Archive for the ‘culture’ Category

A Picture from Edna

This past Spring, a friend of mine, Judy Z, gifted me with a piece from her David Winter Cottages collection. She gave me Benbow’s Farmhouse and described it as having a very interesting connection to the Mormon church.

Researching further, I found that Benbow’s Farmhouse by David Winter Cottages was made to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the arrival in 1837, to Britain, of the first missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In 1840, Apostle Wilford Woodruff of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormon or LDS) stayed with John and Jane Benbow at Hill Farm (Benbow’s Farmhouse) in Castle Frome, Herefordshire, and baptised many converts to the new religion in the farm pond. John Benbow himself had became a member of the Church and was responsible for the first printing of the Book of Mormon in Great Britain.

David Winter Cottage

The image, David Winter – Benbow’s Farmhouse, was originally uploaded by Edna Barney. It is posted here from Barneykin’s flickr account.

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Queen of the May



Consider the Maypoles of olden days with floral vines and colorful ribbons woven around a towering pole, commanded by the Queen of the May.

The little country school in Maryland that I attended for my first primary grades presented a May Day celebration that has been etched in my memories these sixty-four plus years. Boy – girl, boy – girl, boys in white shirts and trousers, girls in pale pastels, paired around the Maypole, each holding a colorful ribbon of crepe. Oh how I was mesmerized by the Maypole dance. As the the music began so did the May Pole dance, each boy facing each girl, skipping and weaving, over and under…. over and under…. over and under…. until the towering pole was a brightly woven tribute to our Queen of the May!

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A Picture from Edna

We cherish too, the Poppy red

That grows on fields where valor led,

It seems to signal to the skies

That blood of heroes never dies. (We Shall Keep the Faith)

In November of 1918, inspired by the poem “In Flanders Fields,” Moina Michael replied with her own poem, cited above. She then conceived of wearing red poppies on Memorial day to honor those who died serving the nation during war. She sold poppies as a fundraiser to benefit needy veterans. When Madam Guerin, a visitor to the United States from France, learned of this new custom she began making artificial red poppies to raise money for French war orphans and widows. The Red Poppy tradition spread to other countries. In 1921, the Franco-American Children’s League sold poppies nationally to benefit war orphans of France and Belgium. The League disbanded a year later and Madam Guerin approached the VFW for help. Shortly before Memorial Day in 1922, the VFW became the first veterans’ organization to nationally sell Red Poppies. Two years later their “Buddy” Poppy program was selling artificial poppies made by disabled veterans. In 1948, the US Post Office honored Moina Michael for founding the National Poppy movement with a three cent postage stamp with her likeness upon it.

The image, Poppy at Lion House, was originally uploaded by Edna Barney. It is posted here from Barneykin’s flickr account.

Visit Neddy’s Archives for more of Edna’s writings.

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Christmas 2009

A Picture from Edna

Christmas is Christians’ flawed attempt to honor the birthday of their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He deserves better, but the harder we try to honor Him, the more we seem to diminish the celebration. I am certain that Jesus understands us better than we understand ourselves.

The image, Creche at Washington Cathedral, was originally uploaded by Edna Barney. It is posted here from Barneykin’s flickr account.

Visit Neddy’s Archives for more of Edna’s writings.

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A Picture from Edna

This is one example of graffiti that occupying Union soldiers left upon the walls of Blenheim in Fairfax, Virginia during the War Between the States. This photograph is from the attic, however when wallpaper was recently removed from the main floors of the old Greek Revival farmhouse, graffiti was discovered everywhere. This “Soldier’s Lament” records:

4th Month

No money

No whiskey

No Friends

No Rations

No Peas

No Beans

No Pants

No Patriotism (underlined)

“Blenheim,” located at 3610 Old Lee Highway, Fairfax, Virginia, is a brick home built by REZEN WILLCOXON about 1858, to replace an earlier frame dwelling. This 12-acre former farm, includes a cemetery for several generations of the Willcoxon family who lived here. Blenheim is renown for its outstanding examples of Civil War soldier graffiti. It is currently being restored. The day we were there, a recent tropical storm had left many downed trees, but no damage to the structures.

The image, Soldier Graffiti, was originally uploaded by Edna Barney. It is posted here from Barneykin’s flickr account.

Visit Neddy’s Archives for more of Edna’s writings.

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The “We” Word

‘WE’ is the word used to steal virtue from the good, to steal strength from the strong and to steal wisdom from the sages.

Ayn Rand in “Anthem:”

For the word “We” must never be spoken, save by one’s choice and as a second thought. This word must never be placed first within man’s soul, else it becomes a monster, the root of all the evils on earth, the root of man’s torture by men, and an unspeakable lie.

The word “We” is as lime poured over men, which sets and hardens to stone, and crushes all beneath it, and that which is white and that which is black are lost equally in the grey of it. It is the word by which the depraved steal the virtue of the good, by which the weak steal the might of the strong, by which the fools steal the wisdom of the sages.

What is my joy if all hands, even the unclean, can reach into it? What is my wisdom, if even the fools can dictate to me? What is my freedom, if all creatures, even the botched and impotent, are my masters? What is my life, if I am but to bow, to agree, and to obey?

But I am done with this creed of corruption.

I am done with the monster of “We,” the word of serfdom, of plunder, of misery, falsehood and shame.

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Oh to be in West Virginia, now that summer’s here. Oh, to be dancing on the porch of the old mansion at the top of the mountain in Elkins. Oh to be watching the flatfoot dancers and listening to the old timey musicians. Those were wonderful days and memories I cherish. They still be a-happening, according to this video.

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