What's new at The Trebitch Times
Slow and steady, we exhume the past. Here's some of our dirty work from the past year:
Sneaky Cop Haters in late 1970s St. Louis
A whimsical dash through five years of anti-cop mischief: “March 1976: The RIT wire basket factory in Rock Hill caught fire because someone wanted it to. That someone wasn’t hip to racist, ex-cop general manager Buck Ray. While Bucky was kicking back in his recliner at home earlier in the week, that someone also sent him telephone and postal threats and a drive-by shower of buckshot to convey something quite scary to this quite scary man.”
What Mound Have Been
What Mound Have Been is a petite, personal history of the curious earthworks of North St. Louis. The text explores the mysterious origins and unexpected transformations of the city’s monumental earthen mounds from the burial grounds of Native Americans to the platforms of early St. Louis colonialists for their self-aggrandizing fountains; from a hideout for delinquent youths to modern industrial usage and its toxic remnants. What Mound Have Been strikes a balance between humor and history, poetry and prose.
1969-1974: St. Louis Draft Dodger
“When I was a junior [at Riverview Gardens] high school, they had a ceremony for a friend of mine who had dropped out of high school to join the Marine Corps and died in Vietnam, and they erected a flagpole in his honor. I felt that was a big waste, part of this war that didn’t make any sense—he died in Vietnam for a real stupid cause. One night, we took a bunch of tires and threw them over the flagpole and filled the flagpole with them so they had to cut them off. It was our way of rebelling against the situation. It was pretty much when I realized I wasn’t going to go. It didn’t make any sense to me, why people should have to fight to resolve a conflict.”
George Caleb Bingham and The Verdict of the People
Written in response to a petition attempting to halt the St. Louis Art Museum from loaning The Verdict of the People to Donald Trump’s inaugural luncheon, the piece argues that Bingham's painting has much more in common with Trump than not. Bingham's detourned paintings as well as anecdotes from Missouri's racist past give life to the times of George Caleb Bingham.
“The Binghams moved to Franklin County, Missouri in 1819 during an incredibly turbulent time both racially and politically. The area they settled was known as Boone’s Lick, later to be called Little Dixie. For the last five or so years, Sacks, Foxes, Osages and other Native people had skirmished and fought small battles against encroaching white settlers. Though abandoned by the British after the War of 1812, these warriors kept fighting. Sadly, waves and waves of white settlers like the Binghams eventually proved too much. Hunting grounds, seasonal Native villages and wilderness in general was all slowly transformed into plantations of the Anglo-American tradition.”
St. Louis, 2006-2007: Anti-Development Fires
Taken from issue #2 of War on Misery, that infamous rag, the article includes a 2015 introduction weighing the effects of the fires in the nine years since their lighting. In total, $21,000,000 worth of damage lead the way for delayed and stalled developments.
“A fire. And another, and another, and another… We exchange silent smirks. Maybe outbursts of laughter among friends. A skipped heartbeat or two. Whispers of anticipation that the burdensome tide of regularity might be shifting. That the social conflict of this city, that between the rich and the poor, might be outwardly showing itself as such. Some, more daring than ourselves, articulate our buried rage for the prison we call a city.”
Freedom and Play for All!