Sunday, November 20, 2011

great grandmother

Martha Lucinda Pate was Murdoch Uriah Finlayson's wife.  I know nothing about her.  There is no story to tell about her but who you see in this photo and what can be found by looking at dates.  I looked at the birth dates of their children and noticed when Murdoch had enlisted into the Confederate Army.  She was left to raise five young children during her husband's absence.  I can't imagine what it was like to be raising children during a war that was being fought on southern soil.  There's something I have learned about warfare.  When men march off to defend their country, their families sacrifice as well.   Martha must've been a strong woman to have handled such hardships at home while her young husband was off fighting.  She had her own daily battles to fight - keeping her family safe in perilous times.  I know nothing about my great grandmother.  Just by looking at her face and the dates I have - I know that she must've been an incredibly strong woman, a good wife, a good mother.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

my great grandfather

My sister Jennie called Friday afternoon and said that she was in town and had a box of photos for me from Columbia, SC.  I drove over to mothers to see my great father's face for the very first time.

Murdoch Uriah Finlayson married Martha Lucinda Pate on January 10, 1854.  Murdoch had left his wife and children to fight in the War of Northern Aggression.  He enlisted on May 7th of 1862, at the age of 27.   He marched among the men of Company G, 55th Infantry Regiment of North Carolina (pg.18-20 of URL link).  He fought in numerous campaigns including Gettysburg.  At the time, he was a resident of Wayne County.  I ran across some information regarding the 55th Infantry Regiment online that you can read about here
Murdoch Uriah Finlayson enlistment information states that he was a merchant before the war.  I have posted advertisements in the past of his store in Wilmington.  He eventually moved to Cheraw, South Carolina when my grandfather was very young and set up shop.  My grandfather Burruss and his older brother Henry Wright Finlayson eventually became merchants and had stores of their own.  My father and his siblings were born in Cheraw.

Both Murdoch & Martha Lucinda are buried in the old St. David's cemetery in Cheraw, SC.  Their graves are not in the Finlayson section, but only a short stroll from that area.  I am very glad to have a picture of my great-grandfather - to now be able to put a face with the name.  I hope my siblings take time to visit the links I've provided here and find out a little more about the their ancestor.

Friday, November 11, 2011

securities for liberty

"Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both."
-Benjamin Franklin

Last night I attended a Veteran's Day presentation at my daughter's high school.  Many times the word 'freedom' was mentioned and I couldn't help but feel saddened each time the word was spoken.  I wonder if folks truly understand the freedom that we have and the freedom that we are loosing and have lost as a nation.  I wonder if twenty years from now, if people will still be singing about America's freedom, but not noticing that they have been stripped of it all together.

I am deeply concerned for my country.  I am not an old man, but this isn't the place I once knew.  What will America be a decade from now?  I want my children to truly know freedom - to have what we had.  I don't want them to grow up wards of the state.

True our freedom is from God.  It is true a multitude of troops have sacrificed to pay a terrible price to preserve our freedoms.  It is true that freedom isn't why do we trade it so easily?

I am thinking of the story about Jacob and Esau, how Esau was so willing to swap his birthright for a bowl of lintel soup.  I feel like that's what the American people are allowing our government to do - swap liberties for securities.  Esau was foolish to give away something so precious as his birthright just to sate his belly for a few hours.  The more we let a government is allowed to do for the people, the less people are allowed to do for themselves.  Eventually we will be left without any choice but what a bureaucracy deems best for us.  Government wants the people to think the idea of entitlement as a good thing, but it's just a link in a chain to bondage.  We do not need to feel entitled, we should need to be FREE!

A powerful and overreaching government leads to totalitarianism, and that is where we are quickly heading. We must demand LIMITED GOVERNMENT for our nation to survive.  No way did our founding father's intend for government to turn into what it has become today.  Our founding documents were made not to restrain the people, but rather to restrain government!

"A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government, and this is necessary to close the circle of our felicity."
-Thomas Jefferson

I have been deeply troubled these days about the state of our nation and her people.  I turn on the television and see a president trying to seduce the people with a bowl of soup.  I see too many of us clamoring for it.  All we have to do is give up a little liberty here and there and we'll be safe, warm, and fed.  I see America's young people angry in the streets protesting - demanding that they are entitled to something.  I hear the term freedom spoken so freely, but do we all know of that of which we speak?  I think of all the blood that has been spilled down through the years to preserve that freedom.  And I see too many American's too willing to trade away what was paid for so dearly.

"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

Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

of yards and toilet paper

I never really understood the rolling yards thing.  We had A LOT of trees in our front yard on 2624 Scenic Hwy.  Back then toilet paper cost a dollar for five gazillion rolls. A kid could do some real yard decorating back then.

I remember my yard got rolled back when Gina and I were youth directors of Fountain Square Free Methodist Church in Bowling Green, KY.  We don't know who did it, but we were pretty sure is was a collaborative effort of the youth department.  The church didn't have many youth, and any one of them could have easily have been a culprit.  When it came to toilet paper, we decided to turn the other cheek.

Gina and I didn't say anything about our yard being rolled.  It was a blessing in disguise.  We simply went outside with a couple of large Hefty bags and retrieved as much as we could from the trees.  We had harvested so much toilet paper that day that we didn't have to buy toilet paper for three months.  That's saying a lot because Gina really uses a surprising amount of bathroom tissue.

I don't see as many yards rolled these days.  I can only guess that it's because we are living in difficult financial times.  Kids today really have to count the cost of committing such an expensive prank.

I have only a few trees in my front yard.  I'm waiting for someone to come along and roll what little yard I have so I don't have to buy toilet paper for a while.  If you're up for the task, but feeling a little lazy, just leave the paper in the package at my front door.  I'll take it from there.