Houston flooded and Trump trying to build a Trump Tower during the campaign. Big news items this morning. Yet I open with Mother Seton and the Catholic nun order she began, the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph.

I saw a notation this morning that on this date in 1774, Elizabeth Ann Bayley was born. The founder of the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph. Returned me to the warm days of my youth. My teenage days. High school. The Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph taught me. Henceforth to be referred to as Sisters of Charity.

My high school was in Utica, NY. Stood in the back of a large lot next to St. John’s church on John Street.

The building tiny. Three stories high. The height larger than the width of the building.

Today, the school is gone. The land the school stood on a parking lot for St. John’s Church.

The heads of Sisters of Charity were capped with big white head coverings. Looked like wings. Body attire, dark blue ankle length dresses. Tied around their waists, extremely large and heavy appearing rosary beads.

The Sisters lived in an old Victorian building one block away. Today, a deserted lot.

The Sisters were excellent teachers. Disciplinarians. In teaching and personal matters. A sister would not hesitate storming into the boys’ bathroom if she thought there was smoking going on.

I got caught. On more than one occasion. Learned from one nun as she twisted my ear: The cigarette is a dirty weed and from it the Devil doth proceed.

Didn’t do much good. I still smoke.

One of the nuns had a distinct impact on my life. Sister Gertrude. A short stout elderly woman. A craggy beautiful face.

She discovered my love for history. Did everything to encourage it. She is also the reason I went to Manhattan College. She pushed Manhattan. Her cousin was a Christian Brother and Director of Athletics.

We had to study Latin. I took three years. Thought it was stupid. During my life time, I discovered those three years of Latin did more for me than any course I studied at any age.

Elizabeth Ann Bayley was born an Episcopalian. Married at 19. Became known as Elizabeth Seton. Bore 5 children. Her husband died ten years after their marriage.

Elizabeth was broke. Her husband had become ill some time before he died. Their money was gone. The family was stuck in Italy where they had gone believing the Italian weather would be good for her husband’s health.

Some Catholic Italian friends helped. She was impressed with their kindness and charity. Studied the Catholic religion. Became a Catholic.

Catholicism was neither popular nor respected in those days. Even her Episcopalian family deserted her.

Elizabeth returned to the United States. The Baltimore area. She became involved with helping the poor and needy. Especially women.

She founded the first Catholic school in the United States. Turned out to be the beginning of the parochial school system in the United States.

A group of women flocked to Elizabeth to assist her in the good works being performed. Elizabeth felt they should become an established nunnery order within the Catholic church. She pursued and accomplished the goal. Elizabeth founded the first female apostolic community in the United States. The Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph.

In 1975, the Pope recognized her commitment and success to humanity. She was ordained a Saint of the Catholic Church. The first American born to be so honored.

As to Harvey, a catastrophe of epic proportions. I am impressed, as I am sure you are, with the neighborly assistance being provided. Neighbors helping each other. Strangers helping each other.

Makes for a good feeling after Katrina. People are pitching in and helping each other rather than complaining.

The number of dead known is 3. Some say really 5. I believe the number will be much more once the waters recede and authorities are able to conduct a detailed search.

The Washington Post reported yesterday that the Trump Company was seeking to do business with Russia in late 2015 and into early 2016. Campaign time.

It is claimed the construction of a massive Trump Tower was contemplated. Purportedly, there is a letter of intent signed by investors and Trump and Company re the projected structure.

Tunney Morgan Hunsaker. What a name? His claim to fame is that he was the first person Cassius Clay fought professionally.

Hunsaker had a mixed career. Seventeen wins, fifteen losses. He went on to become a long time Police Chief for Fayetteville, West Virginia.

He and Clay remained friends their entire lives.

Enjoy your day!





Hurricane Harvey has unleashed a hell upon the Texas gulf coast. Nature at its worst! A howling storm that cannot be blamed on anything other than weather. Global warming not involved.

Harvey does not want to leave. Hanging around a few days. Bringing with it rain in a volume not common.

How much damage? How many dead? How many injured? Are survivors getting sufficient assistance? Enough drinking water for example?

The answers will not come till Harvey has gone. Then the impact will be known.

Front page this morning’s Key West Citizen the current state of affairs re remedial work to North Roosevelt Boulevard.

North Roosevelt Boulevard is a State highway. A few years ago, Florida spent 4 years renovating the Boulevard big time. The final job has a couple of minuses. Big time minuses. Properly described as major screw ups.

One has to do cross-walks. There are 5. Their purpose to make it safe for pedestrians to cross the major busy thoroughfare.

The cross-walks a disaster. Invite accidents, death and injuries. So far, only one death. Injuries more.

The cross-walks are poorly designed. Need a red light as part of them so traffic will recognize the need to stop and will stop. Without red lights, the cross walks create more danger than when the road was without any.

After constant badgering by City and County officials, the State has come up with the remedial plan. Merely a suggestion at this point. It will redo the cross-walks with red lights. The time frame includes design to be done in 2019 and construction to begin in 2021.

If the City so desires, it can do the corrective work itself and then seek reimbursement from the State.

Typical bureaucratic delay. The State is making a mountain out of a mole hill. Put the red lights in and be done with it. Boulevard users should not have to wait 4-5 years to get the job done.

How many people will die or be injured during those years because of the State’s obstinacy?

Another government mess in the making. Key West’s amphitheater. The mess plentiful. One at the moment is naming rights. A bidding process to be used. He who bids the most will get to name the amphitheater.

So far five names suggested. Not all of whom have the dollars to successfully bid. At least one dead.

One person openly expressing his desire to have the amphitheater named after him is Jimmy Buffett. He has the money to successfully bid.

I am shocked at the number who do not want Jimmy Buffett’s name on the amphitheater. For all kinds of reasons that do not seem to have validity.

Typical Key West, however. A place where some have their heads up their asses. They make a lot of noise. The squeaky wheel gets the attention.

Sheriff Arpaio’s Presidential pardon a disgrace. Most believe Trump has the power. I am not sure.

The Constitution extends the power. In few words. An old Supreme Court decision decided in 1866 interpreted the power broadly. I question whether the decision would be followed today were the issue brought before the Supreme Court.

The Justice Department has a Pardons section. Application must be made by the person seeking the pardon. Five years must have elapsed from the time of conviction. The person seeking the pardon must admit responsibility for the crime. The applicant must show remorse for having committed the crime.

None of these factors have been complied with in the Arpaio situation. An example of Trump not respecting the law, believing he is the law, etc.

I doubt Arpaio will get to the Supreme Court. I cannot conceive of the Session’s Department of Justice doing so. Meaning Trump will get away with what appears to be wrongdoing once again.

Enjoy your Sunday!