Archive for April, 2019

The Season For Minnesota Gardens is Short

Posted on 04/14/2019. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

It is April 13 in Bloomington Minnesota and I look out the window and see snow as I make plans for the garden work to be done starting next week. The frost is out so planting shrubs and perennials could be done now if one is inclined to dig through some snow.

One of my bad habits is writing novels and short stories and another is gardening. I live in a condominium that my wife and I moved into in 2004. I was an instigator in having the condominium landscaping improved. In 2004 the landscaping consisted of grass, shrubs and trees. I succeeded having the association develop perennial gardens, plant new and replace worn out shrubs and plant additional trees. We also added flower pots planted with annuals at the entry side of the association building. During this process I became the Braewood Association default volunteer gardener/landscape person.

Dry Creek
Parking Lot Border
Lamp Post Planters

Circle Garden
98th Street Sign

These landscape improvements added significantly to the Braewood grounds eye appeal. It has also added significantly to the landscape maintenance requirements. Up until the time when I became a care giver for my wife, who left us almost two years ago, I had been able to handle the added maintenance. Also, as the years come and go, I have become less physically able and need help with the more strenuous activities. Now I glance out my widow occasionally, at the snow, while I plan the next years garden projects.

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Free: Copy of Finding the Way

Posted on 04/07/2019. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

Get a free ebook copy Of Finding the Way Thursday April 18 through Monday April 22.

Karl Mueller, son of a Prussian peasant family undertakes a long journey in order to reach his goal to homestead land in America. Karl meets companion Heinrich Schlicter on the ship taking him on the first step of what becomes a seven year odyssey. The two remain friends and partners as they travel across the young country and encounter hardship, love, adventure and danger while Karl pursues his goal. Karl’s first priority is to accumulate enough money to finance his homestead plans. The quest to accumulate the needed stake takes the two young men to Chicago’s notorious meat-packing plants, to a Wisconsin lumber camp, and to the Black Hills 1876 gold rush. While in the Black Hills, Karl falls in love with a mixed blood Lakota Indian woman who helps him redefine his goal and to understand who he really is.
A blending of history and social issues with a compelling story makes Finding the Way entertaining and informative reading.

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Review of Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee

Posted on 04/07/2019. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: |

The book Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee is a classic.  First published in 1970, it caused a perception change in the minds of many Americans of the history of the interaction between the western Indians and United States government, white settlers and the US Army. 

The history of that period was described in history books and articles written by non-Indians authors, written from the perspective white people who viewed Indian land as an opportunity to bring white law an order to a disorderly virgin land where a few nomadic Indians roamed about and to convert it into to a better and more profitable use. The white people populated the land they claimed, they surveyed it, divided it into parcels, attached titles to the parcels that proved ownership that and could be bought and sold. In the Indian world the land belonged to everyone to be used as needed.  

Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee was written by the Author Dee Brown to view the history of that period from the Indian’s perspective. The Indians had resided in North America for thousands of years before the white men appeared and invaded the land that Indians considered to be their land. The Indians were tribal and fought each other over who controlled parts of the land, but it was all Indian land. However, when the white men came, they began appropriating the land for their own use. The Federal Government made the land takeovers ligament by persuading the Indians to sign treaties in most cases. If that wasn’t successful, white settlers, miners often ignored Indian land boundaries and if the Indians attempted to drive them out the US Army would protect the settlers or miners. The Indians were often given gifts, money and the promise that Indians would retain a portion of the region for their own use forever. Maybe the people signing for the government believed what the treaty stated. The Indians may have trusted the US Government. It would have had to be trust because, with few exceptions, the Indians could not read or understand what they were agreeing to.  Whatever the treaties stated; in the end it didn’t matter since the United States government broke its promises in every treaty that it signed with the Indians.

As the white men pushed westward, establishing farms and cities, the Indians retreated until there was no room to retreat further.  For the Indians it became a matter of resisting or capitulating, giving up their lands and freedom to be confined to reservations that provided neither game for hunting or land fit for growing crops. The Indians choose to fight and though they won battles despite fighting an army better trained and armed, the Indians couldn’t and wouldn’t win. The plains wars ended with the battle of Wounded Knee where the US Army massacred an Indian encampment on December 29, 1890 on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota, killing three-hundred men, women and children.

Dee Brown used carefully researched history to tell the story from the Indians perspective in third person, while adding the authors thoughts in first person. This book is a must read for those interested in American history.    

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