NEW! Exploring The Book of Mormon In Americas Heartland Photographic Book

NEW!  Exploring The Book of Mormon In Americas Heartland Photographic Book
NEW! Exploring the Book of Mormon In America's Heartland, A Visual Journey of Discovery by Rod L. Meldrum is a gorgeous, large format 200+ page heirloom quality photographic journey into the exciting new "Heartland Model" geography. Click on the Picture above to learn more. Picture Book Cover Click to Order

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Families Can Be Together Forever

President Thomas S. Monson - He is Risen

An Apostle's Easter Thoughts on Christ

He Is Risen

The Savior Suffers in Gethsemane

He Lives: Testimonies of Jesus Christ

Testimony of the Book of Mormon

Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration

Look to the Light

Parable of the Good Samaritan

Addiction: You Will Be Freed

What Matters Most

Lifting Burdens: The Atonement of Jesus Christ

Voice of the Spirit

Rescued by Christ

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Jade Axes Proof of Vast Ancient Caribbean Network, Experts Say

Jade Axes Proof of Vast Ancient Caribbean Network, Experts Say

Jade Axes Proof of Vast Ancient Caribbean Network, Experts Say

Charles Petit
for National Geographic News
June 12, 2006
A discovery of ancient jade could shake up old notions of the New World before Columbus. Scientists say they have traced 1,500-year-old axe blades found in the eastern Caribbean to ancient jade mines in Central America 1,800 miles (2,900 kilometers) away, New York's American Museum of Natural History announced late last month.
The blades were excavated in the late 1990s by a Canadian archaeologist on the island of Antigua in the West Indies (see map of Antigua and Barbuda).
But the jade used to make the blades almost certainly came from Maya mines in distant Guatemala (see map of Guatemala), says mineralogist George Harlow of the American Museum of Natural History.
The find may call into question a once dominant archaeological picture of the pre-Columbian Caribbean.
Previous theories held that a few big or budding civilizations existed on the mainland of Central America, with only isolated, village-based societies on islands in the Caribbean Sea.
The new analysis gives weight to a competing view, which suggests that organized, long-distance trade networks were based primarily on those islands.
"There has been a closed mind-set that these [ancient] people out here were primitive, but we are learning there was a whole world out here we don't yet fully know about," said Reg Murphy, an archaeologist at the Museum of Antigua and Barbuda in St. John's, Antigua.
Murphy collaborated with Harlow on the research.
Murphy says it's likely that complex societies not only existed on the islands but also communicated with other cultures in South America along the Orinoco and Amazon Rivers.
"Those rivers [in South America] were highways of exchange that extended around the coast all the way to Guatemala," he said.
Harlow and Murphy's research team reported its findings in the April issue of the journal Canadian Mineralogist.
Saladoid Culture
Continued on Next Page >>

Cahokia mounds reveal a vast copper workshop

Cahokia mounds reveal a vast copper workshop

Cahokia mounds reveal a vast copper workshop

Junior Sarah Luongo and Steven Broderick, Class of 2009, work on excavations overlying a copper workshop found in Cahokia Mounds. A team of researchers led by John Kelly, Washington University archaeology professor, and James Brown from Northwestern University discovered a copper workshop that will provide insight into the lives of the Cahokians who leaved near the mounds more than 1,000 years ago. (Courtesy of John Kelly)
Nearly 1,000 years ago, the ancient city of Cahokia flourished only 20 minutes away from modern St. Louis in the floodplains of the Mississippi River. Today, the discovery of a copper workshop by a team of researchers led by John Kelly, Washington University archeology professor, and James Brown of Northwestern University will provide insight into the lives of the mysterious Cahokians.
Native Americans began to settle the area around East St. Louis in 1000 A.D., and the city had a population boom 50 years later. More than 20,000 people lived in the city during Cahokia’s Golden Age.
Four plazas were built around Monk’s Mound, believed to be the largest mound of Cahokia. The mound is approximately as large as the Danforth Campus.
Today, the Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site still has 80 mounds of various sizes out of the more than 100 mounds built. These were created when Cahokians dismantled constructed buildings and buried the pieces underneath the earth. These buildings were sometimes reconstructed.
“One of the important elements in Indian cosmology is rebirth,” Kelly said. “They look out at the world around them; everything is dead now, but in two months it’s going to come back again and be reborn…We start with the building, the burial of the building, the rebirth of the building and the burial again.”
Only 1 percent of these mounds have been excavated to date. The copper workshop was found within Mound 34, where, according to Kelly, pieces of copper were discovered. Cahokians used the metal to create religious ornaments and other decorative items. It’s hypothesized that workers hammered and heated the copper to 600 degrees Celsius to flatten out the metal. The sheets were pressed onto carved wooden templates to create the ornament. The metal may have been obtained from the Great Lakes region. Copper specifically was used because it was considered to have special properties.
“They see that there is power in everything,” Kelly said. “Copper is something that is very powerful so how you handle it, how you deal with it is very important.”
After four centuries, the population of Cahokia began to decline and the city was abandoned. Although it remains unknown why the Cahokians left their city, theories range from environmental factors, like drought driving away inhabitants, to geopolitical issues. Artifacts from 1200 A.D. uncovered in excavations indicate a shift in focus from community life to warfare. The copper workshop itself is dated to 1200 A.D. The Osage tribe located in southern Missouri may have originated from Cahokia. Researchers currently work with the Osage tribe as they excavate, preventing changes to the mound.
Kelly and Brown won a grant from the National Geographic Society to continue their work two years ago. The team turns to current Native American culture to develop their hypotheses and theories regarding the lifestyles of the Cahokians.
Cahokia also presents a unique opportunity to examine the early formation of a city.
“What we’re looking at here is the very beginning of…urbanism,” Kelly said. “So it hasn’t had a chance to really flourish; it’s just starting to come into existence.”
The excavation team hopes to continue its work in the summer. Amateur archaeologist Gregory Perino had first found the copper workshop. In the 1950s, he had been hired to find artifacts for museum display. Kelly and Brown used his maps to retrace the copper workshop. The team now hopes to collect soil samples from the mound to test for copper levels.

Friday, June 8, 2012

A Tragic Loss: Maj. Rex McTyeire (Ret), U.S. Army Special Forces, and Oath Keepers VP, Has Passed Away (Apparent Sudden Heart Attack)

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A Tragic Loss: Maj. Rex McTyeire (Ret), U.S. Army Special Forces, and Oath Keepers VP, Has Passed Away

b-smallOath Keepers,

It with great sadness that I inform you that Maj. Rex H. McTyeire (Ret), U.S. Army Special Forces, Oath Keepers Eastern National Vice President, has passed away.   Rex died at home of an apparent sudden heart attack on the night of June 6, 2012.   His wife, Karen, was with him.
We have lost a brother in arms and a great friend. America has lost a great patriot and warrior in the cause of freedom. His shoes cannot be filled.  He cannot be replaced.  This is a terrible shock. I just saw him a week ago at Rolling Thunder in D.C., where we spent the weekend outreaching to all of the veterans who had gathered there for Memorial Day.  He was as spry and witty as ever.  I truly am grateful I had the chance to spend that time with him, but this is such a heavy loss.

When Karen is able to, she will write up Rex's life story so we can post it, and I will post a more detailed memorial write up.  But I wanted to inform you as fast as possible so you have the option of attending the memorial services, which are scheduled for this coming Monday, June 11, 2012.  Here are the details:

Monday 11 June 2012, at 1400 hours (that's 2:00 pm) EST:
Blakely Funeral Home
1047 Chesnee Highway
Gaffney SC, 29342
Phone #: 864-488-1141

All Oath Keepers are invited to the memorial service and to a wake/fellowship gathering directly after the Memorial, at the home of Rex and Karen. At the memorial, we will provide directions to the home (that way only those who attend the memorial will know where it is, and Karen's privacy will be respected).

IF you can possibly make it, please do come and let's give Rex a send off he would be proud of.   He deserves the highest honors and the presence of as many of us as can make it. K aren wants all of you to come if you can, to both the memorial and the gathering at the home after.  Come join us in fellowship as we honor this brother in arms, as we toast his life and his service, and as we recommit to going forward in the cause of liberty to which he gave his fullest measure, to the very last.  I think it will be most fitting for us to hold an oath renewal ceremony, in his honor, and then raise a glass of scotch whiskey in toast to this great American warrior.

There will be a military honor guard and a bag-piper at the memorial service, but please do bring any flags you have, and anything else you think appropriate to honor this warrior. A snare drummer would be awesome too, if you know anyone.

I will be there, and so will Rand Cardwell (National BOD and TN chapter president) and David Helms (Ranger vet and retired Oath Keepers National Board of Directors). Both Rand and David knew Rex well and I know Rex would be pleased to have them there, as fellow warriors of the highest degree.

SC Chapter President Richard Grumbine will be helping to coordinate.  He should be your first stop with any questions on logistics and details, besides what I post here.  He can be reached at at 843-708-7717.

We have lost a damn good man. Karen has lost her husband, and right on the heels of losing her Mom last week. She really needs our fullest support and help right now.


We have set up a memorial fund to help with funeral costs and to help his wife Karen with all else she is dealing with.   When I know where to send cards and flowers, I will post that too.  To donate to the memorial fund, click here:

At the moment I really don't know what else to say, except that the good die far too young, and life is far too short. Rex, brother, we will miss you terribly and we were MOST honored to have had you among us.

Rex was one of the very first men to step up from across the country when we started Oath Keepers (you can read his testimonial here). He grasped immediately its importance, and he was there at our conference in Vegas in October of 2009 and jumped in with both feet, joining our National Board of Directors, and serving as our first South Carolina Chapter President.  I later asked him to become my Eastern U.S. Vice President. He was a tireless leader and spent countless hours online, on our forums, on the phone, and in person getting things done. Having such a fine Special Forces officer in Oath Keepers helped us in immeasurable ways, and besides that, just the way Rex was, as a stubborn Scotsman, made all the difference in many fights. I was proud and honored to have his serve as my Vice President, and all of us on the National Board of Directors were honored to have him among us. He was our brother in a band of brothers.

I remember well his speech at our first convention in 2009 in Vegas, when he spoke of his participation in the Scottish Independence Movement, and he choked up a bit when he spoke of his Scottish heritage, and of the long history of the struggle for freedom in Scotland, and tied it to our current struggle here in America.  He read this quote from the Declaration of Arbroath, of 1320:

for, as long as but a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be brought under English rule. It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom - for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.

Amen. Rex understood that the struggle for freedom is eternal, timeless, and endless, and that every generation, and every man who dares call himself a man, must take up the standard and stand in the breach. He knew it, and lived it. For him, the Special Forces motto of "De Oppresso Liber" (to Liberate the Oppressed), was not just a motto, but a way of life, and a solemn promise, part of his oath, and part of him. He lived it every day of his life, to the very end, and he did not give up, or give the cause of freedom up, but with his life itself.
Please join me in remembering and honoring this great warrior and leader.  Your comments in memorial are most welcome, and we will print them up and give them to his wife, Karen, to keep always. 

For the Republic,

Stewart Rhodes
Founder and President of Oath Keepers

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Mammoth skeleton found in Iowa excites scientists


Mammoth skeleton found in Iowa excites scientists

A nearly complete mammoth skeleton found buried on an Oskaloosa farm is exciting scientists who said such fossil finds are rare and can yield clues about life thousands of years ago. 

Des Moines, an Iowa man carries a mammoth bone that was found on his land. The bone is part of a nearly complete skeleton from an animal that died 12,000 years ago [Credit: AP]
The bones were found about 60 miles southwest of Des Moines and were largely undisturbed, leaving plenty of evidence for scientists to gather that could help show what the area was like more than 12,000 years ago, when the mammoth died. Those excavating the site have collected pollen grains, seeds, a spruce pine needle and other plant material from the site. 

“A find of this size is quite rare because it looks like we have a lot of the animal rather than just a single bone here and there,” said Sarah Horgen, education coordinator for the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History, which is overseeing the excavation. 

“What's important to the university is looking at the environmental context that we can recover as part of this excavation, looking at what Iowa was like at the end of the last ice age,” she said. 

A number of tests for carbon, nitrogen and oxygen isotopes can reveal such details as when the animal died, its diet, and even the temperature of the water that it was drinking, said Holmes Semken, a retired paleontologist and professor emeritus at the University of Iowa's department of geoscience. 

He said the excavation site includes an abundance of material valuable to scientific study. 

It appears the mammoth died and decayed on the earth's surface, then was covered up over time, because some of the bones have rodent gnaw marks and a rib shows gnawing by a fairly large carnivore. 

Excavating such a site is a slow process. The discoveries so far have been located after digging about 6 feet down. The site goes as deep as 30 to 40 feet, Semken said. 

Excavation is scheduled to continue throughout the summer. The next dig is scheduled for June 16. 

A group of scientists plans to scan the area with ground-penetrating radar on Friday to see if they can determine how much of the mammoth remains underground. It's an experiment by the U of I's geology department to see if the radar can detect bone underground, Semken said. 

Semken said the landowner and his sons discovered the mammoth fossil two years ago. They saw what turned out to be a 4-foot-long leg bone protruding from a creek bed. The bone at the knee joint was about the size of a soccer ball, and further digging revealed bones from the animal's foot and neck. 

He said the landowner asked not to be identified in order to keep the site's location confidential. 

“The geological location for this thing is just ideal,” Semken said. “He's very excited about the kind of science we'll get out of it, and he fully realizes the value of what we have.” 

The site also has become an invaluable teaching tool, said Mahaska County Conservation Board Naturalist Laura DeCook. 

She teaches about nature and the outdoors in schools throughout the county and has assisted at the dig site. 

“Information I learn from the people coordinating the dig can be used in the classroom and in providing classroom materials for us eventually,” DeCook said. 

She said the local teachers and students also have been invited to help dig at the site. 

DeCook said digging is like putting together pieces of a puzzle. “Piece by piece we can put together the whole picture of what life was like thousands of years ago,” she said. “To find something that has existed this long is fascinating. It gives us clues to what the ecosystem was like at the time our own state. It's a neat history that doesn't come from a book, it's hands on.” 

Source: Associated Press [June 07, 2012]