Saturday, February 28, 2015

Alvin Smith Unforgiven

I find it fascinating and touching that, as late as April 13, 1842, when addressing the newly arrived English converts on the subject matter of health and doctors, Joseph Smith Jr can still use the overdosis of Calomel that killed Alvin Smith in 1828 as a negative example to warn about quack ("Calomel Doctors").

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Discussions of Mormon Geography

In 1993, William J. Hamblin, history professor at BYU, broke a lance for the Limited Geographical Model approach to the book of Mormon. His interpretative approach was rejected by an ex-Mormon, Richard Packham, as well as by a Mormon layperson, Wunderli, in a paper published in Dialogue.

Peckham's account is excellent, because as a lawyer and computer scientist, he is both logical and good in exposition. Wunderli is cool because he points to the work of the Reverend Lamb, The Golden Bible, and exposes some of the things that Hamblin writes as the flip side of the arguments that Lamb made, eg. on the preservation of names in Biblical Palestine vs. the Americas, pp.274ff. Lamb also made some interesting ones, such as rejecting the notion that any singular culture, Nephite or Lamanite, ever spanned the American continent.

The farmer's guide in hiring and stocking farms...

Arthur Young, premiere English agronomist, correspondent of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson on farming matters, wrote this book

The farmer's guide in hiring and stocking farms...

both for the gentleman farmer and for the husband man.

A most fascinating read.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Handbook of clearing and grubbing methods and cost

The Handbook of clearing and grubbing methods and cost : Gillette, Halbert Powers, 1869- from 1917 is but one in a whole slew of engineering and costing books by Mr Gillette. I was brought to this book by reading about the Erie Canal, where the dense forests of the middle section of the Erie Canal, between Seneca and Rome, surveyed by Benjamin Wright, included the grubbing of the heavy forests as part of his $1,500 per mile estimate; cf. Hulbert, Erie Canal, p.109.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Manual for Road Construction from 1850

This book, A manual of the principles and practice of road-making : comprising the location, construction, and improvement of roads (common, macadam, paved, plank, etc.) ; and rail-roads, covers how to build plank roads, McAdam roads, etc.

Friday, February 20, 2015

The Cox - Knox controversy at Frankfurt

During the reign of Queen Mary, Richard Cox and John Knox both had to hang out in Europe. They eventually got into each others hair with the problem of how to accept the common book of prayers into their doctrinal issues (see also Richard T. Hughes, C. Leonard Allen, Illusions of Innocence: Protestant Primitivism in America 1650-1875, Chicago (University of Chicago Press) 1988, esp. pp.7-14; for a quick summary of the story, see here.)

These troubles were written up after the fact by someone, possibly William Whittingham, though some have argued against that, and published.

A Brief Discourse of the Troubles at Frankfort,... (an older version, tough to read: A brieff discours of the troubles begonne at Franckfort in Germany, Anno Domini 1554)

Some of the quotes therein, especially this one, shows the continuity of concern between the Reformation and the Restoration.
For what greater treasure, or sweeter comfort, can a Christian man desire than to have a Church wherein he may serve GOD in purity of faith and integrity of life; … (p.26)

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Treating Beggers around Dijon over two centuries

When introducing the term "horizontal mobility", Braudel defers to a book on the environs of 17th century Dijon.
In the sixteenth century, a beggar would be fed and cared for before he was expelled [from the town]. At the beginning of the seventeenth century, he would have his head shaven. Later he was more likely to be whipped and by the end of the century the full weight of a repressive society set him to forced labour. -- Gaston Roupnel, La ville de la campagne au XVIIeme siecle. Etudes sur les populations du pays dijonnais, 2nd ed, 1955.
Quoted in: Braudel, The Mediterranean,  Book 2, p.704.