John Bell

John Bell

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John Bell was born in Nashville, Tennessee, on 15th February, 1797. A member of the Democratic Party he worked as a lawyer until being elected as a to House of Representatives (1827-41). He joined the Whig Party and President William Harrison appointed him as Secretary of War in 1841.

Bell returned to politics when he was elected as U.S. senator for Tennessee in 1847. Although a large slaveowner, Bell opposed efforts to expand slavery and voted against the Kansas-Nebraska bill in 1854.

Southern slaveholders were outraged when in 1860 the Republican Party nominated Abraham Lincoln as its presidential candidate in 1860. They looked to the Democratic Party to defend its interests but when it met in Charleston in April, 1860, it selected, Stephen A. Douglas, as its presidential candidate. Unhappy with this decision, Southern delegates decided to hold another convention in Baltimore in June, where they selected John Beckenridge of Kentucky as their candidate. The situation was further complicated when Bell and other Southerners formed the Constitutional Union Party.

Abraham Lincoln won the 1860 election with 1,866,462 votes (18 free states) and beat Stephen A. Douglas (1,375,157 - 1 slave state), John Beckenridge (847,953 - 13 slave states) and Bell (589,581 - 3 slave states).

Bell initially opposed secession; however, he later gave his full support to President Jefferson Davis and the Confederate Army. John Bell died in Dover, Tennessee, on 10th September, 1869.

John Bell

John Bell (John Anthony Bell) was born on 1 November, 1940 in Maitland, New South Wales, Australia, is an Actor, Director, Miscellaneous. Discover John Bell's Biography, Age, Height, Physical Stats, Dating/Affairs, Family and career updates. Learn How rich is He in this year and how He spends money? Also learn how He earned most of networth at the age of 81 years old?

Popular As John Anthony Bell
Occupation actor,director,miscellaneous
Age 81 years old
Zodiac Sign Scorpio
Born 1 November 1940
Birthday 1 November
Birthplace Maitland, New South Wales, Australia
Nationality Australia

We recommend you to check the complete list of Famous People born on 1 November. He is a member of famous Actor with the age 81 years old group.

Early Life of John Bell

John Bell is one of the famous actors with a ravishing personality in the field of acting. Moreover, he was recently cast to play the role of Young Ian Murray for Season Three of the Starz’s TV series, Outlander. Furthermore, Bell starred in the role of Anthony Weaver in the comedic BBC series, Life of Riley (1949-1958). Bell was born on 20th October 1997, on Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland. Moreover, he is Scottish by his nationality and belongs to Celtic ethnicity.

John Stewart Bell

John Bell's great achievement was that during the 1960 s he was able to breathe new and exciting life into the foundations of quantum theory, a topic seemingly exhausted by the outcome of the Bohr-Einstein debate thirty years earlier, and ignored by virtually all those who used quantum theory in the intervening period. Bell was able to show that discussion of such concepts as 'realism', 'determinism' and 'locality' could be sharpened into a rigorous mathematical statement, 'Bell's inequality', which is capable of experimental test. Such tests, steadily increasing in power and precision, have been carried out over the last thirty years.

Indeed, almost wholly due to Bell's pioneering efforts, the subject of quantum foundations, experimental as well as theoretical and conceptual, has became a focus of major interest for scientists from many countries, and has taught us much of fundamental importance, not just about quantum theory, but about the nature of the physical universe.

In addition, and this could scarcely have been predicted even as recently as the mid- 1990 s, several years after Bell's death, many of the concepts studied by Bell and those who developed his work have formed the basis of the new subject area of quantum information theory, which includes such topics as quantum computing and quantum cryptography. Attention to quantum information theory has increased enormously over the last few years, and the subject seems certain to be one of the most important growth areas of science in the twenty-first century.

John Stewart Bell's parents had both lived in the north of Ireland for several generations. His father was also named John, so John Stewart has always been called Stewart within the family. His mother, Annie, encouraged the children to concentrate on their education, which, she felt, was the key to a fulfilling and dignified life. However, of her four children - John had an elder sister, Ruby, and two younger brothers, David and Robert - only John was able to stay on at school much over fourteen. Their family was not well-off, and at this time there was no universal secondary education, and to move from a background such as that of the Bells to university was exceptionally unusual.

Bell himself was interested in books, and particularly interested in science from an early age. He was extremely successful in his first schools, Ulsterville Avenue and Fane Street, and, at the age of eleven, passed with ease his examination to move to secondary education. Unfortunately the cost of attending one of Belfast's prestigious grammar schools was prohibitive, but enough money was found for Bell to move to the Belfast Technical High School, where a full academic curriculum which qualified him for University entrance was coupled with vocational studies.

Bell then spent a year as a technician in the Physics Department at Queen's University Belfast, where the senior members of staff in the Department, Professor Karl Emeleus and Dr Robert Sloane, were exceptionally helpful, lending Bell books and allowing him to attend the first year lectures. Bell was able to enter the Department as a student in 1945 . His progress was extremely successful, and he graduated with First-Class Honours in Experimental Physics in 1948 . He was able to spend one more year as a student, in that year achieving a second degree, again with First-Class Honours, this time in Mathematical Physics. In Mathematical Physics, his main teacher was Professor Peter Paul Ewald, famous as one of the founders of X-ray crystallography Ewald was a refugee from Nazi Germany.

Bell was already thinking deeply about quantum theory, not just how to use it, but its conceptual meaning. In an interview with Jeremy Bernstein, given towards the end of his life and quoted in Bernstein's book [ 1 ] , Bell reported being perplexed by the usual statement of the Heisenberg uncertainty or indeterminacy principle ( Δ x Δ p ≥ ℏ Delta x Delta p ≥ hbar Δ x Δ p ≥ ℏ , where Δ x Delta x Δ x and Δ p Delta p Δ p are the uncertainties or indeterminacies, depending on one's philosophical position, in position and momentum respectively, and ℏ is the ( reduced ) Planck's constant ) .

At the conclusion of his undergraduate studies Bell would have liked to work for a PhD. He would also have liked to study the conceptual basis of quantum theory more thoroughly. Economic considerations, though, meant that he had to forget about quantum theory, at least for the moment, and get a job, and in 1949 he joined the UK Atomic Research Establishment at Harwell, though he soon moved to the accelerator design group at Malvern.

It was here that he met his future wife, Mary Ross, who came with degrees in mathematics and physics from Scotland. They married in 1954 and had a long and successful marriage. Mary was to stay in accelerator design through her career towards the end of John's life he returned to problems in accelerator design and he and Mary wrote some papers jointly. Through his career he gained much from discussions with Mary, and when, in 1987 , his papers on quantum theory were collected [ 21 ] , he included the following words:

Accelerator design was, of course, a relatively new field, and Bell's work at Malvern consisted of tracing the paths of charged particles through accelerators. In these days before computers, this required a rigorous understanding of electromagnetism, and the insight and judgment to make the necessary mathematical simplifications required to make the problem tractable on a mechanical calculator, while retaining the essential features of the physics. Bell's work was masterly.

In 1951 Bell was offered a year's leave of absence to work with Rudolf Peierls, Professor of Physics at Birmingham University. During his time in Birmingham, Bell did work of great importance, producing his version of the celebrated CPT theorem of quantum field theory. This theorem showed that under the combined action of three operators on a physical event: P P P , the parity operator, which performed a reflection C C C , the charge conjugation operator, which replaced particles by anti-particles and T T T , which performed a time reversal, the result would be another possible physical event.
Unfortunately Gerhard Lüders and Wolfgang Pauli proved the same theorem a little ahead of Bell, and they received all the credit.

However, Bell added another piece of work and gained a PhD in 1956 . He also gained the highly valuable support of Peierls, and when he returned from Birmingham he went to Harwell to join a new group set up to work on theoretical elementary particle physics. He remained at Harwell till 1960 , but he and Mary gradually became concerned that Harwell was moving away from fundamental work to more applied areas of physics, and they both moved to CERN, the Centre for European Nuclear Research in Geneva. Here they spent the remainder of their careers.

Bell published around 80 papers in the area of high-energy physics and quantum field theory. Some were fairly closely related to experimental physics programmes at CERN, but most were in general theoretical areas.

The most important work was that of 1969 leading to the Adler-Bell-Jackiw ( ABJ ) anomaly in quantum field theory. This resulted from joint work of Bell and Ronan Jackiw, which was then clarified by Stephen Adler. They showed that the standard current algebra model contained an ambiguity. Quantisation led to a symmetry breaking of the model. This work solved an outstanding problem in particle physics theory appeared to predict that the neutral pion could not decay into two photons, but experimentally the decay took place, as explained by ABJ. Over the subsequent thirty years, the study of such anomalies became important in many areas of particle physics. Reinhold Bertlmann, who himself did important work with Bell, has written a book titled Anomalies in Quantum Field Theory [ 10 ] , and the two surviving members of ABJ, Adler and Jackiw shared the 1988 Dirac Medal of the International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste for their work.

While particle physics and quantum field theory was the work Bell was paid to do, and he made excellent contributions, his great love was for quantum theory, and it is for his work here that he will be remembered. As we have seen, he was concerned about the fundamental meaning of the theory from the time he as an undergraduate, and many of his important arguments had their basis at that time.

These statements contradict two of our basic notions. We are rejecting realism, which tells us that a quantity has a value, to put things more grandly -- the physical world has an existence, independent of the actions of any observer. Einstein was particularly disturbed by this abandonment of realism -- he insisted in the existence of an observer-free realm. We are also rejecting determinism, the belief that, if we have a complete knowledge of the state of the system, we can predict exactly how it will behave. In this case, we know the state-vector of the system, but cannot predict the result of measuring s z s_ s z ​ .

It is clear that we could try to recover realism and determinism if we allowed the view that the Schrödinger equation, and the wave-function or state-vector, might not contain all the information that is available about the system. There might be other quantities giving extra information -- hidden variables. As a simple example, the state-vector above might apply to an ensemble of many systems, but in addition a hidden variable for each system might say what the actual value of s z s_ s z ​ might be. Realism and determinism would both be restored s z s_ s z ​ would have a value at all times, and, with full knowledge of the state of the system, including the value of the hidden variable, we can predict the result of the measurement of s z s_ s z ​ .

A complete theory of hidden variables must actually be more complicated than this -- we must remember that we wish to predict the results of measuring not just s z s_ s z ​ , but also s x s_ s x ​ and s y s_ s y ​ , and any other component of s s s . Nevertheless it would appear natural that the possibility of supplementing the Schrödinger equation with hidden variables would have been taken seriously. In fact, though, Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg were convinced that one should not aim at realism. They were therefore pleased when John von Neumann proved a theorem claiming to show rigorously that it is impossible to add hidden variables to the structure of quantum theory. This was to be very generally accepted for over thirty years.

Bohr put forward his ( perhaps rather obscure ) framework of complementarity, which attempted to explain why one should not expect to measure s x s_ s x ​ and s y s_ s y ​ ( or x x x and p p p ) simultaneously. This was his Copenhagen interpretation of quantum theory. Einstein however rejected this, and aimed to restore realism. Physicists almost unanimously favoured Bohr.

Einstein's strongest argument, though this did not become very generally apparent for several decades lay in the famous Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen ( EPR ) argument of 1935 , constructed by Einstein with the assistance of his two younger co-workers, Boris Podolsky and Nathan Rosen. Here, as is usually done, we discuss a simpler version of the argument, thought up somewhat later by David Bohm.

The result of this argument is that at least one of three statements must be true:

The first possibility may be described as the renunciation of the principle of locality, whereby signals cannot be passed from one particle to another faster than the speed of light. This suggestion was anathema to Einstein. He therefore concluded that if quantum theory was correct, so one ruled out possibility (3) , then (2) must be true. In Einstein's terms, quantum theory was not complete but needed to be supplemented by hidden variables.

Bell regarded himself as a follower of Einstein. He told Bernstein [ 1 ] :

In 1964 , Bell made his own great contributions to quantum theory. First he constructed his own hidden variable account of a measurement of any component of spin. This had the advantage of being much simpler that Bohm's work, and thus much more difficult just to ignore. He then went much further than Bohm by demonstrating quite clearly exactly what was wrong with von Neumann's argument.

However Bell then demonstrated certain unwelcome properties that hidden variable theories must have. Most importantly they must be non-local. He demonstrated this by extending the EPR argument, allowing measurements in each wing of the apparatus of any component of spin, not just s z s_ s z ​ . He found that, even when hidden variables are allowed, in some cases the result obtained in one wing must depend on which component of spin is measured in the other this violates locality. The solution to the EPR problem that Einstein would have liked, rejecting (1) but retaining (2) was illegitimate. Even if one retained (2) , as long as one maintained (3) one had also to retain (1) .

Bell had showed rigorously that one could not have local realistic theories of quantum theory. Henry Stapp called this result [ 18 ] :

The other property of hidden variables that Bell demonstrated was that they must be contextual. Except in the simplest cases, the result you obtained when measuring a variable must depend on which other quantities are measured simultaneously. Thus hidden variables cannot be thought of as saying what value a quantity 'has', only what value we will get if we measure it.

Let us return to the locality issue. So it has been assumed that quantum theory is exactly true, but of course this can never be known. John Clauser, Richard Holt, Michael Horne and Abner Shimony adapted Bell's work to give a direct experimental test of local realism. Thus was the famous CHHS-Bell inequality [ 19 ] , often just called the Bell inequality. In EPR-type experiments, this inequality is obeyed by local hidden variables, but may be violated by other theories, including quantum theory.

Bell has reached what has been called experimental philosophy results of considerable philosophical importance may be obtained from experiment. The Bell inequalities have been tested over nearly thirty years with increasing sophistication, the experimental tests actually using photons with entangled polarisations, which are mathematically equivalent to the entangled spins discussed above. While many scientists have been involved, a selection of the most important would include Clauser, Alain Aspect and Anton Zeilinger.

While at least one loophole still remains to be closed [ in August 2002] , it seems virtually certain that local realism is violated, and that quantum theory can predict the results of all the experiments.

For the rest of his life, Bell continued to criticise the usual theories of measurement in quantum theory. Gradually it became at least a little more acceptable to question Bohr and von Neumann, and study of the meaning of quantum theory has become a respectable activity.

Bell himself became a Fellow of the Royal Society as early as 1972 , but it was much later before he obtained the awards he deserved. In the last few years of his life he was awarded the Hughes Medal of the Royal Society, the Dirac Medal of the Institute of Physics, and the Heineman Prize of the American Physical Society. Within a fortnight in July 1988 he received honorary degrees from both Queen's and Trinity College Dublin. He was nominated for a Nobel Prize if he had lived ten years longer he would certainly have received it.

This was not to be. John Bell died suddenly from a stroke on 1 st October 1990 . Since that date, the amount of interest in his work, and in its application to quantum information theory has been steadily increasing.

John L. Bell

John Bell (b. 1949) was born in the Scottish town of Kilmarnock in Ayrshire, intending to be a music teacher when he felt the call to the ministry. But in frustration with his classes, he did volunteer work in a deprived neighborhood in London for a time and also served for two years as an associate pastor at the English Reformed Church in Amsterdam. After graduating he worked for five years as a youth pastor for the Church of Scotland, serving a large region that included about 500 churches. He then took a similar position with the Iona Community, and with his colleague Graham Maule, began to broaden the youth ministry to focus on renewal of the church’s worship. His approach soon turned to composing songs within the identifiable traditions of hymnody that found began to address concerns missing from the current Scottish hymnal:

"I discovered that seldom did our hymns represent the plight of poor people to God. There was nothing that dealt with unemployment, nothing that dealt with living in a multicultural society and feeling disenfranchised. There was nothing about child abuse…,that reflected concern for the developing world, nothing that helped see ourselves as brothers and sisters to those who are suffering from poverty or persecution." [from an interview in Reformed Worship (March 1993)]

That concern not only led to writing many songs, but increasingly to introducing them internationally in many conferences, while also gathering songs from around the world. He was convener for the fourth edition of the Church of Scotland’s Church Hymnary (2005), a very different collection from the previous 1973 edition. His books, The Singing Thing and The Singing Thing Too , as well as the many collections of songs and worship resources produced by John Bell—some together with other members of the Iona Community’s “Wild Goose Resource Group,” are available in North America from GIA Publications.

US Senate

In 1847, Bell returned to national politics after six years. He got nominated by the Whig-controlled Tennessee House of Representatives to fill the vacant post of the US Senate for Tennessee. He won the seat with a resounding majority. In the Senate, Bell clashed with the Democrats over several issues. He opposed the new President James Polk&rsquos aggressive stand on the Mexican-American War and the annexation of the Mexican territory of California to the US.

Despite being a slave owner, Bell supported the right of Congress to dictate the terms of slavery on all the US territories. He opposed the inclusion to the Union of territories like of slave-owning territories like Kansa, Nebraska, and California until they renounced the trade. Bell surprised many by voting against the slave trade abolitionist law within the Senate. He also supported the admission of California and New Mexico as Free states in the Union.

Party intrigues and internal rivalry weakened the Whig Party. The most emotive was the issue of slavery. Most of the northern Whigs decamped to join the Republicans. The division worsened when most of the defectors voted for the Missouri compromise creating a demarcation on slavery between the Northern Free states and the Southern slave-owning states. Bell voted against the compromise and lost.

John Bell 1946-2012

John Bell was an HIV activist, mentor to a generation of ex-offenders, teacher, and our friend. In the years we were privileged to know him, we watched in awe as John took his lived experiences of racism, stigma, war, and disease and transformed them into an inspirational body of thought and knowledge to help make the way easier for the people who came behind him.

As a long time employee of Philadelphia FIGHT, John was the co-creator of TEACH Outside, FIGHT’s consumer education program for HIV+ people leaving prison or jail and later of TITO: TEACH In/TEACH Out which carried the empowerment principles of Project TEACH to the prison population at risk of acquiring HIV. John’s voice in TEACH Outside set the tone of participation, empowerment and honoring the experience of the participants that continues to this day. He said and believed that TEACH Outside existed for its participants, a safe space, where everyone could feel free to say what needed to be said, while making sure that everyone respected others’ right to speak, and that real knowledge would be conveyed. When it was time to leave for the day John made sure the participants went through a transition from safe space staying safe and remaining free on the street. When it was time to graduate John made sure that every graduate had the chance to speak about what they had learned in the program, often encouraging the more reluctant to find their voice.

John was a mentor to countless people as they left prison or jail. He was there when he was needed, a tireless visitor in the Philadelphia Prison System, available to people on the outside, believing in them when they had lost hope, and modeling what they could become, no matter what they had lived through before.

A brilliant man denied an education in the American South in mid-twentieth century, John studied in the school of social change, participating in ACT UP and other activist groups, ready to put himself on the line countless times because it was the only way to get public attention. Yet he never forgot his responsibility to those he taught and mentored one time when John planned to strip naked with a group of ACT UP activists in Times Square, he was careful to seek the permission of the current TEACH Outside class beforehand.

For a person in need, John Bell would be a lifeline and perhaps this is the most important way to remember him. There are people alive today because of John Bell. He never turned his cell phone off. John knew everybody and he knew how to connect people. For an incarcerated person about to leave jail, the lifeline was “call John” and so many did. At any time of the day or night, he would be there for them, see to it that they got immediate needs met, find them a place to live, and help them start out on the path to true recovery. For his colleagues he was a constant and determined source of information – about living with HIV, about the experience of being incarcerated or an ex-offender, about becoming an activist. John always had a lot to say, but when you listened, you always learned something of value. John urged people to focus on what they could learn from each other, sometimes ending meetings by asking people to stand up and say what they had learned from connecting with those from other communities.

He had a passion for justice. He knew how much activism had already achieved. He believed that activism would bring justice in the end.

John Bell

John Bell was one of antebellum Tennessee's most prominent politicians and an acknowledged leader of the state's Whig Party. The son of a farmer and blacksmith, Bell was born in Davidson County and graduated from Cumberland College in 1814. After his admission to the bar in 1816, he opened a law practice in Franklin in Williamson County. A year later, his political career began with his election to the state Senate, but he declined to seek reelection after one term. Perhaps because he recognized the limitations of a provincial town for an ambitious youth, he moved to Murfreesboro, then Tennessee's capital, before finally settling in Nashville, the state's commercial center. By the time Nashville became the capital in 1826, Bell had established himself as one of the city's most prominent attorneys.

In 1827 Bell returned to politics and won the first of seven congressional terms in a bitter contest against former congressman Felix Grundy. He entered the House of Representatives as a supporter of Andrew Jackson, despite Jackson's endorsement of Grundy. Toward the end of Jackson's presidency, however, Bell worked with the administration's opposition. Never a member of the president's inner circle, Bell cultivated close connections with Nashville's mercantile community–solidified by his 1835 marriage to Jane (Erwin) Yeatman, the widow of one of the city's wealthiest merchants–and began to sympathize with the developing Whig Party's advocacy of federal government promotion of national economic development. At the same time, he apparently recognized that Jackson's preference for rival politicians would hinder his own aspirations. In 1835, although he still proclaimed loyalty to the administration, Bell accepted opposition support to win election over James K. Polk, Jackson's choice as Speaker of the House. Later that year he openly broke with the president when he became one of the leaders of the movement to elect Tennessee Senator Hugh Lawson White, rather than Democratic Party nominee Martin Van Buren, as Jackson's successor.

After White's loss in the 1836 presidential election, Bell successfully worked to move White's support into the national Whig Party, and the party ultimately rewarded him for his service with an 1841 appointment as secretary of war for the first Whig president, William Henry Harrison. Bell served only six months in the War Department before he and other cabinet members resigned after the party repudiated John Tyler, who had become president following Harrison's death. Returning to his law practice in Nashville, Bell spent the next six years watching political developments and waiting for the chance to return to public office. His opportunity finally came in 1847, when he agreed to serve a term in the state House of Representatives, where he gathered sufficient support to win election to the United States Senate.

Reelected to a second term in 1853, Bell served in the Senate during the national debate over the expansion of slavery into new territories. Although a slave owner, Bell quickly distinguished himself as an advocate of compromise. The only senator from a southern state to vote against passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act in 1854, in 1858 he defied instructions from the Democratic-controlled Tennessee General Assembly and voted against Kansas's admission to the Union as a slave state. By the latter date, the legislature had already elected a Democrat to succeed him in the Senate, but his reputation as a defender of the Union made him an ideal presidential candidate in 1860 for the hastily formed Constitutional Union Party. In a contest characterized by sectional division, Bell finished last among four candidates, but he won the second largest number of popular votes in the southern states and carried the electoral votes of Tennessee, Kentucky, and Virginia.

When the lower South seceded after Abraham Lincoln's presidential victory, Bell at first urged Tennesseans to remain in the Union, and he met with the new president to encourage him to pursue a peaceful policy toward the South. After Fort Sumter and Lincoln's call for volunteers to put down the rebellion, Bell became convinced that the Republicans intended to impose a military dictatorship upon the South. He then reluctantly endorsed Tennessee's withdrawal from the Union. As the champion of a broken Union, Bell witnessed his political career come to an abrupt end. He avoided the Union army's occupation of Tennessee by moving to Alabama and later Georgia. After the war he spent his remaining years near the family's iron foundry in Stewart County.

Despite the oblivion of his later years, Bell had been among the most prominent southern politicians in the antebellum era. His career presents a reminder that Tennesseans were united neither behind Andrew Jackson's Democratic Party nor behind the extreme advocates of the defense of southern rights.

John Bell - History

The next important federally sponsored western exploration after that of Lewis and Clark, in 1820 the Long-Bell Expedition crossed the central Great Plains. Between June and September they traveled from the Missouri River in eastern Nebraska west to the Front Range in Colorado, and then south and east along the Arkansas and Canadian rivers the whole length of Oklahoma. They added to the scientific knowledge of the plains region but also helped spread the idea that it was the Great American Desert.

Led by Maj. Stephen Harriman Long of the U.S. Army Topographical Engineers, the expedition was to conduct a military and scientific reconnaissance of the central plains for the first time. To do that, the mission included men with skills or training in geology, botany, zoology, and ethnology as well as a naturalist, an artist, and a topographer. Eight guides and hunters and a seven-man military escort completed the twenty-two man detachment. A year earlier many of the same men had explored the lower reaches of the Missouri River by steamboat. In 1820, however, the Panic of 1819 and the financial crash that followed it ended nearly all federal support for the expedition. On their journey west they lacked adequate food, equipment, animals, and men and suffered accordingly. On June 5, 1820, they set out from their camp on the Missouri River a few miles north of present Omaha, Nebraska.

Traveling along the Platte River about twenty miles a day, on July 6 they reached the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains. There they paused to climb Pike's Peak and examine the South Platte and later the Arkansas where these streams flowed out of the mountains. Desperately short of food, Major Long divided his party when they reached the Arkansas River. He led botanist Edwin James and eight other men south and east beyond that stream while Capt. John R. Bell took zoologist Thomas Say and the rest of the explorers east along the Arkansas. Long and his nine companions rode across the far western tip of the Oklahoma Panhandle into Texas, where they mistook the Canadian River for the Red. They followed that stream back into Oklahoma near the Antelope Hills and east across the full length of the state. Lacking adequate food and water, the men ate horse, skunk, owl, and badger in addition to occasional deer or buffalo meat. Often without water for twenty-four hours at a time, they had few good things to report about the climate and resources on the southern plains that summer.

They rejoined Captain Bell and the rest of the expedition on September 13 at Fort Smith, Arkansas, happy to have survived their ordeal. Their journey through Oklahoma at the height of the 1820 summer exposed them to high temperatures, biting insects, and drought. Mile after mile of stream bed lacked water or carried a liquid so loaded with sand or animal manure that it was completely undrinkable. Their experience in a virtually waterless and treeless environment persuaded the scientists that the Oklahoma plains had little agricultural potential, and when Major Long drew his map of the region he labeled the plains as "Great Desert."

The expedition report and map reinforced the growing idea that nineteenth-century farmers could not live on the plains, and until the advent of deep-well drilling equipment and barbed wire, this often proved true. The explorers did gather new data that worked its way gradually into scientific and governmental knowledge about the West in the next few decades. For Oklahoma, the negative description had little immediate impact, and by the time white settlement occurred, the technology needed for success already existed.


John R. Bell, The Journal of Captain John R. Bell, Official Journalist for the Stephen H. Long Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, 1820, Vol. 6, The Far West and the Rockies Historical Series, ed. Harlan M. Fuller and LeRoy R. Hafen (Glendale, Calif.: A. H. Clark Co., 1957).

Edwin James, comp., Account of an Expedition from Pittsburgh to the Rocky Mountains, Performed in the Years 1819 and '20 by Order of The Hon. J. C. Calhoun, Sec'y. of War, Under the Command of Major Stephen H. Long, Vols. 14–17, Early Western Travels, ed. Reuben G. Thwaites (Cleveland, Ohio: A. H. Clark Co., 1905).

Roger L. Nichols and Patrick L. Halley, Stephen Long and American Frontier Exploration (Newark, Del.: University of Delaware Press, 1980).

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Roger L. Nichols, &ldquoLong-Bell Expedition,&rdquo The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture,

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