On This Date In History: Antebellum US Senate days got pretty hairy. If you think partisanship is tough in our era, today’s debates are quite mild in comparison. in the mid 19th Century, Senator Henry S. Foote of Mississippi and Senator Thomas Hart Benton of Missouri were bitter rivals. Benton is well known for his opposition to the Compromise of 1850. Each routinely tossed insults at one another on the Senate floor. In short-they hated each other. On this date in 1850, Senator Foote was giving a speech in support of the Compromise of 1850. In it, he lobbed verbal grenades at Benton who promptly kicked back his chair and began stomping toward the stage. Foote responded from his position at the podium by pulling a pistol and aiming it at Benton, who stopped and opened his coat and exclaimed, “out of the way! Let the assassin fire!” Order was restored when the gun was taken from Foote who claimed he was defending himself against the unarmed Benton.
The Senate today seems pretty boring, doesn’t it? Certainly more boring than Edmund Franz Creffield, the nudist prophet!
Creffield called himself Joshua II and led the Bride of Christ Church in early Twentieth Century Corvallis, Oregon. He would preach to largely female congregations in someone’s home. He would shutter the windows and then declare “Vile Clothes Be Gone!” Off came the dresses, the corsets…everything. Then the group would roll around on the floor together. (This really happened!) Joshua was looking for the “second mother of Christ.” After a few of these “services” a 17-year-old girl earned the crown. Needless to say, when the husbands found out about this chicanery, there was hell to pay. Joshua got tarred and feathered and run out of town on a rail. Joshua also got tossed in the slammer for adultery. Undeterred, upon his release he gathered another group of women….including the formerly 17-year-old girl. This time though, on this date in 1906, he put a curse on Corvallis and Portland and Seattle and San Francisco. Not sure what the other cities did but they somehow made the list.
The next day…San Francisco was hit with a devastating earthquake. Kinda helps explain the term “holy roller.” In fear, 50 other women rushed to join Joshua.
Now, the young girl…the chosen bride had a brother who tracked the group to Seattle where he shot the supposed prophet in the head behind the left ear. He was acquitted of a murder charge. His sister, the “bride”, then proceeded to shoot her brother in the head behind the left ear. She lived out much of the rest of her life in an insane asylum.
I’m not sure what the moral is to this story.
Weather Bottom Line: The clouds stuck around a bit for the first half of the day on Wednesday but all turned out fine as we ended up in the 60’s. Snow White, Lillipution and I went to Henry’s Ark and Snow White said good bye to the beloved Lady Di who went to dromodary heaven. She was a good girl and was wonderful on our Christmas Card one year. Then we spent the evening on the Spirit of Jefferson. Nice way to have dinner if you get a chance. I would anticipate Friday being a fine day for a trip to the zoo with temperatures in the low 70’s. Saturday still looks good for Thunder Over Louisville. I’m still not overly concerned about rain. That will hold off, methinks, until Sunday.