Monday, October 3, 2011

The way things work

“Extermination order.” After watching a Buster Keaton silent film this morning, I decided to do a little research on Keaton. Searches led to actress Camille Keaton, said to be a grand-niece of Keaton. The actress was born in Fort Smith, Ark., but went to school in Eudora, Ark., until age 13. Eudora is a small town – 2,850 people by the 2000 census.

The Wikipedia article on Eudora contained an external link to “History of Eudora’s Jewish Community” from the Institute of Southern Jewish Life, www.isjl.com. In 1900, the town had 11 Jewish families and a congregation, Bene Israel. Historians have paid little attention to Jews in the South. ISJL attempts to change that.

From the ISJL site, I looked at four small towns in Texas. The narrative of one town mentioned a man who served with the 16th Texas Cavalry during the Civil War. Search for the 16th mentioned Confederate Gen. Sterling Price, who was in the Mexican War and the Missouri Mormon War. Missouri Mormon War? More searching, which led to the extermination order, accounts of murder and depravity, as well as cases of injustice and unconstitutional seizure of property. The extermination order was rescinded in 1976 by then-Missouri Gov. Kit Bond.

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