I am a day late and a dollar short again. Well, friends and neighbors, I must first give you
my sincerest apologies for not providing the "new" content that
ya'll are all used to and have come to expect. Seriously, it's the best
part of my "job." But, then there's those other mundane parts as well,
and I've been in shopping cart hell!! Scuze my language. Remember I told
you that we were gonna have a new shopping cart in January. Well, that
was the delay in getting out the
newsletter, I was hoping to have it done before this
went out. But, now we got another kink in the cog. My web host says I'm
just too darn popular and they can't handle it anymore, so I got just a
few days to get this get this whole big ole' website moved somewhere else.
Yikes, yikes, yikes!! What that means to you is that next week, the website could be unavailable for a day or two as
we change our hosting location; though we're doing our best to make sure
that any downtime is at a minimum. If you do get an outage, please be patient, it will be back! In the meantime, I've
already moved the bulletin board. Please come see the new one - it's
terribly lonely out there with just a few members. Here's the
With all this administrative junk, I can't even provide you with
any great recent adventures -- no meaner than hell motel operators, nor
Arizona border patrols, no almost falling off of steep railroad grades,
no nuthin'. Oh yeah, I never
told you about the steep railroad grade adventure. Ok, well, I will
resurrect that escapade on the Alpine Tunnel Trail for next month.
Well, back to the site -- I've got the funniest feeling that this just might be one
of the busiest years I've ever had. Ya know, this website now has more
than 5,000 pages, gets some 300,000 unique visitors (that means first
time visitors) a month, and some 25 million
hits per month (yes, I said million.)
Still, it's just lil' ole' me putting this together, so
I'll hope you'll bear with me. Hubby Dave is gettin' ready to come "on
board" a little more (even though he has a full-time job and
already does all the shipping for Legends' General Store.) He's one heck
of a writer and has a real interest in the 1920's, especially all those
"mobster" outlaws, so look forward to that comin' soon. In
the meantime, he's started his own blog called
Legends of America
Tech. He gives you some behind the scenes stuff in running this
business, but mostly he just gives away my quirkly personality (in my
opinion.) Anywho, check it out!
In the meantime, I truly hope you enjoy the
newsletter and the website!!
Kathy Weiser, Owner/Editor
In this Edition:
The Old West
Drive Home a Point!
As long as there are tests,
there will be prayer in public schools.
It's lonely at
the top, but you eat better
stopped the payment on my reality check?
of America Advertising!
See your ad HERE!
New Additions to Legends of
No, during the holiday season we didn't get "out" much other than just a
couple of the "required" parties, which, I hate by the way - give me the
kitchen table and a beer!! Still, regular life beyond the website must
Though new content has been a little lean, we do have a few new things.
You'll see a whole bunch of new railroad stuff. Just makes sense to me -
it was one of the biggest parts of the Old West. From
Railroad History to
Tales, it's all great stuff! Check out some of this
Railroad History -
Along The Santa Fe Trail,
Penetrating The Pacific Northwest, and the biggest railroad disaster
in American History --
Ashtabula Disaster. And even more fascinating are the railroad tales
Encounter With Train Robbers,
Bradley, Gambler & Gentleman,
Arizona & An Indian Scrimmage and
The Mysterious Signal.
We also delved a little more into the
California Gold Rush - Check out
these new tales: Placerville,
California - Hub of the
California - Gold Town to
Ghost Town, and
James Marshall -
Discovering Gold in
And, there's more historic destinations as well.
that died twice, has been revived today
as a tourist attraction.
Lost Dutchman Mine is one of the best
treasure tales in the history of the
West. Shrouded in mystery, the mine is
not only allegedly extremely rich in gold, but is also said to have a
curse upon it, leading to a number of strange deaths, as well as people
who mysteriously go "missing” when they attempt to locate the old mine. And, don't miss
Fort McDowell, situated in the midst of Indian
country and surrounded by mountains, it became
the embarkation point for many of the skirmishes involved in the Apache
Well, I think that's enough "new" for now,
so I'll be mosyin' on.
On August 19, 1884
‘Doc’ Holliday shot bartender Billy Allen in the arm over $5 at
About 1/3 of all gunmen died of "natural causes," living a normal life span of 70 years or so. Of those who did die violently (shot or executed), the average age of death was 35. The gunfighters-turned-lawmen lived longer lives than their persistently criminal counterparts.
Featured Travel Destination
Bodie, California - A
Ghostly Ghost Town
"A sea of sin, lashed by the tempests of lust and passion."
-- Reverend F.M. Warrington said of Bodie,
California in 1881
Like many other mining camps of the
quickly took on a lawless and wild reputation after gold was discovered.
Today, it's a
State Park, filled with historic buildings as well as the
When mining began to decline along the
western slope of the Sierra Nevada, prospectors began to cross the
eastern slope in search of their fortunes. One such man named
William (aka: Waterman) S. Bodey, discovered gold near a place
that is now called
Bluff in 1859. Alas, the poor man died in a snow storm that very
winter and never saw the new town that would be named after him.
In 1861 the Bunker Hill Mine was
established as well as a mill, though the camp was called home to only
about twenty miners.
slowly and remained an insignificant mining camp for 17 years. The
Bunker Hill Mine and Mill, on the west slope of
Bodie Bluff, changed hands
several times during the years before being sold to four partners in
1877. The name was changed to the Standard Mining Company and
within months the partners discovered a significant vein of rich gold
ore. Profits rose dramatically and by the end of 1878
population had soared to some 5,000 people. The Standard Mine
would yield nearly 15 million dollars in gold over the next 25 years.
Miners, gamblers and business
continued to flood the area and by 1879,
Bodie boasted a population of
about 10,000 and 2,000 buildings. Before long the town supported
some 30 gold mines, 65
numerous brothels, gambling halls, and opium dens, as well, as a
number of legitimate businesses, including three newspapers, several
churches, a couple of banks and a school. Every other building
on the mile long main street was a saloon. Three breweries worked day
and night, while whiskey was brought into town in 100 gallon barrels.
Like many booming mining camps,
Bodie soon earned a
reputation for violence and lawlessness. Killings were sometimes
daily events and robberies, stage holdups and street fights were
common occurrences in the camp.
Over the next several decades,
would suffer a series of tragedies, until finally, all the gold was gone
and, but six people remained in the dying town.
However, in 1962, after years of neglect,
became a State Historic Park. Today, it is designated as both a
Historic Site and a National Historic Site. The old settlement is one of the largest and best preserved
ghost towns in the
boasting over 200 buildings.
Though its lawless days are over, its
legends continue with a number of friendly resident ghosts, along with
what's known as the
Curse of Bodie, which brings bad luck to anyone who does harm to
this old place.
Images of 66,
David Wickline - If you've ever
traveled even a little portion of
you'll know that some of the great vintage icons and photo opportunities
are hard to find. Not with this book! It's like no other
book -- this one is an interactive photographic journey across the
entire length of the
Mother Road. This massive 386 page book has more than 2,000 images
of those many "must stops" along
includes addresses and background, where possible. Click
HERE for more.
Did You Know?
grows more sunflowers than any other state.
it is against the law to dance around a Sombrero.
Death Valley, the Kangaroo Rat can live its entire life without drinking a
drop of liquid.
Arkansas has the only
active diamond mine in the United States.
The Old West
Gold Rush - There are dozens of historical events that created
the "atmosphere" of the
One of the biggest was the
Gold Rush. The "yell" for gold was the first call for Westward
Expansion. It never stopped.
In the cold morning hours of January 24, 1848,
James Marshall, a construction foreman at Sutter’s Mill, was inspecting
the water flow through the mill’s tail race. The sawmill, on the
banks of the American River in
was owned by John A. Sutter, who desperately needed lumber for the
building of a large flour mill. On that particular morning, Marshall
not only found the water to be flowing adequately through the mill, but
also spied a shiny object twinkling in the frigid stream. Stooping
to pick it up, he looked with awe at a pea-sized gold nugget lying within
News of gold, free for the taking,
quickly spread. The
gold discovery sparked almost mass hysteria as thousands of immigrants
from around the world soon invaded what would soon be called the Gold
California. The peak of the rush was in 1849, thus the many immigrants
became known as the '49ers. Some 80,000 prospectors poured into
during that year alone, arriving overland on the
Trail, by ship around Cape Horn, or through the Panama shortcut. The
majority of them came in one immense wave during mid summer, as covered
wagons reached the end of the
trail. At the same time, sailing ships were docking in San Francisco, only
to be deserted by sailors as well as passengers.
The gold discovery wrought immense changes upon the land and its people.
with its diverse population, achieved statehood in 1850, decades earlier
than it would have been without the gold.
The peak production of
placer gold occurred in 1853. Every year after that, less gold was found,
but more and more men were in
to share in the dwindling supply. Thousands of disillusioned gold seekers
returned home with little to show for their time, glad to escape with
Rush is generally considered to have ended in 1858, when the New
Mexican Gold Rush began. These hearty pioneers found the land
unbelievably productive, and ultimately California's great wealth came not
from its mines but from its farms.
What our readers are saying about Legends
I just want to let you know that I really enjoyed the
newsletter this morning. Keep up the good work! Gary
Best site on the web!!! A person could write 100 novels without ever
leaving your wonderful site. I just might. A thousand times thanks. -
Your newsletter is so
darn interesting. Thanks for it! - Nancy
I just want to thank you for all your information on
the totems -- you they really came through for me. In being able to
help my daughter, who is in the military interpret a dream. - Irene
Hi Kathy, I ordered a photo from your company and just
received it. I was very delighted with it and will recommend your
product and services to my associates. Also, thank you for very fast
delivery. I am doing a presentation on antique and historical
photography to our local historical society, and will be showing this
photo of the post mortem of Jessie James. - Judith from down under.
Feedback and Suggestions
We always appreciate feedback about the
website and our
newsletter. Do you have a suggestion about content that you would like to see, or
perhaps, would like to contribute a photograph or a story? We
would love to hear about it! We also want to hear about
suggestions for improvement. See a link that doesn't work or a
picture that doesn't appear -- please let us know. Just drop us a line
at our Email
address and tell us what you think.
is copyrighted 2007 by
Legends of America.
Our reader's e-mail addresses are never
sold, rented or
otherwise made public.
Legends of America
A Travel Guide
28926 Cedar Hill Loop
Warsaw, MO 65355