Delicious Cotton Candy

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OK. So I’m not really talking about cotton candy today. Don’t get me wrong – I love to cram that pink fluffy stuff into my mouth and just let it melt!  (For some reason, I don’t particularly like the blue color cotton candy. I’m sure it tasks the same, but there’s just something wrong about eating something blue!)

Just over a week ago, our oldest son and his family, and his younger brother and his family and us went to Amicalola Falls State Park. It’s located about 25-30 minutes from our house. It is the highest waterfall in Georgia at 729 feet, but that’s rather misleading. It’s not like Yosemite Falls in California where it is one humongous drop of 1030 feet. Amicalola Falls is broken up into several cataracts that added together make up that 729 feet total. Still, it is rather beautiful. And when you slow down the shutter speed on your camera, voila!, cotton candy water effect!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1809, Revolutionary war veteran and future President Andrew Jackson killed Charles Dickinson in a duel.

Born in the Waxhaws area along the border between North and South Carolina, Andrew Jackson was the last president to be a veteran of the American Revolution and the first president to bring the backcountry values of the Carolinas to the White House. His willingness to not only duel Charles Dickinson, but also to kill him at short range for having printed libelous comments about Jackson, revealed the extent to which he had imbibed the brutality of the Carolinas during the revolution. Born in 1767, Jackson served with the Patriots in the devastatingly brutal battles that characterized the American War for Independence in the Carolinas. His eldest brother died following the Battle of Stono Ferry in 1779. A print depicts a young Jackson, who served as a scout in the region, watching British Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton’s massacre of Patriot militiamen at his home settlement of Waxhaws on May 29, 1780. Jackson then fought in Patriot Thomas Sumter’s uncontrolled attack on the British and their Loyalist allies at Hanging Rock in August 1780, before falling into British hands with his brother Robert in 1781. While in prison, he and his bother contracted smallpox, to which his brother succumbed.

The content of Dickinson’s slanderous comments about Jackson also indicated a great deal about the culture of Jackson’s times. In 1790, Jackson claimed to marry Rachel Donelson Robards, whose husband had abandoned her. What Rachel and Jackson did not know was that the couple had not technically divorced, and when this was discovered, Rachel was ostracized by society as a bigamist. Her husband insisted on defending her honor, even if it required him to kill. The men rode from their homes in Tennessee to Kentucky, where dueling was legal, in order to settle their deadly feud as gentlemen.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: In total, 8,744,000 U.S. combat troops fought in the Vietnam War. An estimated 1.3 million military combatants died in the Vietnam War, from all countries involved, as well as 1 million civilians.

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