Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Mad Anthony Stew

Recipe for Mad Anthony Stew:

You will need:
several gallons of fresh well water
1 large cauldron or kettle
1 butcher knife
1 boning knife
1 saw
1 shovel
1 13-year-old oak casket-aged, well-preserved corpse of General Mad Anthony Wayne
2 quarts of bourbon
serves one

  • Fill the cauldron with water and place over a fire. You want a nice rolling boil.
  • Drink all of the bourbon, you will need it to complete the next steps.
  • While the water is coming to a boil, dig up the corpse of Mad Anthony Wayne with your shovel.
  • Remove the uniform. You will want this later!
  • Next, remove the head using a saw to sever the spinal cord.
  • Divide the body into equal quarters with the butcher knife. 
  • Using the boning knife, separate and remove as much meat from the bone as possible and set aside.
  • Boil the bones in the cauldron until the clingy bits of tendon and meat fall off easily.
  • Cook down until it is a thick broth. About 30 minutes.The bones should be nearly clean by then.
  • Remove the boiled bones and pat dry. Place them into a large box and give to Issac Wayne.
  • Return the remaining broth, raw fillets of organ meat, uniform and utensils to the original grave. Pour the broth over this and reseal.
  • Enjoy!
  • Perhaps you would like a little background...

    General Mad Anthony Wayne, after Gen. Harmar and Gen. St. Clair failed, was the heroic frontier General who finally defeated the Indians in the Old Northwest Territory at the 1794 Battle of Fallen Timbers. The resulting 1795 Treaty of Greenville he negotiated ceded most of Ohio to the Americans and ended major hostilities in the region until Tecumseh came along and stirred things up again in the early 1800s.

    Fallen Timbers monument in Maumee OH
    Born January 1st, 1745 in Pennsylvania to Irish immigrant parents, Wayne served in the American Revolution and became a good friend of President Washington as a result. However, his legacy will always be his service in the Old Northwest Territory. Countless, cities, counties, townships, businesses, parks, roads and schools are named after him all across the US but predominantly in PA, OH, and IN. He essentially saved the US Army and the country from ruin at a pivotal time for our young country. Remember, most of the standing US Army had been wiped out at St Clair's Defeat just a few years earlier. Despite all this, you would be hard-pressed to find anyone that really knows anything about him these days. I suppose over time his status diminished giving way to new heroes.

    Mad Anthony was a nickname given to him for his strict disciplinary military methods. One time Wayne sentenced five Army deserters to death. He carried this out by having the hair and eyebrows shaved off of one of the deserters, had him lashed 100 times and a "D" branded on his forehead. Then he had this man execute the other four. Tough love. The Shawnee referred to him as "the chief who never sleeps" and nicknamed him Black Snake. Up until then, the Native Americans could usually predict the methods and patterns of their foes but this General even marched at night. It was these things that earned him fear and respect of friend and foe. A man of his stature would surely be given proper respect even in death. You would think.

    do NOT park in Wayne's spot. He will mess you up.
    Wayne died at the age of 51 in PA on December 15, 1796, unexpectedly after a painful gout attack which was a fairly common ailment in those days. This was just over a year after the events that made him a legend. He was buried in Erie PA near where he died. In 1809, his son Isaac claimed that his Father's wish was to be interred in the family plot in Radnor PA. He rode up on his horse and buggy, had the body exhumed and expected to only find bones. Everyone was surprised to find a fairly well-preserved body. No one at the time was really sure why the body was in good shape after 13 years in an oak casket but Issac wasn't prepared to take a whole body back. So they did what made sense. They got a bigger buggy, right? Not quite.

    They dismembered Wayne's body and boiled the flesh off in a big cauldron. Yes, you read that correctly. They cooked Mad Anthony's corpse, took the bones out, put them in a box and reburied in the original grave, the remaining flesh, his uniform and the instruments used to dismember the body.

    Issac then took the bones on a 400-mile journey back home. But the horror doesn't end there. Along the way, the box fell off the cart several times spilling the bones everywhere. In the process, many of the bones were lost along the way and were never recovered. What remained of the bones were reburied in Old Saint David Church Cemetery in Delaware County PA on July 4th, 1809. There is a legend that Wayne's ghost haunts Route 322 in search of his bones.

    The blockhouse that was constructed at the original grave in Erie PA burned down in the mid 19th century. The grave site was pretty much lost until 1878 when it was rediscovered. The blockhouse was then rebuilt and the items that were buried in 1809, his uniform and the dissection tools were buried once again. Maybe there is a little Mad Anthony Stew left there too.

    Weird US
    - Roadside America

    Friday, October 19, 2012

    The Eruv Has Been Approved

    I think it's the 3rd one from the bottom.
    ...I think.
    You may be surprised to know that there is a continuous unbroken wire that surrounds roughly a three square mile area around most of the Cincinnati community of Amberley Village and portions of Roselawn and Golf Manor. This wire is attached to utility poles but it does not carry electricity, voice or data of any kind. If at any time you were wondering if the wire has become severed, you can call a telephone hotline to check the status. This type of thing is not unique to Cincinnati. Most major cities have one. In fact, some cities have several. I just found out I drive by one, or through one really, nearly every day on my work commute.

    This cable enclosed section of town is called the Eruv District. It's pronounced Air-oov and it is part of the Jewish religion. Now I am not Jewish and I have never heard of such a thing. I first learned of this in a book called "Amberley Village, Its History And Its People" by Richard S. Kerstine.

    Orthodox Jews have strict laws they must follow including what they can and cannot do on the Sabbath Holy Day. One thing an Orthodox Jew can't do is carry things from one domain to another. Or in other terms, a private property to a public property. So, if you were living in Roselawn for example, it would be against Mosaic Law to drive to Kroger and pick up some kosher groceries and bring them home unless you did it within the territory of the established and approved eruv.
    In the very very long ago past, cities and neighborhoods had walls that grouped a community together and this constituted a private domain so this wasn't a problem as long as you stayed within the walls. As Orthodox Jewish communities settled in newer predominantly non-Jewish urban and suburban areas this made it hard for them to do pretty much anything on the Sabbath. The eruv concept came along to define the boundaries of a designated area within which Orthodox Jews can treat public spaces, shared by all the community, in the same way as private space at home. And it can just be a wire on utility poles. Apparently, the rules and exceptions as well the acceptance of the idea of the eruv itself is a bit complicated and not even accepted by all people of the Jewish faith. I won't go into all that here. If you want more details I would suggest this site it or perhaps read the Wikipedia article. Or call up a rabbi if you'd like. Your choice.

    since 1987, the Cincinnati Eruv District
    The concept of an eruv dates back 2000 years but in the late 1890s Orthodox Jews in St. Louis, Missouri, constructed the first documented Eruv in the United States. The Cincinnati Eruv District has been in effect since 1987 and cost private donors $5000. Natural barriers can form part of the border, such as a river or a lake. In the case of Cincinnati eruv, I-75 was considered acceptable as a natural barrier and is used as one part of the boundaries  It is important that the eruv stay intact so every Friday it is someone's job to check on the continuity of the wire. According to the Cincinnati Shuls website, it is "always to be presumed that the eruv is not up". To check, you can call their eruv hotline at 513-351-ERUV. I called and the eruv is up at the time of this writing. I've also learned that another eruv is under construction just north of the recently closed Blue Ash Airport property. Cincinnati will soon be a two eruv town!