Stories written by Bob Diamond

Washington’s brother Lawrence and Cartagena

Years ago, Arlene and I visited the beautiful Colombian walled city of Cartagena, on the westerly side of the Caribbean. We had an unusual conversation with a resident who held a grudge against the United States. “Don’t you know your history,” he said. “George Washington’s brother Lawrence helped lead a naval invasion against our beautiful […]

The Birth State of Andrew Jackson?

Andrew Jackson is rated in numerous historical polls as our sixth greatest president. South Carolina and North Carolina each claim to be his birth state. Which state is correct? Andrew Jackson (father of the future president), a farmer from Ireland and his wife Elizabeth decided to seek a new life in America. “In 1765, the […]

Lincoln, Grant and the Jews

In December 1862, in the Civil War, General Ulysses S. Grant, in charge of the Western territory, initiated the most sweeping anti-Semitic regulation in all of American History. He issued General Order No. 11, “which expelled all Jews from Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi, within 24 hours and any Jews remaining will be arrested.” Although only […]

David Levy Yulee – ‘The Florida Fire Eater’

Moses Levy, an observant Jew, took great pride in 1845 when his son David was elected as America’s first Jewish U.S. Senator. It was short lived. It all started when Rachel Levy, a young English Jewess, was captured by Moroccan pirates and sold to a prominent Muslim named Jacoub ibn Youli, who added her to […]

Jefferson – The Ambiguities of Human Nature

I recently had the pleasure to attend a lecture at Broward College by Pulitzer Prize author Jon Meacham (Thomas Jefferson, The Art of Power). Meacham’s conclusion, “Although Jefferson was flawed and a hypocrite over the issues of blacks and slavery, he still deserves credit as one of our greatest presidents.” Jefferson’s legacy is a fascinating […]

Grace Coolidge, FDR and the Jewish children

In the coming years, a new tragic chapter may be added to the story of Anne Frank’s diary, as her life could have been saved. In 1938, the Wagner-Rogers Bill was introduced into Congress that would have admitted 20,000 German Jewish children under the age of 14, outside the quota system. Anne, as a German […]

Jefferson speaks out

In view of the charges that I am a hypocrite over my relationship with my slave Sally Hemings and the 1998 DNA connecting results, I decided to tell my side of the story. Sally and my beloved wife Martha were half-sisters. Sally’s mother Betty was a slave concubine to Martha’s father, John Wales. On the […]

Who was the real Thomas Jefferson?

Historians have mainly sidestepped Jefferson’s personal beliefs and lifelong ownership of slaves, having revered him for his immortal words “All men are created equal.” Based upon two recent books, Jefferson’s honeymoon may be over. In Henry Wiencek’s book “Master of the Mountain,” he states that a reading of Jefferson’s records reveal “a coldblooded taskmaster who […]

Who would you vote for!

Two candidates are running for the U.S. Senate; one a two-term Senate incumbent, and the other, a former one term Congressman. Both express positions on a major issue impacting a part of our nation. The Senator believes we should let the people in the impacted area vote and decide the issue for themselves. The opposing […]

Lincoln and Nevada Becoig a State

Ask long-time Nevada residents why their state was admitted into the Union on October 31, 1864 and the probable answer would be because its silver and gold production “was needed to help finance the Civil War.” It’s a wonderful tale but not true. According to Nevada State Archivist Guy Rocha, “The myth of Nevada’s mineral […]

Washington’s Finances

When George Washington was unanimously elected President of the United States in February 1789, he was “amid a full-blown financial crisis,” was deeply in debt and unable to pay his bills. He borrowed five hundred pounds to cover his travel expenses from Virginia to New York to attend his presidential inauguration. According to historian Ron […]

Spielberg’s movie ‘Lincoln’

I urge everyone to see Steven Spielberg’s remarkable achievement in the heroic movie “Lincoln,” about compromise; where satisfying a moral position – embracing of social equality between black and white – would have led to defeat of the 13th Amendment. Lincoln was willing to compromise on “almost everything – except his ultimate destination.” The precise […]

Washington’s Erratic Mother

One of the strangest mysteries of George Washington’s life was his strained relationship with his mother, Mary Ball. As a child, George feared his mother; his father, Gus, died when George was 11 years old and away on business so often that George remembered him vaguely. When George was appointed Military Commander of the Colonial […]

Valley Forge – December 1777

British General William Howe and his officers rested in comfortable winter quarters in Philadelphia, as eighteenth century warfare remained “a seasonal business.” Howe saw no reason to fight in cold weather, as well as his having confidence they could defeat George Washington and his rag-tailed ill trained troops at any time they desired. Washington struggled […]