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LIFE IS GOOD IN BERMUDA DUNES
Meets the 2nd Thursday
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supervisor benoit's office
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Lt. Mike Manning
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760 540 1878
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Dunes Community Center
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|FERAL CAT AND KITTY
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|BERMUDA DUNES SECURITY
|NOTE FROM MRS. B
We had left off in Reno, heading towards Modoc County and to Lakeview, Oregon where Bob's younger brother Gary,
and his wife Cindy reside. Gary is a cattle broker and Cindy works for the Forest Service.
Bob and Gary's family were heavily entrenched in ranching in their early childhoods. Gary remained in Modoc
County (Paisley) and managed the famous ZX Ranch up until the death of JR Simplot.
First I will talk about Modoc County (because it is so beautiful); I will touch on the Paiute Indian Tribe and the war
that was being fought; next, I will discuss the ZX Ranch and Mr. Simplot and lastly I will discuss Gary's new
business - that being a cattle broker.
Bob and Gary's Grandfather had a contract with the US Calvary to provide horses for the soldiers in Sacramento. The
trip from Modoc County to Sacramento took almost 6 months roundtrip. Their grandmother was left alone to fend for
herself and her children in his absence. During this time she shot a Pieute Indian on her front porch. Of course, this is
a beloved story the family loves to share...and she lived to be 104 years old. She was 'ready to go,' because all of her
'card playing friends' had passed away.
Here we go:
Tucked up in the Northeastern corner of California where Oregon, Nevada, and California all come together, lays a
sparsely populated, high desert region known as Modoc County.
Modoc County is turquoise at the very top of the map below
It was named after the Paiute chieftain who fought one of the last Indian wars in America. Running north and south
through the middle of the county is a beautiful mountain range, The Warner Mountains, with an abundance of wild
life, thick forests, and cold mountain lakes. To the south lies the vast Madeline Plains where wild horses still run
today. On the east side of the Warners, bordering the great Nevada desert, is Surprise Valley, a fertile valley of
natural meadows. The local ranchers feed the rich meadow hay to their livestock in the winter and allow them to
graze on the wild desert grass of Nevada, to the east, in the summer.
The naming of the valley in the 1860s, rather than earlier, is substantiated by the fact that no records of travel or
Army reports dealing with that region have been found using the name “Surprise”. In one early account, the local
Indians referred to this valley as “Kibeningnaredols”, which means “Valley of the Long Mountains”.
“Surprise Valley was given this name and for good reason. The first settlers making the arduous trek along the
Southern Route of the Oregon Trail in the 1800s were quite surprised to discover the lush eastern flanks of the rugged
Warner Mountains in a fifty-mile long valley, which is bordered on the east by alkaline lakes. Between the
mountains and the lakes, these travelers found a zone of tall grass, rich soil, springs and creeks - perfect places for
homesteading ranches and farms.
The native Paiutes were 'surprised', too, as their ancestral lands were taken over by strangers and these natives
were placed on reservations in Fort Bidwell and Cedarville. Such is history with the settling of the entire U.S. Paiutes
still living in the valley, as do the ancestors of some of the first settlers.
There are four small communities in Surprise Valley; Fort Bidwell, Lake City, Cedarville, and Eagleville. A variety of
newcomers as well as escapees from the hubris of city life also populate this area.
Winema and the Modoc War: One Woman's Struggle for Peace
By Rebecca Bales
On February 25, 1891, Congress passed a very unusual piece of legislation. It awarded "Winemah Riddell [sic] . . . a pension at
the rate of twenty-five dollars per month."
It is not unusual to find thousands of names in the pension files housed in the National Archives. What is unusual is that a woman
received it for her courage in battle. And even more unusual is that Winema Riddle was a Native American woman of the Modoc
Historical sources often reflect roles of men who influenced history over time, but in them are sometimes found accounts of
women's deeds. Through a multitude of sources, Winema's story unfolds, illuminating actions and people who, with her, shaped
events in the latter half of the 19th century.
Winema Riddle was a Modoc woman whose life story illuminates Native American women's roles in history through her
interactions with outsiders. She married outside her Nation, she became a mediator for her people, and she earned a military
pension from Congress for her actions in time of war by saving a federal official's life.
Winema gained national attention because of her role in the Modoc War of 1872–1873, a war that lasted approximately eight
months but that finds its roots in the Indian policy of the 19th century. In 1864, under pressure from settlers, the government
decided to move the Modocs onto the Klamath Reservation in southern Oregon. The Klamaths, however, were historic enemies
of the Modocs, and some Modoc people left the reservation for their old homes. The U.S. Government sent Federal troops to
move the Modocs back to the reservation, and in 1872 the two sides clashed.
This is the story of how Winema Riddle worked for peace between her native Modocs and the U.S. Government.
To understand the importance of the pension Winema received, we must explore the events and personal history surrounding
this woman who, for the most part, has been overlooked in the pages of history.
The Modocs' ancestral homeland spans the border of California and Oregon. For centuries the Modocs lived in this area, raising
their families and establishing a society based on interdependence with each other and on extensive trade networks throughout
California and the Pacific Northwest.
The arid environment is relatively inhospitable, but it did not impede the formation or growth of the Modocs as a viable and
vibrant nation. Born and raised in the ancestral homeland of the Modocs, Winema's family nurtured her and imbued her with the
values of her people, but she herself stretched the boundaries of gender and race.
Winema proved her courage in her early life during the 1850s. By all accounts, it is clear that one courageous deed set her apart
from her peers early on. When she was a young teen, she saved a canoe full of children from being dashed in strong rapids by
steering it to safety, earning her the name "Winema," which translates into "woman chief." Such deeds continued throughout her
Another example of her courageous character was her defiance of her father (and Modoc tradition) when she refused to marry
the young man her family had chosen for her. Instead, she ran off and married Frank Riddle, a Kentuckian who had come to
California in 1850 to seek his fortune in the gold fields.
Her marriage to Frank resulted in a short estrangement from her people and her family; however, Frank sought to gain her
father's approval of their marriage and did so by meeting the obligations of a Modoc groom. He gave several horses to his new
father-in-law, and in return, her family gave gifts to Frank to welcome him as Winema's husband. Frank and Winema settled close
to her family in the Lost River area in California after their marriage.
The bonds between the Riddles and the Modocs established their role as critical players that would grow in the following
decades. Winema's quick study of white ways helped her as both wife and mediator. Her fluency in the Modoc language
(Lutuami) and her working knowledge of English gave her unique skills with which she could act for peace between her people
The 1840s, the decade in which Winema was born, was one of the most pivotal in California and Oregon Indian history. With the
westward movement of white Americans, Native Americans throughout the American West experienced dramatic changes in their
societies. The gold rush compounded these issues.
The Modocs felt the impact as non-Indians sought different routes to the burgeoning urban areas and the gold fields of California
and Oregon. Indeed, as the westward movement gained momentum, so did the unease that enveloped Modoc country
throughout the 1850s, 1860s, and 1870s. These events influenced Winema in several ways.
First, her family and people had to adjust to new circumstances, many of which were out of their control. As they met new
challenges and threats to their subsistence, they were drawn into similar problems their neighbors experienced, including the call
to remove natives from the area as settlers set their sights on northern California and southern Oregon.
Complaints by settlers bombarded the Oregon Superintendency and the Indian Office in Washington as early as 1851. In July of
that year, Oregon Superintendent Anson Dart reported difficulties in southern Oregon and recommended that the permanent
boundary line between California and Oregon be set. This suggestion would have put the Modocs under the jurisdiction of
Oregon even though most of them, including the Riddles, resided in California. The Modocs needed to find a way not only to
maintain their land base but to protect their families and customs.
Unease became outright hostility in 1852, when a volunteer regiment from Yreka led by Ben Wright sought vengeance for an
attack on an emigrant party headed for California. Evidence indicates that the Modocs were not responsible, but it was their
neighbors to the south, the Pitt Rivers, who perpetrated the attack. Wright, however, made no distinction between the Pitt Rivers
and Modocs, and he and his men slaughtered a village of about 40 Modocs. Some of Winema's family members lived in this
village, including her cousin, Kintpuash, whom whites later called Captain Jack. He witnessed the murder of his father and other
family members. This event would not only intertwine Winema and Kintpuash's lives on levels other than familial obligations but
influence the future of their people.
In 1862 Commissioner of Indian Affairs William P. Dole reported:
All, or nearly so, of the fertile valleys were seized; the mountain gulches and ravines were filled with miners; and without the
slightest recognition of the Indians' rights, they were dispossessed of their homes, their hunting grounds, their fisheries, and, to a
great extent, of the production of the earth.
The Modocs' struggle to maintain their subsistence patterns became desperate as more non-Indians moved into their territory.
They appealed to the California Superintendency to secure an area in their ancestral homeland for their own use. They asked for
assistance from Judge Elisha Steele, who with the help of rancher John Fairchilds and Frank and Winema Riddle, negotiated a
peace in 1863. This agreement would have established a reservation in northern California for those who assented to the treaty.
In turn, the Lost River Modocs agreed to allow safe passage through their territory and to maintain peace with settlers and
neighboring native nations.
The Modocs who agreed to this treaty felt secure in the knowledge that they would remain in their homeland under the protection
of the California Superintendent. However, because Congress and the Indian Office had not authorized Steele to enter in such
an arrangement, objections from Washington, D.C., and settlers soon arose. Unaware of the bureaucratic and communication
problems between the California Superintendency and the Indian Office, the Modocs continued to live in their homeland, often
visiting white towns to trade and to seek employment.
The following year, representatives from the Indian Office notified the Modocs of an upcoming treaty council through which the
Modocs would be ensured suitable land on which to live. The treaty, signed in October 1864, provided land for all Modocs within
the boundaries of the Klamath Reservation—not the Lost River area.
As tension grew throughout northern California, government officials were determined to find solutions. Between 1851 and 1890,
the prevalent solution to the Indian problem was to place them on reservations where the United States could watch over them.
However, there was an obstacle to overcome—how to get their compliance to move and remain on the reservations.
This government policy guided Modoc action and drew Winema into the national spotlight. The Modocs split between those who
remained on the reservation under the leadership of Old Schonchin and those who later left and argued that officials were
inconsistent and unjust in implementing the policy.
When Lindsay Applegate, one of the first white settlers in the southern Oregon area, became subagent for the Klamath Agency in
1865, one of his main tasks was to convince the Lost River Modocs to come to the reservation. He informed the commanding
officer at Fort Klamath that he would represent the Modocs, who "have frequently called upon me and now for the last time to
represent their grievances. . . . [They] say . . . it [the reservation] was not a safe place for them." The Modocs complied and
moved to the reservation, but very little time passed before their concerns became firm reality. As they had feared, they were the
target of Klamath harassment, and they did not receive the supplies promised them. Many Modocs moved several times between
1865 and 1870 to and from the reservation as conditions worsened and the government took no action.
In 1869, as the crisis on the Klamath Reservation continued, President Ulysses Grant and his new administration, struggling with
the issues of Reconstruction and budgetary issues, refocused Indian Policy. Grant's administration sought to redirect military
personnel and resources from reservation administration and implemented the "Peace Policy," shifting Indian agencies on
reservations from military supervision to church management.
In compliance with the Peace Policy, Alfred Meacham, a Methodist minister, became Superintendent of Indian Affairs for Oregon
in 1869. Meacham worked closely with several officials and Winema in trying to bring peace to a troubled region. That same year
President Grant ordered the army to force the Modocs back to the Klamath reservation; the Modocs complied, but little had
changed. Upon their return, Meacham supplied them with blankets and goods, and O. C. Knapp, the commanding officer of Fort
Klamath, supplied flour and beef. The Modocs, however, again experienced trouble with the Klamaths, who harassed them, often
taking their supplies. Again they left the reservation for the Lost River area in California.
In March 1870 Knapp ordered the Modocs back to the reservation and sent a detail of soldiers to accomplish this goal.
Approximately 45 Modocs had not returned to the reservation. Knapp reported, "on the 17th [the soldiers] started after these
Indians, found them at Hot Creek Cal. on the 19th and returned to the Agency on the 23rd. Had no trouble in bringing them in."
The Modocs tried to settle on the reservation peacefully, but their uneasy history with the Klamaths prevented their adjustment to
reservation life. Many times Kintpuash and other Modocs brought their problems to Knapp's attention. The solution Knapp
offered was to move the Modocs to a different part of the reservation. The Modocs did move, but the problems did not cease.
The Modocs grew tired of Knapp's moving them to different areas and the lack of a permanent solution to the conflicts. In the
spring of 1870, many of them left the reservation for the last time.
When more than 100 Modocs left, settlers' apprehensions increased. Superintendent Meacham proposed a possible solution to
the increasing tension: the creation of a subagency at Camp Yainax on the southern border of the Klamath reservation. In his
annual report he "recommended the establishment of the band on a reservation to be set apart for them near their old home
where they could be subjected to governmental control and receive their share of the benefits of the treaty." This proposal had
the potential to solve the problems occurring in Oregon and California—the Modocs would be away from the Klamath; the
Oregon Superintendency could supervise them with the help of the Californians; and the government would have direct
supervision over them, thereby mollifying the settlers. However, as Secretary of the Interior J. D. Cox later reported, "No action
on this recommendation was ever taken by this Department."
Between 1867 and 1871 it is clear that the Modocs tried to negotiate, sometimes with the assistance of Winema Riddle, but their
pleas for a fair resolution fell on deaf ears. By 1872, when conditions became unbearable, the Modocs were determined to stay
in the California-Oregon border area, having set up camp along Link River. But an effort in November 1872 to bring them back to
the reservation forced them to split into separate parties, one led by Kintpuash, another by Hooker Jim. They decided to meet in
the Lava Beds, a natural fortification in California. Kintpuash headed immediately for the Lava Beds, but Hooker Jim chose a
different path. He attacked a number of settlers, killing men but sparing women and children.
U.S. soldiers inspect Captain Jack' s cave in the Lava Beds in 1873.
When he reached the Lava Beds and announced these activities, Kintpuash realized that the United States would not let this
incident go unpunished. Indeed, the Oregon governor and citizens demanded the extermination of the Modocs. The government
had other ideas and wanted the killers turned over for trial and execution. Kintpuash was between a rock and a hard place.
Ultimately, he refused to give any of his people over to a justice system he did not trust. As a result, war ensued, bringing the
Modocs and Winema national attention.
After the war broke out in November 1872 and tension grew, the government realized that the solution to these problems was to
either force the Modocs onto the reservation (which had failed miserably) or to negotiate their return in a peaceful manner.
Although the war was inevitable, and it looked as if it would be a long affair, the Modocs were willing to negotiate and sent word
that they would accept a reservation in the Lava Beds, but the answer was unequivocally negative.
Communication was very difficult for several reasons. Mistrust ran high, and because Kintpuash's band was entrenched in the
Lava Beds, runners and messengers willing to carry important messages were hard to find. Winema was up to the task. Although
Winema's activity during the reservation conflicts in the late 1860s had been limited (she and Frank remained in California while
the other Modocs moved back and forth), the continuation of the war directly changed her services and illuminated her abilities
once again as peacemaker. As a primary interpreter, Winema carried words between the Modocs and U.S. officials.
In February 1873 progress seemed to be made as the Modocs and the officials in both California and Oregon began
communication through messengers. The Modocs were clearly unhappy with the way the United States carried out the treaty
stipulations, but they were not averse to further negotiations. This position did not alleviate the anxiety of settlers, nor were the
Modocs' concerns of primary importance until hostilities became imminent in California. Consequently, President Grant and his
advisers decided to follow Meacham's earlier suggestion to settle the Modocs at a separate subagency at Klamath. But they had
to find a way to bring the Modocs to the table for negotiations. Consequently, Grant ordered a peace commission established to
bring the recalcitrant Modocs onto the reservation and those who had killed the settlers to justice.
In March 1873, churchmen, military men, and interpreters accepted the responsibility of securing peace in a troubled land. The
commission was made up of Alfred Meacham, Leroy Dyar, Rev. Eleazar Thomas, Gen. Edward R.S. Canby, and Winema and
Frank Riddle. The commission's main goal was to meet with the Modocs and induce them to return to the reservation and turn
the killers over to the authorities.
General Canby early on recognized the Modocs' concerns on the reservation. In 1872 he related that when the Modocs had
settled on the reservation, they "were so much annoyed by the Klamaths that they complained to the local agent [Knapp], who,
instead of protecting them in their rights, endeavored to compromise the difficulty by removing them to another location." His
perception, however, did not solve the Modocs' discontent. One year after he made this statement, Canby found himself in the
middle of a war that resounded throughout the United States and that ultimately took his life.
The history of the war and the peace commission can be found in numerous House and Senate reports. For example, House
Report 1413 of the 50th Congress focuses on details of Winema's actions as she sought peace between her people and the U.S.
Government. Of particular interest is her interaction with the Modocs in the Lava Beds. Between February 20 and April 11, 1873,
Winema and her husband served as mediators, often under dangerous circumstances. According to the report, the Modocs in the
Lava Beds learned of the U.S. desire for a meeting with the newly formed peace commission and sent Bob Whittle and his wife,
Matilda (an Indian woman), with a message asking for the Riddles and John Fairchilds to act as intermediaries. They believed
this meeting would allow "Riddell and Fairchilds to conclude details."
As a result, Winema traversed the Lava Beds to help bring an end to hostilities. Her role as messenger and mediator emerged for
several reasons. She had working knowledge of both the Modoc and English languages; as a woman, her presence represented
peaceful intentions, allowing her fluid movement in carrying messages between camps; and as Kintpuash's relative, she fell
under his protection when she was in the Lava Beds. She visited the Lava Beds several times, often being threatened by the
more hostile Modocs who were suspicious of her and her connection to the peace commissioners, but Kintpuash saw to her
The Modocs, after seeing the entrenchment of the military, could foresee no way to stop the war, but they did express to Winema
their willingness to meet with the commission and negotiate a peace. On March 9 she, along with Rosborough, Steele, and her
husband, encouraged Kintpuash to meet with Canby and the other commissioners to determine a time and meeting place. On
March 27 the Modocs related through Winema that they would settle for a reservation in the Lava Beds; Canby replied that he
had no power to grant their request but that they should meet to determine a peaceful solution. Nothing came of these
exchanges; the two sides did, however, agree to meet again in mid April.
The knowledge Winema brought back to the peace commission would not keep either the Modocs or the commissioner free from
danger. During her last visit to the Lava Beds in early April, as she left to bring information to the peace commissioners, Wieum,
one of Kintpuash's followers, went after her to inform her of a plan to kill the peace commissioners. She took this news to Canby
and Meacham. Canby disregarded her warning and still insisted on meeting with the Lava Bed Modocs. Meacham urged Canby
to listen to Winema. The meeting was set for Good Friday, April 11, 1873.
Winema's many warnings to Canby and Meacham of the Modocs' intentions created tension among the peace commissioners.
On the morning of April 11, Winema was determined to make Canby listen to her, but he refused to heed the warnings. She then
turned to Meacham and pleaded with him not to go. When he told her it was his duty, she physically tried to stop him from
following Canby. Because he had final say in the negotiations, Canby proceeded to the meeting place where six Modoc men
awaited the commissioners.
Kintpuash had been pressured into killing the commissioners, but once the meeting began, he tried to again to negotiate a place
for the Lost River Modocs in California. However, the purpose of the commission was to have the Modocs surrender, to give up
the killers of the settlers to authorities, and to move back to the Klamath Reservation. When the council started, Canby refused to
listen to Kintpuash's reiteration of his request for a home in the Lava Beds. Canby's refusal and his demand for their
unconditional surrender sealed his fate; Kintpuash could not give up his people to Canby's justice. Throughout the exchange
between Canby and Kintpuash, Winema tried to keep tempers at bay, but even she realized the futility of negotiation at that point.
When Kintpuash realized that the meeting was one-sided, he and the other Modocs opened fire on the peace commissioners.
In the ensuing skirmish, Canby and Thomas died; Dyar and Frank Riddle escaped. Meacham was severely wounded and, had it
not been for Winema, would have died. As one Modoc man, Shacknasty Jim, started to strip Meacham of his clothing, another,
Boston Charley, wanted to be sure Meacham was dead. Shacknasty Jim, however, told him that Meacham was already dead.
Boston Charley then proceeded to scalp Meacham, when Winema stepped in and started yelling that the soldiers were coming.
Risking her own safety, she saved Meacham's life. The act bound Meacham and Winema as friends forever. The killing of the
peace commissioners made national and international news. For the Modocs it meant two more months of fighting and eventual
surrender as the army closed in.
For a month and a half after the attack on the peace commissioners, the army besieged the Lava Beds. Because the Lava Beds
are a natural fortress, 159 Modocs, mostly women and children, were able to maintain an advantage over a thousand troops for
several months. However, as negotiations soured and the army sought vengeance for Canby's death, it had ample time to figure
out how to penetrate the Lava Beds. Eventually, the soldiers found ways to get closer to the caves, and the Modocs lost their
tactical advantage. By the time troops had reached the encampment, the Modocs had already escaped, dispersing as they fled.
According to Lt. William Henry Boyle, a veteran of the Modoc War, the Modocs did not surrender as one group, and, as the army
closed in, they knew they were no match for the advancing soldiers. Kintpuash's party was the last to surrender. Boyle claimed,
"Captain Jack surrendered at 10:30 a.m., June 1, 1873, saying that his legs had given out. The costly Modoc War was over."
The conclusion of the war did not bring Winema and Frank's roles to an end. When the military accompanied the Modocs back to
Fort Klamath, all 159 Modocs who had encamped in the Lava Beds were confined in the stockade, where they awaited their fate.
A trial of six Modocs—Kintpuash, Schonchin John, Boston Charley, Black Jim, Barncho, and Slolux—ensued. Winema and Frank
Riddle were witnesses at the trial and, when called upon, testified about the events surrounding the war and why the Modocs
had acted as they did.
On July 1, 1873, after a speedy trial, Judge Advocate H. P. Curtis passed sentence on the six Modoc men, who were to "be
hanged by the neck until [they] be dead." Four death sentences proceeded; Kintpuash, Schonchin John, Boston Charley, and
Black Jim were hanged on October 3, 1873. Because Barncho and Slolux's participation in killing Canby were in doubt, the judge
reduced their sentences to life imprisonment on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay.
After the war ended, the lives of many Modocs changed dramatically. The 153 Modocs imprisoned at Fort Klamath waited
expectantly for their judgment. It came in the form of removal. The federal government removed 39 men, 54 women, and 60
children to IndianTerritory.
The consequences of the Modoc War directly influenced the makeup of the Modocs as a nation. The Modocs in Indian Territory
suffered through this tragic removal and a steady decline in population. In contrast, the Modocs in Oregon suffered a different
shift in survival strategies.
Population numbers in Oregon differed tremendously from those in Indian Territory. In 1874 the Modoc population numbered
approximately 200 and remained relatively stable into the early 20th century. Although many intermarried with people from other
native nations on the Klamath Reservation, tribal designation continued through the father's line. Census records indicate names
that reflect those Modocs who remained on the reservation before and during the 1870s. Old Chief Schonchin and his family
consistently show up on the rolls well into the 20th century. Similarly, the census rolls for the Klamath Agency list Toby Riddle,
Modoc Billy (name changed to William Hardin), Modoc Charley (name changed to Charles Modoc Faithful), and several other
Modocs who raised their families there as well. After Jeff Riddle established his family, his mother's and father's names appear in
conjunction with Jeff's. They are listed in terms of their relationship with their son; this indicates that the Klamath Agency
regarded Jeff as the head of household. Overall, the Modoc population in Oregon remained steady. Those Modocs in the Indian
Territory held their status as Modocs under the Quapaw Indian Agency and maintained cultural norms as they adapted to the
new area despite their population decline.
Immediately after the war, Winema and Frank decided that they could further serve Native Americans by bringing attention to the
Modocs' plight. At Meacham's urging, they embarked on a lecture circuit, speaking about what had happened during the war and
how Winema had saved Meacham's life. The Riddles traveled throughout the United States, going to large cities such as New
York. This endeavor, however, came to a quick end as Meacham and the Riddles could not afford moving from place to place. In
addition, being away from her people and home took its toll on Winema. She became very homesick, and Frank feared for her
welfare. He wrote to Oliver Applegate, subagent of the Klamath Reservation, several times, asking to borrow funds to get them
home. Eventually they did return to the Klamath Reservation, where both lived out the rest of their lives.
Meacham and Winema forged a lasting friendship that withstood the ravages of war, the failure of a lecture tour, and the
devastation of sickness and death. Because of Meacham's deep respect for Winema and her role in the war, he insisted that she
receive a military pension and determinedly petitioned Congress to make it so. He wanted public recognition of Winema's
courage in saving his and other lives during the conflict between the Modocs and the peace commissioners on April 11, 1873. By
special act of Congress, pension certificate number 565101 was issued to Winema Riddle. The act noted that the pension of
"$25 per month" was granted "for service rendered Commission to the Modoc Indians."
Winema became one of the few women to receive a pension by a congressional act. This recognition acknowledged Winema as
a key participant during peace and war, solidifying her role as a mediator between cultures. Winema received the monthly sum of
$25 until she died of influenza in 1920. Her son Jeff asked the Pension Office for the remainder of her pension for February of
that year to "pay Mother's funeral expenses."
Winema's death marked the closing of an era—she was one of the last Modoc War participants to die, and she was one of the
first American women to be distinguished by congressional act for her actions in time of war. More important, she instilled in her
son the significance of diplomacy and what it means to be a leader. She merged the two concepts as mother and mediator. Jeff
later became a councilman and judge for the Modocs living in Oregon.
Her actions in the events unfolding in northern California drew the respect of many, including some who solely blamed the
Modocs for the hostilities of the 1870s. For example, in 1909 Oliver Applegate wrote about the importance of her role in the war
and in securing peace. He contended that if Canby had listened to and followed Winema's counsel, he and the others would not
have lost their lives on that fateful day. He wrote, "She was courageous and intelligent and had her counsel been taken, the
bloody Peace Commission massacre would not have occurred."
Note on Sources
Rebecca Bales is on the history faculty at Diablo Valley College in Pleasant Hill, California. Her field of specialization is Native
American history with an emphasis on women. Her current research focuses on Native American women in California, and her
publications include articles on that subject.
|Ridin' high with J.R. Simplot
The Idaho farm boy turns hard work and big gambles into an empire that stretches from
spuds to computer chips
J.R. Simplot is worth a couple of billion.
But the 87-year-old still likes to drive himself to work and stop by McDonald's for an
Egg McMuffin and hash browns.
It's the potatoes that please him most. Because when John Richard Simplot orders
McDonald's potatoes in his town or anywhere else, chances are better than even that
he grew them.
``Fella, I think I kinda put Idaho on the potato map,'' Simplot growls.
Idaho license plates say ``Famous Potatoes'' on the bottom. Simplot's reads ``Mr.
Spud'' across the middle.
It would be enough that Simplot rose from humble beginnings to become potato king.
But the last past two decades of his work life have veered from fertile brown fields and
the traditional rhythm of farming to cutting-edge technologies and the wild roller coaster
of the computer chip market. He staked Micron Technologies Inc. in 1980 -- a venture
that soon doubled his overall fortune.
Fortune Magazine last year ranked him as the 37th wealthiest American, his worth
pegged at $2.2 billion.
Creating forefront empires across two generations has made Simplot not just one of
the last great tycoons of Charles Russell's American West, but one of the first new
tycoons in Bill Gates' high-tech West.
It's a heady constellation, though he's the first to say it wasn't by design. All J.R.
Simplot knows, he will tell you, is how to work hard and take chances. Big, fat chances.
He has officially retired from the company that bears his name. Since 1994, his three
children and one grandson share the chairman's office. But neither that, the company
changes nor the two hips he recently had replaced have measurably slowed him.
He still controls the J.R. Simplot Co. land and livestock division and continues to build
the company and his family trust.
In the past year, the company bought the largest food processor in Australia, and
Simplot's family trust snatched up 10 percent of Magma Copper Co. and Boise
Now, he's got his sights set on a ranch down under.
``I'm going to buy a million acres, irrigate it, grow potatoes,'' he says. ``Then I'm going
to ship 'em north.''
North means Indonesia and Southeast Asia, completing the Asian expansion Simplot
began when he followed the french fry-ravenous McDonald's into China in 1990.
Simplot thinks potatoes can compete with rice as the dietary staple in Asia.
In today's business climate of managerial consensus-taking, he is an anomaly: the
cowboy who operates on gut as well as acumen, defiance as well as collaboration.
``He's a vanishing breed,'' says H. Dean Summers, a friend for more than 40 years and
former Idaho state senator. ``I've thought about it, and I don't think anybody coming
along now could build what he's built.
``I just don't think it's possible anymore.''
- Dazzling successes
Many would have thought it impossible at any time.
Simplot built his empire on dazzling successes, any one of which would have been
enough to satisfy most entrepreneurs:
*From a dirt-poor tenant farmer in the 1920s, Simplot became one of the first
middlemen in agriculture. By 1940, he was shipping most of the potatoes grown in
Idaho, with 33 warehouses along the Snake River.
*In 1941, he jumped into the new technology of drying vegetables with overnight
success. In the next four years, Simplot supplied one-third of the dried potatoes and
onions to American troops in World War II.
*In 1953, Simplot patented the frozen french-fried potato, an invention of his scientists
that made him billions.
*In 1966, he persuaded McDonald's founder Ray Kroc to sell his frozen french fries,
and Simplot expanded with the chain across the globe.
Along the way, Simplot accumulated other businesses to help cut his costs -- or just
satisfy his undeniable appetite for more and bigger.
He broke into the cattle business as a feedlot operator in the 1960s. The explosion of
his frozen foods operation had created tons of waste, and Simplot used it to fatten his
cattle. He became and remains one of the top 10 U.S. beef producers.
Phosphate-heavy fertilizer for his vast growing fields became so expensive that Simplot
bought phosphate mines and commenced to manufacture his own mix of soil enrichers.
They worked. With mines promising production for another century, Simplot started
marketing the stuff.
His subsidiary Soilbuilder Fertilizer has some about 100 outlets throughout the West.
The product ; it is used on golf courses around from the United States and to the
Pacific Rim, making the fertilizer division a profit leader in the company the past three
Simplot does not sell things, unless for some clear strategic gain that advances his
urge to gather yet more. He is in that way a gatherer.
Land has rewarded him most. It's also what he has gathered most.
- Buying starts early
He started at 16, purchasing buying 5,000 acres in Idaho's Raft River Valley for 50
cents an acre. Trading up, generating more cash, he kept buying.
While He's not indiscriminate, but he's quick. Simplot says he thinks things through at
night. ``If it makes sense here,'' he says, pointing to his skull, ``I do it.''
Simplot's friends say that if he likes the first look of a ranch, he buys it on the spot.
If he doesn't buy land, he leases it from the federal government and uses it for grazing.
Simplot either doesn't know how much land he owns or simply won't say, but the
leased portions of his holdings exceed 3 million acres -- a land mass nearly the size of
``I guess I'm kind of a land hog,'' he says.
Among his dozen large cattle ranches is the nation's largest, situated near Paisley,
Ore.: the 137-mile-long, 64-mile-wide ZX Ranch. The last huge spread in Texas, King
Ranch, was split up in a transaction several years ago.
``There might be somebody out there who owns more land than I do,'' he says, pausing
a moment. ``If there is, I don't know who they are.''
All the gathering has been fortified by a childlike fascination with widgets and
technology. The new machine figures in story after story, etching into place a pattern:
He falls in love with some untried technology, claims ownership of it and tries to turn it
Sometimes it's failed. Often it's worked.
Take the electric potato sorter and the prune drier.dryer.
Starting out growing potatoes on rented land in Idaho in 1928, Simplot heard about a
new sorter and persuaded his landlord to go halves on the $256 machine.
A deft mechanic, Simplot improved the device so it made especially quick work of the
crop. He began sorting potatoes for neighbors.
Then, the rub: Simplot's landlord and partner objected, saying the device, and the
business it was spawning for Simplot, amounted to unwelcome competition for his
``We were arguing,'' Simplot recalls. ``He'd had a few drinks, and he said he'd flip me
for the whole machine.''
Simplot, who attributes his lasting health to abstinence from liquor and tobacco, called
heads on the coin his landlord tossed in the air.
Simplot walked away with the sorter, turning the dirt farmer into the state's dominant
potato man, sorting and shipping most of Idaho's potatoes. All the while he was urging
his farmer clients to use better seed and smarter techniques to grow a higher-quality
By 1940, Simplot was shipping onions, too. As the manager of his finances as well as
field operations, Simplot drove to Berkeley, Calif., to collect $8,500 owed by him from a
man who was buying his culled onions.
There Simplot met the man who bought the onions from Simplot's client.
``Turns out he was buying the onions after this guy dried them and made onion
powder,'' he recalls.
They had lunch. The man showed Simplot a prune drier dryer -- a device the
delinquent was using to dry Simplot's onions.
Simplot made his move. Using the back of an envelope, he wrote a contract with the
onion powder buyer to deliver to him 500,000 pounds of flaked and powdered onions
that year. It was a deal for the buyer and $500,000 in profit for Simplot -- not counting
the $8,500 he would collect from the first client.
The blessed prune drier dryer positioned Simplot for a contract whose scale exceeded
imagination: the supply of one-third of the dried potatoes and onions to American
troops during World War II.
Not everything turned out, of course.
Simplot walked away from a try at large-scale, American-style farming in Germany after
investing $30 million. The patchwork of expensive, family-owned parcels he was
acquiring triggered resistance.
``They taught me a hell of a lesson,'' he says. ``They put the squeeze on me, and then
there was a drought.''
He and the J.R. Simplot Co. paid penalties of $40,000 each on a 1977 charge of tax
fraud for failing to report more than $1 million in corporate income and claiming another
$250,000 in false deductions.
The previous year, Simplot was at the center of a record-setting commodity scandal for
which he paid $50,000 in fines and an undisclosed amount to settle a $1.4 million
lawsuit. He was charged with trying to manipulate Maine potato futures.
During a period of rapidly inflating prices, Simplot and others promised millions of
pounds of potatoes they didn't own. Instead of selling the futures contracts, the group
defaulted when the contracts were called and the potatoes due.
Simplot was banned from commodities trading for six years. He's candid and
unperturbed talking about the problems now.
``I made out all right,'' he shrugs.
He is back in commodities and now one of the biggest players in cattle futures.
As he walks into his Boise office one morning, the bounce in his step is pronounced as
he announces, to no one in particular, ``Cattle prices hit the limit!''
Then he peers across a secretary's desk at a computer terminal and reads the stock
quote on his newest abiding love: Micron.
- Venture into future
It's a far cry from prune driers.
But the boyish technical fascination that allowed Simplot to turn crude technology into
fortunes with the potato sorter and the prune drier dryer drove him headlong into
No aspect of Simplot's business career stirs his passion like Micron, the company he
calls ``my baby.''
It is the company that announced to the business world that J.R. Simplot had the vision
to compete in specialized, volatile markets alien to farming. Micron made Simplot
immune to the charge that he was just another boot-kick hick who got lucky with french
fries. It lent him international respectability.
Between the shares he and the Simplot Co. own, he controls 22 percent of Micron's
stock. Even though Micron shares have tumbled from a high of $90 last fall to about
$30 now -- a dive that has taken $1 billion from Simplot's portfolio -- he remains a
He slams his bird's-eye maple desktop with a business card sporting Micron chips and
talks of their power with pure awe.
``Look at this,'' he says, pointing to a chip smaller than a postage stamp. ``You know
how much information is on here? SIXTY-FOUR MILLION BITS!''
Simplot is bouncing in his chair. ``That's 64 books that have a thousand pages each!
He does not understand computers or how they work. He doesn't use one because
he's never learned to type.
But J.R. Simplot can fathom the economic power of these chips, what they can do. He
knows the chip makes decisions about things like a potato sorter -- a yes/no, yes/no
process that, when multiplied at blinding speed, suggests unimaginable economies of
Simplot grasped the power instantly in 1980, when he met with Micron's founders in the
rented basement of a Boise dentist's office. There he decided on the spot to stake $1
million to the memory chip company -- 40 percent of the start-up.
Simplot's passion for Micron has caused trouble within the company. His cheerleading
is relentless and, at times, a challenge in the face of trouble. He asserts that Micron
can restart construction of a stalled Utah microchip plant by the end of this year,
although several key stock analysts snort at the notion.
``I think he also told Fortune or Forbes that Micron was going to earn 12 bucks (a
share) this year,'' says Richard D. Owens of Pacific Crest Securities in Portland. ``It's
gonna be a little short.''
The precipitous fall in Micron stock -- it represents a 70 percent drop in the company's
value on paper -- was caused by a glut in the inventory of the chips it makes. Micron is
one of the 10 largest manufacturers of dynamic random-access memory (DRAM) chips
in a market dominated by Korean and Japanese companies. The only other American
manufacturer is Texas Instruments.
But Owens and other analysts say volatility is nothing new to chip-makers. Micron,
Owens says, is well postioned as a low-cost producer for that moment when the market
Meanwhile, Micron has led a new charge of dumping against its Pacific Rim
competitors. This follows Simplot's initiative in the 1980s, when he complained widely
about underpricing by Japanese chip-makers and helped persuade former President
Reagan to slap a $300 million tariff on imported chips.
Simplot occasionally has treated Micron, a publicly traded company, as if it were his
own private enterprise. He once reportedly lost his temper and told Micron President
Joe Parkinson that he was fired.
Parkinson told Simplot he didn't have the authority.
``Then, get out of my building,'' Simplot barked.
Parkinson kept his job a few more years, resigning after another bout with Simplot in
- Holds onto businesses
J.R. Simplot probably would likely not understand firing as because he's never worked
for anyone else. He repeatedly has refused to sell parts of his agribusiness or take it
But where Simplot found his independence is murky.
Many entrepreneurs of staggering success cite mentors or models. Or, with reluctance,
they talk of formative experiences early in life -- the kind of precipitous events that
shape a person's thinking.
If you ask Simplot, he'll wave off such discussion, affirming the best guess about his
early life: J.R. Simplot was born hard-boiled.
It certainly showed at age 14, when Simplot dropped out of school. He moved off the
Central Idaho farm and away from his taskmaster father and went to work for himself.
``He was too tough,'' Simplot says of his father, a man whose drive he now sees in
himself. ``He wouldn't let me go nowhere. I wanted to go to a basketball game, but he
said I had to stay and milk those damn cows. So I just left.''
Simplot's mother sent him off with four $20 gold certificates. It's all the stake Simplot
He moved into a boarding house in Delco, where public school teachers in the
cash-strapped farming town were paid in scrip that earned interest if they held it.
Simplot started buying it for 50 cents on the dollar and used the scrip for collateral on a
bank loan to buy 500 pigs for $1 each.
``Hell, the government was practically paying these farmers to kill 'em,'' he recalls.
He fattened those pigs through the winter on a diet of culled potatoes and the meat of
``I shot 'em, jerked the hides off and cooked 'em myself,'' he says.
By summer, Simplot had some of the only pigs around. He and sold them for $7,800, a
sum he calls `` a fortune in those days. ''
The money staked Simplot in the potato business and started his reputation as a
wheeler-dealer. He was 15.
He showed nerve, as only gamblers can.
What differentiates J.R. Simplot from many gamblers, however, is his confidence that
he'll come up aces. Friends say he lingers for hours daily at the Arid Club, a private
card club in Boise, luring the willing into just one more hand of gin rummy.
``He's the biggest gambler I've ever met,'' says his wife of the past 25 years, Esther.
Summers, his old friend, calls Simplot unshakable. He recalls Simplot once taking a call
on the futures market that cost him tens of thousands of dollars. He hung up. Then,
Summers says, he proceeded to ``twist your arm off for one point at the gin rummy
The loss of his first wife has left him without apparent scar, though it was out of the
blue. After 25 years of marriage, she 'd left Simplot for another man. Today he shrugs
the subject off, remarking that she had everything money could buy.
Esther says J.R. simply refuses to lose sleep over things he can't control. It's when he
can have an influence that he becomes relentless.
- Holdings dominate
Driving with Mr. Spud through Boise is a taking of inventory.
Though the city boasts only a smattering of his worldwide interests, Simplot holdings
dominate this city of 140,000. He speaks of buildings as if they were toys.
This factory over here is a ``biggie.'' That building over there ``is real.''
His mammoth house overlooks Boise, it's its massive windows shining from a 60-acre
knob of green. Just look for the 65-by-30-foot American flag -- the biggest Simplot
could order -- on a 200-foot-tall flagpole.
Neighbors in middle-class neighborhoods below once complained about the noise of
his flag snapping in the wind. So Simplot raised the flagpole to reduce the clamor.
The first stop is ``Esther's rig,'' the Esther Simplot Performing Arts Academy, which he
bought, renovated and endowed for $5 million. Simplot pulls the white Lincoln Town
Car into a handicapped space -- he has no handicapped sticker -- and bursts through
the door with his hand outstretched for the first person he sees, a middle-aged woman.
``I'm the old man Simplot,'' he announces.
``Yes, sir,'' the woman says. ``I know you.''
``And what outfit are you with?'' he asks.
``This is the Boise Philharmonic office,'' she says to the reporter in tow, and then,
turning to Simplot, notes, ``We're the fiddlers, Mr. Simplot.''
Simplot continues up the stairs, explaining, ``We got two rooms for the toe-dancers,''
meaning the ballet.
Esther Simplot was working a day job and and singing opera at night when Simplot met
her on a trip to New York in the 1960s. When she became his second wife and moved
to Boise, she helped form the opera and is became the driving force behind the
couple's hefty support for the arts.
``They've given hundreds of millions'' to charities around the state, says Steve Crook, a
fund-raiser with the performing arts academy. ``He could put his name on just about
anything in this town.''
Now Simplot wants to show off his favorite toy. He drives out of town toward Micron but
detours to cruise through Columbia Village, a subdivision he has developed with
Micron's 9,000 employees in mind. Columbia has about 900 homes and space for
``With a couple of thousand dollars -- and a job -- you can own one of these,'' Simplot
crows as he drives slowly past tidy suburban homes and cul-de-sacs. ``Look at this,
fella. It's big, and it's real.
``Ownership is the greatest source of pride anybody in America can have. You own
something. It's yours, and you'll fight to keep it.''
At Micron, Simplot drives up and down the rows in the parking lot.
``I just wanted to show you the cars,'' he says. ``Look at 'em. These are jobs.''
Finally Simplot sweeps through the lot at the headquarters for Simplot Food Services,
where he pauses to scowl at a smoker outside on a break.
``We don't allow people smoking in any of our buildings,'' he says. But he's wondering
how that one got through the hiring process. Simplot long has argued against hiring
Then he slows near the entrance and glares again. The boss is about to hold court.
``One thing I hate is these goddamn parking spaces for cripples,'' Simplot explodes.
``Nobody ever uses them. They're the best spaces, and they're always empty. It
doesn't make any goddamn sense.''
He counts. ``Eight, eight of the best spots we got, and we don't have a cripple working
- He sleeps little
Esther says J.R. gets about five hours of sleep a night.
He stays up late ``when he does his thinking,'' she says, and rises between 4 and 5
a.m. to read for an hour or two before exercise. The Simplots usually walk for a
half-hour each morning in one of Boise's parks, or they take a turn on the treadmill in
With two hip replacements, Simplot has given up jogging. ``I quit that when I was 75,''
he says. And he stopped riding horses at 81 `` 'cause I took a fall and broke a couple of
ribs. I was by myself. Boy, that hurt.''
The activity he won't quit is skiing, despite his doctor's advice. Simplot spends much of
the winter at his picturesque cabin near McCall.
``I still love it,'' he says. ``Next time around, I'm going to be a ski bum.''
The natural question, of course, is why he didn't become one -- a very rich one -- in
He can't. The man who gets his way and makes his own rules is, inevitably, the subject
of his own empire.
``I love my damn business,'' he says. ``It's mine. It's real. And nobody ever put a dollar
into it but me. I'll never sell it, because you couldn't buy another one.''
|Today is Wednesday, November 30, 2016
|November 23, 2016 - December 24, 2016
Selected Dates; 6:00 - 9:00pm
24th Annual WildLights
Marvel at over a million twinkling lights, as the desert’s favorite holiday
tradition returns with new features for 2016! Discover the new herd of life-
size, luminescent animal lanterns, have a snow-ball fight in the new holiday
Whoville, and explore the newly added pathways decorated in holiday
lights. And, all of the event’s favorite activities return including the tunnel of
lights, visits with Santa, live entertainment, arts and crafts, carousel rides,
WildLights begins Nov. 23 and runs selected nights through Dec. 24
Wednesday, November 23 Members Night
Friday, November 25 – Saturday, November 26
Friday, December 2 and Saturday, December 3
Friday, December 9 and Saturday, December 10
Friday, December 16 – Saturday, December 24
6:00 – 9:00pm
With last admission at 8:30
Park closes at 9:00pm
Members / Children / Military (with ID) $8
Children (under 3) FREE
*Children strollers and Wheelchairs available under first come first serve
|Vacant Lot for Sale
I have a lot in Bermuda Dunes Country Club. It is a large
lot facing North overlooking two fairways and a green.
Included with the sale of the lot is a set of plans for a 3
bedroom, 3 bath, 3000 sq.ft. home.
Price, $144,900. Call for more information or to look at
|CLICK ON AG TRAIL BELOW FOR FARMS
AND OTHER NEAT THINGS... CHRISTMAS
JANET MC MURTREY AND DANAE DELANY
BD HOA ASSOCIATION
These ladies are more than qualified to be on the Board and live here full time
Let's keep the Boards full of people who are nice to everyone!
THAT'S IT FOR THIS
I am a member of a very talented and diverse community choir. We
have 3 holiday concerts next month, each of which will include about
15 songs and accompaniment from local handbell and chamber
orchestra groups. Tickets can be purchased online. Please post the
attached ad on your blog to spread the word and good cheer!
CLICK HERE FOR TICKET INFO
Founded in 2007, American Outreach Foundation is a 501(c) 3 non-
profit organization with a mission where anyone suffering from any kind
of impairment qualifies for our assistance, regardless of age, race,
gender, or financial situation.
For the last nine years, American Outreach Foundation has combined
enthusiasm with an unceasing commitment to enhance the freedom of
mobility of those confined to the use of electric wheelchairs and
scooters; to help donate electric wheelchairs to veterans, children, and
adults; to answer the needs of those who suffer from any kind of
impairment; to be a compassionate public service.
The loss of mobility is a life changing experience and the efforts by the
American Outreach Foundation bring assistance to people that find
themselves with little or no options left. “Donate My Powerchair” is a
program collecting donations of used electric wheelchairs and scooters
in the Southern California area. Every donated electric wheelchair and
scooter received is refurbished, cleaned, sanitized, and checked for
parts to be repaired or replaced so as to pass a proper quality check.
The Foundation then donates these mobility devices in perfect working
condition to individuals who do not have the financial means to afford
them, those who do not have insurance, and those who do have some
level of health coverage, yet were turned down for this type of
assistance. Scooters are also provided to residents of local nursing
homes, hospices, and rehabilitation centers through the “Get Out of
the Room” project, enabling residents to move freely and take part in
The American Outreach Foundation has an industrial warehouse in a
convenient mid-valley location, near Cook Street. The American
Outreach Foundation provides about 100 electric wheelchairs and
scooters on average per year in the Coachella Valley and surrounding
areas. A great majority of recipients are Hispanic and Caucasian, while
a small percentage goes to African Americans and to American Indians.
Through the Assistive Technologies program, the Foundation provides
tools tailored for therapists that engage children with learning and
developmental disabilities (i.e. attention deficit disorder, autism,
dyslexia, visual impairments, and development coordination disorders,
amongst others). These “work stations” are low-technological devices
(similar to clipboards), called Adjustable Slant Boards, that have been
proven to grasp children’s awareness in everyday learning and
creative activities where they previously held little or no interest. The
originality and uniqueness of the slant boards designed by the
American Outreach Foundation is that the workable surface can be
easily adjusted into 14 different slanted positions, allowing the child to
find a position that is most comfortable for him/her in reading, writing,
or activity based work. With the support of various school districts in
and near the Coachella Valley, the American Outreach Foundation
distributes Adjustable Slant Boards to special education departments
The American Outreach Foundation produces several annual
fundraising events to champion the spirit of putting “service above
self,” bringing the community together through a common desire for the
betterment of those who need and deserve our assistance:
The American Outreach Golf Classic which is held at the Classic Club
in Palm Desert.
The American Car Show promotes car enthusiasm and community
The Raffle of Charity is a valley-wide raffle where participants can win
luxurious prizes, tax free.
The Desert Jamboree is a concert to promote “Music for Charity”
through jazz, blues, and adult contemporary music.
|NOTE FROM MRS. B
The American Outreach Foundation is a special project of Mr. B. As a Board Member he has been working very
hard to help and get this car show off the ground.
If you have a car you would like to enter: Please fill out the information provided,
or call Robert Nelson 760 772 9053 for more information.
They are working on a golf tournament to be held at Thunderbird Country Club in early May 2017.
Recently returned to BD and found a cord broken on
vertical blinds. Does anyone have experience with a
local person/firm getting this type of problem repaired?
Thanks for the help. Judy Cline
|Festival of Lights Parade
Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, CA, 92262
Saturday, December 3, 2016; 5:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, CA, 92262
P: 760-323-8276, Visit Website, Email: Jasmine.Waits@palmsprings-ca.gov
The 23rd Annual Palm Springs Festival of Lights Parade will take place on Palm Canyon Drive in downtown Palm
Springs on Saturday, December 3 at 5:45 pm. It begins at Ramon Road and Palm Canyon Drive and heads
northbound on Palm Canyon Drive to Tamarisk Road where it ends. The parade route is approximately 1.25 miles
long. The parade will last between 90 minutes and 2hours from start to finish. Come early to get a seat to watch the
parade as this is one of the most popular events in the Coachella Valley.
For more information on the parade, please contact Jasmine Waits, Special Events Manager at
Jasmine.Waits@palmsprings-ca.gov or (760) 323-8276.
CONGTRATULATIONS TO THE CLUB...and Myra (Membership
There seems to be a stampede to get Social Memberships!
A 'little bird' told me that if you reside inside the gates, they will
not charge you the initiation fee!
|Golf Tournament Fundraiser
Won't you join us? All proceeds benefit my family and the massive medical bills that we have accumulated in the fight against my
Thanks for passing on that info on charities. I knew they
were crooks long ago. I always give to DAV not
wounded warriors, I heard bad things about them.
Happy Thanksgiving from the middle of the Red Sea.
we are headed to Oman after visiting Spain, Italy, Israel,
Malta, Cypress and through the Suez Canal. Petra,
Jordan was the highlight for sure.
Cap and Carol
Captain Paul E. Lobo
Hi Cap and Carol:
So happy for you on this Thanksgiving day. What
a wonderful trip.
When will you be back to sign your book?
CROSSING THE BAR is a great read.
|SAVE THE DATE: DECEMBER 11TH
YOU are cordially invited to the La Quinta Open Studio
Art tour hosted by La Quinta Historical Society and the La
You can find us on 46-865 Golden Sands Pl., La Quinta,
not far from the intersection of Washington & HWY 111,
nearby the St. Francis Church.
From 1-5 we will have LIVE music with Jac, an awesome
musician living in Idyllwild, you can’t miss that, the
increasable art, munchies and libations.
See attachments for more details and hope to see you
Melody, Rainbow and Gideon (the artists)
About 20 studios participate in this beautiful event on
Dec. 11, 2016, 10am-5pm.
How would I go about placing items for sale on this site?
That's easy. Just send us all of your items,
description, price and contact number - along with
photos - and we do the rest.
Look forward to seeing what you are selling
I just had to respond. I was flabbergasted yesterday. Someone is a
little clueless. I go through my ballot, marking on the yellow sheet
who I want to vote for to represent me. I'm reading the instructions
and fold my ballot to put inside the included yellow ballot envelope.
Then, it tells me to place my sealed ballot into the window envelope
provided with postage and put in the mail box.
Hmmm. Only problem is THERE IS NO ADDRESS SHOWING UP
FROM THE WINDOW ENVELOPE. Nothing on the back of the
yellow ballot card. So, I slip the yellow ballot envelope in and there
is NOTHING on the white envelope to tell Mr Postman what to do
with this. Seems pretty FUNDMAMENTAL.
Someone dropped the ball. Do you need a new chair for your
Gosh, I am sorry you had such a hard time getting your vote
I did not experience your problem. There was a white sheet
included in the instructions. You simply cut it in the middle
and inserted it into the window envelope.
Maybe others had the same issue.
|Hi Mrs B,
I just read the blog and saw there was a bocce ball opening day.
Fun! Can anyone in the community get involved or is it only for
members of the golf club?
I am sorry, but the Bocce Ball is only for members of the Club.
Give Myra a call and see what they are offering
You know it's the holidays when you break out the shortbread
TOTAL TIME: 0:45
1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
3 tbsp. powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 c. unsalted butter
1 tbsp. red and green nonpareils or sprinkles
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
In food processor, combine flour, sugar, salt, vanilla, and butter
until combined. Place dough in bowl and knead until it comes
together.Add nonpareils and knead to combine.
On waxed paper, roll dough into a ½”-thick square. Freeze 15
minutes. Cut dough into 1/2-inch squares. Place dough onto large
Bake until cookies are light brown, 18 to 20 minutes.
|NOTE FROM MRS. B
It is with great sadness that I ask for prayers for Supervisor John Benoit. His long fight with cancer has taken its toll
on him. He is at home resting peacefully.
In case you are not familiar with Supervisor - here is some information I would like to share with you.
Supervisor John J. Benoit represents the eastern two-thirds of Riverside County on the Board of Supervisors.
Incorporating nearly 5,000 square miles, the 4th District stretches from Palm Springs and Desert Hot Springs, south to
the Salton Sea and east to Blythe and the Colorado River.
John has a life story of exceptional service to the public. John is a veteran of 31 years in law enforcement, starting
with the Corona Police Department. He attended the FBI National Academy and served as a volunteer fire captain
with the Sunset-Whitney Fire Department. His 29 years with the California Highway Patrol took him up and down the
state, working patrols in Los Angeles, in Sacramento and in Bakersfield. In 1988, he made the Coachella Valley his
home when he was promoted to commander of the California Highway Patrol’s Indio Station.
Long active in community service organizations as past president of both the United Way of the Desert and Indio
Rotary, John served on the Desert Sands School Board. Having retired from the Highway Patrol in 2001 and driven to
make a positive impact and serve his community, he ran for the State Assembly in 2002. John served three full terms
in the California State Assembly, representing the 64th District from 2002-08 and then representing the 37th District in
the California State Senate in 2008-09.
As a state lawmaker, John was successful in having 40 pieces of legislation signed into law, including the landmark
“Aryanna’s Law” to protect children in daycare centers. He was known for his ability to reach across the aisle to
improve public safety, transportation and education. He was awarded Legislator of the Year honors by the California
School Boards Association, the School Transportation Coalition, the California Narcotics Officers’ Association and the
Chief Probation Officers of California.
Following the death of his friend and mentor, Supervisor Roy Wilson, John was appointed to the Board of Supervisors
in 2009. He was re-elected to a second four-year term on June 3, 2014.
A graduate of Riverside’s Notre Dame High School and Riverside City College, John holds a bachelor’s of science
degree in public safety at Cal State Los Angeles and a master's degree in public administration at Cal State San
Bernardino. Having participated in language immersion programs in Mexico and Costa Rica, his bilingual skills are
invaluable to his work in Riverside County’s largest and most diverse district.
John and his wife, Sheryl, married in 1978. They are committed parishioners of Saint Francis of Assisi Catholic
Church. They have a daughter, Sarah, and son, Benjamin, and a beautiful granddaughter, Abrielle Benoit.
|ANOTHER NOTE FROM MRS. B
I have been corresponding with Kristin Sherman on a site called Nextdoor. Her daughter has cancer, as well. As you
know, medical bills are a real killer in any long term battle with health issues.
I am hopeful that many of you will consider playing golf in this tournament or donate to their cause.
Carnegiea gigantea - (Cereus giganteus)
The saguaro cactus is composed of a tall, thick, fluted, columnar stem, 18 to 24 inches in diameter, often with several large
branches (arms) curving upward in the most distinctive conformation of all Southwestern cacti.
The skin is smooth and waxy, and the trunk and stems have stout, two inch spines clustered on their ribs. When water is
absorbed, the outer pulp of the saguaro can expand like an accordion, increasing the diameter of the stem and, in this way, can
increase its weight by up to a ton.
The saguaro often begins life in the shelter of a "nurse" tree or shrub which can provide a shaded, moist habitat for the
germination of life. The saguaro grows very slowly -- perhaps an inch a year -- but to a great height, 15 to 50 feet. The largest
plants, with more than five arms, are estimated to be 200 years old. The average old saguaro has five arms and is about 30 feet
The saguaro has a surprisingly shallow root system, considering its great height and weight. It is supported by a tap root that is
only a pad about three feet long, as well as numerous stout roots no deeper than a foot, emanating radially from its base. More
smaller roots run radially to a distance equal to the height of the saguaro. These roots wrap about rocks providing anchorage
from winds across the rocky bajadas.
Sonoran Desert of extreme southeastern California, southern Arizona and adjoining northwestern Mexico.
Desert slopes and flats, especially rocky bajadas.
Creamy-white, three inch wide flowers with yellow centers bloom May and June. Clustered near the ends of branches, the
blossoms open during cooler desert nights and close again by the next midday. The saguaro flower is the state flower of Arizona.
Saguaro Cactus Flowers
The slow growth and great capacity of the saguaro to store water allows it to flower every year, regardless of rainfall. The
night-blooming flowers, about three inches wide, have many creamy-white petals around a tube about four inches long. Like most
cactus, the buds appear on the southeastern exposure of stem tips, and flowers may completely encircle stems in a good year.
A dense group of yellow stamens forms a circle at the top of the tube; the saguaro has more stamens per flower than any other
desert cactus. A sweet nectar accumulates in the bottom of this tube. The saguaro can only be fertilized by cross-pollination --
pollen from a different cactus. The sweet nectar, together with the color of the flower, attracts birds, bats and insects, which in
acquiring the nectar, pollinate the saguaro flower.
Sunset with Saguaro Cactus
Unlike the Queen of the Night cactus, not all of the flowers on a single saguaro bloom at the same time. Instead, over a period of
a month or more, only a few of the up to 200 flowers open each night, secreting nectar into their tubes, and awaiting pollination.
These flowers close about noon the following day, never to open again. If fertilization has occurred, fruit will begin to form
The three inch, oval, green fruit ripens just before the fall rainy season, splitting open to reveal the bright-red, pulpy flesh which
all desert creatures seem to relish. This fruit was an especially important food source to Native Americans of the region who used
the flesh, seeds and juice. Seeds from the saguaro fruit are prolific -- as many as 4,000 to a single fruit -- probably the largest
number per flower of any desert cactus.
While the whitewing dove (whose northern range coincides with range of the saguaro) is one of its primary pollinators, it is the
Gila woodpecker and the gilded flicker who can be observed making their home in the saguaro by chiseling out small holes in the
|NOTE FROM MRS. B
I found this article in one of my favorite magazines. I
hope you enjoy it.
Finding Fossilized Insects
Fossilized Flying Insect
In 1985 some friends and I went on a desert camping trip to
the old mining site of Borate which is located about 3.6 miles
east of Calico Ghost Town, California.
Our camp site was located on top of a high mound of
greenish colored mine tailings. In these tailings I found a
number of interesting and unusual rocks which appeared to
be sedimentary in nature and symmetrical in shape.
Abrading these rocks resulted in a petroleum-like odor.
Nodule collection area on tailings pile. Calico Peak is in the
Some years later, while going through some old issues of
Desert Magazine, I came across an article titled "Fossil
Insects from the Mojave" by Ruth A. Kirkby in the January
1959 issue. The article indicated that these odd rocks were
nodules from the "Barstow Formation" and were formed in
the Miocene Epoch some 10 to 50 million years ago. The
major significance of these rock nodules is the fact that they
contain a very rare form of insect fossil. These fossilized
insects are in the form of silica and are in a three
dimensional state, often retaining wings, legs, antennae and
colored markings. This type of insect fossil is found nowhere
else in the world!
Typical nodules which are 1 to 2 inches in size.
Having found this article quite fascinating and ready to
investigate the possibility of finding some of these fossilized
insects, I purchased a low power, stereo microscope and a
digital microscope camera.
The fossils are obtained from the nodules by dissolving the
largely calcium carbonate nodules in swimming pool grade
muriatic acid (hydrochloric acid). Nodule dissolution takes
about 20 minutes and is accompanied by vigorous out
gassing and the strong odor of petroleum due to the
petroliferous nature of the nodules. Once the nodules have
dissolved, the remaining insoluble residue is washed with
water and examined with a microscope for fossilized insects
or insect parts. The majority of the insects found will be
aquatic larval forms of the water beetle, Schistomerus.
Interestingly, besides finding fossilized insects and insect
parts, I have found a few insects and insect parts that were
not fossilized but were soft and pliable. These appeared to
have been preserved by small blobs of petroleum-like
material with which they were associated. A few fossilized
flying insects with wings were found as well as some very
tiny spiders and some yet smaller mites. The size of these
insect fossils was about 1/10 inch or less.
The following photo is what appears to be some type of leaf
hopper. This is one of those unusual findings in which the
insect, rather than being fossilized, appeared to be
preserved by a petroleum-like substance.
Soft, pliable, non-fossilized insect.
The following is a photo of a typical fossilized Schistomerus
At this point, the best specimen that I have found is that of a
small, flying insect. It retains its 3 dimensional shape, wings,
legs and colored markings. The following two photos, and
the one at the top of the page, are of that insect fossil.
It is odd to think that this insect was flying around some 13
million years ago (estimated), long before human beings had
ever evolved. And yet, here it is, nearly perfectly preserved
in silica. Quite a remarkable and exquisite specimen!
The last photo is that of a tiny, fossilized spider, looking as
though it were made of glass.
So there are some unusual fossils to be found in unexpected
locations in the Mojave.
|BERMUDA DUNES COUNTRY CLUB
MEMBER OF THE MONTH!
Please join us in recognizing this special staff member.
Every member of our team is important, but this month we
award this honor to Francisco Mendoza. His continued
positive attitude and dedication to excellence is a valuable
asset to the Membership.
What is BDSA doing about UPS and FED-EX packages for our
I sent your email to Bob Nelson and here is his reply:
The program started last year by Paul Stotesbury, DOS for our
gated community, will be continued this year. The essence of the
program is to get UPS and FED-EX vehicles off our streets and
eliminate theft of packages from our residences.
What happens is the delivery vehicles stop at the Main Gate, at a
designated drop zone, and they leave the packages there.
A delivery vehicle (Electric work vehicle) is then used to drop the
packages off at the residences. It a safer more effective way to
distribute the packages to our community and as proven last year
greatly reduces or eliminates theft.
Thanks to Paul and his staff we can all have a wonderful Holiday
Thanks for asking.
|Doing Well with Citrus in the Desert
I recently took a class on citrus at the Coachella Valley Water
District given by Don Ackley, who evidently also teaches at the
College of the Desert and the Living Desert.
There are seven main points to remember for doing well with
1. Pick the right tree. Some varieties do better here than others.
For example, Eureka Lemon does better than Meyer; Hamlin
Orange does better than Washington Navel. Check the Sunset
book for the best varieties in the desert. Some trees also do well
with a pollinator tree nearby. Mandarins need Tangelos and vice-
2. Pick the right place. Citrus need 8 hours of full sun and good
drainage. (Fill the planting hole full of water and make sure it
drains in 8 hours before planting.)
3. Plant it right. Don’t plant it too deep. Don’t add fertilizer to the
backfill; if anything, use a product called Ortho Upstart (a root
stimulant). Loosen the soil within a 2-foot circle around the tree
with a spading (pitch) fork. Then mulch with 2 inches of redwood
4. Minimize pruning. Thin out in the middle and keep the center
open. Don’t prune it to look like a lollipop. Let the foliage grow
down to the ground, because that not only creates additional
fruit-bearing area but also protects the trunk from sunburn.
5. Protect the trunk from the sun.Protection from sunburn is
why citrus often have their trunks painted white and come from
the grower with paper protection around the trunk. If the trunk is
exposed to sunlight, paint with a water- or rubber-based paint.
Do NOT use oil-based paint.
6. Fertilize 3 times a year.That would be January/February,
April/May, and August/September. Don uses Scott’s citrus
fertilizer at the rate of 1 cup per 5 square feet, and then really
soaks the plant. Generally it is better to soak the plant when
watering and let it dry out in between soakings. Be sure the
fertilizer also contains a small amount of the micronutrients iron
(Fe) and zinc as well as the 3 primary macronutrients: N-P-K.
7. Protect from pests and frost. Old sheets or Reemay cloth
(available from Amazon, among others) are a very light frost
|On a beautiful fall Saturday I met with our Board of Directors at
the Whitewater Preserve, which Friends helped acquire and
protect for the benefit of the rare riparian habitat and the
thousands of visitors who go there each year for recreation and
education. The Board and I devoted the day to evaluating the
progress we have made over the last year, and planning for the
year ahead. As we listened to the sounds of the Whitewater
River we took time to reflect on our upcoming anniversary. In
2017 we will reach 30 years of conservation and preservation of
the Coachella Valley and its surrounding mountains.
I'm proud to report that 2016 has been a huge success. For one,
the organization welcomed a new Executive Director (me). As
someone who has worked with Friends for over ten years, I am
honored to have this opportunity to direct our organization
forward to expand and strengthen our efforts to protect our
Amazingly, our volunteers recorded more than 14,000 hours in
support of our programs to protect our unique desert, mountains,
and wildlife. That translates into many miles of trails repaired,
acres of land cleared of invasive weeds and hours spent in the
classroom educating students young and old on the wonders of
our desert home.
The goals we have charted for 2017 are even more ambitious.
We are working with the City of La Quinta on the first phase of a
project to improve and standardize trail signs throughout our
Coachella Valley. In partnership with the Coachella Valley
Mountains Conservancy, we plan to build new trails in the
underserved north valley. We have plans to expand our youth
education program to more students who might not otherwise
have the means to explore and learn about the conservation land
that surround them.
Friends of the Desert Mountains
National Public Lands Day
This year we have been working hard in the La Quinta Cove to
improve trails, remove invasive species, and keep our natural
areas beautiful. We've installed new signs, lined trails, improved
pathways, built stairs, and removed fountain grass that was
taking water from native species.
Our greatest effort was National Public Lands Day on November
19th, where Friends volunteers and staff worked with the City of
La Quinta, the Bureau of Lands Management, the US Forest
Service, and the National Environmental Education Foundation to
improve the trails leading into the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto
Mountains National Monument. Together we removed 146
contractor-sized bags of invasive plants and trash! Thanks to all
of the volunteers who showed up and made it happen, and
thanks to Stuft Pizza for donating lunch!
Volunteer Spotlight: Richard & Natalie Shonerd
Over the last year, our volunteers have recorded more than
14,000 hours repairing trails, greeting visitors to the National
Monument Visitor Center, collecting data for ecological research,
leading hikes, and more. Their passion and dedication never
cease to amaze us! This month we sat down with volunteers
Natalie and Richard Shonerd to talk about how they got started
Colin: How did you become Volunteers?
Richard: I was retired, and I heard about the Friends, I don't
remember how. I signed up, and started doing weeds and trails
and land monitoring.
Natalie: Because they were outside.
R: It could be. I didn't want to work in the gift shop.
N: He was just being interested in being physical outside after 30
years of being inside. He likes plants, and knows about plants.
He's always had an interest in gardening, as you can tell from our
R: I worked at the water district, and was closely associated with
the water management department. We were always getting
questions about the best type of plants to have, so I learned how
to create a butterfly garden. That got me started on plants,
butterflies, hummingbirds, and birds.
C: Natalie how did you get started?
N: Richard dragged me up here to one of these meetings,
R: That would have been the next year.
N: I came up to the Volunteer party. I was not interested in trails,
but I got interested in volunteering in the Gift Shop.
R: I think that's why I suggested you start volunteering. I know you
love history, you love this valley, and you love people...
N: ... I love people ...
R: ... and I knew, or I suspected, this environment would...
N: ... would make me happy...
N: I am an original desert rat. I was brought here at the age of 2,
raised out on a farm in Thermal, and have seen the valley grow
since. I love the valley, I love the history of the valley, and I love
sharing all of that with people, so I really enjoyed being in the
Visitor Center. I like being up here because it brings me close to
nature. I always leave with a desire to go home and learn more.
Thanks to Richard and Natalie, and all of our volunteers!
- Colin Barrows, Conservation Coordinator
"Walking is the best possible exercise. Habituate yourself to walk
very far." - Thomas Jefferson
If we can sell out on this tournament that will cover our deductible and a bunch of the co-pays!
Thanks so much Mrs. B for your interest in our daughter and our family.
|Hi I spoke to Diane and she has a buyer for my houes 42395
castle harbour ct tel 760 345 3215 I will be there on the 10th
of Dec and will stay until Dec 28. I would appreciate it if you
would place an add in you blog asking anyone who would like
to buy any of the contents of my house they are welcome.
They can see what is in my house by going to 42395 Castle
Harbour CT on the internet.
EVERYTHING IS FOR SALE. I mean everything!!!!!!
Anytime would be good especially Dec 17 and 18
resident for 16 yrs and member for 10
|YOU ARE CORDIALLY INVITED TO
The Living Desert's Mildly Wild New Year's Eve Celebration
Join Us Saturday, December 31
5PM - 10PM
Start 2017 with a roar and celebrate at our Mildly Wild New
Year's Eve Party. Attendees can experience all the fun and
excitement earlier with an East Coast countdown to
LOCATION: Palm Garden (Outdoor Venue)
PRICE: $125 - Includes champagne toast and one free drink
THEME: Mildly Wild New York NYE Celebration with a nod
to the cheetah
FOOD: Surf and Turf
MUSIC: Dave Damiani & The No Vacancy Orchestra
Please RSVP by December, 28
Must be 21 or over and show valid I.D. to receive
champagne toast and drink ticket.
Switching from fossil fuels to renewables is considered a
challenge to the existing electric grid, which was not built to
handle solar and wind power. Renewable energy flows
intermittently onto the grid only when the sun is shining and the
wind is blowing. Batteries are seen as one solution to that
problem because they may be able to store electricity when it’s
sunny or windy, and then release that power onto the grid at
night or when the weather is calm.
The NOAA team's study shows that batteries may not be
necessary to fully harness wind and solar power. The key is
putting renewables in the best places to harness wind and solar
at all times of day.
The team used a complex computer model to simulate the ideal
system to produce a steady stream of renewable energy. The
result is an entirely new system of transcontinental high-voltage
1040 Red Hawk Road
Herman, MN 56249