17 Aug 2009

Monday Morning Smile

(via JWT) "Judy Wallman, a professional genealogy researcher in southern California, was doing some personal work on her own family tree. She discovered that Senator (D-NV) Harry Reid's great-great uncle, Remus Reid, was hanged for horse stealing and train robbery in Montana in 1889. Both Judy and Harry Reid share this common ancestor.

The only known photograph of Remus shows him standing on the gallows in Montana territory.

On the back of the picture Judy obtained during her research is this inscription:
Remus Reid, horse thief, sent to Montana Territorial Prison 1885, escaped 1887, robbed the Montana Flyer six times. Caught by Pinkerton detectives, convicted and hanged in 1889.
So Judy recently e-mailed Senator Harry Reid for information about their mutual great-great uncle.

Believe it or not, Harry Reid's staff sent back the following biographical sketch for her genealogy research:
Remus Reid was a famous cowboy in the Montana Territory. His business empire grew to include acquisition of valuable equestrian assets and intimate dealings with the Montana railroad. Beginning in 1883, he devoted several years of his life to government service, finally taking leave to resume his dealings with the railroad. In 1887, he was a key player in a vital investigation run by the renowned Pinkerton Detective Agency. In 1889, Remus passed away during an important civic function held in his honor when the platform upon which he was standing collapsed.
That's real POLITICAL SPIN!!! That's how it's done folks!"


  1. Hilarious! But of course that response from Reid's staff was a total joke, right? I'm really slow to pick up on these things, and I know that asking any questions here kind of kills the joke, but I'm willing to do so to know that they didn't actually try to spin it like that!

  2. This does sound like one of those "funny e-mails" that you get from time to time. I smell something fishy, and I'm not in the fishmonger's shop...

  3. @all -- I'm not sure, but I sure believe everything I read on the internet :)

  4. As Nate and Umlud suspect, it's all just a joke: snopes.com.

    David: wise words; the Internet has never led anyone astray.

  5. Joke aside, that one is truly an amazing piece of literature. The respond e-mail, I mean. Who says words can't kill?

    Good article, David.


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