Hillary Clinton’s Horse-Thief AncestorFiction!

 

Summary of Erumor:
This email claims that Hillary Clinton is a genealogy enthusiast and discovered an ancestor who was hanged as a horse thief and bank robber in 1889.  It was her great-great uncle Remus Rodham.  The only picture of him was one of him standing on the gallows just before he was hung and had an inscription on the back describing his crimes, capture, and execution.  When the account of great-great Uncle Remus was placed into Hillary’s family history, however, the picture was cropped to just a head shot of Remus along with a sanitized version of his story that was expertly created by Hilllary’s image-makers.

The Truth:


This is not true just like it was not true about Harry Reid, Al Gore or George W. Bush.  The essence of this story is from an old piece of humorous writing that was designed to demonstrate how you can put “spin” on a negative story to make it sound positive.  Someone altered the story to make it seem as though it was talking about an ancestor of Al Gore.  Then another version got started saying it was about an ancestor of Hillary Clinton.  Now there is a version making the rounds saying it is about George W. Bush.

Posted 01/08/09

A real example of the eRumor as it has appeared on the Internet:


modifying family history

It’s all in the way you present it:

Hillary, an amateur genealogical researcher, discovered that her great-great uncle, Remus Rodham, a fellow lacking in character, was hanged for horse stealing and train robbery in Montana in 1889.

The only known photograph of Remus shows him standing on the gallows. On the back of the picture is this inscription:

“Remus Rodham; horse thief, sent to Montana Territorial Prison 1885, escaped 1887, robbed the Montana Flyer six times. Caught by Pinkerton detectives, convicted and hanged in 1889.”

In Hillary’s Family History, her staff of professional image consultants, cropped Remus’s picture, scanned it in as an enlarged image, and edited with image processing software so that all that’s seen is a head shot. The accompanying biographical sketch is as follows:

“Remus Rodham was a famous cowboy in the Montana Territory. His business empire grew to include acquisition of valuable equestrian assets and intimate dealings with the Montana railroad. Beginning in 1883, he devoted several years of his life to service at a government facility, finally taking leave to resume his dealings with the railroad. In 1887, he was a key player in a vital investigation run by the renowned Pinkerton Detective Agency. In 1889, Remus passed away during an important civic function held in his honor when the platform upon which he was standing collapsed.”