Author Topic: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?  (Read 13388 times)

jwh1947

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"Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« on: July 28, 2010, 08:58:40 PM »
A friend stopped in here with a question about the so-called "Alamangal" school of gunmaking.  Knowing this to be a moniker coined by some contemporary acquaintances from those parts of PA, I set out to help him.  I pulled from my extensive database a "primary source,"  prepared for Dixon's fair, 1997, by a regional "authority" who reportedly is believed to know something about the subject.

Here goes.  We begin with a sweeping generalization:  "Historically, The Alamengal was the area in what was in the mid-1700's, the N. E. section of Albany Twp., Berks Co., then including a portion of what is now Schuylkill Co."  No historical references are provided for this sweeper.  Followed by perhaps the most veritable statement of the entire paper:  "Culturally speaking, the exact boundaries of the Alamengal district have not been satisfactorily determined for students interested in area gun making."

The commentator proceeds: "The rifled-gun that developed regionally incorporated a blend of characteristics from the Northampton County and Reading School of Gun making. "  The reporter goes on with terms like "folksy flavor," "homespun," "diverse architectural styles."  All this being "well established" in  "all the decorative arts of the regional culture."

Sounds sweet to the ear if you are promoting the region.  We all tend to do this with the things that ring our bells.  It is sometimes called existential bias by scholarly researchers with a scientific persuasion.

So what we have is a nebulous region; squeeze the balloon to include another builder if he emerges on the periphery of the area and has characteristics you want to include.  Other than some general architectural points indigenous to any sub-school or group of shops, ramrod pipes and a some shared "Pennsylfanish Deutsch" art, not necessarily limited to the area described above, and we are left with little to analyze.  

I would ask of  the "Culturally speaking..." lead comment...What do you mean "Culturally speaking?"  I am 100% in and of that culture, as some of the writers are not, and I wish for you to expand this in operational terms that we can all understand.  Ordinary language will do.  Then show me some of this "folksy" and "homespun" stuff that I cannot find on the periphery and into Lebanon County and Dauphin.  Incidentally, some of the specimens that I have owned from this territory were not "rifled-guns" but smooth bores.  Just another example of the use of loose terminology.

Researchers, please!!!  Nothing here is "well established" and held by "many" not to fall within "accepted norms."  These words tend to obfuscate; they sound erudite but are "puffering" in semantic terms.  They tell us nothing but sound wise.  This is the language of the advertising industry, not of useful history and science.

I failed to establish the concept in the learner's mind using this extant document of local "expert" opinion.  Both intended teacher and student chose to suspend judgment on both the moving intellectual target and the rationales yet given for it.  Verdict still out in this little corner of the world and by the "few" who study here.  Incidentally, Faust is referred to as one of these Alamengals. How many of you have owned and studied Jacob H. Faust rifles?  I've had 2 and there are some distinct characteristics on these, one being a "flame" box finial.  According to my same extensive database,  the symbolism here is blatant; these are the flames of $#*! that singe amateurs when they throw language around loosely.  Faust's Twp. (Alscase) buts up against Reading City; guess the demarcation is at the city line now.  By the way, John Derr used the same finial and architecture.  He's way over near Tulpehocken.  Want to include him, too? 

Point is, one need not buy into any of this to enjoy or study the guns, and cutting a chunk out of three counties to suit one's purposes doesn't make it any easier to study trends, associations or our true material culture.  Maybe some of the other "experts" can set me straight.  I'm just a generalist, but William of Occam would say "I told you so."  Wayne from the North,  Advocatus Diabolicus. and PITA, par excellence.

« Last Edit: July 28, 2010, 11:35:57 PM by jwh1947 »

Offline spgordon

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2010, 09:34:58 PM »
Is this source that you cite published? The only piece on "The Allemaengel Gunsmiths" that I know of was published in the KRA Bulletin (1999) and reprinted in the KRA Selected Articles volume. Perhaps this article stemmed from the material prepared for Dixon's Fair in 1997 from which you're quoting?
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

jwh1947

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2010, 09:41:24 PM »
Typed up on an old typewriter. "Prepared for: The Gunmakers Fair at Dixons, 1997." Blessed by association, if not by fact.   All the same gene pool with inbreeding...Dixons, author of this, authors of KRA paper a few years later.  We affectionately refer to the whole clan as "the Allentown Mafia."  They are probably sending out a hitter as we speak.
« Last Edit: July 28, 2010, 11:43:07 PM by jwh1947 »

Offline spgordon

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2010, 09:55:26 PM »
Interesting. This is the sort of material that most researchers, esp. recent ones, will never come across....

One of the things that has surprised me, as I'm learning more about more about research into eighteenth-century gunmaking, is how few research publications have made it into libraries. WorldCat, which, while not exhaustive, is the main finding aid to see what libraries in the world own copies of a particular title, lists only two libraries that have a copy of SELECTED ARTICLES FROM THE KRA BULLETIN: the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Wisconsin Historical Society. Now I'm sure that other libraries have copies. But for most researchers, these copies are unfindable except by chance; they certainly can't be borrowed through interlibrary loan.

Only a few issues of the ASAC Bulletins are available online. And no issues of the KRA Bulletin, from what I can tell. I realize that a major issue in making this material available online is that the Association would no longer be able to earn revenue from it, and all these associations need to use their publications to earn revenue that supports their programs, websites, etc.

But, unless libraries purchase (or are given) these volumes, or subscribe to these newsletters, this leaves so much research inaccessible to most people ...
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

jwh1947

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2010, 10:34:39 PM »
Makes sense.  Selected Articles of the KRA Bulletin has some interesting things in it.  As a matter of fact, I was one of the many who wrote a blurb for the front matter.  I know the book well.  If I were critiquing that one, I'd sum up by saying that the primary flaw there is that the original bulletin articles were copied as pages rather than digitally by letters, so that corrections were unable to be done for the collected articles that comprise the book.  Flaws were not rectified.  

Also, regarding documentation and veracity, the range of articles in there runs from top-quality to downright hilarious.  It is up to the reader to separate wheat from chaff, so to speak.  

It's been said before, but Kindig's 1960 book along with Kauffman's 1960 book would create a reasonable base of knowledge for a beginning reader.  Not perfect, but visionary and guiding in the proper direction.  Add to this the work of George Shumway and you are off and running.  For building guns, get a copy of Dixon's guide.  There are other books out there and hucksters promoting them.  Some are good; others so-so.  Read them all, but read them critically.  My guess is that the humans who wrote them were neither divinely inspired, nor did most want to be seen that way.

I repeat.  If a writer cannot show you thorough documentation, and if you can't agree that that documentation is both acceptable reference material and that it is used properly, then suspend judgment pending further analysis.

What we do not have in Kentucky rifle research is a set of established academic/operational standards that would be acceptable to any professional field of scholarship.  There is no vetting by peer review and an open invitation to test, review and critique work.  If people do question things, often originators of the words get testy and defensive.  Surprise you?  Just evidence of the lack of standards.  Things are not juried, and if they did try this, the jurists might well be illiterate.  Perhaps some day the bar will be raised, but for now it is every man for himself,... every writer, book seller and reader.

PS:  KRA Movers and Shakers...take the hint...donate a few "for education's sake."  For starters, PSU library. Ohio State, UVA, and UK.  I would throw in WVU but they are just learning to read there and rely mostly on pictures. 
   

« Last Edit: July 28, 2010, 10:48:54 PM by jwh1947 »

Offline spgordon

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2010, 10:58:23 PM »
JWH wrote: "What we do not have in Kentucky rifle research is a set of established academic/operational standards that would be acceptable to any professional field of scholarship.  There is no vetting by peer review and an open invitation to test, review and critique work.  If people do question things, often originators of the words get testy and defensive.  Surprise you?  Just evidence of the lack of standards.  Things are not juried, and if they did try this, the jurists might well be illiterate.  Perhaps some day the bar will be raised, but for now it is every man for himself,... every writer, book seller and reader."

Yes, exactly. There would be a major market--including but also enlarging on or extending far beyond the current market--for a well-documented, peer-reviewed book on the history of the Kentucky Rifle, that built on Kindig and Kauffman, that assessed the research in the many non-peer-reviewed publications since (making use of what was valuable and correcting what was not), and that offered either a straight narrative or (better) a narrative with an argument or thesis.

That's a tall order, obviously. But I can say--among other activities, I direct a university press--that we would be eager to publish such a book.

I know James Whisker published two books with Susquehanna University Press, and he has mentioned to me how disappointing that process was--largely due to the "administration" that ran Associated University Presses (which published SUP's books). It is too bad. Because the sort of peer review a manuscript undergoes at a university press isn't about gatekeeping or elitism (or shouldn't be): it's about improving the quality of the publication and it does that. Even already-excellent manuscripts are improved by anonymous peer review. And many so-so books are improved into good or excellent ones.... And, unfortunately, sometimes the process can be misused. But, in my experience at least, this happens rarely and, with a little oversight and care, can be easily avoided.


« Last Edit: July 28, 2010, 11:08:39 PM by spgordon »
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

jwh1947

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2010, 11:24:09 PM »
E-mail me: DocHeck@verizon.net   Perhaps we could work something out. 

Under the aegis of a university press, you may be able to rouse me from the slumber of profound indifference and the quest for purely carnal pleasures, and again get the torch of academe flickering.  I understand style sheets and deadlines, and can even act intelligent when the dean is present. 

Offline Stan

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2010, 01:36:35 AM »
Alamengal!!! It took me many hours of reading to discover the meaning of the word. I'll try to make it simple. The area of the world we know as "Germany" was not called "Germany" by the Germantic peoples. It was called "Germania" by the Romans & by the mid - late 19th century the name Germany became fixed. The "Germans" called their country  Alamengal, a name that they brought with them & applied to those parts of Northampton & Berks counties which were heavily settled by Germans.

Offline rich pierce

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #8 on: July 29, 2010, 02:02:14 AM »
Peer review is generally used only in scholarly research articles published in certain journals.  Many other "scholarly" journals have invited reviews that are less rigorously reviewed, and other have no peer review whatsoever, but simply editorial oversight.  If you look at books on colonial barns, on colonial pottery, on colonial weaving, on colonial tools, on colonial painters, and on colonial dress, you will be hard pressed to find any that are peer-reviewed.  And who would be the peers?  This is a hobby and a fascinating one, and there is a wide range of rigor in the research that is published.  It is also worthwhile to keep in mind that "current knowledge" is a moving target.  Peer-reviewed papers in many fields report findings that are refuted or at least modified later.  At some level, the consumers have control of the situation.  They can either purchase the books or articles, or not.  Their decision can be well-considered, after looking for and checking footnotes and references, more intuitive, or completely uninformed.

In other endeavors, we often issue this challenge to those who rail the loudest:  Show us how to do it right, and we'll be happy to (buy the book, in this case).   :)

There are a few who hoard knowledge, and many others who lack the skill or drive to put a book together.  Where would we be without those who do take the time and effort to write books and articles?  This applies also to all those who complain about their latest Muzzle Blasts magazine, etc. Be part of the solution.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2010, 02:05:37 AM by richpierce »
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Offline spgordon

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2010, 02:37:46 AM »
The "peers" would have to be other researchers of eighteenth-century gunsmiths--those who, by some measure of consensus, were the most respected researchers in the field. As in any peer review system, the reviewer won't be able to assess everything in a particular article, but he/she could certainly weigh in on whether the writer has engaged with relevant material, overlooked major contrary claims, etc. The anonymity of the review system, while subject to abuse, for sure, does enable a reviewer to criticize a shoddy article in ways that a friendly editor of a journal (esp. in a small field) may be uncomfortable doing.

By the way, there is plenty of published research on barns, pottery, weaving, tools, painters, and dress that has undergone peer review. It's overstating things to say that one would be "hard pressed to find any" work in those fields that is "peer reviewed." But please don't take that to mean that all the excellent work in those fields has been peer reviewed: there is plenty of excellent work in those fields that hasn't been peer reviewed. I published a piece in a peer review journal on a colonial painter, a few years ago, and the journal sent it to five reviewers, both historians and art historians. Their suggestions required more work from me; and this certainly improved the article.

It's certainly true that peer reviewed work gets refuted or modified: it nearly always does, at some point, which is how fields progress or grow or whatever you want to call it (stay in business, perhaps). But this phenomenon is just the definition of a field of research. It isn't a knock on peer review--as if, without peer review, this phenomenon wouldn't occur.

Like you say, there is superb research in this field. And then there is poor research, also in print. The ideal situation would involve some sort of peer review that would try to produce as much of the former as possible, through suggestions or recommendations after a reading of the first draft that would be incorporated into later drafts, and to prevent as much of the latter as possible from seeing print in its initial draft-state.

But I am a newcomer to this field and am uncomfortable with the position I seem to have put myself in this thread. I only meant to suggest, after JWH1947 described (in his initial post) an article big on claims and little on substantiation, that peer review is a system that, for all its flaws, can be successful in dealing with this.

« Last Edit: July 29, 2010, 03:27:13 AM by spgordon »
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

Offline smshea

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #10 on: July 29, 2010, 05:29:58 AM »
Boy I could get in trouble here with my Mentors, but here goes nothin....My wife is a CPA and a very good one I might add, she likes everything organized and in columns( I don't claim to understand) and I suspect this is very usefull in record keeping and compiling data.  I suspect that when the original researchers were compiling info from Nothing these rigid guidelines were helpfull but today it seems that that there is an exception to the rules of these schools around every corner. What we think of when we refer to Northhampton guns is really guns from Allentown with a few exceptions, Lebanon School is a Joke with no two makers work really having much in common and all of them working in Lancaster or Dalphin Co in the period. Berks Co. rifles (great Book and display by the way) Divided up into City of Reading , Womelsdorff Guns, and the Eastern stuff that shares Lehigh influence (Alamengal,Maxatawny, whatever)Bonowitz and Johannas Neff have Nothing in common.
 Ive said before that when it comes to names of schools and sub schools, I defer to those who have done the research, they can call it whatever they want. who is going to challenge W. Gustler on how he divides up rifles of Virginia when we all finally see his book. There will undoubtedly be exceptions to the rules he puts forth in coming years, but we will likely categorize rifles of Virginia as he does...and we should.
 I think the term "Lancaster School" could be chopped up into several sub schools, but why? The people who have researched (wayne) are very comfortable describing these rifles under this heading. In the case of the Alamengal Guns the research was done primarily by the same people who have put most of the research time into the Lehigh/Northhampton school and they saw a reason to parcel these guns into another category...so be it.  The study of the individual guns is what is most important. Speaking for myself and only myself....at this point "Schools" are just an easy way to navigate Books and Parts catalogs.
  
« Last Edit: July 29, 2010, 05:33:07 AM by smshea »

Offline Dr. Tim-Boone

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2010, 02:31:45 PM »
And security for academics............ ;D

actually the labels helped me begin to see different styles and even to look deeper because of things that didn't seem to fit. So for me they have been helpful, if not perfect categories.  Thanks to those who have studied the guns (lucky dogs!) and taken the risk to suggest the categories.
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Liberty is the only thing you cannot have unless you are willing to give it to others. William Allen White

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Offline smshea

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2010, 03:27:01 PM »
After rereading my post , I see it might appear that I am making a case for "School" irrelevance.... By no means.  They are very helpfull as we start leaning and reading about these pieces of our history. They are very helpfull in showing us characteristics of guns that might point towards a possible point of origin or maker. The books are filled with examples that are put together to help show what these guns have in common and again...this is helpfull in helping you look for clues of origin when looking at a gun for the first time.
 Personally I see them as very loose regional categories with many exceptions to these standards but I do have great reverence for those who have done the research and given us these standards. I happen to think the "Alamengal school" is as worthy of being called a school as any others. I have personally heard this debated no less than 25 times by researchers and collectors from the area. Any case that can be made against an Alamengal school can be made to varying degrees against other schools....in my opinion.       

Mike R

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #13 on: July 29, 2010, 04:05:50 PM »
who reviews the peers?   ;) Seriously, my career as a geoscientist has including being an Editor of scientific volumes, a 'peer reviewer' for scientific journals and an author of peer reviewed papers.  Peer review does result in 'control' over what gets published, to include rubber stamping known authors, denying new ideas the light of day and other abuses, in addition to the desired results of editorial corrections and content judgement.  When one gets to the nature of, say, longrifle history, where does one find the "Ph.D.s" in the field to agree on what is proper?  Read some of the Kettenberg vs Gusler stuff online--who is to moderate that? Not I.  I suppose such a group needs to be well-versed in scholarly historical research methods yet open to new ideas and speculaton.  A scientific paper can be judged on its use of facts and inferences to make its conclusions, among other things. Clearly errors of fact or reasoning need to be detected and corrected.  But rarely a sound guess or intuition turns out to be true. Who knows how the human brain works? History has many holes in it and much of the filler is unreliable. This hobby could, I suppose, be turned into more of a science, but would it be as much fun?  Critical thinking and writing are always to be laudable goals in any endeavor. But longrifles are an artform too..

Offline spgordon

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #14 on: July 29, 2010, 04:47:55 PM »
I agree with everything said above.

The aim of peer review wouldn't be to resolve debates or enforce conformity of views; no field can survive that. It's there to make sure that participants in debates are meeting standards for using evidence, making claims, etc. Peer review doesn't discourage speculation, guesses, etc., but it may ensure that moments of brilliant speculation or well-founded guesses are marked as such and clearly differentiated from other moments in an article or book. The best peer reviewers would be those whose own work, in print or online, demonstrates these qualities. I strongly suspect that the members of this list would be in general agreement about which writers they would trust to assess others' work. But maybe I am wrong about that. The real problem would more likely be that the same individuals were recruited over and over and over again to read material--and that just doesn't work.

Art history, in the past century, underwent a transformation of the sort the JWH1947 proposed in his original post about "peer review." It was a "field" begun by knowledgeable and incredibly talented connoisseurs and collectors, who remained leading authorities even as the field became, if we want to use that word, more "scientific" or rigorous in its vetting of published work and its claims about attributions. (BTW, there was an amazing article in a recent New Yorker about the still controversial matter of attribution (science or art?), centered on a man who claims to have found a way to detect an artist's fingerprints in a painting's paint: the New Yorker exposed him, pretty much, as a fraud.)

I don't think there needs to be some big gulf between a "hobby" and "science"--as long as by "science" we don't think "dry" and "boring" but, instead, a field that has standards of basing claims on evidence, etc. Much of what I've read about gun/rifle research already meets that standard, easily, and I know the writers had fun doing that research and producing those articles or books. I'm not sure why good research is any less fun than sloppy research.

« Last Edit: July 29, 2010, 04:49:57 PM by spgordon »
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

Offline Dr. Tim-Boone

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #15 on: July 29, 2010, 04:48:59 PM »
Ah, the Art & Mystery of the American Longrifle............reductionism seldom leads to enjoyment.  Some of the romance is due to what cannot be known....... but it sure is fun trying  to find out...... and rigor and robustness are good attributes for investigations...
« Last Edit: July 29, 2010, 04:49:56 PM by DrTimBoone »
De Oppresso Liber
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Liberty is the only thing you cannot have unless you are willing to give it to others. William Allen White

Learning is not compulsory...........neither is survival! - W. Edwards Deming

Offline rlm

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #16 on: July 29, 2010, 04:55:16 PM »
As a peer I take exception with jwh1947's view of West Virginian

Offline rich pierce

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #17 on: July 29, 2010, 08:18:41 PM »
Scott Shea's comments are right on for me- many times the term "school" does not fit any particular construct.  So in books we will see Lancaster guns that were playing hookey at the "Lancaster School"- like Fainot's work- side by side with Dickerts.  The individual guns and how they associate with one another are the thing for me.  The Moravian Book made this all the clearer to me. I care a little less about where a gun was made given that many gunmakers moved around, and really appreciate learning more about who made it, when, and who they trained with, worked with, and trained.

On the other hand it is clear that location did affect style.  Look at Albrecht's work at Christians Spring versus his Lancaster gun.  Likely, when many folks came to Lancaster in the 1770s and 1780s for a rifle, they wanted it to look like a Dickert to some extent.
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jwh1947

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #18 on: July 29, 2010, 08:57:59 PM »
Allemengal, various spellings, can be seen to refer to Albany Twp. on an old map here.  That's it.  Stan, what you say is correct, up to a point.  My wife is from there.  Never heard of the word.  However, we all know of Allemagne, the French word for Germany.   

jwh1947

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #19 on: July 29, 2010, 09:10:04 PM »
There you go...Wittgenstein once said, "Anything worth saying can be said in ordinary language."  Einstein, too, piped in with, "Any important scientific concept should be able to be explained to the man in the street in terms that he will understand.  Otherwise, it is not important."

That's it. Stated above by a professor.  "Standards for using material," and "making claims."  There, can we agree with just this much?  And, documenting your sources for all to see and perhaps go to.  This would be a paradigm shift from self-serving advertising rhetoric to scholarly, reputable, studies that serve the entire community and hold up under analytical criticism.

Mike R

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #20 on: July 29, 2010, 10:13:49 PM »
Good points from spgordon...my last big editing challenge was as Chief Editor for a 2010 geological transactions volume for a large geologic society. It was about 1000 pages of articles submitted by nearly 100 authors on diverse geologic topics. This is not strictly a peer reviewed volume, but some would make it so [academics need the 'credits' for peer reviewed pubs].  The main problem with changing this particular volume to strict peer review--and perhaps there are parallels with longrifle interpretations--is that many useful or thought-provoking articles would likely have been eliminated.  This volume is a special case in that it is the record of oral presentations at an annual meeting of the society, and it was set up to allow ideas out of the mainstream, or papers a little less rigorous than in the peer review journals.  There is a place for such lit--and I agree with spgordon that they must be clearly identified for what they are.  Sites like ALR allow an informal exchange of ideas with and without rigor.  Sometimes that stimulates new ideas that might have been missed by peer review restrictions. Science history, at least, is fraught with examples of abuse of the peer system. But I agree that some sort of standards need to be set. We would all like to see good research and well founded interpretations.

Offline Stan

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #21 on: July 30, 2010, 03:35:48 AM »
Hi Doc! The name Alemengle for that general area has been used since the 18th century.
As for Alamengal being French, you must remember that the "French" were "Franks" a tribe of Germans who moved from north west Germany to the area of what is now France about 600 or 700 AD. Franks = French  The previous owners of the land were a group known as the Parisini (according to Caesar).

jwh1947

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #22 on: July 31, 2010, 08:58:07 PM »
That's the point.  "That general area..."  What general area?  I see a map with a synonym for Albany Twp. and a road leading there.  That's it.  Who says we can not go to Reading City and in toward my way?  Draw me a line, so when I coin the Tulpehocken School, so as to inscribe my words on the cave wall and achieve gun immortality myself, that I don't transgress and start a range war.  

All I am calling for is for documentation and for the separation of conjecture from fact.  Opinion from established records; definition of terms and adherence to accepted research standards.  Some recent things to surface are muddled.  Come up with a new idea or theory? Great, but market it as such; not as the new "truth" handed down from above.  

If we are to ever move gun research from the mixed bag of "anything goes" to "material of acceptable reliability and validity" we need to know what we are talking about, and be able to define it in operational terms acceptable to anyone who looks upon the same "evidence" and forms the same conclusion.  Just saying something is so does not make it so.  For me, or for anyone else.

When I taught research metholdology I insisted upon thorough documentation and support based on established theory or sound logic that leads to original diversion from established norms.  Then, we worked to prove otherwise, rule out, and form a diagnosis.  Sorry, that's my bias from proclivity and training in a state university and elsewhere.   I've heard much conjecture, and hypotheses, guilded and distributed as of late, and spoken of as "fact" when it is not anywhere near "fact."  That's all I am saying.    

Much of what is here reported appears to be congruent with my suggestions.  This is but one issue where interesting words may muddle truth.  It is time for people with questions to speak up and ask people "how" they know something.  Then each can determine if he is convinced or not.

 I apologize for my West Virginia joke.  Must stick to Pa. Dutch ones.  Dr, Tim...appreciate comments, as usual.  Scotty...you are on the same wavelength...both of us have had an opportunity to handle lots of local guns.  Funny how we reach conclusions together.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2010, 12:09:19 AM by jwh1947 »

Offline Stophel

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #23 on: August 02, 2010, 04:57:54 PM »
The Allemans were a German tribe.  Allemand ( I think) is the French word for Germany today.  Teutonische/Teutcsh/Deutsch for the general group of Germans.

Allemangel means, more or less, "all is wanting".  Apparently so named because the region was pretty poor in resources.
When a reenactor says "They didn't write everything down"   what that really means is: "I'm too lazy to look for documentation."

Offline Stan

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Re: "Alamengal"...did I spell it correctly?
« Reply #24 on: August 02, 2010, 06:39:42 PM »
I was looking at an archaeic map of continental Europs last night and the area that we know as Bavaria, Wurttenberg and west into france is labled "Allemain".
The Wiktionary defines Allemain as Germany.
Older Pa germans (older than me) tell me that it means "all wants" meaning tha it provides all wants.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2010, 06:42:40 PM by Stan »