TSGS Cruiser Blog

Saturday, January 10, 2009

From My Email Box - "Spin Humor"

We all get far too many of the forwarded items in our email that purport to be true and generally relays information we just absolutely need to know. Often it warns us of the “sinful” actions of certain businesses, groups or persons. Usually with a political overtone or aimed at certain elements of society that some people deem unacceptable. We should be careful not to forward false messages of this manner or any other, as far as that goes. Just like we should avoid “unproven” genealogical data. What genealogy we send out needs to be verified, documented. I suspect that we are all guilty of forwarding messages & information before we fully check out its validity. Here are two very good sites to verify before forwarding messages:

Snopes.com Rumors has it
About.com – Urban Legends by David Emery
Internet hoaxes, email rumors and urban legends http://urbanlegends.about.com/od/internet/a/current_netlore.htm
Another one is:

In some cases the message is humorous, despite its intent to deceive or mislead. I got one of these yesterday from a friend. This one can be found on Snopes & About.com by typing in “horse thief” in their search engines. Snopes is best on this one: http://www.snopes.com/politics/humor/horsethief.asp

I have used fictitious names to protect the innocent!

Ibee A. Rumor, a professional genealogy researcher here in Heilman, IN, was doing some personal work on her own family tree. She discovered that John West's [See photo below] great-great uncle, Sigmund West, was hanged for horse stealing and train robbery in Montana in 1889. Both Ibee and John West share this common ancestor. The only known photograph of Sigmund shows him standing on the gallows in Montana territory. On the back of the picture Ibee obtained during her research is this inscription: ''Sigmund West, horse thief, sent to Montana Territorial Prison 1885, escaped 1887, robbed the 'Montana Flyer' six times. Caught by Pinkerton detectives, convicted and hanged in 1889.” [See photo below] So Ibee recently e-mailed Blogger John G. West for information about their great-great uncle.

Believe it or not, John West's staff sent back the following biographical sketch for her genealogy research: “Sigmund West was a famous cowboy in the Montana Territory. His business empire grew to include acquisition of valuable equestrian assets and intimate dealings with the Montana railroad. Beginning in 1883, he devoted several years of his life to government service, finally taking leave to resume his dealings with the railroad. In 1887, he was a key player in a vital investigation run by the renowned Pinkerton Detective Agency. In 1889, Sigmund passed away during an important civic function held in his honor when the platform upon which he was standing collapsed.”

NOW THAT is how it's done folks! That's real SPIN.

- Compiled & edited by JGWest

John G. West [above], who is related [alleged, no documentation offered] to the hanged horse thief, Sigmund West [below].

No comments: