep to see
You haste away so soon. . . "

Herrick can make them maudlin and sentimental. Dead so soon, they prefer such notions – and obsessions – be private. Always near the surface of their beauty is the reality of death and too soon oblivion.

EE Cummings' (d. 1962) "in time of daffodils" is a poem of declaration and purpose. It keeps them focused:

"in time of daffodils (who know
the goal of living is to grow)
forgetting why, remember how "

They cherish their history and all the poets who expand and burnish it.

Still on any day of their too short annual sojourn, they like this best; "April Showers" sung by Al Jolson (1921).

"And where you see clouds up the hills, You soon will see crowds of daffodils."

And, always,

"and the daffodils looked lovely today
Looked lovely. "(From the" Daffodil Lament "by the Cranberries, 2002.)

Indeed they do.

Source by Jeffrey Lant

Governor Foster Furcolo and His Vision on Public Higher Education in Massachusetts

More than 2,000,000 students or almost 43% of the college level student population annually would never have the opportunity to attend public higher education in Massachusetts unless the Governor Foster Furcolo's passionate and untiring struggle to set up 15 Community Colleges within the state was not successful in the 1950s . As the Republicans' Editorial correctly expressed in September 2009, his services were long forgotten by the politicians. In appreciation of his services Massachusetts general laws were amended, only two years back, to design the 15 Community Colleges Collectively as the "Governor Foster Fucolo's Community Colleges." At a time when the private higher education was dominant, and had access mostly to the students from well to do families, Governor Furcolo opened the door for public higher education to those who could not afford to attend costly private educational institutions. He wanted the colleges to locate closer to communities, provide the education at a lower cost to the individuals as well as to the state, meet the demands of the rising manufacturing and service sectors, and to raise the income of families and the revenue of the state in the long run. The benefits of his intelligent foresight could be seen clearly in the Massachusetts economy and society today.

One of his aims was to provide opportunity for higher education for members from low income families who wanted to pursue their higher education. He wanted to reach immigrants, non-working adults, working men and women and disable people who wish to enhance their skills and engage in economic activities. The composition of student population at present shows how far the Governor Furcolo's target groups reached and benefited from his community college movement. According to a recent economic impact report, the average household income of those students attended community colleges was less than US $ 36,000 per annual, and 60% of the financial aid recipients, particularly the Pell Grant recipients, were from families who earned less than US $ 18,600 per year.

Governor Furcolo saw the growing college age population in mid fifties, and the obstacles they had to get into higher education. His solution was to have a public higher education system to help this population, providing opportunity for them to engage in skill enhancing studies, on-part time, open enrollment basis, and if required with opportunity to enroll in remedial courses. Examination of the composition of student population in Community Colleges in Massachusetts shows that the major belong to the part-time adult student groups. More than 61% of students in Community Colleges in Massachusetts are half time or quarter time students, and were over 25 years of age, Only 39% were full-time students and in the traditional college age group. Many of them required to have remedial courses such as Math and English, Writing and Reading prior to enrolling for college work. As to a recent study, based on 2005 high school students who introduced the Community Colleges in Massachusetts, 37% in average, needed at least one remedial course prior to start work at the college level (Conaway 2008).

Achievement of Fucolo's vision to make public college education affordable to poor families is evidenced from comparing cost for community college education with other college systems, even today. The national average for college tuition cost for public universities is $ 4,694 for in state residents. The tuition and fees in a private college is around $ 20,000 in the nation, while in a community college the cost is averaged to $ 2,076. The same pattern is observable in Massachusetts. The nature of the student population required higher education, as Furcolo viewed it, required a dispersed pattern of education facilities. Low distance to facilities save time, and reduce movement cost, reducing the overall cost to an individual, and also minimizing the disturbance to daily routines. Furcolo envisioned that the colleges are located at a commuting distance, so those who were busy with household as well as work place chores could attend them conveniently. His, his Public Higher Education Act in 1958 provided laws to set up state wide system of 15 Community Colleges through Massachusetts. They have become the house for 46% of the college students in Massachusetts at present, and it is more than four times of the student enrollment in Higher education in the 1950s (Burns 1995).

Fucolo understood the need of the skilled labor in the growing business and the manufacturing sectors at the time, and the responsibility of the public higher education to create a skilled labor pool, if Massachusetts was to be competitive and keep pace with the other states. The community Colleges, therefore, seen as the solution to the shortage of skilled man problem at the time. The skilled labor training is a core function of the community colleges even today. Comprehensive Regional Community Colleges in Massachusetts today offer an array of programs leading to associate degrees, certificates and voluntary programs. They provide basic, continuing, and remedial courses for college age students and adults. They associate with schools, industries and work places and develop programs to improve the skills and the quality of labor helping to increase efficiency and productivity. Massachusetts Community colleges have pioneered an innovative, low- cost, state wide work training resource for business and industry called Mass * Net, and it helps to provide work training in 21 technological fields. According to a Community College information source more than 5000 work force development programs are annually offered by Massachusetts Community Colleges. By providing, skilled manpower needs of the states industry, commercial as well as other service units, they have helped to increase income of the manufacturing units, individuals, and the State.

Governor Furcolo wanted to make the Community Colleges a "preparation ground" for higher education. One of the important missions of these colleges today is to facilitate their graduates to transfer to four year colleges which is also an important component of the most community college students' educational aspirations. At present, Community Colleges have well designed programs and provisions to facilitate student transfers through transfer agreements, and bindings with four year colleges and universities. As a member of a Public Higher Education System, Quinsigamond Community College for example, maintains ties with all the Massachusetts four year colleges and universities and facilitate student transfers through Mass Transfer program introduced in 2008.This program helps students through reduced tuition fees, and credit transfers, and make transfer process quick, smooth and affordable ..

The economic impact of the Community Colleges on individuals, families, and business is clearly seen today in Massachusetts. A recent economic impact report estimated that the incremental annual income of the Community College graduates as US $ 21400 compared to non-graduates. Education also opens to opportunity for better jobs with better benefits.It has been estimated that 90% of the Massachusetts Community College graduates working in the state after their graduation in business, industry, or other services, and the income they generate since mostly spent within the state. This means that the state is able to generate more revenues taxing the personal income of the community college graduates working in the state. Further, the expenditure in Community Colleges has created a multiplier effects and further regional growth as to various studies. These colleges help also the local economies to sustain their economic activities through spending of students and visitors, and workers. Thus the Community Colleges in Massachusetts have become a growth engine for the state according to the same economic impact report mentioned earlier.

Governor Foster Furcolo's foresight on Public Higher Education as discussed in this essay has helped many poor, and low income young as well as adult students to enter into higher education. The personal income of those who educated these colleges has increased due to their higher education, and also the income of the state through income tax revenues. Those graduations have become the greatest source of skilled man power, for industries and business to thrive in Massachusetts. Governor Furcolo should have viewed as a great serviceman who served Massachusetts, and embrace his visions in the future as the Republican Editorial remarked in September 2009.

Source by Don Patrick Amarasinghe

Guide to Haunted Lighthouses – Massachusetts

Massachusetts, well known for Plymouth Rock, where the first pilgrims landed, and the Salem witch trials, is also home to five of America's most haunted lighthouses.

The Haunted Bell
Baker's Island Light

Baker's Island Light, just six miles off the coast of Salem, home of the infamous witch trials, is reputedly haunted by a phantom foghorn bell.

This mechanized bell sounded a warning to sailors of impending danger, and rang just once, before being stuck by lightning that destroyed it. The lighthouse keeper had to go out in the storm and manually strike a hammer against the bell at precisite intervals to keep mariners safe. The bell was replaced, but the new bell repeatedly failed and the frustrated captain left his post.

Seventeen years later while visiting the lighthouse by steamer, the keeper and his fellow passengers heard the bell. After dropping a few passengers off at a nearby harbor, a waterspout suddenly rose from the sea, capsizing the boat and drowning all but a few passengers. The former keeper, who survived, believed the bell was sounding a warning.

According to legend, this bell, also destroyed by lighting, can be heard sounding the alarm even when there is no apparent danger.

The Ghost Walk
Boston Harbor Light

Boston Harbor Light on Little Brewster Island was the first lighthouse built in the pre-revolutionary war colonies. The original structure, cone shaped and first lit by candles, and later oil lamps, was destroyed by the British Army garrisoned in Boston, after colonial militiamen twice attacked it.

When the war was over, a new tower was erected, that stood 75 feet above the sea, and surprised against hurricanes, gale force winds and high seas for more than 200 years. A new Fresnel lens was installed in 1859, making Boston light visible for sixteen miles.

Little Brewster had its share of shipwrecks, though not as many as other lighthouses. Sailors still speak of a "ghost walk" several miles from the island, where the lighthouse signal can not be heard. New Englanders and others believe this area is haunted.

The Pirate Keeper
Bird Island Lighthouse

The first keeper of Bird Island Lighthouse was tagged pirate, William Moore. Moore, who fought against the English in the War of 1812, owed the government enough money to justify their banishing him to the lonely life of a lighthouse keeper.

He was assigned to Bird Island Light in 1819, taking his wife who apparently married him when he was financially prosperous. Mrs. Moore, suffering from tuberculosis and addicted to tobacco, was forbidden to leave the island, as her husband feared that once gone, she would never return.

The dampness of the lighthouse aggravated her condition, and her desperation for tobacco so distracted her that people on the mainland could hear her crories. The local doctor implored Moore to allow her tobacco, but he staunchly refused. The townspeople, disturbed by her wailing took pity on her and smuggled tobacco to her, despite fearing her husband.

When she finally died, Moore raised the distress flag, and a minister went to the island, performed the funeral rites and laid her to rest. The angry townspeople blamed Moore for her death, and he in turn blamed them for not respecting his wishes. Rumors flew that Moore murdered her and covered up the true cause of her death.

According to legend, several of Moore's successors reported seeing an old woman's ghost, hunched over, knocking at the door late at night.

The Long Goodbye
Gurnet (Plymouth) Light

Gurnet, or Plymouth Light, America's oldest wooden lighthouse dating back to the Revolutionary War, is also one of its most haunted.

Today, the Coast Guard operates Plymouth Light, yet many believe the spirit of a former keeper's wife haunts its rooms, waiting for her husband's return.

Hannah stayed behind to tend the light while her husband went off to fight for America's Independence from Great Britain. Her neighbors not aware her standing vigil at her window every evening, waiting for her husband, who unfortunately was killed in action.

Some say Hannah still keeps her faithful vigil, briefly appearing at the window, and then quickly vanishing from sight.

Warning Cries-Nightly Shadows
Minot's Ledge Light

Minot's Ledge Light is no more than a tower that sits on a reef jutting out to sea off the coast of Scituate. The first tower leased less than a year before an angry sea claimed it.

Isaac Dunham, the first keeper at Minot's Ledge urgently warned his superiors about the lighthouse's instability to no avail, and he retired after fourteen frustrating months.

One day, Dunham's successor, John Bennett flew a flag from the lighthouse indicating he needed a ride to shore. He left his two assistants, Joe Wilson and Joe Antoine in charge, when suddenly a savage nor 'easter packing one hundred mile an hour winds attacked them. Bennett watched helplessly from shore as the storm destroyed the lighthouse, killing his two assistants.

Several fishermen reported seeing Antoine swinging from a ladder, yelling, and "Stay away!" in his native Portuguese. Subsequent keepers reported seeing shadows in the lantern room, hearing ghostly whispers at night, and hearing or feeling soft taps upon their shoulders. The two Joes used these taps to signal the end of a shift. One keeper, hearing the tapped committed suicide, and another went insane and was taken to shore in a straight jacket.

Then there are the windows … It generally takes an entire day to clean windows soiled by overhead seagulls, yet each new keeper's assistant reported the windows sparkling clean before ever reaching them.

Are these stories truth or legend? Visit one and find out.

Source by Marianne Kelly