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1 Volume 16, Issue 11 November 2013 The November Speaker Award-winning documentary filmmaker and author Nicholas Clapp has studied, filmed, and written about the deserts of the world. With a master’s degree in cinema from the University of Southern California, his first professional break came when he produced and directed The Great Mojave Desert, a one-hour spe- cial for CBS and the National Geographic Society. He has won over 70 major film awards for his documentary work. Mr. Clapp will introduce to us: GOLD AND SILVER IN THE MOJAVE Images of a Last Frontier. A person well-known to the Mohahve Historical Society, Emmett Harder, wrote of this book: Having been a desert person all my life, I loved this book. It is a miracle of pictures, many new and rarely seen, and besides that it is a treasure of history. It takes you back in time: you are there in the midst of what was the old west. For me, who has been there with a burro and a back pack, it was the real thing. It is truly a bonanza find that is a great collector’s must have item. A very valuable book, strike it rich. 2 MEMBERSHIP CORNER 2013 Officers President John Bascom Vice President Fran Elgin Treasurer Lorena Gragg Recording Secretary Nick Lamb Corresponding Secretary Marcy Taylor Past President John Marnell Directors: Tim Baggerly Mary Dutro Vacant Newsletter Still Vacant Membership/director at large Andrea M. Gutierrez Share your newsletter with a friend! If you have something to con- tribute to the newsletter E-mail it to email@example.com **MEMBERSHIP* *CORNER* As of 11/4/13 ~RENEWALS~ Thomas Corth Apple Valley Jerry Hutchinson Apple Valley Thank-you for your continued support! *Membership is now by cal- endar year from Jan - Dec* Share your newsletter with a friend! Better yet bring a friend to the next meeting Nov 21st. Dues/Memberships: Lifetime Single $150.00, Lifetime Family $200.00, Yearly dues for Jan-Dec 2014 Family/Couple $30, Single $20 For membership questions call Andrea or contact her at the meeting. *Andrea M. Gutierrez, Membership * Ph: 961 2731 * 3 Nov. 21 General meeting. Please take note of the meet- ing date for November. Nicholas Clapp will be giving a presentation on his new book. ELECTION of officers for 2014. Nominations will be taken from the floor and voted on. Nov. 23 Field trip to be deter- mined. Dec. 19 Annual potluck Installation of officers for 2014 Special Note If you plan to attend the an- nual Christmas potluck please see Fran at the meeting. She will have a list of what dishes are needed for the dinner. What ever you decide to bring it should be able to feed at least five people. Events for 2013 The Mohahve Historical Society will hold election of officers for 2014 at the No- vember meeting. All of the offices are open for nomi- nation with the exception of vice-president and one director position. Current office holders have all ex- pressed an interest in re- taining their position. Nominations for office will be accepted from the floor and elections will be con- ducted as required. Election of Officers Thank you to all that have volunteered and helped keep the Mohahve Historical Soci- ety functioning for another year. The officers put in many hours finding speakers willing to donate their time to give a presentation at our meetings. Mary has been hauling and storing our books and Andrea has been donating the use of her home for board meetings for many years Also the Lutz’s need to be commended for the great refreshments they provide at the meetings. Thank You 4 The history of the western U.S. is a history of booms and busts. A lode is discovered or a policy isenacted (the Homestead Act, the wind energy tax credit). Where once was “pristine” (lightly populated, subtly changed) na- ture, civilization rushes in, with all its attendant virtues and vices. Then the ore plays out, or the policy changes, or the rain fails to follow the plow. The people move on, leaving the rusting tin cans, the broken dreams, the windmills creaking idly in the wind. And they leave photographs. Stashed away in shoe boxes or on display in county historical societies, these old photos can seem quaintly picturesque. Trapped in their black-and-white world, the subjects seem more actors on a stage than real people who lived, worked, loved and died. In his excellent Gold and Silver in the Mojave, Nicholas Clapp scrapes away that quaint layer to reveal the lives behind the photos. Through vivid story-telling, insightful commentary, and carefully selected photographs, the book gets at the actual experience of the people who were part of this later, lesser-known mining boom, spanning the years 1895 to 1920. Clapp calls it a rowdy Last Act for the Old West. A Review of Nicholas Clapp’s Book 5 From Randsburg to Ballarat to Tonopah, the book presents photos both expected and unexpected: the gold-panners and the miners, the bankers and the saloon-keepers, the gamblers and the red-light districts; but also the families, the ladies' clubs, the children, and the Mojave Desert's first tourists. Some of the most striking are portraits of the people of Tonopah, Nevada, taken by E.W. Smith in his studio, featuring classi- cal backdrops and a laughing gnome for a prop. Himself an award- winning filmmaker, Clapp expertly dissects the images he presents, whether commenting on habits of dress, the expressions of men in a saloon, or the changes in photographic technology that made the im- ages possible. Gold and Silver in the Mojave explores all the ways wealth was made and squandered here. There was the mining of ore, but also the mining of investors' pocketbooks; "high-grading" (mine workers lining their clothing with stolen ore); the trick of selling out while a shallow claim still "showed;" and "bucking the tiger" – trying to beat the house in the often-rigged game of faro. And of course there is the desert. This being the Mojave, the land- scapes are dramatic. Even in their heyday, these boomtowns were dwarfed by the desert that surrounded them, the humans, tiny figures amidst nature on a grand scale. This contrast is even more striking in the book's examples of "rephotography." A shot of Rhyolite taken a hundred years ago shows the town of 5,000 that sprang up in less than five years; today, a photo taken from the same vantage shows the blackbrush holding sway once more. A review by Larry Hogue from Goodreads.com. In the late 1770's, Benjamin Frank- lin suggested that the turkey should be the symbol for the fledgling United States. He argued that the bald eagle was no better than a pi- rate and a fish-eater (mostly true). The American turkey lost to the bald eagle by a single congressional vote. HAPPY THANKSGIVING 6 There will be an Apple Valley 25th Anniversary Expo cele- bration on Friday, November 15th between 12:00 and 6:00 p.m. At the Apple Valley Town Hall on Dale Evans Park- way in Apple Valley We have been asked to partici- pate. The MHS will have a booth showing some of the AV historical milestones. They would also like to feature old- timers who would like to share their experiences and memo- ries from years past. Anyone that has historical artifacts / photos / scrapbooks to display is welcome. If you would like to participate in any or both of these, please call Fran at 760-961-9343, or Kathie Martin at the Town of AV at 760- 240-7000, ext. 7070 If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts. Albert Einstein Up Coming Local Events 7 Other Events of Interest 64th Annual Death Valley '49ers Encamp- ment November 6th-10th, 2013 Pre-Encampment~November 3th-5th, 2013 1st Death Valley Natural History ConferenceNovember 15 thru 17 at the Furnace Creek Visitors Center. Go to http://shoshonevillage.com/shoshone- events.html for info. ts attendant virtues and vices. Then the ore plays out, or the policy changes, or the rain fails to follow the plow. The people move on, leaving the rusting tin cans, the broken dreams, the windmills creaking idly in the wind. And