Friday, November 25, 2016

Purpose and Oath Fulfillments

I spent some time yesterday thinking about the men and women in law enforcement, the emergency services, and the military, who often have to sacrifice time with their families on the holidays in order to fulfill the oaths they took when completing their training and accepting their first assignment. That commitment they made, the purpose to which they give themselves everyday, to serve others, to help those in distress, to protect those in danger, and in some respect try to tip the balance in favor of good over evil, is ultimately so important to everyone, even to those who cannot or will not see it for what it really is.

There are factions from outside our nation who, I know, would like to destroy the American peoples' trust in their services personnel. They will ultimately fail to do so. Their agenda is not that of most of Americans, to live quiet and peaceable lives, to do their jobs, and to spend time with their families. Peace frightens them, because they've never truly experienced it. Such factions stir up trouble, fan the flames of discontentment, and believe that the age-old strategy of "divide and conquer" will work to effect the changes they want to see in this country. But, they just don't get it. And, they never will.

America isn't one single dream, it's hundreds of millions of them. They cannot understand that and they would not accept it even if they were really listening. Dreams don't remain static. They shift and change with every individual's wants and needs, and they are adapted to whatever circumstances come about, and eventually those dreams overcome whatever obstacles may be placed before them. The American dream is, as it says in the Holy Bible, to work with one's own hands and to eat one's bread quietly, and to be content with whatever we have. The American dream is founded in that spiritual goal, not in the discontentment of this world.

So, to those who went to their jobs yesterday, and gave up time with their families, to ensure that the American dream could march courageously on, I thank you from the heart and want you to know that your sacrifice, every day, does not go unnoticed, even when it may go unspoken.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Busy Year in 2016

It's been a busy year, and an exciting one so far. Since the spring, I have been finishing up a couple of interview transcriptions and I hope to get those donated soon to the counties in which the sheriff served. 

I have also been working on compiling a list of men who served as Nodaway County sheriff since the county's founding in 1845. This list, too, will be placed on file with the local Nodaway County Historical Society and Museum and will be available online for anyone who would like to review it. It will also be included in a book coming out in 2017, The Human Squirrel Cage: Nodaway County's Rotary Jail

I am still searching for some data, specifically about the political parties of the sheriffs of Nodaway county from 1845 to 1866. I have names, just not party affiliation. There is indication, however, that in its early years Nodaway County was largely democratic at a ratio 2:1. However, the list shows that after 1866 there were an equal number of Democratic and Reublican candidates. I don't want to assume, however, especially since there were a couple of unusual parties in existence then. 

I came across a couple of pretty interesting facts: 
  • From 1845 - 1873 Nodaway County's sheriff also served as the county collector. 
  • James Prather, age 25, was its youngest-elected sheriff, in 1856.
  • It wasn't until 1909 that Missouri's sheriffs began serving four-year terms in office. Prior to that, they were up for election every two years. 

The nation will go to the polls this Tuesday, November 8, 2016. Be sure to get out and vote for your county, state, and national representatives. It's important.