Chatham County Line - Where all voices are heard

May 2017

International creeps in the national boudoir
by Julian Sereno

If politics makes for strange bedfellows, what to make of the tyrants, large and small, that President Trump plays footsie with. And what to make of the ones he kicks in the rear end.

First he blows off the Prime Minister of Australia, one of our staunchest allies, over a “bad deal” over refugees. Later, the U.S. meets its commitment; Trump caves.

Next, he defends Vladdy Putin, the right wing Russian tyrant who ordered the murders of critics and political opponents buy the dozen, bullied and strong armed others by the thousand. On 60 minutes Trump said Putin did no worse than unnamed U.S. officials.

Angela Merkel, the Chancellor of Germany, is next up. He publicly refuses to shake hands, then accuses Germany of stiffing NATO and demands that it pay up. The Germans hotly dispute it all and blow off Trump. Ach du lieber.


Hill View Farm
by Kathleen Conroy

We bought our farm in Mount Vernon Springs in 1998, and named it after a marker that we found in the front yard of our turn-of-the-century farm house. Ore Hill, a Revolutionary War and Civil War source of iron ore, is visible from our front porch.

In 2011 we purchased 20 acres of adjoining pasture from our elderly neighbors' farm. This land was continuously farmed by their family for over 100 years and we hoped to maintain it as farm land. We leased the land to a neighbor while we pondered our options. We had learned about Dexter cattle through the American Livestock Breed Conservancy and we were intrigued by their history and their reputation for producing exceptional grass-fed beef.

Dexter cattle are a traditional Irish breed. They were favorites of earlier American settlers and homesteaders as a triple-use breed, excellent as dairy cows, oxen and beef cows. They are smaller than other cattle breeds and good foragers, cheerfully eating a wide variety of weeds, brush and grasses. Dexters are outstanding mothers. They give birth easily and without assistance. They are attentive and protective and they make plenty of milk for their calves.

Early in 2013 we got a call that a friend of a friend had 2 Dexter heifers (unbred females) they wanted to sell. Those two cows were the start of our herd that we've grown slowly as we've learned how many animals our pasture can support.


Rustic Pottery
by Carol Ann LaJeunesse

Rustic PotteryRustic Pottery

Pottery is one of the most ancient art forms that dates back to prehistoric times. Artifacts have been found at archeological sites throughout the world and the development of pottery technology was essential part of the growth of civilization across the globe. The invention of pottery allows for advances in food and produce storage, cooking, and even the development of beer and wine production. Most of the pottery found at these ancient sites was dried, porous unfired clay. Firing clay requires a very high temperature of heat to adequately bisque the piece making it non-porous. This high temperature firing was not developed until many years later.

Pottery is created using several methods. Most people are familiar with pottery that have been formed using a pottery wheel, which allows a potter to create beautiful pots, bowls, cups, plates and many other pieces. The potter engages a process that is referred to as “throwing” the clay onto a rotating wheel, centering the clay, and employing some water to form a desired piece via control of centrifugal force. The pottery created on a potter’s wheel is uniform and even. However, the pottery wheel was not invented until many years later. So during these pre-wheel times, pottery was hand built or sculpted. In ancient times, the earliest techniques in crafting pottery pieces do not use the wheel and are completely made by hand. These techniques include the coil and pinch pot methods, hand sculpting and slab work. Today, these methods are part of the rustic pottery movement.


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Page 1 - Talk'n Trash at Jordan Lake * The Art of the Lie * The Importance of Good Mothers * Chatham needs big parks to survive urbanization - Page 2 - Successful Breastfeeding * Climate Change Awareness is Reaching Tipping Point - Page 3 -I Am Your Tax Dollars at Work (or "Should I Be Alive at All?") - Page 4 - The Headwaters of Northeast Creek - Page 5 - Is Your Life Eternal? * The Medicine Wheel Healing Ritual — Past and Present - Page 6 - Clinnie Malcolm Laws — Survivor of Pearl Harbor and World War II, Part I * HEALING (cont. from page 5) - Page 7 - Chatham Opinion Line - Page 8 - Chatham Comunidad * TRASH (cont. from page 1)

Judy Hogan's new book GRACE: A China Diary, 1910-6

After years of research into early 19th century China and the missionary movement there, Judy Hogan announces the publication of GRACE: A China Diary, 1910-6.

"This thoroughly annotated five-year diary, including contemporary accounts of the retreat colony Kuling and schools in Nanking, provides rich and illuminating primary documentation toward understanding the daily personal, family, social and professional lives of American educators and missionaries in early 20th century China, the native culture in which they devoted themselves, and their influence on subsequent generations. A graceful window on the lives of Westerners and Chinese alike." -- J. Samuel Hammond, Duke University.

"Grace, a rich portrait of missionary life in early 20th century China, is told through diary entries, photos, narratives, and an epilogue by Judy Hogan, editor and annotator of her grandmother’s diary. Most poignant for me, as a former missionary child, is Hogan’s appreciation of Grace’s difficult transition from the China where she spent her first 32 years to the United States where her mental illness took flight." – Nancy Henderson-James, author of Home Abroad: An American Girl in Africa.

To order send $30 to: Judy Hogan, PO Box 253, Moncure, NC 27559. Price includes tax and postage.

Obesity Prevention Toolkit free to Chatham employers

The Chatham Health Alliance has launched Worksite Wellness Chatham, a free worksite wellness toolkit aimed at obesity prevention. The toolkit was developed with feedback from Chatham County employers and in conjunction with the University Of North Carolina School Of Public Health, Health Behavior Master's Capstone program.

Obesity is a preventable chronic disease associated with increased sick leave, absenteeism, risk of developing breast cancer, cardiovascular disease, musculoskeletal disorders, and stress. In the 2014 Community Health Assessment, obesity was identified as the number one health issue in Chatham County, with nearly 1 in 3 Chatham residents classified as obese. Factors underlying obesity include modifiable behaviors, including eating habits, physical activity, and diabetes management.

Research suggests that well-aligned, comprehensive worksite wellness programs are proven to improve these health behaviors and reduce obesity. In addition, worksite wellness programs have broad reach, and engaging the top five employers in Chatham County would reach almost 1 in 6 of Chatham's residents.

Employees participating in worksite wellness programs benefit in a number of ways, including working in a safe and healthy work environment, reduced stress, improved morale, increased job satisfaction, increased skills for health protection, and overall improved health.

Not only do employees participating in worksite wellness programs benefit from participation, but employers benefit as well. Worksite wellness has been proven to improve employee productivity, reduce organizational turnover, and increase healthcare cost-saving through reduced absenteeism, disability leave, and decreased workers' compensation costs.

The Worksite Wellness Chatham toolkit includes 1) a brief summary of the current evidence supporting worksite wellness, 2) an introduction to several free, ready-to-use programs, 3) recommended policy and environmental changes that impact worker health, and 4) a review of related local resources that are available free of charge to all Chatham employers. The toolkit can be downloaded at or a paper copy can be requested from the Chatham Health Alliance at or 919.545.443.

In addition to the toolkit, the Chatham Health Alliance is offering support and technical assistance in establishing worksite wellness programs. This includes conducting employee health needs assessments, setting up worksite wellness teams, using the Worksite Wellness Chatham toolkit, and planning for program sustainability.

If you are interested in using the toolkit, contact the Chatham Health Alliance at or calling 919.545.8443. Worksite Wellness Chatham is an initiative of the Chatham Health Alliance, a community coalition working to improve health in Chatham County. To learn more about the Chatham Health Alliance visit

Chatham Reads wins Grant from Women of Fearrington

Chatham Reads, a countywide collaborative working to improve literacy and enhance literacy resources, is thrilled to announce a grant awarded by the Women of Fearrington, Inc. This grant will allow Virginia Cross and Siler City Elementary Schools in Siler City to reduce the effects of the "summer slide." Summer slide, or summer learning loss, is the tendency for students, especially those from low-income families, to lose some of the achievement gains they made during the previous school year.

Each summer, the Media Specialists from Virginia Cross and Siler City Elementary operate a Bookmobile program that travels into the communities where their students live to ensure children who are most impacted by "summer slide" have access to books during the summer break. The Bookmobile serves over 200 students a week and enables these students to check out books ALL summer. The funds from the Women of Fearrington, Inc. will be used to purchase new books, including bilingual books and "playaways", all-in-one audiobooks. Through this program and the support of Women of Fearrington, Inc. we hope to help some of our most vulnerable students succeed in school and graduate prepared for college and a career.

Chatham Reads is a partnership led by Chatham County Schools and the Chatham Education Foundation partnering with other local community organizations including Chatham County Literacy Council, Chatham County Partnership for Children, Chatham County Public Libraries, Communities In Schools of Chatham County, Chatham County Commissioners, Chatham Economic Development Corporation, The Learning Trail, RWA of North Carolina, Reach Out and Read, United Way of Chatham County, Chatham Connecting, Uplift Chatham, YMCA of the Triangle, Boys and Girls Club of Central Carolina, Triangle Community Foundation and others to bring awareness of literacy to the community. Stay tuned for additional news as we grow, collaborate and work toward making systems changes that impact literacy proficiency and book access in Chatham County. You can follow us on twitter, facebook and instagram with the handle @chathamreads

2nd Infantry Division Reunion

The Second (Indianhead) Division Association is searching for anyone who served in the Army's 2nd Infantry Division at any time. This year the association will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the division which was formed in France during World War I. For information about the association and our annual reunion in Arlington, Virginia from September 13 - 17, 2017, contact Secretary-treasurer Bob Haynes at, call 224.225.1202, or visit

Chatham Literacy Receives Grant from Duke Energy

Chatham Literacy, an organization that provides free literacy tutoring for adults, has received a $7,500 grant from the Duke Energy Foundation to enhance its literacy work across Chatham County.

Chatham Literacy is a non-profit organization whose mission is to help adults, living or working in Chatham County, N.C., acquire the literacy and educational skills they need to function successfully in society.

"These new grants will be used to enable expansion of current services more broadly across Chatham County," said Vicki Newell, executive director of the organization. Specific programs include Adult Literacy, Adult Secondary Education, English for Speakers of Other Languages, Citizenship preparation, and Workforce Soft Skills Training.

"Our students desperately want to improve their skills to better their lives," Newell explained. "They use their new literacy skills to enhance workplace performance, prepare for better jobs and perform everyday tasks more effectively. Strong literacy skills and the ability to speak English are critical for individuals and their families."

Indira Everett, Duke Energy district manager for government and community relations, explained why her organization is pleased to support Chatham Literacy. "Building a better North Carolina begins with investing in the communities we’re fortunate to serve. Duke Energy is thrilled to support sustainable programs like Chatham Literacy that promote the value of continued education, give students the best chance for success, and improve our state’s workforce development."

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HBA of Durham, Orange & Chatham Counties Awards Local Scholarships

The Home Builders Association (HBA) of Durham, Orange & Chatham (DOC) Counties celebrated its Spring Membership Meeting by awarding $10,000 in college scholarships to 10 area high school seniors pursuing a degree in the construction industry. The Spring Membership Meeting focuses on the joint efforts of the HBA and the HBA Foundation. The HBA raises money for the HBA Foundation through an annual scholarship auction event.

The HBADOC Foundation has awarded $262,000 to 246 area students over the last 20 years. The eight-member HBA Foundation Board of Directors works as a separate entity of the larger association, with three of these members having served since the inception of the Foundation. "Meeting these students, the future of our industry, is why I have served on this board for 20 years" states Michele Myers of M Squared Builders, the Secretary/Treasurer of the HBA Foundation. HBA CEO and Foundation Executive Director Holly Fraccaro shares, "I could not be more proud to serve the HBA of Durham, Orange and Chatham Counties and its Foundation. The charitable spirit of this association was the ultimate decision-making factor for me in accepting this position."

Key note speaker at the Spring Membership meeting was Dr. Todd Wirt, Superintendent of Orange County Schools. He delivered a touching and inspiring speech, sharing with the group that his father, after many years of working in shipyards, became a general contractor. Henry Warren, a longtime HBA member, gave an impromptu speech after all of the scholarship recipients received their awards. "Can I just say something?" Warren called out from his seat. "From the first time I assisted on the committee to evaluate the scholarship applications we received, I was blown away by the caliber of students who applied. Reading their essays has given me hope in the young people of our community."

Founded in 1962, the HBDOC is affiliated with the National Association of Home Builders and the North Carolina Home Builders Association. It has more than 600 members who are builders, developers, subcontractors, suppliers, and professionals in businesses related to residential construction. For more information, visit or call 919.493.8899.


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