Rich Galen

  • Sound familiar? That's where any similarity to Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans ends.

  • Rather than wailing and wringing their hands, local leaders immediately began the relief and rebuilding process. From the archives:
    Mayor Eugene E. Schmitz hurriedly appointed a committee, known as the "Citizens' Committee of Fifty," called together such as could be reached, and a meeting was held at the Hall of Justice, on Wednesday afternoon, April 18, 1906, at 3:00 p.m. [Just 10 hours after the first shock was felt].

  • According to the official minutes, the first full meeting was held the next morning at the North End Police Station instead of its scheduled location at the Fairmont Hotel because "the fire was ascending Nob Hill."

  • The citizens of San Francisco took it upon themselves, to help themselves, by forming themselves into subcommittees responsible for everything from "Relief of Sick & Wounded" to "Housing of Homeless" to "Restoration of Water" to (of course) "Press Agent."

  • It was a different time: No Brownie. No FEMA. No CNN. No waiting until the Feds showed up.

  • We have lost any capacity for self-reliance in the course of just one century.

  • Speaking of helping our own, as of Sunday afternoon, sponsorships of the young Marines running to raise money for the Injured Marines Semper Fi fund has exceeded $15,000 - much of that from Mullings readers.

  • The original goal of just over $3,000 has been increased 10-fold and the new goal is $30,000.

  • If you haven't had the time to do it, please take a look at the letter from Captain David Quy explaining what they're doing and why.

  • Then, give any little bit you can.

  • On a the Secret Decoder Ring page today: A huge amount of stuff including a link to the US Geological Survey's 1906 pages, an explanation of the Janis Joplin reference, a link to the Semper Fi Fund donation page, and some stuff on the Clark Gable movie. Also a Mullfoto which is pretty amusing and a Catchy Caption from 1906.

  • Rich Galen

    Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at