Retirement

27 November 1853

Theophilus Roosevelt,

From today onward, my journey with everyone in the Baltimore Sun is finished. My hair soon grays, retirement seems an option, and dreams of terror and warfare plague my nightly rests. I see soldiers in grays, greens, hiding in glorified ditches while explosions appear from no source, and my sleeplessness is destroying my work quality, and definitely hastened my retirement. Here at the Baltimore Sun, we have a very efficient and useful system for keeping records, and looking back, I see that I am not the only one who wrote about matters of faith – on the contrary, I’ve read several articles by my fellow journalists I neglected to read, and how wrong indeed I was to overlook them!

Among the many studies I did, religion was a dominant feature. Knowing how or what the people of my God were working for the faith did wonders, but recently I found articles on one of the lesser known groups of the religious crusade. According to a fellow author of mine, a group called the Shakers were founded, and he says that; “The Shaker beliefs are very similar to Quakers, which is a religious separation from Protestantism.”[1] According to my friend, the Shakers were separate from the Protestants, and given no mention of Orthodox, Catholic, Coptic, or other church groups, one can assume that these Christians are a group with a unique set of values that do not identify with other churches.

My fellow also gives information about how these Shakers were founded, stating that a woman named Ann Lee arrived in America to found the Shakers in 1794, following the commands of God.[2] These Shakers, by the words of their founder, are founded based on a conviction and a connection with God. On a different tone, one can see from this second article that some special emphasis is placed on compassion, as the reporter notes that “people are friendly and polite to me all the time. It was a wonderful experience discussing religion with Mother Ann Lee yesterday, and I was amazed how positive the mottos were.”[3] This kindness falls in line quite well with other Christian values such as compassion, and that compassion falls in line with smdoogs’s statement that the Quakers came following the commandments of God.[4] On a final note, it is good to be retiring at long last, but I know that wherever this nation goes, the Baltimore Sun will faithfully and justly inform us all.

References

[1] Smdoogs, Shaker Community prosperous or the next to fall? Retrieved 24 April 2015.

[2] Ibid.

[3] jeffdong1998, Uniqueness of the Shakers. Retrieved 24 April 2015

[4] Smdoogs, Shaker Community prosperous or the next to fall?

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Slaves

Through my time covering the life of slaves, I have had to hear many saddening stories. While there are feel good moments over the course of slavery, the harsh reality that there are human beings being owned as property outweighs everything.

Given that the economy in the south is thriving off slavery, I fear that it never will be abolished. However the slaves do their best to push on, in hope for better quality of life in the future. It was so inspiring to hear about slaves connecting through music. They are all in the same struggle and like all human beings, trying to make the most of an awful situation. What the slaves endure is dehumanizing and is really is just terrible luck. They have similar characteristics to whites, but because their skin color is black, they somehow are deemed slaves.

The work of Harriet Tubman is incredible. One would think that she would distance herself from slavery, but she is not satisfied. She understands the suffering the slaves cope with, having been a former slave, and is determined to help as many as she can. Covering slavery for a large part of my career has put things in perspective. Now any problems that I face, seems so petty compared to what those less fortunate must face. I feel an obligation to make the most of my life and do work that has a positive impact on others.

Sometimes I think to myself that I would take their place if I could, but then the harsh reality hits where I realize that I would not. I am a compassionate person, but I could not put myself through what the southerners are forcing upon slaves. All I can do is hope and pray that slavery is abolished.

To Follow My Sun

Louis Reichman

The last 17 years working for the Baltimore Sun have been the best of my life. My first post for this newspaper was about the plantation life in the South, and the common conceptions about that foreign life to the North. However since then, my career as a journalist has flourished, and other posts are reaching out to me. I have become friends with other journalists at this organization, whose work I admire very much, and whose work inspires me as I search for my future. I was offered the position of chief editor at Harper’s Weekly, which is an opportunity I can not turn down.

My most common area of literature was on the plantation life in the South. My first ever blog post was focused on the social divide of social and wealth classes of the South. What startled me most on my first visit down to visit my cousin Jed in Mississippi was how many people there were that did not fit the stereotypical image of a Southern Plantation owner. What I could not realize, was that for every rich and influential land owner, there were many more slaves, and people living in poverty. In fact, almost half of the population of Mississippi around the time I went down was enslaved people.

My last post was also on this subject, except I went down to visit my other cousin Atticus in Charleston to learn more about the opulent and rich life of the South. Even though the luxury of that life was attractive to me, I could never advocate or support the system of slavery. The natural right of life is very sacred to me and I was appalled by this aspect of southern plantation life.

During my time here at the Baltimore Sun I have been inspired by the writers around me that have helped me and supported me throughout my whole career. My first and last blog posts were greatly influenced by ideas that appeared in posts of my peers and friends.

The first work I would like to credit some of my success is an article by Canovai. The article outlined how mistresses were not treated well, even though their life was luxurious. The theme of this article is not exactly the same as my last article, however one theme that is similar is how plantation owners live very luxurious lives. However abuse and mistreatment seem to follow wealth in the South. [1]

Another inspiration for my final edition was my friend and colleague John Edwards. A couple years after my first blog post, he wrote an article about how poor;y slaves were treated on plantations. I think the reason this article so stood out to me was because Edwards wrote about how the slave culture survived as well. The reason was that they had deep resentment towards their masters, and the rebellious spirit, helped their culture stay in existence. [2]

It fills me with happiness to see how much this newspaper is flourishing, and even though I am departing to chase down my sun, I know this Sun will continue to shine.

 

Notes

[1] Isabel Chai, “Ideal Life?” The Baltimore Sun, 14 April, 2015. https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/14/ideal-life/

 

[2] Sahil Veeramoney, “The Deep South II – The Plantation Culture” The Baltimore Sun, 21 April, 2015. https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/the-deep-south-ii-the-plantation-culture/

Hopes for the Future

By Janis Steinem

I have learned much about the new beliefs shaping our society today. Whether they are the abolitionists, women’s rights advocates or transcendentalists, they all believe that our society can become a utopia where everyone has equal rights. Many transcendentalists are also abolitionists and believe in women’s rights, and vice versa, creating a large community of people who are advocating for human rights. While this group is growing and remains strong, they are still a minority and many people beliefs are against the new views. The transcendentalists and advocates for rights are looking forward into a bright new future. They are idealists who hope they and others can have a better life. They also have deep compassion for other people. The desire for women’s rights and abolition comes either from the desire to have rights for yourself or enough concern for others that you want them to have rights too. Despite the outlast, activists are still hopeful that their beliefs will change the world.

I spent much time studying the Transcendentalists and have heard from others the ideas of the women’s rights advocates and the abolitionists. The women’s right’s movement started when a group of female abolitionists were denied access to the World Anti-Slavery convention in England. These women realized that they would first need to gains rights for themselves before they could fight for the rights of others. The women organized the Seneca falls convention in 1848, which was attended by over 300 people. There many resolutions were drafted and all except the suffragette passed. These women are working hard to change the nation they live in, alike the Transcendentalists and they have bright, Utopian views for the future.[1]

Many people are also looking towards a bright and free future for enslaved people. Some brave, enslaved people are taking manners into their own hands by attempting to escape through an underground railroad. Ex slaves, such as Benjamin Moody and James Cummins managed to escape towards the North via the underground railroad. They made it all the way to New Jersey, but were still endangered of getting caught. In the earlier days, once slaves made it up North, though they were often unwanted, they were considered free. Now we have the Fugitive Slave Act, which means that in it lawful to return slaves to their owners. The act is a huge setback for the abolition movement because it means that no where in the United States are slaves free. Slaves now need to escape as far as Canada and Mexico to find safety and some free black people in the North are being captured even if they were born free.[2]

The social and economic changes being advocated for will greatly alter many people’s lives. People will have more rights however, if more people have the right to work free white men may be in a more competitive market for jobs. And if slaves are free the owners would have to pay labourers, which and the free people will eat more and live in a nicer environment, causing more resources to be used. If women have more options of places to work then they may not want to work at home. Our society would have to be greatly changed in order for more people to have freedom however, the fighters for said freedom believe the change is for the better.

[1] Saperstein, William R. “Changing America One Step at a Time.” Word Press (blog).
Entry posted April 13, 2015. Accessed April 28, 2015.
https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/13/
changing-america-one-step-at-a-time/.

[2] Trinity, Jonathan. “Runaway Slaves.” Word Press (blog). Entry posted April 13,
2015. Accessed April 28, 2015. https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/
13/20/

The Empty Pen

Readers of the Baltimore Sun, for the last 30 years you have read and appreciated the articles I have contributed to this great newspaper. I would like to thank you for your dedication and support of me. Having said this, I would like to regretfully inform you all that it is now my time to move onwards from the Baltimore Sun. This newspaper has given me great opportunities to explore the culture and lands of this great nation, enlightening and heightening my education. I would like to thank all of my peers for their continued dedication to the paper, and my editors. I hope that without me here, the newspaper will continue to grow and teach. I know that I will be reading the Baltimore Sun for many years to come.

Over my many years here at the Baltimore Sun, the most impressive feature of this newspaper were the people working to make it better every single day. I have met many colleagues here, and most importantly, made lifelong friendships. Two of these colleagues, Jonathan Trinity (Cal) and Zack Mohammad, taught me about the lives of slaves, and I learned that the atrocities slaves underwent was not unlike those of the Native Americans. In fact, through the writings of these individuals, in combination with my own writing, I now see that the struggles that many people go through, not just slaves are “ much worse than anything a white can think of” (Seneker). I hope the writers at this paper continue to explore the difficult topics of race and privileges as my colleagues and I have done before them.

Most importantly, to me, was my extensive research of Native American policy in the United States. I have followed groups on painful journeys, interviewed the elders of tribes and lived with native peoples, and each event has changed my life for the better. I have watched as the public opinion has changed from one of disdain to one of understanding and welcoming towards the native peoples of this great nation. These social changes impact the lives of everyone in the United States, especially the Native Americans. As the general populous changed opinion, allowing the Native Americans to integrate into society, their lives have changed drastically. Many natives are beginning to assimilate into our culture, though many still stay on the reservations. Their lives were the most affected by the theft of native land and sacred places. However, these changes didn’t affect only the Native Americans. Many of us Americans, myself included, have been greatly influenced by the native people. Their deep understanding of nature and the world around them has certainly impacted the lives of average Americans, who strive only to learn more. The lives of Americans everywhere are changing because of those who lived here before, who taught us the ways of the land, who showed us what it meant to be one with nature: the Native Americans.

Farewell,

Andy North

Notes

Seneker, Calvin. “The Loss of a Voice.” Baltimore Sun. Accessed April 27, 2015.

https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/28/the-loss-of-a-voice/

The Loss of a Voice

Baltimore, 1860. The pen drops today, with my last article for the Baltimore Sun. In my many years researching and writing about the atrocity that is slavery, I have learned so many interesting, yet horrible facts. I now understand that the struggles enslaved people go through are much worse than anything a white can think of, from incredibly high rates of disease to the physical punishment suffered almost daily. In his previous article discussing the slave experience, Zack Mohamed interviewed a slave who recently had to make sugar, where “Our feet and legs, from standing in the salt water for so many hours, soon became full of dreadful boils… afflicting the sufferers with great torment”.1 Because of these atrocious conditions, slaves had a variety of ways of rebelling. The most common was a simple refusal to work hard, which was often met by being whipped by their owners. Another common way was the underground railroad, which I myself have done extensive research on. According to Frederick York, the underground railroad is a great step towards the abolishment of slavery.2 The underground railroad helped over 100,000 slaves on their to safety. The least common way of rebelling would be a full-blown insurrection, similar to Nat Turner’s rebellion in 1831. It must not be lost that the reason these slaves, mostly plantation slaves, would run away or rebel is because of the horrible conditions they were put through daily.

The growth of abolitionism greatly impacted almost everybody’s lives during the beginning of this century. There have always been people that opposed slavery, but this movement began to pick up during the early 1830’s, thanks in no small part to William Lloyd Garrison and his newspaper. He attracted a large following very quickly, especially among the free blacks and northerners, while the White southerners understandably strongly disliked this idea. The growth of abolitionism helped with the success of the underground railroad, changing the lives of over 100,000 slaves. In addition, the propaganda put out by the abolitionists, such as the book Uncle Tom’s Cabin, educated many more about the atrocities of slavery. Even though the abolitionists were always a small minority, with factions within that minority, the passion they felt towards this topic changed the lives of people all around this great, growing nation.3

Jonathan Trinity

Screen Shot 2015-04-27 at 6.12.38 PM4

Notes

1: Mohamed, Zack. “Inhumane Conduct.” Baltimore Sun. Accessed April 24, 2015.

https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/inhumane-conduct/.

2: York, Frederick. “Runaway.” Baltimore Sun, April 25, 1857. Accessed April 24, 2015.

https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/22/runaway/.

3: Brinkley, Alan. The Unfinished Nation: A Concise History of the American People. 7th ed.

New York, New York: McGraw-Hill, 2010. 282-286.

4: Chiles, Nick. “7 Ways Some White People Justified American Slavery.” Atlanta Blackstar.

November 5, 2014. Accessed April 28, 2015.

http://atlantablackstar.com/2014/11/05/7-ways-some-white-people-justified-american-slavery/.

We Don’t Share the Same Life, But We Share the Same Sky

by Luc Liu

Published January 2nd 1888

This world is meant not to be the same from places to places. More and more people try to pursue their happiness and to avoid suffering by leaving their home to an alien land especially in the beginning of our century. Irish people came so far to this unfamiliar continent from their deepest melancholy to feed their hunger, caused by the destructive famine in 1845. Holding the dream of pursuing a better life, German also sailed their way to the United States, and found themselves influential in the local society. Even though the sailing condition was horrible for both Irish and German, I bet most of them still had their hearts pounding so hard to embrace their new lives on the other side of the earth. However, this is not their homes, after all. Soon almost all of them experienced different levels of difficulty to survive on this new and strange land.

As the national population increased due to the inflow of the immigration from all over the world, the number of unemployment rose, too. Although some immigrants were stigmatized and treated differently when applying for jobs, a lot of Americans lost their original jobs because immigrants usually required less wages.[1] The competition of jobs became especially intense after the immigration flow of the Irish after the Great Famine, that resulted in the rising of a group of people who called them selves “Nativists” in 1840s.[2] These Americans did not call themselves as “Nativists,” because they believed that they were just patriotic who cared about the unity and integrity of the United States very much.[3]

Another reason that generated the tense relations between Americans and the immigrants was the nearly exclusive communities created by them. This phenomenon was especially apparent in Irish little communities after their arrivals. A group of Irish settling to the Midwest, closing their gates to the outside world unless they were off to work, and speaking their own languages all the time were very common in the mid 19th century inside of those Irish villages.[4] The lack of communication became the consequence of Irish stigma when British revealed the Irish stereotype of being heavy alcoholics in Britain. However, with all of the difficulties, the immigrants still agreed that the lives here in America was still much better than the lives back in their homeland.[5]

Now we have come this far to learn the society of the immigrants, and how their arrivals have changed our country. I could mark that, in the land of United States, the conflict between different cultures is inevitable, yet we should not only prevent to receive the idea of Nativism, but also be able to accept the immigrants’ lifestyles and to communicate with them without stereotypical views. We all should possess the ability of acceptance towards others who are different from us, even though we come from different places. Because we grow up under the same sky after all.

[1] Madison Roitze, “Outsiders? Invaders?,” The Baltimore Sun, https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/13/outsiders-invaders/

[2] Madison Roitze, “New Home for the Irish!,” The Baltimore Sun, November 29, 1859, https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/new-home-for-the-irish/

[3] Roitze, “Outsiders?”

[4] Ibid

[5] Roitze, “New Home”

Looking Forward

WILLIAM SAPERSTEIN (Zoe Collins)

With the continuous development of our growing country, we must not close our minds new opportunities to progress in our culture and society. Through observing the lives around me and delving deep into the issues that are sometimes overlooked, I have acquired a newfound appreciation for the activist movements in America. Strongly opinionated people are fighting for what they believe in and speaking on behalf of the groups they care about. In this country, we must stop prioritizing the rights of certain people and all move towards one shared goal of equality. Ideas of equality are what this country was founded on, and the fact that the same people who argued their hearts for independence are now actively trying to deny equality to other people verges on ironic. It is clear to me that rights for women and slaves is the direction this country is headed, and it will be much easier for some citizens to understand if they listen to the opinions of the people I have spoken to.

Sojourner Truth is a soulful woman who makes you feel everything she has been through. After hearing her experiences and hardships, it is hard to disagree with her views the women’s rights movement and the abolitionist movement. Elizabeth Cady Stanton took initiative and organized a huge step in the women’s rights movement called the Seneca Falls convention. This was the event where revolutionary ideas emerged and women came together for a common cause.

Not only are women separate from men in white society, there is also a difference in how women are treated in slave culture. On the big plantations, women slaves are forced to labor in the fields but also cook and clean and care for the children.1 Even though there is still a lot to improve on in this country, every day new steps are being made towards equality. Lucy Stone, in 1855, kept her maiden name when she married her husband. This very small and insignificant sounding deed caused a huge outbreak of discussion surrounding the rights of women.2

Social changes impact people’s lives immensely. The changes that are beginning to be made in regards to the abolitionist movement and the women’s rights movement can be good or bad. The obvious change is the change in laws that are gradually passing because of these movements. Another change, though, is in the mentality of the citizens. Women may feel empowered by hearing their issues being talked about, which could change the home life of their families. Abolitionist riots and anti-abolitionists riots are also becoming increasingly more common due to the progression in the movement. These movements affect everyday life so much and will continue to affect it until complete equality is achieved.

Notes

1  Canovai. “Women on Plantations – Connected and Separated.” Word Press. January 28, 1889. Accessed April 27, 2015. https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/27/women-on-plantations-connected-and-separated/.

2  De Beour, William. “Lucy Stone: Disgrace or Women’s Hero?” Word Press. Accessed April 27, 2015.

The Era of Abstinence: A look back at Temperance

James K. Adams

June 3, 1856

The Era of Abstinence: A look back at Temperance

Through my past year working for the Baltimore Press, the movement known as Temperance has seen great strides and changes. In its early stages, Temperance was simply drinking in moderation, but over the years has evolved into complete abstinence from alcohol. With laws like the “Maine Laws” put in place, which prohibit the sale and drinking of alcohol, Maine and the rest of America has never been the same. Streets that were once booming with spirit and drunken rowdiness are now haunted by a sober silence. However, even with the whole culture of America changing, one of the biggest turns in Temperance involved one of its figure heads, Neal S. Dow. His entire life he had been an avid supporter of Temperance, bringing it to new heights by forming Temperance societies and creating the infamous “Maine Laws” after becoming mayor of Portland. However after the events surrounding the “Portland Massacre”, his entire image changed and he was revealed to be a hypocrite. Dow definitely saw that this would greatly hinder his position in this years election as he did not even run.

This era of Temperance goes far beyond alcohol though, and has deeper roots and meanings. The recent social and economic changes in America link to Temperance and its role in modern society. One major social change over the past few years has been the flooding of Irish immigrants into America.[1] They have brought with them their drinking culture, and have played a huge role against the Temperance movement. Some American’s have given them the name, “The unwanted Irish” from the stereotype the British have of them of only drinking and not doing any work.[2] In this new industrial age working hard has become important, and persons can not just lay back and be lazy. Factory owners need efficiency in their work staff and drinking on the job, which became the norm for men, is now being frowned upon. Americans used to drink huge amounts of alcohol each day, which caused problems in families. Fathers, the breadwinners of the family, became abusive or unable to perform their jobs.[3] This negatively affected home life and ruined many families.

In this new day and age after the Industrial Revolution, Temperance is needed for life to function. Alcohol goes against the system as it causes people to be lazy, decreasing efficiency in factories and disrupts family lives. In order to push America forward abstinence from alcohol is needed

[1]Lui, Luc. “They Suffer, They Come, They Survive.” Baltimore Press, January 2, 1868.

[2] Ibid

[3] Jefferson, Benjamin. “Destroying the American Family.” Baltimore Press, June 23, 1868.

The End of an Era

John E. Lee

December 12, 1850

I have finally finished. A thorough reminiscing is needed to reflect on my career. Two of my stories on the topic of the Erie Canal have remained my favorite and most memorable pieces of work. My work about the Erie Canal shows the controversy of the engineering achievement. While many saw the canal as an impeccable addition to society, others found it to be disastrous to their lives. The Erie Canal is a 363 mile long waterway between Lake Erie and the Hudson River that is used for shipping goods. Civilians have also used the canal for tourism; traveling through different port cities, previously impossible. Completed in 1825, the canal has improved and the lives of many, while simultaneously ruining others in the past twenty-five years.

With the genesis of the canal era, the economy was greatly affected. Shipping prices were decreased from $100 to $5 per ton. Large companies and farmers were able to profit from the canal. Prior to the building of the Erie Canal, Dewitt Clinton, governor of New York, saw the economic potential of a waterway. I interviewed Clinton in 1827 and asked him to tell me about what it was like being known as the “father of the Erie Canal.” He told me that it was rough at times as he did not always have the public’s support, however, when the canal was finished he knew he had accomplished a monumental success that would benefit the nation greatly. The economy changed greatly due to the canal, as shipping prices decreased, it allowed prices for good to be lowered, therefore, making products more accessible to various levels of wealth. Clinton represents the many, business orientated, people in America that were able to profit and utilize the Erie Canal for their own good. Others benefited from the canal as they were able to buy less expensive food and goods. The economy was heavily impacted by the canal and almost all should be able to see that the Erie Canal was an economic achievement.

As quickly as the canal found economic success, excruciating pain was felt by others mourning their old lifestyle. A growing amount of people and canal workers began frequenting the port cities after the canal was finished. The canal workers were often rowdy and obnoxious. Saloons began to be built around the canal to accommodate the needs of the new residents. Prostitutes were seen daily, walking the streets. Society had changed. Prior to the Erie Canal a city may have been innocent, but now, almost all have been touched by the devil.

After what I have learned about the Erie Canal, I do not believe it was ever worth creating. The construction was not sympathetic to all and repercussions of the canal were too extreme for the well being of many.Times have began to change, even at the Erie Canal’s peak, trains are able to outperform them. The canal era is coming to an end, as trains have started to take over the transportation industry, and I question if the failing canals and the trains should be stopped right now[1]. I have seen the pain that canals have caused and I do not see the worth in risking that pain again for better transportation[2].

[1] PophetW, “Rising of Canal Construction,” Baltimore Sun (2015), accessed April 26, 2015. https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/rising-of-canal-construction/

[2] David York, “Derailing the American Economy,” Baltimore Sun (2015), accessed April 26, 2015. https://baltimoresunab.wordpress.com/2015/04/22/derailing-the-american-economy/