June 29, 2010

Library of Congress Veterans History Project

San Diego chapter of the Friends of Allensworth member Ernest H. Collier profiled in the Library of Congress Veterans History Project. The Veterans History Project preserves and makes accessible the personal accounts of American war veterans. The project collects first-hand accounts of U.S. Veterans from the following wars:

• World War I (1914-1920)

• World War II (1939-1946)

• Korean War (s.1950-1955)

• Vietnam War (1961-1975)

• Persian Gulf War (1990-1995)

• Afghanistan and Iraq conflicts (2001-present)

Ernest Collier services with the 9th Cavalry Regiment and the 24th Infantry Regiment, two of the Army’s four Buffalo Soldier regiments. Allen Allensworth was the chaplain of the 24th Infantry Regiment from 1886 to 1906. Many of the first settlers of Allensworth, California were members of the four Buffalo soldier regiments and their families.

This Sunday Ernest Collier will be one of the Grand Marshals for the 2010 Spirit of the Fourth Independence Day Parade in Rancho Bernardo, California. The 2010 Spirit of the Fourth parade is celebrating the theme, “In the Spirit of Service” and is honoring Wounded Warriors. Ernest Collier is a Korean War veteran whose Purple Heart was earned in South Korea in 1951. The battle area was near Pusan, Korea. The actual award was made by General Mark Clark at Letterman Hospital, in San Francisco, CA.

Stephen Hill, Sr.

June 18, 2010

California’s Heartland DVD

5min Life Videopdia has just added the below video to their site. The 5 minute video is taken from the KVIE Public Television production African Americans in California’s Heartland. Produced in cooperation with The Sacramento Observer, the DVD explores the history of African Americans in the Central Valley and Sierra Nevada from the Gold Rush through the 1950s.

In addition to Allensworth, the DVD relates the stories of the Gooch/Monroe family, whose descendants owned much of Coloma; the Buffalo Soldiers stationed in Yosemite and Sequoia National Parks; the civil rights case of runaway slave Archy Lee; and the entrepreneurial Dunlap Family, who operated a famous Sacramento restaurant frequented by Senators.

You can purchase the DVD at the KVIE web site. The site also has lesson plans and the DVD transcript.

Stephen Hill, Sr.

June 12, 2010

Initiative Qualified for November Ballot

California Secretary of State Debra Bowen has qualified the State Parks and Wildlife Conservation Trust Fund Act of 2010 for the November 2nd state wide ballot. Last year’s budget cuts caused closures or reductions in 150 of the state’s 278 state parks, and caused a backlog of more than $1 billion in needed maintenance and repairs.

The trust fund will generate approximately $500 million annually to be used to restore, maintain and keep state parks like Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park open and accessible to the public. The trust fund will also make the General Fund dollars that would have been used for the state parks to be available for other vital needs such as public health and education.

The Trust Fund Act has the support of conservation organizations, parks organizations, coastal and ocean organizations, business, hospitality and tourism organizations, Latino organizations, public safety organizations and more. To learn more about the initiative and see a full list of supporters go to http://www.yesforstateparks.com/.

Stephen Hill, Sr.

June 03, 2010

Allensworth Heavy Maintenance Facility a No Go

In our Winter 2010 newsletter we reported that the Tulare County Association of Governments (TCAG) submitted a proposal to the California High Speed Rail Authority to build a heavy maintenance facility in Allensworth for the High Speed Rail System.

In a June 3, 2010 news release the California High-Speed Rail Authority announced that Allensworth was one of four sites that should not be included in further studies for the heavy maintenance facility because of land size, distance from recommended alignments and/or environmental impacts.

The authority recommended four sites for continued study as potential location for the Heavy Maintenance Facility.
     • Fresno Works – Located in Fresno
     • Kings County – Located in Hanford
     • Kern Council of Governments – Located in Wasco
     • Kern Council of Governments – Located in Shafter

Stephen Hill, Sr.