It was unveiled in Jefferson City on Nov. 10. The Harris Sword, an important artifact from the Civil War, is now on display at the Missouri State Capitol until its permanent transfer to the Battle of Lexington State Historic Site, expected in early 2002.
It was previously displayed in Augusta, Georgia, and was acquired for the state of Missouri through efforts by an ad hoc committee formed for that purpose. The committee raised $20,000 in private and corporate funds to complete the acquisition, along with $37,000 from the state.
Officers he commanded during the Battle of Lexington (September 1861) gave Gen. Thomas A. Harris the sword. Their gift was to commemorate his deeds on the battlefield. Boyle & Gamble, a noted arms manufacturer of Richmond, Virginia, crafted the sword.
Most contemporary presentation swords were simply purchased "off the shelf" and taken to a jeweler to engrave a dedication. The Harris Sword is unique because it is marked with words and symbols directly related to the Battle of Lexington. These details make the sword an outstanding, event-specific artifact.
The most remarkable features include the Presentation Inscription, on the upper scabbard mount, which reads "Presented to Thos. A. Harris by the officers of the 2nd division Missouri State Guard"; a Hemp Bale engraved below the carrying ring band on the scabbard and the words "Hemp Bale" appear both on and below the image; the Missouri State Seal, including the motto "United We Stand, Divided We fall" appears on the lower scabbard mount.
After a brief exhibition at the Missouri State Capitol in Jefferson City, the Harris Sword will be housed here permanently at the Anderson House Visitors' Center.
Another new effort is underway. A group calling themselves the Alley Cats volunteers their time and muscle on weekends repairing potholes in our alleys. Most of them are members of the Chamber's Community Service committee. They are able to use the city equipment, but they do the work themselves. Love that cooperative spirit!
And now the sports news: LHS ended the football season with a 6-2 record in the conference and 6-4 overall. I believe they tied for 2nd in the conference. I know, I know, it's not like it was in Our Day. But it's a whole lot better than last year!
And now news to each other from each other. The first is from Duncan Lee:
In these troubled and uncertain times we often wonder how our friends
families are faring. With the fear of more attacks, with corporate layoffs, rising prices, falling interest, failing stocks, failing companies, fear of traveling, fear of eating out, fear of breathing, we need to communicate with each other and reassure ourselves that we needn't fear so much. Things are not all that bad and we will prevail.
On that note, I would like to let you know that Reno, NV, is doing quite well under the strain. For example, just this month alone there are many conventions, seminars and meetings scheduled in our biggest little city in
the Sierra. Among these are the National Sash and Door Jobbers Association,
with 3,000 attendees; and the USA Dry Pea and Lentil Council annual convention, with 150 attendees.
And, then, just in time and most appropriate, early next month the Reno
Hilton will host the American Nuclear Society and its 1400 attendees, all
of whom declined nightlights in their rooms as they glow quite nicely
themselves, thank you all just the same.
And, I'm sure if you all look around your local communities, you will find
similar signs of normality and a general sense of "Well, it's all going to
be alright, then." We don't know exactly when "then" will be, but as we
used to say in England (and may still do), "Put on the kettle and let's have a
cup of tea."
Keep smiling, be kind to your neighbor and, please, buy some lentils next
time you're shopping. We need the convention business.
(He wrote more later but I'll save it for next time. - Ed)
From Shirley Briggle:
Susan, here is part of an email from (The Rev.) Ron Christiansen, husband of
Darlene Wegener, '53 after they could not make it to Dallas for a family
Sept. 15 (we were to see them that weekend). Their son and family live in New York City:
"We spent the week before Labor Day in the Atlantic City area (Margate
City) with Kendall (our son) and Carol and her parents and three
grandchildren. We had a pleasant week there. As it turned out, we
thought for a few hours on Sept. 11 that it might have been the last time we
would see her, as she was in Tower 1 when the first plane hit two floors above
her office! As luck would have it, she had just gotten to the Tower
(after getting their three children off to school and the subway was late), and
she decided to stop in the Concourse to get a cup of coffee. She was in
line when the plane hit, and immediately ran out into the plaza and over to the
Marriott (used to sit between the two towers) and was 4th in line to use the
outside pay phone to call home and to Kendall's office. Then she
walked the mile plus north to her parents' apartment. Got there just in
time to see her building fall! Kendall works in midtown and was up at Riverside
Church (@116th) and walked down to the apartment, and finally they
across the East River to a friend's house, and by then the subways were running in Brooklyn. Quite a day! Carol was administrative assistant to the Director of
the World Trade Center in 1993 when the bombing took place, and handled interior security for 8 days without going home. Double whammies is almost too much!"
Darlene and Ron's e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org.
This from Norma Homfeld Barney: