E CLAMPUS VITUS

What say the brethren?

Yee…
Per caritate viduaribus orphanibusque, sed prime viduaribus._________________________________________The Ancient and Honorable Order ofE Clampus Vitus ® E Clampus Vitus is both a Historical and Fraternal organization.Although ancient in origin, it reached its peak during thetumultuous days of The Great California Gold Rush.A member of E Clampus Vitus is commonly called a “Clamper.”The latter-day members of this organization attempt to upholdthe traditions of fellowship, good spirits, and fun.Like their forbearers, the modern Clampers are dedicatedto the care and protection of the Widow* and the Orphan.* But especially the Widow.________________________________________E CLAMPUS VITUS: Who are we? Some Californians are Elks, others are Moose, and some are even Lions. But the most colorful of them all are the Clampers, members of the Ancient and Honorable Order of E Clampus Vitus (ECV), a fraternal organization founded back in the gold rush days. It all began as a spoof on other lodges and secret societies, and its early history is a little difficult to reconstruct. The early meetings of E Clampus Vitus in the California gold fields were devoted so completely to drinking and carousing that none of the Clampers was ever in any condition to keep minutes, let alone remember what had happened the next day! By tradition, a person could join E Clampus Vitus by invitation only and then was expected to endure an elaborate, humorous and sometimes grueling initiation ceremony. Membership in E Clampus Vitus declined in the late 1800s, but experienced a revival in the 1930s and is still going strong today. Modern-day Clampers typically dress up in garb reminiscent of the gold-rush — usually a red miner’s shirt, and black hat — and they still hold their unique initiation ceremonies, but now specialize in putting up commemorative plaques of historical and hysterical interest. Along with serious sites that need more reverent commemoration, Clampers have been known to plaque places like saloons, bawdy houses, and other locations that have been “overlooked” by more serious historical societies. Pull to the side of the road in California to read a monument and as often as not, you will discover that Clampers had something to do with its erection.Lots of folks don’t know what to make of the Clampers today, but we think Carl Wheat, one of the three founders of the revived Order back in the thirties, put it well when he described E Clampus Vitus as “The comic strip on the page of California History.”As the new millennium begins, there are thousands of Clampers in forty-two chapters in California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, New Mexico and Colorado. There are even two new Outposts of our august organization in Oregon and Washington. Since the early nineteen-thirties, well over two thousand historical sites have been “plaqued” with historical markers by ECV.What does E Clampus Vitus mean? Well, that is a great mystery. Ask a Clamper.What is the purpose of the society? The objectives of ECV are well known: Members swear to take care of the Widows and Orphans — especially the Widows._______________________________________E CLAMPUS VITUS: Can I be a Clamper? The prime requisites to becoming a Clamper are a good sense of humor, an interest in Western history, an open mind, and a cast iron stomach. If a man has those qualities, and strikes up a friendship with a Clamper or two, he may find himself taken in to (and by) the Ancient and Honorable Order. But one can’t simply walk up and say, “Can I be a Clamper?” It is for the Brethren of ECV to invite prospective members to join. And if a man is asked, he should know that the invitation is only given once. If it is refused, it is never tendered again. But a man of any intelligence and character so invited would hardly be likely to turn down such a signal honor. And remember, as the Brethren of E Clampus Vitus maintain, Clampers are not made, they’re born. Like gold, they just have to be discovered.Credo quia absurdum. _______________________________________Mountain Charlie No.1850 is a California non-profit Historical- Educational corporation, registered with the State of Calfornia.We are classified by the IRS as a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3).Donations to Mountain Charlie No.1850 can generally be deducted from the donor’s Federal (and often state) income tax.Please consult with your tax advisor about your specific situation.® “E Clampus Vitus” and “ECV” are registered trademarks of E Clampus Vitus, Inc. and are used by expressed permission.All Rights are reserved.

Per caritate viduaribus orphanibusque, 
sed prime viduaribus.

_________________________________________

The Ancient and Honorable Order of
E Clampus Vitus ® E Clampus Vitus is both a Historical and Fraternal organization.
Although ancient in origin, it reached its peak during the
tumultuous days of The Great California Gold Rush.

A member of E Clampus Vitus is commonly called a “Clamper.”
The latter-day members of this organization attempt to uphold
the traditions of fellowship, good spirits, and fun.

Like their forbearers, the modern Clampers are dedicated
to the care and protection of the Widow* and the Orphan.

* But especially the Widow.


________________________________________


E CLAMPUS VITUS: Who are we? Some Californians are Elks, others are Moose, and some are even Lions. But the most colorful of them all are the Clampers, members of the Ancient and Honorable Order of E Clampus Vitus (ECV), a fraternal organization founded back in the gold rush days. It all began as a spoof on other lodges and secret societies, and its early history is a little difficult to reconstruct. The early meetings of E Clampus Vitus in the California gold fields were devoted so completely to drinking and carousing that none of the Clampers was ever in any condition to keep minutes, let alone remember what had happened the next day! 

By tradition, a person could join E Clampus Vitus by invitation only and then was expected to endure an elaborate, humorous and sometimes grueling initiation ceremony. Membership in E Clampus Vitus declined in the late 1800s, but experienced a revival in the 1930s and is still going strong today. Modern-day Clampers typically dress up in garb reminiscent of the gold-rush — usually a red miner’s shirt, and black hat — and they still hold their unique initiation ceremonies, but now specialize in putting up commemorative plaques of historical and hysterical interest. Along with serious sites that need more reverent commemoration, Clampers have been known to plaque places like saloons, bawdy houses, and other locations that have been “overlooked” by more serious historical societies. Pull to the side of the road in California to read a monument and as often as not, you will discover that Clampers had something to do with its erection.

Lots of folks don’t know what to make of the Clampers today, but we think Carl Wheat, one of the three founders of the revived Order back in the thirties, put it well when he described E Clampus Vitus as “The comic strip on the page of California History.”

As the new millennium begins, there are thousands of Clampers in forty-two chapters in California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, New Mexico and Colorado. There are even two new Outposts of our august organization in Oregon and Washington. Since the early nineteen-thirties, well over two thousand historical sites have been “plaqued” with historical markers by ECV.

What does E Clampus Vitus mean? Well, that is a great mystery. Ask a Clamper.

What is the purpose of the society? The objectives of ECV are well known: Members swear to take care of the Widows and Orphans — especially the Widows.


_______________________________________


E CLAMPUS VITUS: Can I be a Clamper? The prime requisites to becoming a Clamper are a good sense of humor, an interest in Western history, an open mind, and a cast iron stomach. If a man has those qualities, and strikes up a friendship with a Clamper or two, he may find himself taken in to (and by) the Ancient and Honorable Order. But one can’t simply walk up and say, “Can I be a Clamper?” It is for the Brethren of ECV to invite prospective members to join. And if a man is asked, he should know that the invitation is only given once. If it is refused, it is never tendered again. But a man of any intelligence and character so invited would hardly be likely to turn down such a signal honor. And remember, as the Brethren of E Clampus Vitus maintain, Clampers are not made, they’re born. Like gold, they just have to be discovered.

Credo quia absurdum. 

_______________________________________


Mountain Charlie No.1850 is a California non-profit Historical- 
Educational corporation, registered with the State of Calfornia.

We are classified by the IRS as a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3).
Donations to Mountain Charlie No.1850 can generally be deducted from the donor’s 
Federal (and often state) income tax.
Please consult with your tax advisor about your specific situation.


® “E Clampus Vitus” and “ECV” are registered trademarks of 
E Clampus Vitus, Inc. and are used by expressed permission.
All Rights are reserved.


Being as I was born and raised in Alameda County, I thought I’d pay homage to Chapter 13 - Joaquin Murrieta. I’d like to retread one of these days. What say the brethren?


JOAQUIN MURRIETA - Legend/History


Everything about Joaquin Murrieta is disputed. He was either the Mexican Robin Hood or the El Dorado Robin Hood. He was either an infamous bandito or a Mexican patriot. He was born in either Alamos or Trincheras, in either Sonora Mexico or Quillota Chile.
He was either descended from Cherokee ancestors who migrated to Chile in the late 18th century, or a noble Spanish landowner. He either sympathized with Native Americans or with Mexicans.
An undisputed truth about Joaquin Murrieta is that he was born in 1829 and made his way to California in 1850, seeking to mine for gold. Legend says that he, his wife and his brother were attacked by American miners who envied his success and hated Mexicans. Talk about sore losers, they not only raped his wife, they hanged his brother, and horsewhipped the innocent Joaquin to a bloody pulp.
Murrieta tried to do the right thing and sought redress in the California courts, but was thwarted because Mexicans were prohibited from testifying against white men.
Seeking vengeance outside the law, Murrieta formed a gang, hunting down and killing six culprits. His outlaw band was named The Five Joaquins: Joaquin Botellier, Joaquin Carrillo, Joaquin Ocomoreniaq, Joaquin Valenzuela and Joaquin Murrieta. There was a sixth member, Manuel Garcia, affectionately dubbed Three-Fingered Jack.
In the Sierra Nevadas, they rustled cattle and horses, robbed banks, and murdered no fewer than 19 men. California governor, John Bigler, got plenty mad about this and created the California State Rangers, led by Captain Love, who had the task of finding the gang for a paltry $150 per month. A bounty of $5,000 was offered for Murrieta.
On July 25, 1853, an encounter between the Rangers and the gang ensued, killing Murrieta himself, and Three Fingered Jack. The Rangers must’ve been pretty bloodthirsty, because they stuck Garcia’s three-fingered hand and Joaquin Murrieta’s head in a big jar filled with brandy to preserve their trophies. They displayed the jar over Northern California, spectators paying one dollar each. (Note: The jar was lost in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.)
A year after the head and the hand event, legends about Murrieta began in earnest with San Francisco newspapers and even a book telling the story which had unleashed the fury of Five Joaquins and one Garcia in their quest for revenge.
History and legend ultimately came together creating Murrieta’s posthumous reputation as a Robin Hood fiercely avenging injustices against Mexicans.
His legendary life has been the subject of songs, novels, plays, and even the first Russian rock opera. Murrieta’s story can also be seen in motion pictures like The Robin Hood of El Dorado and The Mask of Zorro.
Not a bad legacy for a man about whom so many facts are disputed.

Being as I was born and raised in Alameda County, I thought I’d pay homage to Chapter 13 - Joaquin Murrieta. I’d like to retread one of these days. What say the brethren?

JOAQUIN MURRIETA - Legend/History

Everything about Joaquin Murrieta is disputed. He was either the Mexican Robin Hood or the El Dorado Robin Hood. He was either an infamous bandito or a Mexican patriot. He was born in either Alamos or Trincheras, in either Sonora Mexico or Quillota Chile.

He was either descended from Cherokee ancestors who migrated to Chile in the late 18th century, or a noble Spanish landowner. He either sympathized with Native Americans or with Mexicans.

An undisputed truth about Joaquin Murrieta is that he was born in 1829 and made his way to California in 1850, seeking to mine for gold. Legend says that he, his wife and his brother were attacked by American miners who envied his success and hated Mexicans. Talk about sore losers, they not only raped his wife, they hanged his brother, and horsewhipped the innocent Joaquin to a bloody pulp.

Murrieta tried to do the right thing and sought redress in the California courts, but was thwarted because Mexicans were prohibited from testifying against white men.

Seeking vengeance outside the law, Murrieta formed a gang, hunting down and killing six culprits. His outlaw band was named The Five Joaquins: Joaquin Botellier, Joaquin Carrillo, Joaquin Ocomoreniaq, Joaquin Valenzuela and Joaquin Murrieta. There was a sixth member, Manuel Garcia, affectionately dubbed Three-Fingered Jack.

In the Sierra Nevadas, they rustled cattle and horses, robbed banks, and murdered no fewer than 19 men. California governor, John Bigler, got plenty mad about this and created the California State Rangers, led by Captain Love, who had the task of finding the gang for a paltry $150 per month. A bounty of $5,000 was offered for Murrieta.

On July 25, 1853, an encounter between the Rangers and the gang ensued, killing Murrieta himself, and Three Fingered Jack. The Rangers must’ve been pretty bloodthirsty, because they stuck Garcia’s three-fingered hand and Joaquin Murrieta’s head in a big jar filled with brandy to preserve their trophies. They displayed the jar over Northern California, spectators paying one dollar each. (Note: The jar was lost in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.)

A year after the head and the hand event, legends about Murrieta began in earnest with San Francisco newspapers and even a book telling the story which had unleashed the fury of Five Joaquins and one Garcia in their quest for revenge.

History and legend ultimately came together creating Murrieta’s posthumous reputation as a Robin Hood fiercely avenging injustices against Mexicans.

His legendary life has been the subject of songs, novels, plays, and even the first Russian rock opera. Murrieta’s story can also be seen in motion pictures like The Robin Hood of El Dorado and The Mask of Zorro.

Not a bad legacy for a man about whom so many facts are disputed.

Emperor Norton Day…

(Source: youtube.com)

A Clamper branding……Ecv 58 (by DavidRacher)

58 HOLDING IT DOWN!

Matuca Fall Doin’s 2007 (by ECV1849)

T-Shirt design I created for a 4-Skin Doins… I never got off my ass to approach any Hawkers to print them. Maybe next time around… What say the brethren?

E Clampus Vitus on Man v. Food (by GuitarLicksAnonymous)

if you aint plaquen you ain't clampin...

Mark Twain was a pretty smart fellow:

AS TOLD BY THE ORGANIZATION

E CLAMPUS VITUS is said by its adherents to be the most ancient of all fraternal orders. It’s founding, as the tale is told, was coeval with the origin of the human race.
It is related that in 1852 Steamboat Jake. a merchant from Yreka, thinking to improve his business by fraternal affiliations, made arrangements through certain Clampers for initiation into the Masons, the Odd Fellows and E CLAMPUS VITUS at one bargain priceof $98.50. When the various brethern were assembled at the Hall of Comparative Ovation and Jake, bound and blindfolded was brought to be initiated, the question arose as to which Order should first apply the branding iron. It was agreed that the oldest should have priority.
The Odd Fellows presented their claim for that honor, stating that their order was created by a charter issued in the form of a golden tablet by the Emperor Titus to his Jewish Legion in the first century A.D.
The Masons disputed the claim, relating the scholarly history of Reverend Dr. Anderson to prove that the Grand Master Moses often marshalled the Isrealites onto a regular and general lodge whilst in the wilderness, and that King Solomon was “Grand Master of the Lodge at Jerusalem”.
The Noble Grand Humbug of E Clampus Vitus then rose and confounded the rival oraganizations with proof abducted from the unimpeachable unwritten works of St. Vitus, the final authority in all such matters, that E CLAMPUS VITUS was founded by our Clampatriarch Adam himself in the Garden of Eden, and that the original Staff of Relief, which figures so greatly in the Clamper ritual, was a branch that Adam broke from the Tree of Knowledge and smuggled out with him, hidden beneath his apron, when he was driven from Eden. All present in the Hall agreed that such antiquity was beyond compare.
The senority of the Clampers was recognized, and Steamboat Jake accordingly was given into the hands for initiation. It is then told that by the time they were through with him he had lost all desire for further fraternal connections.
The unsurpassable antiquity of E CLAMPUS VITUS has been recognized and proven on many occasions. There are those who claim they can trace it through the times of the Old Testament and the beginnings of the Christian Era when its rites were conducted in the catacombs of Rome and referred to as the “Enigmatical Book ofVitus” and the “Curious Book of the Clampers”. These tales tell how it was spread through Europe by the Frolicking Friars, and carried to the Orient by the indomitable Vituscan Fathers.
According to the Clampers, the introduction of the order into the United States has long been shrouded in mystery and legend. Only recently has the true history been traced by the Royal Platrix Chapter and the Archivist of the West Virginia Lodge. The result of this research supposedly proves by documentary evidence that the secrets and symbols of E CLAMPUS VITUS were imparted by the Emperor of China, Tao-Kwang, Great Hotchot of the Chinese Grand Lodge to Caleb Cushing when the latter visited China in 1844 to negotiate the first treaty between the United States and the Celestial Kingdom. Cushing was specially charged by the Emperor to deliver the secrets and signs of authority to Ephrairn Bee, innkeeper of Bush Creek, Boone County, Virginia, to be disseminated by him at his descretion among the fellow citizens so that the Chinese and American People might henceforth be united by the Bonds of Fraternal Brotherhood as well as by the more formal ties of diplomatic relations. By virtue of his authority, Ephraim Bee traveled about his native state organizing lodges of E CLAMPUS VITUS in villages and county seats.
It is also said that among others, a number of drummers were taken into the order, with or without authority from Bee. These travelers took the gullible villagers and townsmen along their routes into the Brotherhood, until by 1849, the East and Middle West were dotted with Clamper Lodges. From these Lodges many lusty Clampers went West in the Gold Rush and founded the historic lodges in the mining camps that constitiuted themselves as guardians of the morals of these communities.Their duty as they saw it was to prevent the preachers and pious wives who followed the 49′ers, from imposing any excess of morality that might hamper the full enjoyment of life. How well the Clampers performed this function is commonly known, despite the lack of written records. This lack of written records is attributed to the circumstance that during the meetings there was never anyone capable of keeping the minutes and that afterwards no one remembered what had taken place.
As E CLAMPUS VITUS mushroomed along with the rapid growth of the gold towns, it declined as rapidly as they did, and, therefore, lived only in the memory of a few ancient dwellers in the mountains and in the annals of the county histories until, in 1930, when a new prophet, a second Ephraim Bee , appeared in the person of Carl Wheat to reorganize the historic organization.
Members of the Ancient and Honorable Order of E CLAMPUS VITUS have always been adventurers and many have been leaders in conquest of their respective countries. The most noteworthy of that band of stalwarts was Juan Rodriquez Cabrillo, a doughty explorer in the service of the Spanish Empire, who on October 19, 1542, raised the Spanish Flag at a point near the beach city of Hueneme in Ventura County and took possession of the land in the name of the King. Cabrillo is buried on San Miguel island and some Clampers make an annual pilgrimage to his grave.
Sir Francis Drake was a Clamper but not in good standing because of his piratical exploits until June 15, 1579, when this bold bucaneer reached California in the famous ship, the “Golden Hind”, and anchored in Drakes Bay where he raised the English Flag and took possession for Queen Elizabeth and called the land New Albion.
Then Spain decided to occupy California to protect her colonial possessions, so two courageous Clampers were selected for the expedition: one was Don Gaspar de Portola, and the other was Father Junipero Serra. These men raised the Emperors flag at San Diego on May 17, 1769.
After Mexico revolted from Spain, an admirable Clamper, General Antonio de Santa Ana, ordered the flag of the Mexican Republic raised at Monterey on January 7,1769.
John Charles Fremont was a peritatetic Clamper and he raised his ensign as Captain of the United States Topographical Engineers above every camp that he made in California during his expeditions between 1844 and 1846. That flag is now in the custody of the Southwest Museum in Los Angeles.
On June 14, 1846, a Sonoma group of justly indignant Clampers rebelled against the aggression of Mexican officials. They captured the garrison at Sonoma, issued a clampotent proclamation declaring California to be an independent republic and raised a crudely designed but historic Bear Flag.
Clampers played an important part in the history of California in the nineteenth century because the American membersof this Order worked in unison. Commodore John D. Sloat in command of thePacific Squadron of the U.S. Navy captured Monterey and on July 7, 1846 he instructed a fellow Clamper William Mervine to raise the flag of the United States above the customhouse. When Fremont learned of Brother Sloat’s coup he ordered the Bear Flag struck at Sonoma and replaced by a 28-star flag of the United States.
It is manifest that Clampers have been leaders throughout the history of California and the flag-raising members of the Order of E CLAMPUS VITUS have contributed glamor and deeds of courage and gallantry to our heritage. It must be noted however that this history has never been proven.

CREDO QUIA ABSURDUM – BECAUSE ITS ABSURD I BELIEVE

QUOTED FROM E CLAMPUS VITUS, THEN AND NOW, 1852-1979