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Old February 19, 2005, 12:13 AM   #50
4V50 Gary
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Join Date: November 2, 1998
Location: Colorado
Posts: 16,762
Bow wow

Soldiers are not slow to forage when rations are poor. One Union regiment had men going out regularly and so the local landowners and farmers began to complain about their livestock being missing. It became an embarassment for the commanding general. To discourage the foraging, the provost would stop men attempting to enter camp with unauthorized livestock. While the ownership of the plundered (and partially butchered) animal couldn't be determined, they could not allow the foragers to reap the benefit of their harvest. So, the Provost and his men confiscated the foragers' hard earned food. However, not letting such wonderful repast go wasted, it was prepared and served at the officers' mess. Being their betters, why shouldn't they enjoy a fine steak or loin or chop every now and then? It would teach the men a lesson. Well, some foragers were understandably not pleased with having their hard gained food taken from them. So, they conspired to get even.

One day a foraging party attempted to run the gate but the alert men of the Provost Marshal intercepted them anyway. The foragers were forced to surrender what appeared to be a skinned sheep. As before, it was served to the officers that night and the foragers went meatless (except for the "salt horse" served to them by Uncle Sam). Then the fun began. "Bow wow!" came from one unidentified soldier. Another responded, "bow wow!" Soon, an entire chorus of seranaded the camp with barking. The officers realized they had been tricked into eating dog. The men kept up the barking for a couple of days until their commanding general wrote a special order forbidding any barking in camp.
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