It's our birthday and we'll sing if we want to ................ La, la,
Actually, it prolly won't be our birthday when you get this, but, it's
getting written on June 27th (that counts, right?), which is the date that
I registered the domain name Legends of America 12 years ago in
2003. In actuality, we're even older because it started more than a year
before, while I stumbled around trying to learn how to build a website,
changed my mind about the direction a couple of times, and rebuilt the
darn thang several times. Some of ya'll have been with me way back before
it was Legends of America -- when it was tiny little High Country Legends.
Thank you bunches!
Twelve years, and we're still growing! We are thrilled that
you are a visitor, reader and fan of our website! We never could have
imagined the joy it would bring to our lives, much less the thousands of
miles traveled since. The people we've met along the way, even if just by
email or social media, have been a large part of the driving force behind
our passion (yeah, I'm talking about you). Over the past 12 months we've
seen over 5.1 million of you come to our site to enjoy the Old West,
travel destinations, Native American history and more, through 15.1
million page views.
yet, we have more growing to do. Even with all that web traffic, we're
still a small Mom & Pop shop, eking out a living, with dreams of sharing even
more history from all corners of our great nation. There is so much
to write about and share, it's nearly impossible to cover it all with just
the two of us.
We've got dreams and we want to drag you along, if you'll let us. We've
kind of reached a plateau and have come to a conclusion that we need some
help. We've always welcomed submissions from other
authors as a way to expand our content, but you'll soon see a larger push
in that direction. If you are one, or know of one, let us know. We're
looking for those lesser known/talked about pieces of history from all
corners of the U.S., but especially the Eastern half, Alaska and Hawaii. I
also just got off the phone with SCORE, an organization of individuals
who are "Counselors to America's Small Business." Oh, my, my mind is
racing. We can do this, we can, we can.
Website redesign to be friendly across all platforms - your phone, I-Pad,
etc. That's huge given the fact that we have more than 4,000 pages.
Increased interaction with YOU and all of our readers.
Partnerships including writers, photographers, event planners,
destinations, and more.
We've entered a contest through Wells-Fargo that offers 6 months of
mentorship and a grand prize of $25,000 to fund business growth. There are
hundreds, if not thousands of entries, but, hey, it's worth a shot. Part
of the judging is based on Voting. If you've got a moment, would you give
us your endorsement??
We got bunches
more ideas, but, I got to thinking .... Hey, we have business people,
historians, website folks, and bunches more following us via this
newsletter. What do ya'll think?? Got an idea? Own a business that we
could cross promote? Want to write an article to be featured on LOA, or a
photograph? We give bunches of Kudos!! Like to partner on a product,
event, or have skills that you can offer that we can promote? Drop
us a line and let us know, we'd love to hear from you.
Wondering Around the Roads of American History
In this Edition:
New Additions and Featured
Rain-in-the-Face (1905 interview includes
his key role in Custer's Last Stand)
Feedback and Suggestions
More to See:
Legends General Store - Supporting our
website since 2003
Legends Photo Prints - Our growing
gallery of Vintage and Modern images available in various print sizes.
Shop, or just enjoy browsing.
Legends Travel Blog - Follow us on our travels and catch special
Legends Photo Travel
Blog - Follow our travels in pictures with interesting historic
tidbits to boot.
Legends of Kansas - Our website
dedicated to the state Legends was born in.
In Social Media:
Legends Facebook Page - Daily posts of all things American History.
Ghost Towns of the American West Facebook
Page - Occasional posts of all things Ghost Towns.
Native American History Facebook Page - Occasional posts of all
things Native American
Legends Photo Prints Facebook
Store Facebook Page
Legends on Twitter
Legends on Pinterest
New Additions and Featured Stories
We have quite a bit of "new" stuff and updated
stories since our last news letter. First, let's highlight some
other authors and photographers that have contributed great material to
Legends Of America.
Route 66 Author and car nut Jim Hinckley continues to expand our selection
Automobile History. William Galloway
was born on a farm near Berlin, Iowa, and
would go on to create an expanding farm business and even teamed with Maytag
for an automobile. A great story of the rise and fall of the Galloway Empire
and a must read
In addition, Jim also expanded his photo
collection in Legends' Photo
Print Shop. See them all in our "Jim
Hinckley's America" gallery.
Jim was kind enough to introduce us to some European talent that have
another artistic view of the United States that truly appreciate. Jeroen
and Maggie Boersma, from Amsterdam, The Netherlands, have a special love
of highways and signs in the United States. They make two to three trips a
year to the United States, documenting historic neon signs and more before
they disappear forever. We hope you enjoy their incredible work in our
Collection in Legends'
Photo Print Shop.
We also want to congratulate Author Jackie
Boor! In our last newsletter we introduced her submitted article
The Death of
Sheriff Tom Logan, which gives you a peek at her book LOGAN. Since
then Jackie's book took first place in the Midwest Independent Publishing
Association's history category, and received two more honors in the annual
Eric Hoffer Book Awards, one of the largest international book awards for
small, academic, and independent presses. If you missed it last time, be
sure to read her Legends exclusive
The Death of
Sheriff Tom Logan. Congrats Jackie!!
You might also notice a different look at
feel on our home page. We've
added our Twitter Feed so you can see what we are highlighting on social
media, and have remodeled to include interesting tidbits, what's getting
the most attention on our website, and monthly highlights in history. Would appreciate your feedback, and stay tuned for more changes as we move
forward as this is not the final change.
Here's just some of other stories we've
added since our last
MacGregor & The Historic Rivertowns of McGregor and Marquette - McGregor and
Marquette Iowa have a storied history on the Mississippi River thanks to the
foresight of businessman Alexander MacGregor. Dave writes about this interesting
town we passed through during our travels last summer.
Bend - Booming on the Santa Fe Trail - Situated in central Kansas,
Great Bend is the county seat of Barton County.
The area had long been called home to the
Plains Indians before explorers began
to come to the region, beginning with Francisco Vasquez de
Coronado in 1541. It
really began to see people in numbers when the
Santa Fe Trail
was developed which passed right through what would later become Great Bend,
leaving in its wake a long trail of history including Indian skirmishes, tales
of frontier characters, rowdy
days, and more.
Kenilworth - A Still Occupied Mining Camp
Utah is not
quite a ghost town, still sporting a population of about 180 people,
as well as a post office, it isn't what it once was during its coal
mining hey days. Like most other
Carbon County towns, Kenilworth got its start when coal was discovered in
Obsession With Doors & Windows - What is about doors and windows that
fascinate many of us? Especially artists and photographers? Big, small,
colorful, antique, new, arched, stained, and paned, it seems that they beg to be
opened -- to learn about what might be behind them, what stories they may tell?.
History, culture, experiences and tales, lurk behind. Sometimes, doors and
windows are full of patterns, textures, and designs -- so much so, that many are
art forms, in and of themselves. Also check out our
See more What's New here
United States of America!
Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776
Liberty can not be preserved without a general
knowledge among the people. --
John Adams, 2nd U.S. President
Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it
must be demanded by the oppressed.--
Martin Luther King, Jr., American Baptist Minister and Civil-Rights Leader
Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't
pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for,
protected, and handed on for them to do the same. -- Ronald Reagan, 40th
He lasted as long
as a pint of whiskey in a five-handed poker game.
smelled like a mildewed saddle blanket after it had been rid on a
soreback hoss three hundred miles in August
Old West Wisdom
Nobody ever drowned himself in his own sweat.
Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back,
you'll enjoy it a second time.
Rain-in-the-Face "Strategic Sioux Warrior"
Battle of Little Bighorn, June 25-26, 1876, is the most famous of Indian
Battles. In 1905, Charles Eastman sat down with Sioux Warrior
Rain-in-the-face who told about his life, and battles, including his key
role in Custer's Last Stand.
The warrior, Eastman wrote, said "Many lies have been told of me. Some say
that I killed the Chief, and others that I cut out the heart of his
brother [Tom Custer], because he had caused me to be imprisoned. Why, in
that fight the excitement was so great that we scarcely recognized our
nearest friends! Everything was done like lightning. After the battle we
young men were chasing horses all over the prairie, while the old men and
women plundered the bodies; and if any mutilating was done, it was by the
Here's more of this historic interview by Charles A. Eastman (Ohiyesa) in
1905, from his book Indian Heroes and Great Chieftains, published a
decade later in 1918.
Rain-in-the-Face, whose name once carried terror to every part of the
frontier, died at his home on the Standing Rock reserve in
on September 14, 1905. About two months before his death I went to see
him for the last time, where he lay upon the bed of sickness from which he
never rose again, and drew from him his life-history.
It had been my experience that you cannot induce an
to tell a story, or even his own name, by asking him directly.
"Friend," I said, "even if a man is on a hot trail, he stops for a smoke!
In the good old days, before the charge there was a smoke. At home, by the
fireside, when the old men were asked to tell their brave deeds, again the
pipe was passed. So come, let us smoke now to the memory of the old
He took of my tobacco and filled his long pipe, and we smoked. Then I told
an old mirthful story to get him in the humor of relating his own history.
The old man lay upon
an iron bedstead, covered by a red blanket, in a corner of the little
log cabin. He was all alone that day; only an old dog lay silent and
watchful at his master's feet.
Finally he looked up
and said with a pleasant smile:
"True, friend; it is
the old custom to retrace one's trail before leaving it forever! I
know that I am at the door of the spirit home.
"I was born near the
forks of the Cheyenne River, about seventy years ago. My father was
not a chief; my grandfather was not a chief, but a good hunter and a
feast-maker. On my mother's side I had some noted ancestors, but they
left me no chieftainship. I had to work for my reputation.
"When I was a boy, I
loved to fight," he continued. "In all our boyish games I had the name
of being hard to handle, and I took much pride in the fact.
"I was about ten
years old when we encountered a band of
were on friendly terms with us, but we boys always indulged in sham
fights on such occasions, and this time I got in an honest fight with
older than I. I got the best of the boy, but he hit me hard in the
face several times, and my face was all spattered with blood and
streaked where the paint had been washed away. The
boys whooped and yelled:
"'His enemy is down,
and his face is spattered as if with rain! Rain-in-the-Face! His name
shall be Rain-in-the-Face!'
"Afterwards, when I was a young man, we
went on a warpath against the Gros
stole some of their horses, but were overtaken and had to abandon the
horses and fight for our lives. I had wished my face to represent the
sun when partly covered with darkness, so I painted it half black,
half red. We fought all day in the rain, and my face was partly washed
and streaked with red and black: so again I was christened
Rain-in-the-Face. We considered it an honorable name.
"I had been on many
warpaths, but was not especially successful until about the time the
Sioux began to
fight with the white man."
What our readers are
saying about Legends Of America.
Absolutely love reading the articles. So envious that you can
travel and visit these places, but glad you do and are willing to
share - Jim in
I stumbled onto your website and find it to be a treasure trove
for western history among other things. I really enjoy the style
of writing you folks use, it is down to earth, witty and real
"folksy", not the contrived, pseudo-intellectual, boring style of
other authors. As a history teacher, and lover of history, I find
your website a great resource for information... Your website is one of the
most entertaining on the net, good wholesome entertainment that
provides really fun information. I am a fan for life. Thanks,
Randy (location unknown)
Thank you for your website and adventures. I actually feel like I
am traveling with you. I learn much from your tails and trails. -
Jerry in So.
Feedback and Suggestions
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