Brit-Am Historical Reports
23 August 2010 13 Elul 5770
1. Massacre of Irish Immigrants in the USA?
Old Irish bones may yield murderous secrets in Pa. by Jacqueline
2. Scottish Soldiers in WW1 Were a Terror to the Germans
3. Archaeology: Brit-Am Version of


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1. Massacre of Irish Immigrants in the USA?
Old Irish bones may yield murderous secrets in Pa.
MALVERN, Pa. Young and strapping, the 57 Irish immigrants began grueling work in the summer of 1832 on the Philadelphia and Columbia railroad. Within weeks, all were dead of cholera.

Or were they murdered?

Two skulls unearthed at a probable mass grave near Philadelphia this month showed signs of violence, including a possible bullet hole. Another pair of skulls found earlier at the woodsy site also displayed traumas, seeming to confirm the suspicions of two historians leading the archaeological dig.

"This was much more than a cholera epidemic," William Watson said.

Watson, chairman of the history department at nearby Immaculata University, and his twin brother Frank have been working for nearly a decade to unravel the 178-year-old mystery.

Anti-Irish sentiment made 19th-century America a hostile place for the workers, who lived amid wilderness in a shanty near the railroad tracks. The land is now preserved open space behind suburban homes in Malvern, about 20 miles west of Philadelphia.

The brothers have long hypothesized that many of the workers succumbed to cholera, a bacterial infection spread by contaminated water or food. The disease was rampant at the time, and had a typical mortality rate of 40 percent to 60 percent.

The other immigrants, they surmise, were killed by vigilantes because of anti-Irish prejudice, tension between affluent residents and poor transient workers, or intense fear of cholera, or a combination of all three.

When the immigrants died in August 1832, Duffy ordered his blacksmith to burn the shanty for sanitary reasons and bury the bodies in the railroad fill, the Watsons say. The men's families were never told of their deaths.

A passenger list for the John Stamp, a ship that sailed from Ireland to Philadelphia four months earlier, offers possible identities for 15 workers who came from Donegal, Tyrone and Derry counties.

Michael Collins, Ireland's ambassador to the U.S., visited Duffy's Cut last summer and said in remarks at Immaculata University that it's an important story to tell.

2. Scottish Soldiers in WW1 Were a Terror to the Germans
'Savage Scots': wish you weren't here
by Kurt Bayer
REVEALED: "the devils in skirts" in all their glory. A military historian has unearthed German propaganda from the First World War which shows how the Kaiser's army demonised Scottish soldiers as savage barbarians.
The image was used on a postcard distributed by German occupiers in Belgium and France and seeks to play on the racist fears of the local population by sarcastically depicting "Some Champions of Civilisation, Liberty and Progress" as a crowd the Germ
Historian Matthew Low, who found the card in a junk shop while researching in France, said: "I was very excited to discover this card. It is a rare example of how the Germans viewed the Scottish troops as bloodthirsty savages.

"We know that the imperial German army declared the Black Watch the regiment 'to be most feared' and frequent references were made to kilted Jocks as 'devils in skirts' and 'ladies from hell'.

The ferocity of the fighting between German and Scottish forces can be gauged from the huge Scottish losses. Over 26 per cent of Scottish servicemen died, compared with a UK figure of just 11 per cent.

Low said: "Much of the German detestation of the Scots came from their reluctance to take prisoners and some historians like Niall Ferguson have speculated that the war on the Western Front may have dragged on because German units were reluctant to surrender to the Scots."

He added: "The image of the kilted warrior became tremendously romantic during the war. Sometimes English regiments taking up a new position in the trenches would shout to their enquiring opponents that they were the Black Watch just to scare them. Others, like the Tyneside Scottish, were desperate to wear kilts despite their impracticality. The kilts and bagpipes were psychological weapons. "

"Highlanders sometimes liked to play up to such a reputation," he said. "Some 79th Cameron Highlanders during the campaign before the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 made impromptu frying pans out of French cuirassier breastplates.

"As they were frying up some steaks, they invited some Belgians to join them, but the Belgians took one look at the Highlanders frying meat in the dead men's breastplates and ran off. They thought the Scotsmen were eating the Frenchmen!"

Contemporary accounts suggest that the Germans did have plenty to fear from the Scottish troops.

Stephen Graham, who was a private in the Scots Guards, recalled being told by an instructor: "The second bayonet man kills the wounded. You cannot afford to be encumbered by wounded enemies lying about your feet. Don't be squeamish."

3. Archaeology: Brit-Am Version of Explorator 13.18bis
From: david meadows <>
Incest is now being suggested as a cause of Tut's early death:

The 2010 Hazor report:!e2809d-Reflections-on-the-2010-Season-at-Hazor.aspxNon-Technical

Recent finds from Tal Shamia:

Radio interview with Lawrence Schiffman on the DSS:

Radio interview with Robert Cargill on the DSS:

The application of Akkadian to modern times:

They've begun excavating at Nysa again:
Hellenistic/Nabataean cave paintings from Petra:

A team is planning to retrace Aeneas' footsteps:

Time Team is looking for evidence of Boudicca at Venta Icenorum:

The dig at Nysa (Turkey) has resumed:

Feature on eudaimonia:

Visit our blog:


... and a slave village has been uncovered on Monocacy National Battlefield:

They're thinking about pardoning Billy the Kid (?):

Possible evidence of violent anti-Irish sentiments in the 19th-century US:

More on that bison kill site from Montana:


Another example of ancient medicine being applicable in modern situations:

A history of fireworks:

A new approach to 'our maritime past':

Review of Jonathan Schneer, *The Balfour Declaration*:

3. Nazis told porkies about 'pig' Hitler's war
By Lucinda Cameron

Wednesday August 18 2010

NEW research has undermined the idea that Hitler was a World War One hero whose wartime experiences propelled him to power.

A new book challenges the commonly held notion that he was considered a brave member of his close-knit regiment, and that his experience during the Great War radicalised him and formed his world view.

Dr Thomas Weber's book, 'Hitler's First War', argues that this story was a fabrication created by propagandists to broaden Hitler's appeal to German society.

Newly discovered letters and papers suggest Hitler was referred to as a "rear area pig" (etappenschwein) by comrades, as rather than carrying messages between trenches on the front line, he was a dispatch runner up to 5km back.

The book suggests the Nazi Party suppressed and discredited accounts of World War One that showed him as anything other than heroic. Dr Weber said: "The myth of Hitler as a brave soldier was used by the Nazi party in order to extend its appeal beyond the far right.

"They went to great lengths to protect this idea, and through my research I discovered that a memoir written by one of his comrades was significantly altered between its publication in 1933 and the outbreak of World War Two."

He suggested that the fact Hitler was awarded the Iron Cross had more to do with being known by the officers who could make recommendations, than his heroics in battle.

'Hitler's First War' will be available in bookshops from September 16.

- Lucinda Cameron

Irish Independent


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