Kevin Earl Dayhoff Art One-half Banana Stems

Kevin Earl Dayhoff Art One-half Banana Stems - Address: PO Box 124, Westminster MD 21158 410-259-6403 Runner, writer, artist, fire & police chaplain Mindless ramblings of a runner, journalist & artist: Travel, art, artists, authors, books, newspapers, media, writers and writing, journalists and journalism, reporters and reporting, technology, music, culture, opera... National & International politics For community: For art, technology, writing, & travel:

Sunday, June 29, 2008

20080625 The hogs and parking meters of Westminster’s past history

The hogs and parking meters of Westminster’s past history

June 25th, 2008 by Kevin Dayhoff

Photo caption: Looking east on the south side Main Street of Westminster Maryland at St. John Catholic Church in the 1920s. The church was built in 1865. On June 19, 1952 the storm blew through town and toppled the steeple at 4:45 in the afternoon. As a result the structure was subsequently deemed unsafe in 1968.

The last church service was held on February 4, 1968. The structure was demolished in early March 1977 and replaced with the Westminster Branch of the Carroll County Public Library in March 1980. (The image is from an old file collection. The photographer is unknown. Kevin Dayhoff)

Writer’s note – a shorter version of this column appeared in the print edition of the Westminster Eagle on June 25, 2008.


June is “invasion month” in the city of Westminster. Over the years, a sampling of the invasions over the years has involved bugs, hogs, parking meters, dust, flies, manure, and Southern troops have made historic appearances in the city and caused quite a ruckus.

Ay caramba – where to begin?

Throughout history there have been many critter problems in Westminster, but none seems to have caused as much a stir as what to do with the city’s hog population.

Many thanks go to Laurel Taylor, the Westminster City Clerk who gave me a hand a while back in getting to the bottom of the controversies.

As early as October 1, 1860, an ordinance was enacted by the Westminster mayor and common council, which prohibited “the running at large of hogs and swine” in the city.

On October 9, 1860, “the price per head for the impoundment of errant swine was reduced from $2.00/head to $1.00/head. The daily fee for impoundment was reduced from $1.50 to $.50.”

The following year, on June 12, 1861 the minutes of the common council proceeding note: “Moved and seconded that the Ordinance relating to Hogs running at large in the City of Westminster be enforced and that after the 1st of July 1861 all hogs or swine found in the streets will be taken up and disposed of as directed by Ordinance heretofore (illegible - passed?) by the Board and that ....Joseph Shaw publish a Notice of the same to the Citizens of Westminster prior to 1st July 1861.”

Dogs running loose seem to have also been a problem because in 1866, an ordinance took effect that prohibited dogs from running at large in the City unless they were muzzled.

The minutes of the meeting at which that Ordinance was adopted contain a warning: “Attention is hereby called to the Ordinance already existing relative to swine running at large, which will be rigidly enforced.”

However, the problems associated with hogs persisted and in October 1895 a special council meeting was called after “Dr. J. Howell Billingslea and a committee of citizens who went before them to urge immediate action in the interest of the public health,” according to an October 12, 1895 article in the now defunct American Sentinel newspaper.

The newspaper article noted that Dr. Billingslea was “convinced that the hog pens, even when kept as clean as possible, are disease breeders and a constant menace to the health of the people in towns of any considerable size, a fact about which there can hardly be a dispute…

“January 1st, 1896, is spoken of as the period at which the prohibition will likely go into effect. While such a measure will work hardship, probably in many cases, it seems to be necessary to the preservation of the health of the community.”

The article did not go into detail as to what “hardships” would occur.

In June 1946 another controversy erupted in downtown Westminster – parking meters.

On May 24, 1946, the now defunct Democratic Advocate reported that parking meters “from Charles Carroll Hotel to Anchor street, (became) a reality Tuesday morning when a force of men started drilling holes for the erection of the meters.”

The proposal by the city to install parking meters was quite controversial and the subject of litigation. However, the newspaper reported, “The injunction was denied by Judge Clarke, some time last April, and an appeal was under way but later dropped by the opposers…

“Charles Armacost, popular contractor of Finksburg, has charge of the placing the meters in position. The work is being done very rapidly.”

Of course, parking in downtown Westminster ebbs and flows in controversy. I can recall more than a few spirited conversations about the parking meters well into the late 1950s and 60s.

For many of us, one enigma remains and that is why parking was removed from the south side of Main Street in front of where the downtown branch of the Carroll County library is located.

Many of us who grew up in Westminster recall parking on that side of the street – in front of where St. John Catholic Church was then located. The came along “progress” and a center turn lane – that is hardly ever used - was added for the entire block and the parking removed.

Nevertheless, in spite of the critter challenges and the parking meters, the city has survived. Whether we will survive the city’s current “tax, borrow, and spend” initiatives remains to be seen.


Kevin Dayhoff writes from Westminster Maryland USA.
E-mail him at:
Blog Net News Maryland:

E-mail him at:
kdayhoff AT or kevindayhoff AT

His columns and articles appear in The Tentacle -; Westminster Eagle Opinion;, Winchester Report and The Sunday Carroll Eagle – in the Sunday Carroll County section of the Baltimore Sun. Get Westminster Eagle RSS Feed

“When I stop working the rest of the day is posthumous. I'm only really alive when I'm writing.” Tennessee Williams

20080625 The hogs and parking meters of Westminster’s past history

20080625 The hogs and parking meters of Westminster’s past history

Thursday, June 26, 2008

North County News: At school - Handzo named to deans list at Georgia Tech

North County News: At school - Handzo named to deans list at Georgia Tech

Posted on explorebaltimorecounty 6/25/08

Send announcements to 409 Washington Ave., Towson, MD 21204, or

Ryan Handzo, of Phoenix, was named to the dean's list at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta. (Mr. Handzo is the son of my sister, Tammy Frock Handzo and her husband, Rob Handzo.)

Joslyn Lear, formerly of Baldwin, earned a master's degree in education from Loyola College in Baltimore.

Matthew Hartig, of Parkton, earned a bachelor of fine arts degree in metals and jewelry from the Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, Ga.

Abbe Balaban, of Phoenix, a junior at Widener University in Chester, Pa., was awarded a Chris Towns France Scholarship from Cultural Experiences Abroad to fund a semester overseas. Balaban, who is studying psychology, international relations and French, will spend the fall at the Institute for American Universities in Aix-en-Provence, France.

Jamie Grandizio, of Baldwin, was named to the president's list at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Va., where she is studying kinesiology.

Amy Jaklitsch and Lisa Jaklitsch, of Parkton, were named to the dean's list at Frostburg State University in Frostburg.

Scott Meade, of White Hall, received an appointment from Rep. Roscoe Bartlett to the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, N.Y.

These North County students graduated from Towson Catholic High School:
* Michael Brady, of Sparks.
* Emily Kearns, of Glen Arm.
* Erika Kolakowski, of Baldwin.
* Brittani Perz, of Glen Arm.

John O'Brien, an assistant principal at Hereford High School, has been transferred to the Carver Center for Arts and Technology in Towson, where he will be an assistant principal. Louis Jira, an assistant principal at Randallstown High School, will replace O'Brien.

20080625 North County News Handzo named to deans list at Georgia Tech

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

20080623 Obama for change

Barack Obama for change

Because that is all you will have left when he’s done.

June 24, 2008 - - The base idea for this image was passed on to me in an email from “CJ.”

I guess it resonated with me as the presumptive Democrat nominee for president’s conversation so far about economics and taxation is a major concern for me as I ponder the merits of his candidacy of the Oval Office.

At my advanced age I can easily recognize political silliness when I see it and I refuse to be distracted.

Barack Obama appears to be an honorable man who wants to be president and I admire him for his accomplishments.

My heart and prayers go out to him and his family when I hear or read the vicious personal attacks over drivel that ultimately I really don’t give a rat’s backside over. It’s all so boring and an unnecessary distraction of high chair food fight proportions.

I don’t really care what Rev. Wright has said or when he said it. I don’t care about what Senator Obama’s wife said or when she said it.

I’m not fooled by the recent marketing makeover with his appearance on People magazine or Mrs. Obama’s chattiness on “The View.” I have no interest in voting “for the friendly guy next door” to be president.

I care about issues such as who is going to protect us from foreign aggressors. I care about national defense.

I care about the economy. I care about the class warfare being promoted, disguised as taxation policy.

I care about the deleterious affects of our nation’s lack of a coherent energy independence policy.

I care about who has the experience necessary to be president.

I care about who is going to appoint the next several Supreme Court justices.

If I were to have a choice between “a third term for the Bush Administration” or “Jimmy Carter’s second”; I’ll take “Bush’s third term” in a nanosecond.

Although I realize that Republican presumptive presidential nominee John McCain is certainly no George W. Bush and I have not, as yet mistaken Senator Obama for President Jimmy Carter…

Anyway - I played with the base idea for the image; re-arranged it and added to it and voila.

Please cut and paste this image and distribute it widely…

20080623 Obama for change

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

20080619 “Blue Balled” by “Truth through Action”

20080619 “Blue Balled” by “Truth through Action”

“Blue Balled” by “Truth through Action”

A 4 minute and 30 second short film about a young lady who abandons a late night encounter when she discovers her date’s undisclosed secret. The film was shot in Manhattan over two nights in April. (See footnote 1.)

Retrieved June 19, 2008:

June 19, 2008 - - At my advanced age I can easily recognize political silliness when I see it and I refuse to be distracted.

Nevertheless, from an artist’s point of view – as someone who really enjoys edgy videos and the use of cutting edge art to promote (advertise) a particular agenda, this video is kinda cool. I liked it…

However, the purpose of commercials and advertising is compel and persuade a person, who is not particularly predisposed, to purchase a product – or in this case, vote a certain way.

I can’t imagine this video being persuasive to an independent or least of all a conservative. It seems to be an artistic endeavor in search of meaning. (And I can’t really throw stones at that when I look back at some of my political advocacy in the past…)

This video, with its high production values and artistic accomplishments, is only appealing to the choir – and if anything, may very well persuade an independent or conservative to shy away from the frivolous and superficial values presented.

To state the obvious, I certainly know of few folks who ever utilized a person’s party affiliation in choosing a partner for life – or an evening.

The country is full of husbands and wives who cancel each other’s vote at the voting booth during presidential elections…

Nevertheless, this video is out there in the pop culture overlay that is being promoted by supporters of presumptive Democrat presidential nominee, Barack Obama.

Moreover, in all candor, I’d like to see more of the edgy, artistic approach to political advocacy from both sides of the aisle and I’ll look forward to more of the work of New York filmmakers Joshua Sugarman and Brandon Yankowitz of YaSu Media.

However, one can easily agree with ABC News writers, Susan Donaldson James and Cloe Shasha, when they observed in a thoughtful analysis on June 11 in “Dems Use Edgy Films to Rally Youth Voters”:

“The video, created by the new political organization, is one more affirmation that the Internet is a central character in the 2008 presidential race.

The blue-leaning nonprofit was founded by New York filmmakers Joshua Sugarman and Brandon Yankowitz of YaSu Media, who are producing a series of short films and online videos. The "527" group is, unlike political action committees, exempt from contribution limits.


"Our products have a message but are also entertaining as film projects, and we don't think anybody else is doing the same thing."

Like the "Obama Girl" video, which spread virally last year, "Blue Balled" is intended to rally the indie community and young political activists to support the Democrats in November…


"I thought it was brilliant," said Andrew Rasiej, co-founder of TechPresident, a group blog that covers how the 2008 presidential candidates use the Web.

"It clearly taps into the fact that the election has captured the imagination of the youth of our country and reinforces a message that any political organization for a candidate would want to associate with -- hip cool and passionate," he told

"It clearly takes advantage of the atmosphere of young people paying attention to the election and using their language and their medium to convey the message," he said. "It's very shrewd."


Jeff Everson, an economics major and football player at Middlebury College, was not impressed with the Democrats' video. "I thought that as a political tactic it wasn't effective," said Everson. "But at the same time I found it funny. The concept of this video sort of separates the country, which seems counterproductive."

Everson, a McCain supporter, agrees that the Republicans need to find new ways to reach young voters.

"One of the mistakes that McCain made was not utilizing technology like YouTube," said the 20-year-old. "The Democratic Party has done a better job of encouraging young people to vote."

Whether the message of these clips fits with Barack Obama's strategy is anybody's guess.

A film that includes copious amounts of alcohol, sex and near nudity may not fly with the group of young evangelicals Obama is now targeting.

"Anytime any organization tries something new, there will always be people who don't agree," said filmmaker Sugarman. "What the Democratic Party and anyone involved in politics are starting to realize is that we need a new way to get in touch with people beyond the traditional means of political communication."

The complete article by ABC News writers, Susan Donaldson James and Cloe Shasha, is worth a good read. Please find it here: “Dems Use Edgy Films to Rally Youth Voters.”

Related: View Political Monogamy

Kevin Dayhoff


Footnote 1:

Written and Directed by Josh Sugarman

Presented and Produced by Brandon Yankowitz

Produced by Brigitte Liebowitz

Starring Michelle Galdenzi and Bryan Dechart

Featuring Steven Berrebi and Elo Santana

Music by Shanna Zell and J. Chris Griffin


Duke Greenhill, 1st AD

Jason Pritzker, 2nd AD

Apryl Richards, Script Supervisor

Mike Bozzo, DP

Joel Knutsen, 1st AC

Ian Swanson, 2nd AC

James Leonzio, Steadicam Operator

Havi Elkaim, Production Designer

KD, Key Hair Stylist

Allison McCrudden, Key Makeup

JD Hartman, Gaffer

Sean Hutcheon, Key Grip

Matt Jensen, Grip

Joshua Hilson, Sound Mix

Alan Tansey, Boom Operator

Monday, June 23, 2008

20080618 Recent Westminster Eagle columns by Kevin Dayhoff

20080618 Recent Westminster Eagle columns by Kevin Dayhoff

Recent Westminster Eagle columns by Kevin Dayhoff

June 18, 2008

Kevin E. Dayhoff Sunday, June 18 Why I can't say the 'S' word Friday, June 20 is officially the first day of summer and, for those of us who like it hot, it doesn't come a day too soon.
In recent years, summer months are as busy as the rest of year. Gone are the lazy southern Carroll County summers.
However, growing up in Carroll in the 1950s and '60s, sum... [Read full story]

Paul Causey was the mortar that built many lives in Carroll On May 25, folks filled Grace Lutheran Church in Westminster to say good-bye to one of our community's unsung heroes, Paul Causey. Like Mr. Causey, the folks who came to celebrate his life of 81 years are the foundation of our community.
Mr. Causey would have been annoyed over all the fuss and att... [Read full story]

Food, canning history and eating my way across Westminster On May 3, 1946, a newspaper article carried a story that Carroll Countians opened "approximately 3,163,000 cans of food É annually."
"Citizens of Carroll County can anticipate dramatic developments in canned foods during 1946, many of these products having first been packaged for the armed forces... [Read full story]

Pecoraro makes 'superdelegate' stand in advance of convention Political and presidential historians are often quick to point out that the Democratic Party is the oldest political party in the Unites States.
However, many folks may not be aware that much of the roots of the party are arguably in Maryland.
The U.S. Democratic Party, and specifically, the Ma...[Read full story]

Pictures are worth a thousand words, but not the whole picture Last Wednesday, the Humane Society of the United States released videotape of an "undercover investigation" which claimed to show the "shocking abuse of 'downer' cows occurs not just at slaughter plants but É at livestock auctions and stockyards around the country," according to the humane society p...[Read full story]

More Headlines

For this year's prom, 'Come as you are' ... and stay a while

College may be expensive, but the experiences are priceless

Rhodes offers a helping hand to those in need

Dr. Herlocker set a pace in more ways than one

Days of bicycles, playgrounds, swamps and turkeys

Jeff Morse incident is a lost opportunity

Inns and hotels important in the early history of Carroll County

Hypocrisy and poor money management plague client No. 9

Beet juice, Romeo and Juliet and the 1856 Guano Islands Act

Trouble with trash is nothing new, but the technology may be

Don't let 'wrap rage' leave you in stitches

Looking at Bowling Brook one year later

'Tech Tax' will have crippling impact on Carroll

It's easy to demonstrate for peace; harder to work for it

How culture and song can save a nation

Dr. Martin Luther King's enduring words

Courthouse history seems to match theatrical flair of current case

Something we really must talk about

Sunday, June 15, 2008

20080612 Jim McKay

Jim McKay

Thursday, June 12, 2008 © by Kevin Dayhoff

Author’s note: A shorter version of this column appeared in The Tentacle on June 11, 2008…

I finally got an accompanying YouTube video up. Find it here:

20080607 NBC's Bob Costas pays tribute to Jim McKay

Last Tuesday morning the spotlight of the sports world was focused on the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen in Baltimore as folks came together to pay their last respects to Maryland’s own Jim McKay.

Mr. McKay passed away last Saturday on his horse farm in Monkton, in northern Baltimore County. He was 86 years-old.

For many of us who grew up watching early television, Mr. McKay was one of the first recognizable television celebrities in our lives.

One of the driving forces of television in its infancy was sports programming and many a youngster learned manners, poise, integrity, and speaking skills from Mr. McKay.

Much has been written about the socializing affect television can have on young impressionable minds. Of course, in recent years, much of the conversation has centered on the concern over the terrible impact the manners and behavior and violence displayed on television are having on today’s young children.

We may not have known at the time that we were learning to be gracious ladies and gentleman – but learning social skills is exactly what was happening.

We just thought we were watching sports.

(For many baby-boomers, the example set by folks like Mr. McKay may very well be one of the reasons that we are so disillusioned with Hollywood, television, and sports celebrities of the last decade or so.)

Mr. McKay was always very knowledgeable, well spoken, and gentlemanly as compared with television and sports of today which frequently appears to emphasize empty glitz, pizzazz, and mindless, banal banter over depth, talent, and integrity.

Mr. McKay was born James Kenneth McManus on Sept. 24, 1921 in Philadelphia. His family moved to Baltimore when he was 15 years-old, according to a definitive article written last Sunday by Baltimore Sun reporters David Zurawik, Tom Keyser, and Justin Fenton.

Running nearly 3,000 words in length, it is must reading for anyone who really wants to gain insight into the life and times of Mr. McKay – and why so many of us came to admire him as one of the truly great gentlemen of our time.

For the seasoned newspaper reader, one subtle tribute stands out. The AP stylebook now has folks simply referred to by their last name after they are introduced in an article. Unfortunately not many newspapers use a modified AP style that allows a writer to refer to a person by “Mr.” or “Mrs.” or “Dr.” after they are first mentioned.

In the article which appeared in the Baltimore Sun last Sunday, Jim McKay is referred to as “Mr. McKay.” It is one of the first times in recent memory that I can remember such respect for the subject of a Baltimore Sun news story.

As it should be, Mr. McKay began his career as a police reporter for Baltimore’s Western District, in 1946, for The (Baltimore) Evening Sun.

Dan Rodricks proudly pointed out in his column from last Sunday, that “Jim McKay had once been one of us. (So had his wife, Margaret; so had Louis Rukeyser of Wall Street Week, the author William Manchester, CBS reporter David Culhane, to mention a few.)”

Before Mr. McKay joined the paper, he graduated from Loyola High School and Loyola College where he “was sports editor of the college paper and … the public address announcer at basketball games. He was president of his senior class, and president and star of the drama club, which abruptly altered the course of his life,” said the Baltimore Sun.

“After graduating from college, Mr. McKay served 3 1/2 years in the Navy during World War II, mostly on escort duty in the South Atlantic aboard minesweepers.”

In 1947, A. S. Abell Company, the publisher of the Baltimore Sunpapers at the time, started the 11th television station in the country, WMAR – TV.

Last Sunday’s article noted that Mr. McKay did not understand why he was being recruited for the brand new medium. He was told, “(D)idn't you say you were president of the dramatic society at Loyola College? That's good enough for now.”

The television station began on Oct. 27, 1947 with a live broadcast of “two horse races at Pimlico.” The article noted “the first words heard on television in Baltimore were spoken by Mr. (McManus) McKay: “This is WMAR-TV in Baltimore, operating for test purposes.”

He changed his name in 1950 to Mr. McKay after he was recruited that year to work for CBS - TV. His first program was “The Real McKay.”

Many of us remember Mr. McKay for different reasons. In his long and storied career, he broadcast 25 Kentucky Derbys beginning in 1978.

He was the first host of the “Wide World of Sports” in 1961 and over the next four decades, he introduced many different sports to the American living room other than the traditional fare of baseball, football, or basketball. Many will remember the iconoclastic opening for each episode: “the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.”

He reported upon the Olympics for the first time in 1960 and went on to cover a total of 12 Olympics throughout his career.

For many folks, who are not sports enthusiasts; his place in history occurred when he anchored the live coverage, for 16 hours straight, of the terribly tragic 1972 Munich Olympics when 11 Israeli athletes were senselessly murdered by Palestinian terrorists.

History will forever remember Mr. McKay’s concluding remark when the ordeal was over: “When I was a kid, my father used to say our greatest hopes and our worst fears are seldom realized. Our worst fears have been realized tonight. They have now said that there were 11 hostages. Two were killed in their rooms this morning -- excuse me, yesterday morning. Nine were killed at the airport. They're all gone.”

He is the only sportscaster to win an Emmy for news coverage - for his reporting at those 1972 Olympics.

In 1968, he was the first sports broadcaster to win an Emmy for sports coverage – his first of 13 Emmys. He received a lifetime achievement award in 1990. In 1995, he was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame.

In a statement released by President George W. Bush, he said: "For a generation of Americans, Jim was more than the much-honored host of Wide World of Sports and ABC's Olympic coverage. He was a talented and eloquent newsman and storyteller whose special gift was his ability to make the viewers at home genuinely care about more than just who won or lost.”

His death marks the end of an era. He leaves behind a legacy of sharing, with several generations, a life known for the thrill of victory.

Kevin Dayhoff writes from Westminster Maryland USA.

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Blog Net News Maryland:

E-mail him at: kdayhoff AT or kevindayhoff AT

His columns and articles appear in The Tentacle -; Westminster Eagle Opinion;, Winchester Report and The Sunday Carroll Eagle – in the Sunday Carroll County section of the Baltimore Sun. Get Westminster Eagle RSS Feed

“When I stop working the rest of the day is posthumous. I'm only really alive when I'm writing.” Tennessee Williams

Friday, June 13, 2008

20080614 Flag Day

Flag Day

The long version of Sunday Carroll Eagle column for Sunday, June 8, 2008

by © Kevin Dayhoff (1,089 words)

Related: 20080606 Presidential Proclamation: Flag Day and National Flag Week

Tomorrow is the 231st birthday of the United States Flag. For the past 92 years we have observed June 14th as Flag Day.

Hopefully, you and your family will display the Old Glory for Flag Day.

Please take a moment to reflect upon the flag that has steadfastly stood for America’s strength, unity, and liberty for 231 years.

The flag has remained a constant reminder of the sacrifices that have been made to maintain the freedoms, liberties, and way of life in this great experiment; we call the United States of America.

When we display the flag, our community also expresses our gratitude to the men and women who have gone before and fought to ensure that the many blessings and freedoms we enjoy will continue for many generations to come.

Flag Day was established by President Woodrow Wilson on May 30, 1916. On August 3, 1949, President Harry Truman signed an Act of Congress that designated June 14 as National Flag Day.

Also this Saturday we celebrate the birthday of the United States Army. It was two years before the Flag Act of 1777; on June 14, 1775 that Congress established the United States Army. Ten companies of "expert riflemen" were originally authorized - approximately 800 soldiers.

On June 15, 1775, George Washington was chosen to head the Continental Army. The delegate to the Second Continental Congress who nominated George Washington was Thomas Johnson, from Frederick.

While we are on the subject of birthdays, this year is also the occasion of another milestone in United States military history; the 100th birthday of the U.S. Army Reserve.

The origins of the Army Reserve began in April 1908 with a group of doctors being designated as the Medical Reserve Corps, which could be called to active duty in an emergency. Today there are more than 200,000 “citizen-soldiers” in what we now know as the U.S. Army Reserve.

The origins of Flag Day go back to the Second Continental Congress, which met from May 10, 1775 to March 1, 1781. It passed the “Flag Act of 1777” on June 14, 1777.

Originally, the purpose of the Second Continental Congress was to hopefully continue negotiations with Great Britain over the “Intolerable Acts.” The First Continental Congress drafted the “Articles of Association,” in 1774, in a furtive attempt to mitigate England’s policies towards the colonies. Severing the relationship with England was not part of the plan at the time.

Nevertheless, by the time the Second Continental Congress had convened in Philadelphia, on May 10, 1775, the American Revolution had begun. The Battles of Lexington and Concord, in Middlesex County, Province of Massachusetts Bay had taken place just a few weeks before on April 19, 1775.

Quickly, things weren’t not looking good for the home team. Instead of conducting economic negotiations with the most powerful nation on the planet at the time, the Second Continental Congress found itself at war; equipped with a non-existent army, no money, and the support of about one-third of the population, on a good day.

One of the immediate challenges for General Washington was to negotiate with a congressional committee in September 1775 for more soldiers, equipment, and supplies.

Factionalism plagued congress and regionalism challenged the military and the agreement reached with congress was ultimately not satisfactory.

According to Volume I of the U. S. Army’s “American Military History,” edited by Richard W. Stewart: “A Continental Army had been formed, but it fell far short of the goals Washington and Congress had set for it. This army was enlisted for but a year, and the whole troublesome process would have to be repeated at the end of 1776. The short term of enlistment was, of course, a cardinal error; but in 1775 everyone, including Washington, had anticipated only a short campaign.”

A representative from New Jersey, Francis Hopkinson is accepted by history to have been the designer of the first flag. He was a poet and an artist who began serving on the “Continental Navy Board” in November 1776. It was in this capacity that Congressman Hopkinson began work on “admiralty colors.”

Tradition has it that a Philadelphia flagmaker by the name of Betsy Ross was also involved in the design and manufacture of one of the first flags. The May 29, 1777 minutes of the “Board of War” meeting reads: “... an Order on William Webb to Elizabeth Ross, for fourteen pounds, twelve shillings, two pence for making ships colours & put into William Richards' stores.”

Hopefully she got paid.

Congressman Hopkinson billed the “Board of Admiralty” in 1780 for his work on “‘the flag of the United States of America’ as well as several ornaments, devices, and checks appearing on bills of exchange, ship papers, the seals of the boards of Admiralty and Treasury, and the Great Seal of the United States. Hopkinson had received nothing for this work, and now he submitted a bill and asked "whether a Quarter Cask of the public wine" would not be a reasonable and proper reward for his labors.”

A congressional committee was appointed to investigate Congressman Hopkinson’s request for payment. It summoned witnesses and took testimony. However, “the men of the Board of Treasury ignored the summons. In its report to Congress, the committee recommended that the present board be dismissed.”

The more you read about the behavior of Congress in the early days of the Republic, the more one wonders if we were at war with Congress– or Britain.

On August 23rd, 1781, congress passed a resolution that the Congressman, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, be paid. Ultimately he was never paid, not because it was disputed that he did the work, but because his political adversaries prevailed in denying him payment.

Bear in mind, while all this is taking place - there is war going on; a war that never really went well.

Objective history that is ambivalent as to whether the American colonies won the war or Great Britain got tired of the hassle and expenses and walked away. At the time, members of congress and a congressional committee were haggling over whether Congressman Hopkinson should be paid or not, the final military maneuvers of the war were being conducted in Virginia.

It was around August 23, 1781 that French Admiral de Grasse arrived from the Caribbean, blockaded the Chesapeake Bay, and pinned British General Cornwallis down at Yorktown. General Cornwallis surrendered on October 19, 1781.

Only by the Grace of God did our nation survive, in spite of ourselves – in spite of Congress.

When he is not preoccupied with reading Revolutionary War trivia, Kevin Dayhoff can be reached at kdayhoff AT

20080614 Flag Day

Saturday, June 07, 2008

20080607 C'est un jour parfait à donner des sédatifs

20080607 C'est un jour parfait à donner des sédatifs

20080607 It is a Perfect Day to be sedated

N’est pas VL WAB?

It’s been a long week.

Lou Reed Perfect Day

The Ramones - I Wanna Be Sedated

20080607 C'est un jour parfait à donner des sédatifs

Friday, June 06, 2008

20080606 D-Day, Carroll County, and the famed 29th Division

D-Day, Carroll County, and the famed 29th Division

(c) By Kevin Dayhoff

29th Div shoulder patch: Nicknamed "Blue and Gray,” the division's motto is "29, Let's Go!" The shoulder patch is a half-blue, half-gray Chinese taijitu; this patch was approved December 14, 1917 and was designed by Maj. James A. Ulio.

Writer’s note: Excerpts of this column appeared in my column in The Sunday Carroll Eagle on June 1st, 2008

Today is the anniversary of “D-Day.” It was at 6:30 in the morning on June 6, 1944 that Allied forces began the campaign to retake Europe from Nazi Germany.

The D-Day campaign began with what historians consider to be one of the largest single-day military operations in history. Over 130,000 troops landed on five beaches along 50 miles of Normandy coast between the Cotentin Peninsula and the Orne River with the support of approximately 196,000 Allied navy personnel.

The amphibious landings portion of D-Day was given the codename “Operation Overlord.” It was divided into five operational zones which were identified by the codenames Gold, Juno, Omaha, Sword, and Utah.

American troops landed on the two western beaches, Utah and Omaha. British and Canadians landed at Gold, Juno, and Sword beaches.

Many Carroll countians fought with the 29th Division, who along with V Corps and the 1st Infantry Division made up the total of 34,250 troops, 3,300 vehicles, who landed at “Omaha Beach.” They were backed-up with naval support provided by two battleships, three cruisers, 12 destroyers and 105 other ships.

The Omaha operation was subdivided into ten sectors, which were named, from west to east: Able, Baker, Charlie, Dog Green, Dog White, Dog Red, Easy Green, Easy Red, Fox Green, and Fox Red.

The 29th Division’s responsibilities were the Able, Baker, Charlie, and Dog Green sectors the western half of the five-mile long beach on the northern coast of France, which stretched from Sainte-Honorine-des-Pertes to Vierville-sur-Mer.

According to numerous historical accounts, assessments of the defenses located in the Omaha field of operation were incorrect and for a number of reasons, nothing went as planned at the Omaha beach landing and the results were disastrous.

One account of the events indicate that Company A of the 116th Regimental Combat Team comprised of approximately 240 soldiers had 50 percent casualties within 15 minutes of landing at Dog Green and were almost hopelessly pinned down at the water’s edge.

Several hours later the assessment of the operation was so dire that the First Army commander, Lt. Gen. Omar Bradley actually considered withdrawing the soldiers off the beachhead.

Valor and heroic action on the part of the Carroll countians who fought that day prevailed. The beach that stretched before them was at the most, 200 yards wide but was mined, and fenced with multiple lines of barbed wire, among many other deadly obstacles.

At the other end were steep banks from anywhere from 100 to 170 foot tall, upon which the German defenders manned machine gun nests which dominated the beachhead with interlocking fields of fire.

The 29th Division went on to see 242 days of combat as they progressed from Normandy, crossed the Elle River, engaged in combat from hedgerow to hedgerow to overtake St. Lo, fought across the Rhineland and into Central Europe.

As a result, two soldiers in the 29th Division were awarded the Medal of Honor, 44 were awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, one Distinguished Service Medal, 854 Silver Stars, 17 Legion of Merit, 24 Soldier’s Medal and 6,308 Bronze Stars.

After the war, the 29th Division finally returned home on January 4, 1946.

One column certainly does not do justice to the storied history of the 29th Division. More of the origins and history of the 29th Division can be addressed in later columns. Meanwhile, we’d like to hear from veterans who served in the 29th Division. If you or someone you know served; please be in touch so that we may include your stories in later columns…

Carroll County can be proud of our native sons who were among the 29th Division -and all the men and women who served our country during World War II, in the face of horrendous circumstances. They served so that we could remain free and enjoy our quality of life. We owe them a debt we can never repay.


20080606 D-Day, Carroll County, and the famed 29th Division

20080606 A lesson to be learned from Ford versus Toyota

A lesson to be learned from Ford versus Toyota

Hat Tip: Grammy June 6, 2008

I received this allegory in an email. It was simply too true to not pass on and post…

A Japanese company (Toyota) and an American company (Ford) decided to have a canoe race on the Missouri River. Both teams practiced long and hard to reach their peak performance before the race.

On the big day, the Japanese won by a mile.

The Americans, very discouraged and depressed, decided to investigate the reason for the crushing defeat. A management team made up of senior management was formed to investigate and recommend appropriate action.

Their conclusion was the Japanese had 8 people rowing and 1 person steering, while the American team had 8 people steering and 1 person rowing.

Feeling a deeper study was in order, Ford management hired a consulting company and paid them a large amount of money for a second opinion.

They advised, of course, that too many people were steering the boat, while not enough people were rowing.

Not sure of how to utilize that information, but wanting to prevent another loss to Toyota, the Ford rowing team's management structure was totally reorganized to 4 steering supervisors, 3 area steering superintendents, and 1 assistant superintendent steering manager.

They also implemented a new performance system that would give the 1 person rowing the boat greater incentive to work harder. It was called the' Rowing Team Quality First Program,' with meetings, dinners, and free pens for the rower. There was discussion of getting new paddles, canoes, and other equipment, extra vacation days for practices and bonuses.

The next year the Japanese won by two miles.

Humiliated, the American management laid off the rower for po or performance, halted development of a new canoe, sold the paddles, and canceled all capital investments for new equipment. The money saved was distributed to the Senior Executives as bonuses and the next year's racing team was out-sourced to India.

Sadly, The End

Here's something else to think about:

Ford has spent the last thirty years moving all its factories out of the US , claiming they can't make money paying American wages.

TOYOTA has spent the last thirty years building more than a dozen plants inside the US The last quarter's results for 2007:

TOYOTA makes 4 billion in profits while Ford racked up 9 billion in losses.

Ford folks are still scratching their heads.


(I drive a Prius.)


20080606 A lesson to be learned from Ford versus Toyota