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   Good Morning Kossacks and Welcome to Morning Open Thread (MOT)
We're known as the MOTley Crew and you can find us here every morning at 6:30 Eastern. Feel free to volunteer to take a day - permanently or just once in awhile. With the auto-publish feature you can set it and forget it. Sometimes the diarist du jour shows up much later, that's the beauty of Open Thread...it carries on without you! Just let us know in the comments. You can click on the MOT - Morning Open Thread "heart" if you'd like us to show up in your stream every day.

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For more than a century before the better known "underground railroad" that ran to the north, there was a lesser known one that ran in the opposite direction, south to Spanish held Florida, Mexico, the Caribbean as well as into parts of the American West.

Stories about this little known railroad will be shared on June 20 - 24 in St. Augustine at the 2012 National Underground Railroad Conference.

It is widely believed that once South Carolina was established in 1670, that slaves began fleeing into Florida.  The first mention of escaped slaves appeared in Spanish records in 1687 with a mention of eight slaves, including a nursing baby, that showed up in St. Augustine.

Spain's policy, a policy that was formalized in 1693, was to refuse the return of the slaves and instead grant them religious sanctuary with the condition that those seeking sanctuary convert to Catholicism.  The policy stayed in effect until 1790 when then Secretary of State, Thomas Jefferson convinced the Spanish crown to end it.

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It was likely that the promise of freedom in Florida is what led to The Stono Rebellion which occurred just outside Charleston, SC on September 9, 1739 was the largest slave revolt in British North America. Some twenty slaves raided a store and gathered guns and other weapons.  These slaves were believed to have come from what is now Angola and that they had once been soldiers in their native land.  At the time, Angola was a Portuguese outpost and the slaves would have been Catholic.  Mark Smith, a historian at the University of South Carolina said:

They would have known about the rumor of freedom in Spanish Florida and decided to start the revolt on Sept. 9, the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

They have a white flag, which is not a flag of surrender. It’s a flag of celebrating Mary, and they shout "Liberty." They are not revolting just as slaves, but as Catholic slaves.

Twenty whites and 34 slaves died in the rebellion.  Some unknown number made good their escape into Spanish Florida.

American Indian tribes, including the Creeks, Cherokees , Yemassee and Seminoles assisted these escaped slaves.  

Gullah, sometimes called Geechee, is what linguists call an English-based creole language that was prevalent among the South Carolina slaves and explains why the culture, language and food exists along the Northeast Florida coast to this day.


For a century, underground railroad ran south

Black Seminoles -- Gullahs Who Escaped From Slavery

The Gullah Language

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Comment Preferences

  •  Good TGIF Morning, MOTlies (14+ / 0-)

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    Have a fantastic day everybuddy ;~D

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 03:10:18 PM PDT

  •  Good Morning MOTleyville (4+ / 0-)

    Interesting as usual JD !!!

    Nascar is in Fontana, CA this weekend.

    Hope your Friday goes well.

  •  Indeed there was! (5+ / 0-)

    When I teach this, I use a map (its provenance is long gone, alas) that shows the east coast stream running north into Maine and Vermont and a southern arrow going toward Florida.  Stono, absolutely, and San Agustin was especially welcome because the Stono rebels were already Catholic.

    Economic Left/Right: -6.00, Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.31 All it takes is security in your own civil rights to make you complacent.

    by Dave in Northridge on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 03:40:48 AM PDT

    •  Good Morning, Dave. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thenekkidtruth, eeff

      This was all new to me!  I'm glad you, as a teacher, were aware and certainly your students have benefited.  

      Yes, I could see the Spanish would have welcomed them with open arms seeing as how they were already converted.

      Thank you for adding to the conversation and have a wonderful day.

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 03:53:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Great diary, JaxDem (7+ / 0-)

    I think a lot of the belief (wrongheaded in my opinion) that we are a post-racial society could be put to rest if more attention were paid to the real world that slaves endured. Reading the history helps us understand the real oppression that existed and still exists when people are treated differently because of their skin color.

    The need to escape the unimaginable horror of a life of slavery led people to risk a lot.

    The story is also a reminder that at one time organized religion seemed to embrace human rights. Now they have embraced those who advocate for the death penalty, wars of choice and destroying the social safety net that keeps people from starving.

    Thanks for making me think this morning.

    Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

    by JanF on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 03:42:43 AM PDT

    •  Good Morning, Jan! (4+ / 0-)

      Thank you for reading and I appreciate your insights of which I completely agree.

      We are definitely not a post racial society.

      Hope you have a fun weekend -- do I recall there being a basketball game this weekend?

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 03:57:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Club team tournament on Sunday morning. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem, thenekkidtruth, Oh Mary Oh

        We have to be there at 7:30 and it is an hour away. Yikes! The good news is that all of the games are in the morning so we will be back by 1pm and have the rest of the day to nap enjoy.

        The WIAA girls high school basketball tournament is going on right now here in Madison. They play at the Kohls Center which is where the UW teams play. The quarterfinals, semi-finals and championship games are all on local TV (as they are every year). Great time to be a basketball fan. We are scouting for the Badgers!!

        It is fun watching the young kids play. My daughter gets a lot more out of watching high school players than she does watching college players. We were watching a game last night and she was commenting on how the kids were being very disciplined and not fouling and how they were driving to the basket. The college game is more physical and much much faster and it is hard for her to see the plays develop. I may set my DVR to pick up today's daytime games so she can watch them when she gets home from school.

        Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

        by JanF on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:17:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  GM JanF (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thenekkidtruth, JaxDem, Oh Mary Oh

      so is the stack decreasing?

      Hope your Friday goes the way you want it too !

    •  Well-said Jan...... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem

      Good points!

      Good morning!

      Compost for a greener planet.............got piles?

      by Hoghead99 on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 06:33:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  And ... be careful what you pray for!! (7+ / 0-)

    I am just glad that the Packers passed up the "opportunity" to be blessed with a Tebow. Maybe the Jets are doing penance for the Favre crocs/cell phone/harrassment incident.

    Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

    by JanF on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 03:46:11 AM PDT

  •  Donut day at work! (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eeff, thenekkidtruth, JaxDem, Oh Mary Oh

    About the high point of the working week.

    Laid a bunch more ink on what now is dubbed "Behemobile"....

    I'm thinking about giving The Belle of Brass a spacehship girl. Maybe A.I. produces a spunky thing who fills out a turn of the century tent-dress quite snuggly. And tweaking the Steam Punk thing, she's in black & white and speaks through intertitles.

    "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

    by Stude Dude on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 03:47:20 AM PDT

  •  Wow . . . I never knew this. (5+ / 0-)

    We have hit a low. 59 degrees, with a high of only 72 today.
    In MARCH. In CHICAGO!

    My mulberry tree is already mulling. Every fruit tree is fool of bud and flower. People are cutting lawns for the second time. This is unheard of. Never in my 54 solar orbits have I seen this.

    What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

    by agnostic on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 03:48:38 AM PDT

    •  Good Morning, agnostic! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thenekkidtruth, agnostic

      I know.  This weather is scaring me.  How hot a summer will it be?  I do not like this at all.  Will it last until next Fall?  ::in my best Dr Seuss voice::

      Have a great weekend.

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:04:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Ha! (4+ / 0-)
      Never in my 54 solar orbits have I seen this.
      We set record highs in Madison twice this past week.

      I looked out the back window yesterday morning and it was like someone splattered the wetland area behind my house with green paint.

      It is pretty but kind of alarming. Does this mean 100 degrees in July?

      Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

      by JanF on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:20:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I was trying a case in DuPage last week (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem, Oh Mary Oh, thenekkidtruth

        And the building manager refused to turn off the heat, because he had strict orders to keep it on til April.

        Perspiration city.

        Apparently the chief judge had enough and forced him to turn it off early, on Tuesday.

        My poor furry pups are shedding like crazy, all 260 lbs of them.

        What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

        by agnostic on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:27:10 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  That's a lot of doggies! (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          thenekkidtruth

          My one doggie weighs 13 pounds ... and she is considered overweight!

          I have resisted turning on the air conditioning but it was difficult yesterday and Wednesday. We controlled the temperature as much as possible by lowering blinds.

          Today should be easier.

          Sheesh. Talk about rigid! Not to mention wasting energy. I am glad that the judge overrode the building manager.

          Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

          by JanF on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:43:10 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  the great pyre still thinks he's a lap puppy. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            JaxDem

            when there's lightning, he will do everything possible to curl up on my lap and hide.

            Of course, at any distance, he is often confused with a horse.

            Honey is rather short. when she walks him it looks hilarious. They almost see eye to eye.

            What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

            by agnostic on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 06:22:31 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  A great history lesson (6+ / 0-)

    The last community burned by the KKK in its overt racial wars was in Florida, not Mississippi or Alabama. I don't think there's anywhere else in the country with the percent of gated (almost all white) communities as north Florida. Talked to a friend whose winter home is just a small trailer in what we used to call a park and now must call a "modular home community" and she described how the residents there all freak out if the gate keeper is late or a stranger shows up.

    Sanford, unfortunately, is typical of the neighborhoods around there. It's so sad.

    •  Good Morning, MsTribble (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thenekkidtruth, Oh Mary Oh

      While we in NE Florida do have some gated communities, we are no where near what is found in the southern part of the state.  Boca, Palm Beach, Miami; that is where one would find the most and the most expensive gated communities.  Arizona also has more than their fair share.  The warmer the clime, the more the snowbirds are attracted.  So, in actuality it is the the transplanted northerners among us who may be most responsible for the racial behavior seen in this state.

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:11:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  My example (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        thenekkidtruth, Oh Mary Oh, Hoghead99

        was from the West Coast (Ft Myers) where most are midwesterners. Actually, the Miami/Ft Lauderdale area is more ethnically diverse and a bit more tolerant (although I hear west coasters say that's why they don't want to live on the east coast.)

        It's very sad. The very richness of Florida is it's wonderful multiculturalism, probably the best in the nation. (NOLA folks may want to argue with me:))

        What is so sad is that it's based on paranoia. Hopefully, the legacy of that seemingly-great young man will be a national examination of conscience.

  •  Frankenstein Fundamentalism (4+ / 0-)

    I was commenting on another diary about Idaho earlier, and began to think how the far right--aided and abetted by the power brokers behind the curtain in the GOP--has moved from being their puppets to now being unleashed Frankenstein monsters. It was well known that Daddy Bush seized on George's (recovery-related) newfound interest in religion to make him his liaison to that group, in a way that was very well planned.

    But now the far-right is demanding more and more of the corporatists who have sold the soul of the party to them, pushing the party and their candidate to the right. Can't wait to read the platform.

  •  Morning MOTlies (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    thenekkidtruth, JaxDem, Oh Mary Oh

    A good Friday to you all!

    Trayvon Martin has been much on my mind this week.

    I think of Emmett Till, and hope that history will not repeat itself here.

    TY, JaxDem for today's diary.

    For Justice.

    This song is just a reminder to remind your fellow man
    That this kind of thing still lives today in that ghost-robed Ku Klux Klan
    But if all of us folks that thinks alike, if we gave all we could give
    We could make this great land of ours a greater place to live

    "Space Available" is the largest retail chain in the nation.

    by Free Jazz at High Noon on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:04:18 AM PDT

    •  Good Morning, Jazz! (2+ / 0-)

      It is always wonderful to see you.  

      Gov. Scott has appointed State Attorney Angela Corey of J'ville to head the investigation into the shooting of Trayvon Martin.  

      I sincerely agree and hope that history not be repeated in this case.  

      For Justice
      I hear you, Jazz.  I hear you.

      Have a wonderful day and thank you for another fine contribution today!

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:16:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  History repeats itself when we refuse to learn (3+ / 0-)

      from it. That is "we", the collective we, not "we" as in us. I think that most of us here in the progressive blogosphere  get it.

      But not all. It was disheartening to see some of the comments in Tim Wise's diary.

      Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

      by JanF on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:34:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Gullah (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, Oh Mary Oh, angelajean, eeff

    Knew about it, but I was researching for more information about that creole language just this past weekend with little success.

    Thx for this!  Language is just another form of music, imo.

    “Are you calling the Koch brothers during the recess?” - Henry Waxman

    by thenekkidtruth on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:21:44 AM PDT

    •  When my husband was active duty Navy (4+ / 0-)

      we were stationed in Charleston three times and my brother in law lives in Hilton Head so I've heard a good deal of Gullah.  It is a delight to the ears.  

      Typing "Gullah" into the YouTube search box will yield some good results.

      There is a "Skin Quilt Project" that is associated with the Gullah that I uncovered, but have not had time to explore. One more thing on my "to do" list ;D

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:29:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for this! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, thenekkidtruth, eeff

    I never learned about this up north.  In light of recent events, it's ironic that Florida was seen as a haven.

    In other news, MAD MEN on Sunday night!!! And only 4 concerts and a bat mitzvah between me and my weekend on Monday!

    •  Good Morning, Fiddlegirl! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thenekkidtruth

      Wow, you are going to be a busy gal this weekend.  Hope your thumb has improved greatly.

      Hope you find some time this weekend to have some fun ;D

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:52:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Good Morning! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, thenekkidtruth, eeff

    Have some extra time this morning as the neighborhood where the hotel is at is late to get going and the laundry isn't open!

    Our stuff is packed and sent. The landlord wanted the keys last night instead of this morning so he only got a half-heartedly mopped kitchen floor (don't know what he would have done if we hadn't been cleaning rooms as they movers emptied them). So as soon as the shipment passes customs it will be on it's way to Washington DC. Should take about 8-12 weeks.

    We hit the open road tomorrow and are very excited to see more of Argentina!

    Hasta luego!

    •  Good Morning, angelajean! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      angelajean, thenekkidtruth, eeff

      Enjoy your last few days in Argentina.  It must be bittersweet for your family.  

      Were you allowed an express shipment of necessities?  

      Life will be an adjustment for awhile, but then you and yours are accustomed to that.

      Enjoy and I hope you can stay in touch between now and DC.

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:55:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We did send an express shipment (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem, thenekkidtruth, eeff

        And we have a lot of our basics in storage in CA which we will have sent ahead. We couldn't use US electronics here so know we will have them early on the other end!

        You have the bittersweet right. The boys will have the hardest time as they made good friends. They both have plans tonight with friends and then they want to see them again when we are back in town for the last two days before we fly. It's hard at the end because we say goodbye but we also know we might see a person one more time. Or, we don't say goodbye and then realize we won't see a person again. It can be tough. I don't think it ever gets easier but we learn more coping skills with each move. My latest coping skill has been to invest less in friends on the ground and more in friends online... not 100% smart but for 1 year moves, it seemed to work. Most people need more than a year to develop a good friendship anyway.

        I'll touch base when I can. I like the MOT because it gives me a place to drop in and catch up with guys :)  Thanks for being here!

  •  Bachmann turnover drive on MSNBC! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, thenekkidtruth, eeff

    What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

    by agnostic on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:49:39 AM PDT

  •  Hola de Valparaiso (5+ / 0-)

    been down here in Valpo since wednesday. WOW!! what a place. Its a really, really unusual city but whats most unusual about it is that its like walking around in an outdoor art museum. there's murals all over the walls. Famous artists come down here to do this, from Chile and worldwide. Its stunning.
    I'm doing a diary thats will come out tommorrow morning with a lot more pictures like this.
    Photobucket
    Photobucket
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    Ciao, all, just keep moving
    exlrrpPhotobucket

    Happy just to be alive

    by exlrrp on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 04:56:00 AM PDT

  •  I see that Sen Dick Durbin (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    thenekkidtruth

    is setting up a Judiciary Committee hearing regarding bounties in pro football.  Supposedly the other major sports as well.

    “We will have a hearing and put on the record what sports leagues and teams at the professional and collegiate levels are doing to make sure that there’s no place in athletics for these pay-to-maim bounties. I want to hear the policies and practices in each of the major sports and collegiate sports that are being put in place and have one explore whether federal legislation is required.”    ~ Source

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 05:01:10 AM PDT

    •  Good idea. The NFL would only be too happy (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem

      to sweep this under the carpet, claiming that they "took care of it".  Putting it on the record will make that more difficult.

      Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

      by JanF on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 06:30:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  One point to be made... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, eeff

    Gullah refers to people who developed a creole language on the relatively isolated barrier islands off the coast of South Carolina.  Geechee peoples and language is a closely related combination of African and English languages that developed on islands off of the Georgia Coast.  The point is they are very similar but they are not the same.

    •  Thank you, philip (0+ / 0-)

      I had thought that too, but the story and wiki both say they are one and the same.  I have lived in Charleston and have family in Hilton Head and my understanding was the same as your.  

      I vote for our being right ;D

      Thank you for reading.

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 06:41:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  G/M MOTleys........ (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, eeff

       Hope all is well! About a half hour ago my attention was drawn to movement outside my window, what do you know, a great blue heron on the near shore of the pond, oh mebbe 40'-45' away. He had something in his beak!

       Grabbed the handy binoculars in time to watch him shake the snake he'd caught several times, 'till the snake went limp, then down the hatch! Wow! Never seen anything like it.......

       Have a better day than that snake!

    Best, HH99

    Compost for a greener planet.............got piles?

    by Hoghead99 on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 06:47:41 AM PDT

    •  Good Morning, HH (0+ / 0-)

      How cool.  I love those unexpected sightings.

      Hope you're doing alright.  I know you're missing your buddy.  

      I've been out pulling weeds in the garden.  Some of my strawberries seem to have moved during the winter.  One was out of the raised bed and in the walkway.  It was tricky getting it out too, since I have a weed barrier down beneath the wood chips.  I have no clue how it got itself there!

      Enjoy your day.

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 06:52:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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