Sunday, September 25, 2022
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Local Songwriter Pens Song for the Fort Bragg Name Change Movement

The following is a press release issued by ChangeOurNameFortBragg.com:


Holly Tannen [PIcture provided ChangeOurNameFortBragg.com]

Local songwriter Holly Tannen has just written the first ever song about Fort Bragg namesake Braxton Bragg and it’s a doozy.

Set to the tune of “Cotton Eyed Joe” verses include:

He fought for the Confederate Flag
Lost every battle Braxton Bragg.
Braxton Bragg, Braxton Bragg
Lousy strategist Braxton Bragg,
Braxton Bragg, Braxton Bragg
Everyone hated Braxton Bragg..
He and his wife owned a hundred slaves.
Worked them into early graves.
Braxton Bragg, Braxton Bragg
Black Lives Matter was not his bag.
Don’t know about you, but it makes me gag
Our town’s named for Braxton Bragg.

Hear the whole song here at the website of Change Our Name Fort Bragg:

https://www.changeournamefortbragg.com/bragg-song

Braxton Bragg
Braxton Bragg [Image from Wikicommons.com]

Holly Tannen fell in love with folk songs in Greenwich Village in the early 60s. In 1973 she moved to England, singing around folk clubs and tracking down singers of traditional ballads. When she returned to California in 1980, she studied for a master’s degree in folklore with Alan Dundes at UC Berkeley. Holly came to Mendocino in 1989 to teach anthropology and folklore at the College of the Redwoods, and began making up songs about Mendocino life.

Civil War historians describe Braxton Bragg as arrogant, cantankerous, incompetent, and hated by officers and enlisted men alike. It’s said that his own soldiers twice tried to have him assassinated. Fort Bragg, North Carolina, is changing its name to Fort Liberty. Why couldn’t we do something similar?

Braxton Bragg” will be featured on Holly’s new recording, Eat Your Triceratops. Holly’s CDs include Between the Worlds, Rime of the Ancient Matriarch, The Flower of Australia, and Crazy Laughter: Seven Years with the Spirit of Arthur Rimbaud. 

Holly has performed at the Philadelphia Folk Festival, the California Academy of Sciences, and the Mendocino Music Festival. She was musical director of the first Caspar World Folk Festival.

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21 COMMENTS

  1. People are taking the black lives matter bullshit a little to far. Of course black lives matter , all lives matter. People who are here now we’re never slave owners nor were they slaves… Shit happened in the past but has nothing to do with the future. If you want racism to stop, stop talking about the shit all the time. How can we forgive and forget if we are being constantly reminded. It’s people like this lady that make me sick. I’m so tired of this bullshit. So I say leave the name the way it is. I’ve never even heard of Braxton Bragg until now

    • By just stopping talking about racism won’t make it go away. Maybe for you. Ignorance is bliss….

      • The name Bragg is rooted in the ancient Norman culture that arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. It was a name for someone who was a cheerful or lively person. The name stems from the Old English root, bragged, which means a lively, gay, or active.

        So, there you go. Use your imagination. Rather than change the name of a town. Fort Bragg may have been named after Joe Bragg, or June Bragg or Jessica Bragg. Lively gay folks. You’ve got nothing against “gay folks” do you?

    • Timothy, pull your head out of your butt. Black Lives Matter is only “bullshit” to ignorant white people, if you’re one of the ignorant white people, time to wise up Buttercup!

      • “Old ukiahian”…like the ones that exterminated Pomo natives? Or are you not that old? Either way, sounds white as hell to me!

      • A Mexican what are you even trying to say? What sounds white as hell to you ? Everything?

  2. Getting rid of history is good- destroy the past. Teach your children – well? No teach them nothing but feel good.

    WOKEVILLE CALIFIFORNIA

    • Perhaps those that can’t handle a little tune that reminds us of the atrocities that a historical figure did are the real snowflakes. The cop out is to blame the woke, but your just scared and thin skinned.

  3. How about renaming it “the whales vagina”? Nobody is celebrating Braxton Bragg. Most people have never heard of the guy. You can’t rewrite history with the change of a name or taking down of a statue. History is important to learn from. You can find a little bit of horrible in almost everything. This entire country was built on slavery & genocide. Lots of lands & cultures throughout the world & history were. Human beings suck! Hopefully we get better with every passing generation.

  4. Should have thought about all this before you decided to move here. It’s just another person from somewhere else who loves it here so much that they move here, and wants to change it.

    • Seems to me if the current residents can’t list a lot of good reasons why a town was named for a guy, it’s time to get a new name. And the current residents are not doing that. So name on!

      And sometimes someone from elsewhere might bring an idea. Here’s mine:. Consider a name that does not repeat some dead white guy’s name or anyone’s name but rather says something unique even funny about the area (I would say this as I am from Slippery Rock) 🙂

      • James Laughner – Why on earth do you think the name should be changed? To make people feel better? Does it change the past in any way? What about all the people who want to keep the name because that is where they grew up? Or their family is from there? Or they have a business named after the town? Does the city or any of the dumb hippies that want to feel good feel like paying their cost for a new name? New everything? Who will pay for this stupidity? You?
        There is more to changing a name than making you happy with “good Reason”
        My grandparents were immigrants that chose Fort Bragg to be their home, they raised families there. They have died and been buried there. When I think of this amazing, beautiful town I think of all the wonderful people. The beautiful scenery. Please stay at slippery rock and slide away to another issue

  5. This is the kind of stuff people resort to when real, useful change is blocked at every turn.
    A false sense of agency, usually in the form of virtue signaling.
    Braxton Bragg is so uncelebrated, most people around here never heard of him.
    He’s already forgotten.
    This one won’t even make the charts.

  6. (Historians also consider ripping indigenous people apart by dogs and enslaving them as pretty excessive as well.)

    Viceroy Antonio de Mendoza to which the County and coastal tourist trap is named after. (Mendocino)

    …under Viceroy Antonio de Mendoza invaded the land of the Caxcanes. With his overwhelming force, Mendoza reduced the indigenous strongholds one-by-one in a war of no quarter. On November 9, 1541, he captured the city of Nochistlán and Tenamaztle, but the indigenous leader later escaped. Tenamaztle would remain at large as a guerilla until 1550. In early 1542 the stronghold of Mixtón fell to the Spaniards and the rebellion was over. The aftermath of the natives’ defeat was that “thousands were dragged off in chains to the mines, and many of the survivors (mostly women and children) were transported from their homelands to work on Spanish farms and haciendas.”. By the viceroy’s order men, women, and children were seized and executed, some by cannon fire, some torn apart by dogs, and others stabbed. The reports of the excessive violence against indigenous civilians caused the Council of the Indies to undertake a secret investigation into the conduct of the viceroy.

    #ChangeOurNameMendocino

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MendoFever Staff
MendoFever Staff
Editor's Note: Whenever an article's byline reads "MendoFever Staff", the contents of that article were not composed by any of our reporters. Types of writing that will be attributed to "MendoFever Staff" include press releases, letters to the editor, op-eds, obituaries— essentially writing that is not produced by a reporter.

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