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Susanville WebXtra for July 2nd, 2020
Volume XII Issue 244
4,283 Subscribers


From the Files of the Lassen Historical Society:
Basque Arborglyphs

By Susan Couso


Here in Lassen County, many of the tales of our early emigrants have been told. But much less has been written about those men who came here for a better life and were placed in the middle of the wilderness to work alone. These are the Basque sheepherders.

The Basque or Euskaldunak are from the Pyrenees Mountains which straddle the boundary between Spain and France. Due to political turmoil in the 1830's, many came to this country to attempt to find a better life, and many more came as news of the discovery of gold in California swept throughout the world.

Due to the custom of primogeniture, many Basque men were looking to find their fortune in a new land.

Work for these new emigrants was often difficult, and gold mining was even more so. They soon learned that there was money to be made in the sheep industry. For the inexperienced new arrivals, it was a much more lucrative job than most.

But it was a lonely job. Months alone, watching sheep wander the mountains and desert in Lassen County was not easy.

These men were in a new environment, with new customs, new predators and new species of plants. And their job was an important one. The loss of sheep meant the loss of money, and it was their responsibility to secure the safety of the flock.

But, imagine the sheepherder sitting in camp all alone, thinking of life as he wished it to be. Perhaps memories of home or dreams of becoming wealthy. No one to talk to. No news. Just his dog, the sheep, and the trees. And the trees became his connection to the outside world.

Sometimes the messages were to communicate with other herders as they passed through. Sometimes the arborglyphs, or tree carvings, were simply decorative. But for whatever reason, these stories in the trees show that someone had been there.

Aspen trees were the favorite medium for arborglyphs. The soft white bark was easily engraved and as dark scars formed around the wounds, the marks were easily read. But the scars continue to grow, and over time, the writing often becomes unreadable.

Aspen trees live, on average, between 60 to 100 years, so finding older writings are very rare. Most arborglyphs are a simple record, showing the name and date, but some are much more elaborate.

Often written in Euskara, the Basque language, and sometimes written in phonetic English, Spanish or French, some words are difficult to decipher, but these communications from the past still tell many stories of young lonely men and their dreams.

Of course not all tree carvings are Basque. Many emigrants have left their mark on trees as they passed through our area, and many people still leave their messages today. But there is just something about those young sheepherders, long ago dreaming of happiness, that reminds us that some dreams do come true.

County Health Officer Declares Local Health Emergency as Prison COVID Outbreak Worsens

Dr. Kenneth Korver, Lassen County's Health Officer, declared a local health emergency Tuesday morning as the number of active confirmed COVID-19 cases at the California Correctional Center rapidly swelled to 214 in just two weeks.

The CDCR's Deputy Director of Facility Operations, Division of Adult Institutions has issued an email directing that effective immediately CCC will serve as the statewide hub for male conservation camp inmates requiring that they be returned to CCC for COVID-19 related reasons.

Korver's declaration begins by saying that the potential introduction of COVID-19 into Lassen County is a threat to public health according to Health and Safety Code section 101080.

In March Korver issued the recommendation that, "all transportation of inmates, be they federal or state, from institutions outside of the County of Lassen who are being brought into the County of Lassen or transportation of inmates from institutions within the County of Lassen, state or federal, being moved to institutions outside the County of Lassen, be discontinued until further order of the County Health Officer."

The declaration points out that on June 8th CDCR transferred inmates from outside the County of Lassen, San Quentin State Prison, to within the County of Lassen, The California Correctional Center, without testing or quarantining them once they arrived, refusing to adhere to the recommendation of the Lassen County Health Officer.

Thirteen days later prison officials reported to the Lassen County Public Health Department that three of the recently transported inmates had tested positive of COVID-19 along with one inmate transfer that was housed with one of the infected inmates.

According to Korver, CCC requested 2,500 COVID sample test kits from the Lassen County Public Health Department and, "in the spirit of collaboration," LCPH provided approximately 2,500 COVID sample test kits.

Korver gave a timeline of the rapidly increasing number of infections at the institutions; on the evening of June 24th, CCC reported to Public Health that 22 inmates had tested positive for COVID-19, the following day the prison reported that 76 more inmates had tested positive for COVID-19 and currently the total is at 214 active, confirmed cases.

Saying that CDCR has failed to identify exposed employees and provide a list of exposed employees within 72-hours of identification of the exposure to the County of Lassen, Korver called the failure a direct violation of Title 17, Div. 1, Chapter 4, California Code of Regulations.

CDCR, according to Korver, has not communicated, collaborated or shared a response plan to the COVID-19 outbreak within CCC and HDSP to the County of Lassen and, based partly on the fact that the prison was forced to ask for an additional 3,000 test kits from local health authorities, is demonstrating, "an ongoing lack of sufficient pandemic planning, which we did not supply based on guidance from California Department of Public Health."

Lassen County, at this time, knows of 214 COVID-19 positive inmates at CCC and 4 COVID-19 positive inmates at HDSP, but the number of infected employees is unknown, due to what Korver called a "lack of cooperation by CCC to provide Lassen County Public Health with a list of names of exposed employees for investigation."

"CDCR has proven the inability to confine the COVID-19 pandemic, allowed it to spread to two institutions within the County of Lassen and demonstrated an indifference of the impacts to the limited rural healthcare system within Lassen County."

Click here to download Korver's Health Emergency Declaration.

Free COVID-19 Antibody Testing at July
28th, 29th and 30th Blood Drive


Recognizing the urgent need for blood and platelets in response to COVID-19 and the desire for local antibody testing, Vitalant will be offering free COVID-19 antibody testing for donors at their upcoming blood drive.

During the drive they will test all blood, platelet and plasma donations for COVID-19 antibodies as an additional health service to their donors.

This testing will provide critical insight into whether donors may have possibly been exposed to this coronavirus.

Vitalant will be in Susanville July 28th, 29th and 30th for a blood drive at Susanville Community LDS Church, 905 Richmond Road.

On July 28th the drive will be open from 12:00p.m. until 6:00. On July 29th donations will be taken between 8:30a.m. and 4:30p.m.

The drive will be accepting donors on July 30th from 8:30a.m. until 12:30p.m.

How is Vitalant Keeping Staff and Donors Safe?
  • Temperature checks - you must be under 99.5 F at check-in
  • Social distancing
  • Continuous sanitation
  • Masks required by staff and donors

Vitalant has more information on their website including eligibility information and information about protecting donors, staff, coordinators, and patients.

For more information you can contact Vitalant at 775-329-6451.



Zaengles Furniture

Milwood Florist

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SusanvilleStuff Today in History
The picket line at Westwood, 1938
From the Eastman Studios Collection at UC Davis

Ejected Union Crowd Flocks To Susanville
31 Injured When Mob Drives Strikers From Westwood
July 2, 1938


Angered residents of this Red River Lumber Company town tonight dragged suspected C. I. O. members or sympathizers before a kangaroo court for "trial" in continuing a purge which drove scores of strikers from the town.

The little lumber town was in a state of siege after 2,000 men battled each other with clubs, rifles, pick-handles and fists, and 80 C. I. O. men and their families were scattered along the roads out of Westwood.

A group of approximately 100 C. I. O. workers were reported in Susanville Wednesday afternoon, but residents there said they expected no trouble.

At a meeting in the Susanville city hall, a number of citizens pledged their support to the chief of police to aid in preserving order, and a signal to warn the citizens should any trouble arise was chosen.

Rumors that an attempt to picket the Lassen Lumber and Box Company, which obtains logs from Red River company, could not be confirmed.

L. R. Cady, vice-president and manager of the California Utilities Company, reported that no interference with electric service to Westwood or Susanville is expected as a result of the dispute.

Cady, following a conference with T. S. Walker, manager of the Red River Lumber Company at Westwood, reported that Walker had said the strikers had promised not to interfere with electric service.

Lassen Municipal Utility District


If you are a fan of our daily history stories you should join the Lassen Historical Society! It's a fun way to be a part of our county's rich history. When you sign up you'll receive regular Historical Society newsletters with interesting stories and information. Membership is open to anyone with an interest in area history.

Through your membership you help preserve local history.
You can download a membership application here.

Historical Society Membership

 
The SusanvilleStuff Team

Jeremy Couso
Owner, Publisher and Editor

Marshel Couso
Owner and General Manager

Ray Couso
Sales and Retention
Consultant

Charlie
Good doggy!

Uptown Cinemas will reopen Friday, July 3rd with classic films at $5 for adults 13+ & senior citizens 60+ and children 3-12 at $3.

Titles are tentatively scheduled for 1 week only and they will not have late evening shows.

Ads and previews aren't playing before the movies at the moment so they start right on time.

Come early as Uptown Cinemas cannot serve you at full occupancy.

As usual they appreciate cash whenever possible and please do not bring in food and snacks.

Click here to see what's playing!

Obituaries
Obituaries
Brought to you by
Walton's Funeral Home


 
SusanvilleStuff Joke of the Day
What is a pronoun?
A noun that has lost its amateur status!



Congratulations to Jennifer Gateway, winner of this week's Pizza Factory giveaway!

You too could win a large one-topping pizza from the Susanville or Janesville Pizza Factory locations just by entering our weekly giveaway!

Just click here and follow the link to our handy entry form. You can enter once per day from each email address. We'll announce our weekly winner right here next Monday morning.

The prize is good for take-out or dine-in orders only, sorry no delivery.

Good luck and enjoy that yummy Pizza Factory Pizza!
Pizza Factory Pizza





Today: Sunny. Highs 78 to 88. Light winds becoming southwest around 10 mph in the afternoon.

Tonight: Clear. Lows 43 to 53. Southwest winds 10 to 15 mph. Gusts up to 30 mph in the evening.

Friday: Sunny. Highs 79 to 89. Southwest winds 10 to 15 mph. Gusts up to 30 mph in the afternoon.

Friday Night: Clear. Lows 42 to 52.

Independence Day Through Tuesday: Clear. Highs 82 to 92. Lows 44 to 54.




Community Calendar
Every single thing on our community calendar has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.


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