Just off the cuff, one would think that wanting to claim descendence from a slave loving Founder would be embarrassing. Why try to connect to what you hate? Somehow $$$$ maybe?????
Hemmings was probably impregnated by Thomas Jefferson's relative, who by all accounts, was fascinated with all things African. Hemmings herself was the half sister of Jefferson's first wife.
Lucian Truscott IV is a flaming jerk, and not as good a writer as his dad. On the other hand, his less well known brother, James Truscott, is a gentleman. Ah well, it happens in the best of families.
Lucian Truscott III, the commander of the Third Infantry division in Sicily and commander of the 3rd Army after Patton's relief, was also a gentleman. His "Command Missions" is the best read of all the general's memoirs of the second world war.
posted on 05/03/2003 8:11:40 AM PDT
(Time is Relative, at least in my family.)
Perhaps we could loan them an Admin Moderator for some ZOT! action.
Have a look at this.
This is series.
posted on 05/03/2003 8:40:29 AM PDT
by E. Pluribus Unum
(Drug prohibition laws help support terrorism.)
David Works, who claims to be a sixth-generation grandson of the union of Jefferson and Hemings, said he has asked federal authorities to investigate the matter.
Calling in the Feds? Was the Viking Kitties' line busy?
Hemings kin attend Monticello event
But slave's descendants were only invited guests
BY CALVIN R. TRICE
TIMES-DISPATCH STAFF WRITER May 04, 2003
CHARLOTTESVILLE - About 20 descendants of slave Sally Hemings milled about the historic estate of her owner, Thomas Jefferson, as the annual reunion of his family got under way yesterday.
Unlike last year, the Hemings descendants arrived at Monticello only as invited guests - not as potential members of the Monticello Association, the private club of Jefferson's descendants.
About 80 people in all drank spirits and ate hor d'oeurves at the reception, which opens the association's annual meetings.
DNA tests have linked Thomas Jefferson's family to at least one of Sally Hemings' children. Still, the association voted overwhelmingly last year to keep the Hemingses out of the Jefferson club.
In the wake of that perceived snub, Hemings descendant Michele Cooley considered her family's presence a victory.
"We have developed a foundation that is unifying for Monticello members, the Hemings family and the Woodsons," said Cooley, of Baltimore.
Cooley and her sister, Lisa Cooley, had to wait 30 minutes after the start of the reception at 6 p.m. because their sponsor in the association had not arrived.
Lisa Cooley linked their presence to the cause of the civil-rights movement for which their grandfather, Petersburg lawyer Robert H. Cooley Jr., had fought.
"It's about the ability to walk in through the front door," Lisa Cooley said.
Rules of sponsorship have been the center of heated exchanges among Monticello members during the weeks leading up to this weekend's gathering. That discussion led to a roil over an Internet impersonation that will probably result in an attempt to oust Nathaniel Abeles as association president.
Last year, Lucian Truscott IV, an association member from Los Angeles who embraces the Hemings claim, invited 26 Hemings family members to the reunion as guests. Since then, Abeles and the group leadership limited guest invitations to two per member.
In recent weeks, Abeles chided certain Jeffersons over plans to get the Hemings family members to this year's meeting as guests. Abeles had learned of plans to get Hemings invitations for children of Monticello members and adult members who couldn't attend.
John H. Works Jr., a former president of the Monticello Association, called attempts to draw Hemingses to the annual gathering disruptive, especially in light of last year's vote.
"This is not appropriate behavior. They're trying to create issues that really don't exist," Works said. The fact that there were so few Hemingses at the event showed that most Monticello members don't want a deluge of the Hemingses at their private functions, he added.
He and Truscott got into an animated debate in front of the Jefferson mansion over rules and past recriminations during the taping of a television interview.
Guest rules will likely play a prominent role during the association's business meeting today at the downtown Charlottesville Omni.
Abeles learned about invitation plans from discussions on a private Yahoo! Internet chat group for Monticello members and the Hemings family. Last week, the moderator of the group, Jefferson descendant David Works, discovered that a group member claiming to be a Hemings descendant was an impostor. Works traced the impersonation to Abeles' computer.
Abeles claims his wife, Paulie Abeles, had infiltrated the group and monitored discussion for eight months without telling her husband about the ruse. The impostor, using the name Cassandra Mays-Lewis, forwarded e-mail to Nathaniel Abeles, the president claims.
Abeles said his wife confessed to the impersonation after Works confronted the president about the trace. Abeles said he forced his wife to resign from the chat group Thursday. He issued Works a letter of apology to the chat-group members Friday.
Works and Truscott, both association members and Hemings sympathizers, dismiss Abeles' explanation. They believe he lied about his own impersonation and should be removed as president.
Works will present to the membership a series of e-mails issued to chat-group members over a three-hour overnight span from Abeles' computer. Some used the president's name. Others used the fake "Cassandra Lewis" identity, Truscott said.
Another point of contention has been the family's traditional visit to their ancestral gravesite, where only Jefferson descendants can be buried. Abeles has barred non-Monticello members from participating in today's visit on the property near the Jefferson mansion. His opponents vowed to disregard that rule.
The Hemings issue has been ongoing for five years. In 1998, DNA tests lent credence to a long-held suspicion that Jefferson fathered some of Hemings' children. The tests showed that a Jefferson male fathered Hemings' youngest son, Eston.
The results did not conclude that Jefferson himself was the father, but included him among about 24 Jefferson men who lived in Virginia at the time who could have fathered Eston Hemings.
Contact Calvin R. Trice at (540) 574-9977 or email@example.com http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/MGBJHAQDAFD.html
posted on 05/04/2003 1:43:26 PM PDT
This year may be last for Jefferson-Hemings reunion
Associated Press Writer May 04, 2003
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) _ Under a steady drizzle, Michele Cooley waited by the roadside as a crowd of Thomas Jefferson descendants filed into shuttles and drove to the family's hilltop estate.
Cooley, a descendant of Jefferson's reputed slave mistress Sally Hemings, also came for the annual reunion, but this year the Hemingses were told they needed to be escorted by a willing Jefferson family member.
"So I'm waiting," Cooley said, scanning the crowd for her sponsor. "Every year I feel so uncomfortable because you know people don't want us to be here. But I still feel victorious because my family has developed so many friendships with some of them."
Four years after DNA tests found a link between the Jefferson and Hemings families, the two groups have grown far apart, divided by Jeffersons who refuse to consider any sexual relationship between their famous patriarch and his slave, and vocal members of both families who want the Hemings clan recognized despite any definitive scientific evidence they were fathered by the third president.
In the past year, the Jefferson family's Monticello Associaiton excluded the Hemingses from membership and prohibited its members from allowing more than two Hemings guests each at the reunion.
Many Hemings family members say they're tired of all the infighting, and they've decided to plan their own Monticello reunion in July.
"We're going to have speeches and African-American dancing _ it's going to be totally different," said Julia Westerinen, a Hemings descendant who is organizing the event.
The weekend reunion was quiet this year, attended by about 80 of the Monticello Association's 800 members and a dozen of the 2,500 people who claim Hemings as an ancestor.
The rain continued to sprinkle as families huddled under umbrellas and mingled between tables of crackers and cheese. Children in sport coats still played tag on Monticello's west porch despite the rain, and cousins thrust themselves in front of TV cameras to debate their version of family history.
Thomas Beauchamp, a Jefferson descendant from St. Louis, Mo., said he was tired of having family affairs so political and it wasn't so bad that the new guest policy made it harder for the Hemings to attend.
"I'm not in this fight at all, but if there's a way to make this weekend a little easier, I'm all for it," Beauchamp said.
There was a time, in the 1970s and early 1980s, when the Jefferson cousins would just sit on the porch with a bag of chips and sandwiches they made themselves, he said.
"Why are they (the Hemingses) even coming anymore?" asked John Works Jr., a former Monticello Association president. "They have their own reunion now."
Many family members were still talking about current president Nat Abeles and his wife Paulie, who obtained email messages from a private chat group set up for the Hemings family.
Paulie Abeles said she gained access by masquerading as a 67-year-old slave descendant on her Internet profile. When Hemings family members discussed how to find enough Jefferson sponsors to get them invited to the reunion, Paulie forwarded the messages to Nat.
Nat used the information to refine the association's guest acceptance procedures in a way that made it harder for the Hemingses to come.
"That's got to be fraud of some kind," said Ginny Truscott of Seattle, a Jefferson descendant who wants to remove Nat Abeles as president.
Works said he thought the Abeles' actions were justified, given that the chat group kicked off people that its members considered threatening.
"It's not inclusive," he said. "It's discriminatory."
Steve Moyer, a Jefferson descendant from Rochester, NY, said he was on the chat group for about six months before getting kicked off. He said he was appalled by the "vicious, vindictive-type things" the Hemingses were saying about the Jeffersons.
The drama will likely continue because of the opposing personalities in the family, said Lucian Truscott IV, a Jefferson descendant who first invited the Hemings family to the reunions and continues to push for their acceptance within his family.
"Thomas Jefferson never shied from debate, and I'll tell you, we're not going to either."
Some Hemings family members said they weren't sure if they'd ever come back to the Jefferson reunion, especially if they can have their own at Monticello.
"I wasn't even sure I was going to come this year until about a month ago," said Shay Banks-Young. "I guess we'll take it day by day."
On Sunday morning, about 25 members from the two families gathered one more time, bringing daisies to the site where Jefferson's slaves were buried. Holding hands in a broad circle, they prayed together and relished their newfound cousins.
"If (Thomas Jefferson) could look down at us today, he'd say to himself, this is my family," said John Works Sr., a Jefferson descendant. http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/vaapwire/MGBT8IQBBFD.html
posted on 05/04/2003 1:57:59 PM PDT
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