Archive for March, 2014

Joshua L. Chamberlain

Posted in Pine Grove Cemetery with tags , on March 12, 2014 by Cade

chamberlain1September 8, 1828 – February 24, 1914

Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, a professor at Bowdoin College, volunteered to fight for the State of Maine in the U.S. Civil War. Despite having no previous military training, he became one of the most celebrated officers in the Union Army. His heroic hill-top stand at the battle of Gettysburg, for which he received the Medal of Honor, is depicted in the novel The Killer Angels (and later, the subsequent movie, Gettysburg.) Continue reading

W.C. Handy

Posted in Woodlawn Cemetery (Bronx) with tags , , on March 11, 2014 by Cade

handy1November 16, 1873 – March 28, 1958

William Christopher Handy was a legendary blues man who is often cited as the “Father of the Blues.” Handy was notable for drawing on folk and dixie jazz stylings and for his prolific publishing. The latter is especially important since he was one of the first African Americans to have success in music publishing. His scores such as “Memphis Blues,” “Yellow Dog Rag” and “Saint Louis Blues” would become standards of the genre’s early popularity. Continue reading

William Tecumseh Sherman

Posted in Calvary Cemetery (MO) with tags , on March 10, 2014 by Cade

sherman1February 8, 1820 – February 14, 1891

William Tecumseh Sherman did NOT mess around.  The Union General of the Civil War left a wake of destruction behind him everywhere he went during the conflict. His “scorched earth” tendencies left little doubt of his feelings for his enemy and for the war itself. A career military man, Sherman joined the Army out of high school and served in a variety of means from scouting gold deposits in California to battling Seminoles in Florida. When the Civil War broke out, Sherman received his commission and began leading troops as a colonel. He would go on to see action at many of the major battles of the war like Vicksburg, Shiloh and Bull Run. But, it was his capture of Atlanta and subsequent “March to the Sea” in 1864 that solidified his place in the history books. Continue reading

Edward Kennedy

Posted in Arlington National Cemetery with tags , , on March 10, 2014 by Cade

emk1February 22, 1932 – August 25, 2009

The youngest (and longest-surviving) of the Kennedy brothers, Edward “Ted” Kennedy had, perhaps, even more of an impact on American politics than his siblings thanks to said longevity. He served in the U.S. Senate representing Massachusetts for 47 years. He was a leader in Democratic party and came to be known as the “Lion of the Senate.” But, he was a Kennedy and Kennedys don’t get a free pass, so of course, his life had its struggles.  In 1969, the infamous Chappaquiddick incident resulted in a car in a Martha’s Vineyard tidal channel and the death of his companion, Mary Jo Kopechne. The incident was a national scandal, naturally, and firmly put the brakes on any Presidential aspirations Teddy would have had. Continue reading

Dobie Gray

Posted in Woodlawn Memorial Park (TN) with tags , on March 7, 2014 by Cade

gray1July 26, 1940 – December 6, 2011

Dobie Gray was a singer/songwriter who’s career spanned a number of genres. His biggest hit was 1973’s “Drift Away” which peaked at #5 on the Billboard pop chart. Later in his career he found himself in Nashville writing successful songs for many other artists like Ray Charles and George Jones. He was also wildly popular in South Africa for some reason and successfully toured there. Which was odd, because…well, apartheid. Nevertheless, Gray continued to record modest hits on the pop and country charts well into the 1990’s. Continue reading

James K. Polk

Posted in Tennessee State Capitol with tags , on March 6, 2014 by Cade

polk1November 2, 1795 – June 15, 1849

I believe many would consider James Knox Polk – the 11th President of the United States – as one of the “lesser known” Presidents. Sort of wedged in there between Millard Filmore and Franklin Pierce. But, in his single 4-year term in office, Polk managed to create quite the legacy. His biggest accomplishment, from a historical standpoint, was taking the nation to war against Mexico over a little plot of land called “Texas.” The U.S. won the Mexican-American war and the landscape of the country, specifically the southwest, was altered forever. And, just for good measure, he also threatened to go to war with Britain over the Pacific Northwest. But that conflict never materialized. Continue reading

Marty Robbins

Posted in Woodlawn Memorial Park (TN) with tags , , , on March 5, 2014 by Cade

robbins1September 26, 1925 – December 8, 1982

Martin David Robinson (Marty Robbins) was a singer, actor and sometime NASCAR driver who found his career by way of the Navy and a small-time Phoenix television show. His major country hits “El Paso” and “A White Sport Coat and a Pink Carnation” were also successful on the pop charts. Robbins appeared in a couple of films such as Guns of a Stranger and the Clint Eastwood movie, Honkytonk Man. In his spare time, Marty liked to race cars. Like, professionally. Continue reading

Adam “DJ AM” Goldstein

Posted in Hillside Memorial Park with tags , on March 5, 2014 by Cade

djamMarch 30, 1973 – August 28, 2009

Known to the music world as “DJ AM,” Adam Goldstein was a DJ, musician and producer who was known for his work in the band Crazy Town and for his collaborations with artists like Will Smith and Blink-182’s drummer, Travis Barker. While touring with Barker in 2008, the small jet they were travelling in crashed, killing everyone else on board. Goldstein and Barker both survived with significant injuries. Continue reading

Samuel Adams

Posted in Granary Burial Ground with tags on March 5, 2014 by Cade

00d/25/arve/g2396/015September 27, 1722 – October 2, 1803

Politician. Statesman. Founding Father. Future Beer Magnate? Well, the first three, anyway. Samuel Adams was a key figure in the lead up to the American Revolutionary War. A failed businessman, Adams turned his attention to politics (naturally) where he became involved in local Boston tax collecting. Ironically, it would be taxes imposed from Great Britain that would spur Adams – and many others – to begin the long and bloody process of gaining independence. He was a prominent player in the famous “Boston Tea Party” of 1773. He also participated in both the First and Second Continental Congress meetings that led to the Declaration of Independence. Continue reading

Bat Masterson

Posted in Woodlawn Cemetery (Bronx) with tags on March 4, 2014 by Cade

masterson1November 26, 1853 – October 25, 1921

William Barclay “Bat” Masterson was just your typical Canadian, Old West lawman/gambler turned newspaper columnist/boxing beat writer. It’s a story as old as time, really. Masterson served as a sheriff and marshal all throughout the west hitting up hot spots like Dodge City and Tombstone, oftentimes alongside fellow lawman, Wyatt Earp. Bat ran gaming halls in these towns (and others) as well, because…well, it was the Wild West. Continue reading