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20th century cowboy tells life story, saves wild horses

February 4, 2015
20th century cowboy tells life story, saves wild horses

In recent years, I have written columns about the sad plight of wild horses in the West.
I first learned about them in 2012 at a Western History Association convention in Denver when I heard about Velma Johnson who saw the mustangs starving and feared they would become extinct. Known as Wild Horse Annie, she lobbied for better legislation.
Recently, by accident, I discovered another Westerner who has taken up the same mission. Dayton O. Hyde wrote his life story as an early 20th century cowboy on his uncle’s ranch and became interested as well.… Read the rest

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Budget-writing process begins in Senate committee

February 4, 2015
Budget-writing process begins in Senate committee

On Jan. 28 the main work of the Texas Legislature started when the state budget-writing Senate Finance Committee met at the Capitol.
Financial figures for the committee to use as a guide come from the 10-member Legislative Budget Board, a permanent joint committee of the House and Senate that develops budget and policy recommendations for appropriations, completes fiscal analyses for proposed legislation and conducts evaluations and reviews to improve the efficiency and performance of state and local operations.… Read the rest

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When did we get frightened of medical science?

January 28, 2015
When did we get frightened of medical science?

Sometimes Facebook is so dumb. Well, some of the people on it, too, I guess.
That’s the only way to explain any credence given to the anti-vaccine rage.
Thanks to generations of shots courtesy of geniuses working in medical science, millions of Americans – and millions more worldwide – have been spared the agony of disease because of childhood vaccinations.
But you can find a group with a massive online presence who swear that vaccinations are full of deadly toxins and can cause horrible reactions, autism, and even death.… Read the rest

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We have a situation, mon!

January 28, 2015
We have a situation, mon!

I have just returned from paradise.  Not the one in Wise County, although it is a place I frequent. No, Mrs. Sweetie and I just celebrated 30 years of marriage with six days at an amazing all-inclusive resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Our 30th anniversary was last July, but this was the time we could do the trip.
I won’t subject you to the narrative of our trip (but there are pictures on Facebook). However, I will let you know that the normal stuff of life that you do at home just moves to a whole new level of awesomeness when you have the sight, sound, smell, and feel of the Caribbean Sea in the background.… Read the rest

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Eastern Indian chief led battle that killed more U.S. soldiers than Custer’s Last Stand

January 28, 2015
Eastern Indian chief led battle that killed more U.S. soldiers than Custer’s Last Stand

Ever heard the expression, “The more you know, the more you find out what you don’t know”?
Western historian that I think I am, I assumed that the Battle of the Little Big Horn on June 25, 1876 was the worst defeat of whites from Indians in U.S. history. Recently I learned differently.
When Custer led five companies of the 7th Cavalry against Sioux and Cheyenne, 266 men, including Custer, died. He had separated the companies from the rest of the command.… Read the rest

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Gov. Abbott, Lt. Gov. Patrick take office in Austin

January 28, 2015
Gov. Abbott, Lt. Gov. Patrick take office in Austin

January 20 was inauguration day for Gov. Greg Abbott, successor to Rick Perry, who completed a record-setting 14 years as governor. Abbott is the 48th governor of Texas.
Abbott expressed gratitude to the people who elected him and promised to “promote policies that limit the growth of government, not the size of your dreams.”
“Texas truly is the land of opportunity, the place where anyone can achieve anything,” Abbott said. “But as great as Texas is there’s more we must do: More for the families stuck in traffic. More for parched towns thirsty for water. More for parents who fear their child is falling behind in school.… Read the rest

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Busting a move back in 1961

January 21, 2015
Busting a move back in 1961

I ventured into the morgue again. That’s the place upstairs here at the office where we keep decades worth of old newspapers.
Up there, I found a very old edition of The Azle Banner. It’s dated Thursday, Jan. 19, 1961.
It’s not in great shape, yellowed and torn. But it’s readable. The Banner covered all the news around here – Azle, Lake Worth, Springtown, Boyd, and  points in between.… Read the rest

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Recent book reviews story of North Texas vigilante hangings

January 21, 2015
Recent book reviews story of North Texas vigilante hangings

Historians like to commemorate anniversaries of important events. The year 2012 was the 150th anniversary of vigilante action in North Texas which resulted in the hanging of 42 men. Two citizens knowledgeable of the happenings in 1862 wrote accounts that told somewhat differing stories. Dr. Thomas Barrett’s essay was published in 1885, and the other by George Washington Diamond remained unseen for over a century.… Read the rest

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The assisted living decision

January 21, 2015
The assisted living decision

She’s in her 90’s.
She can’t hear.
Her sight is dimming.
She’s becoming more and more afraid and anxious about her surroundings.
Because of what appears to be the onset of dementia, she has gotten lost while out and about.
Her apartment, while comfortable, is more and more insufficient for her daily needs.
She lost her twin sister and roommate almost a year ago and she’s been pretty lonely ever since.… Read the rest

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Perry gives his parting speech as governor as legislative session begins

January 21, 2015
Perry gives his parting speech as governor as legislative session begins

Gov. Rick Perry delivered his farewell address to a joint session of the House and Senate on Jan. 15 on day three of the 140-day regular session of the 84th Texas Legislature.
Before recounting various aspects of the state’s performance during his record-breaking tenure as chief executive, Perry said, “I have come here to reflect on what we have done together, and to say farewell. But most of all, to tell you it has been the highest of honors to serve as your governor for the last 14 years.”… Read the rest

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