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Old February 19, 2005, 12:26 AM   #51
chaplain john
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Re Bow-Wow

Gary are you sure that those Union Soldiers weren't "Galvanized Yankees"? They sound more like Reb-oops... I mean Freedom Fighters to me.
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Old February 19, 2005, 12:43 AM   #52
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Chaplain John. They weren't Galvanized Yankees. They were midwesterners and to be specific, two men from the 38th Illinois.
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Old February 20, 2005, 11:47 AM   #53
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How Dry I am?

As today, prisons and jails don't want their inmates to have alcohol. Inmates get drunk, stupid, cause fights and are more work for the guards. It's no different in the Civil War when some prisoners were getting out of hand because they were drunk. Such was the case in New Orleans when some Corn-feds imbibed too freely. Well, the Provost Marshal wasn't very pleased with the situation and he tasked one man to investigate the source of spirits. He did and here's his story:

Well, I watched every day for awhile to see who got passes and I noticed that a certain man who went out always took his gun with him. One day he went downthe street and after he had gone I went out and saw him step to the side of a house, and I saw him stretch his arm out and put his hand against the house, then turned and walk away, but he did not have his gun. He walked around in the street awhile, looking in the show windows, then he crossed back over the street and went to the house where I had seen him beofre, stretched out his arm against the house and then turned around and walked away with his gun. He went back up the street, passed the office and around the corner of the prison pen. I crossed over to the other side of the street so that I could see right down the street where he was standing. He had his gun barrel stuck through the fence and the prisoners on the inside were catching the liquor in their tin cups as it trickled from the gun. As each one got as much as he wanted, he would shove up the muzzle and the flow would start again. Then I went back to my quarters. After a while he came up and put his gun away. I did not say anything to him but I told the marshall what I had seen. He told me to send him in. I told him he was wanted in the office. He went in, but what took place I don't know. The Provo called me again and told me to detail two men with guns and bayonets on, have them fill his knapsack full of bricks, strap it on him and march him up and down Barronne Street for six hours. We never had troubled any more with drunken prisoners."
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Old February 20, 2005, 10:33 PM   #54
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Fall in for drill!

"July 25. The colonel, thinking that guard duty and dress parades are not quite enough exercise for us, has ordered company drills in the forenoon. The company officers do not take very kindly to this, and thinking it a good opportunity to give the sergeants a little practice in drilling the companies, they shirk out of it every time they can invent an excuse to do so. The companies are seen out under command of the orderlies or some other of the sergeants frequently. B company moves out of the company street on to the parade ground, and after exectuing a few brilliant maneuvers, starts off across the fields to the Trent road, a little out of sight of the camp, and here in the shade of the trees we sit down and await the recall, when we march back into camp with all the pomp and circumstance of glorious war. The duty has been performed and everybody seems well enough satisfied, except perhaps the performers."

Fools! They should have found a fishing hole and made a day of it.
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Old February 21, 2005, 03:32 PM   #55
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In one of the above posts, we learned of a new use for the musket. It stores alcohol quite nicely. Click here to learn the significance of muzzle control.
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Old February 25, 2005, 10:32 PM   #56
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Got Rice?

When the boys marched off to war, many of them were in total ignorance of cooking. Recall that back in the antebellum days, one's mother or the wife cooked the meals while the man worked the fields (or trade). Womens' Lib hadn't made its appearance and neither did suffrage. So, you can imagine the disasters that followed when men untutored in the culinary arts were issued raw material with which to prepare their repast. Here's one tale:

The boys told me it was my time to cook. I could not cook and told them so, but the answer I got was, "No back talk, do as you are told." That settled it, so I got busy and got a camp kettle that held about four gallons of water. I filled it about half full, made a fire, and set the kettle on. I put about two pounds of rice in it and stirred up my fire. I soon had things going fine. The whole thing was boiling now like a house on fire. Pretty soon I saw the kettle was getting fuller all the time and it wasn't long until it acutally did run over. I did not care so much for the rice, but I was afraid that it would put my fire out. I did not have a thing to put it in, and I thought of my rubber blanket. I got it and my tin cup, spread the blanket on the ground, and went to bailing it out of the kettle on to the blanket. The faster it boiled, the faster I bailed and when the rice in the kettle was cooked, I had more on the blanket than I had in the kettle. But at the same time I had come out ahead, fir I had saved my reputation as not being a cook and I had save the rice which was quite a saving. There was enough cooked rice for a mess and there was enough half-cooked rice for another mess the next day. Now this is not a joke. I assure you this is a true story of my experience in cooking rice and now I am going to leave the cooking business to the ladies where it belongs for they know more about in in five minutes than I do in a lifetime."

Betcha figured out the writer isn't Chinese or Japanese.

BTW, my friend's father taught us in college how to cook rice over an open campfire. You don't. You add the right proportion of water to the rice and then placed the covered pot over the coals. Cooks just fine.
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Old February 28, 2005, 09:21 PM   #57
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Wyatt Earp: Frontier Mashall by Stuart N. Lake

This was sent to me by one of our staffers at THR. It is the story of Wyatt Earp as told to Stuart N. Lake.

"I was a fair hand with pistol, rifle, or shotgun, but I learned more about gunfighting from Tom Speer's cronies during the summer of 1871 than I had dreamed was in the book. Those old-timers took their gunplay seriously, which was natural under the conditions in which they lived. Shooting, to them, was considerably more than aiming at a mark and pulling a trigger. Models of weapons, methods of wearing them, means of getting them into action and operating them, all to the one end of combining high speed with absolute accuracy, contributed to the frontiersman's shooting skill. The sought-after degree of proficiency was that which could turn to most effective account the split-second between life and death. Hours upon hours of practice, and wide experience in actualities supported their argunments over style.

"The most important lesson I learned from those proficient gunfighters was the winner of a gunplay usually was the man who took his time. The second was that, if I hoped to live long on the frontier, I would shun flashy trick-shooting -- grandstand play-- as I would poison.

"When I say that I learned to take my time in a gunfight, I do not wish to be misunderstood, for the time to be taken was only that split fraction of a sceond that means the difference between deadly accuracy with a sixgun and a miss. It is hard to make this clear to a man who has never been in a gunfight. Perhaps I can best describe such time taking as going into action with the greatest speed of which a man's muscles are capable, but mentally unflustered by an urge to hurry or the need for complicated nervous muscular actions which trick-shooting involves. Mentally deliberate, must muscularly faster than thought, is what I mean.

"In all my life as a frontier police officer, I did not know a really proficient gunfighter who had anything but contempt for the gun-fanner, or the man who literally shot from the hip. In later years I read a great deal about this type of gunplay, supposedly employed by men noted for skill with a forty-five.

"From personal experience and numerous six-gun battles which I witnessed, I can only support the opinion advanced by the men who gave me my most valuable instruction in fast and accurate shooting, which was that the gun-fanner and hip-shooter stood small chance to live against a man who, as Jack Gallagher always put it, took his time and pulled the trigger once."


Next week we'll go into part II where Wyatt Earp gives more insights into 19th century gunplay.

Message brought to you courtesy of Rich Lucibella & SWAT magazine (of which I am not associated with - they keep kicking me out. )
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Old March 3, 2005, 07:47 PM   #58
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Wyatt Earp continued

Gang, if you can wait, support your local library & check out Stuart Lake's book. Anyway, here's the second installment. Enjoy. Recall that Earp was discussing the skill required of a gunfighter was not fancy gun handling but good nerves, deliberate aim and speed.

"Cocking and firing mechanisms on new revolvers were almost invariably altered by their purchasers in the interests of smoother, effortless handling, usually by filing the dog which controlled the hammer, some going so far as to remove triggers entirely or last them against the guard, in which the guns were fired by thumbing the hammer. This is not to be confused with fanning, in which the triggerless gun is held in one hand while the other was brushed rapidly across the hammer to cock the gun, and firing it by the weight of the hammer itself. A skillful gun-fanner could fire five shots from a forty-five so rapidly that the individual reports were indistinguishable, but what could happen to him in a gunfight was pretty close to murder.

"I saw Jack Gallagher's theory borne out so many times in deadly operation that I was never tempted to forsake the principles of gunfighting as I had them from him and his associates. There was no man in the Kansas City group who was Wild Bill's equal with a six-gun. Bill's correct name, by the way, was James B. Hickok. Legend and the imaginations of certain people have exaggerated the number of men he killed in gunfights and have misrepresented the manner in which he did his killing. At that, they could not very well overdo his skill with pistols.

"Hickok knew all the fancy tricks and was as good as the best at that sort of gunplay, but when he had serious business at hand, a man to get, the acid test of marksmanship, I doubt if he employed them. At least, he told me that he did not. I have seen him in action and I never saw him fan a gun, shoot from the hip, or try to fire two pistols simultaneously. Neither have I ever heard a reliable old-timer tell of any trick-shooting employed by Hickok when fast straight-shooting meant life or death.

"Primarily, two guns made the threat of something in reserve; they were useful as a display of force when a lone man stacked up against a crowd. Some men could shoot equally well with either hand, and in a gunplay might alternate their fire; others exhausted the loads from the gun on the right, or the left, as the case might be, then shifted the reserve weapon to the natural shooting hand if that was necessary and possible. Such a move - the border shift - could be made faster than the eye could follow a top-notch gun-thrower, but if the man was as good as that, the shift would seldom be required.

"Whenever you see a picture of some two-gun man in action with both weapons held closely against his hips and both spitting smoke together, you can put it down that you are looking at the picture of a fool, or a fake. I remember quite a few of these so-called two-gun men who tried to operate everything at once, but like fanners, they didn't last long in proficient company."


We'll conclude with Part III next week.
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Old March 3, 2005, 10:20 PM   #59
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# 56

If you do the math, 2 gallons of water is 16 cups of water, 2 lb of rice is 8 cups of rice, this is the recommended ratio of rice and water and would never have resulted in the described happening.
This is just another wild bull tale by someone who did not have enough to do.
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Old March 5, 2005, 06:19 PM   #60
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Rice

On the other hand my father told me of a Boy Scout camping trip he was on during the depression. Everyone was hard pressed for money and nearly every scout brought a pound of rice to contribute to the patrol stores as their contribution. Their first meal they ended up with a five gallon can of rice after burying part of it.

When he went in for his cooking merit badge the examiner asked how to cook rice. Dad told him "first you bring the water to a boil, then you stand back about ten feet and throw the rice one grain at a time at the pot". The examiner slapped his leg and said "yep, you've cooked rice". He passed.
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Old March 6, 2005, 02:05 PM   #61
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I've never used a measuring cup for cooking rice. Like the old timers, I used a "cup" and learned to measure with it. Give me another "cup" and I'd be in a world of hurt. Anybody got a bag of Uncle Ben? Please share the instructions as I've never read anything on cooking rice.

BTW, at Conner Prairie Hearth Cooking Class I learned that a "cup" was not the same as a measuring cup. It was a "cup" and one learned to cook by eyeball. So, what was one man's cup could be another man's shot glass. The story related above probably involved a large cup which resulted in too much rice in the pot.

I also came across an account by one soldier whose "cup" measured a quart. Cup should then be read as a cup and not a unit of measurement.
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Old March 6, 2005, 08:55 PM   #62
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Rice

Package back;
Doguet's Rice Milling Co.
795 South Major Dr.
Beaumont, Texas 77707
Cooking Directions
To 2 cups boiling water
add 1 cup Doguet's Rice
and 1 teaspoon salt,
put on low heat, stir and cover, let simmer for 15 minutes.
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Old March 11, 2005, 11:39 PM   #63
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Rapp's Free Company

First Aide to Napoleon, General Rapp, could lead a cavalry charge or cook a chicken. He was also an excellent marksman with a cavalry carbine. Highly trusted, he was given command of the Fortress of Danzig after Napoleon's retreat from Moscow.

The Russians besieged Danzig and called upon Rapp to surrender. He held while his food lasted. However, we're here today to learn of his Free Company led by Captain Chambure. Here's an interesting excerpt:

"The free company became every day more audacious. Trenches, palisadoes, were trifling obstacles; it penetrated every where. In the middle of a dark night, it stole along from tree to tree, the whole length of the avenue of Langfuhr, without being perceived by the Russians. On a sudden it leaped into their works, killed some of the Russians, drove out the others, and pursued them as far as Kabrun. The brave Surimont, the intrepid Rozay, Payen, Dezeau, Gonipet, and Francore, threw themselves on the redoubt, and carried it. A hundred men were put to the sword, the othres owed their escape only to flight."

Despite their work, shortage of food impelled the surrender of Danzig. Napoleon's eagle had flown.
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Old March 12, 2005, 10:49 PM   #64
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The final installment

"In the days of which I am talking, among men whom I have in mind, when a man went after his guns, he did so with a single, serious purpose. There was no such thing as a bluff; when a gunfighter reached for his forty-five, every faculty he owned was keyed to shooting as speedily and as accurately as possible, to making his first shot the last of the fight. He just had to think of his gun solely as something with which to kill another before he himself could be killed. The possibility of intimidating an antagonist was remote, although the 'drop' was thoroughly respectd, and few men in the West would draw against it. I have seen men so fast and so sure of themselves that they did go after their guns while men who intended to kill them had them covered, and what is more win out in the play. They were rare. It is safe to say, for all general purposes, that anything in gunfighting that smacked of show-off or bluff was left to braggarts who were ignorant or careless of their lives.

"I might add that I never knew a man who amounted to anything to notch his guns with 'credits,' as they were called, for men he had killed. Outlaws, gunmen of the wild crew who killed for the sake of brag, followed this custom. I have worked with most of the noted peace officers -- Hickok, Billy Tilghman, Pat Sughre, Bat Masterson, Charlie Basset, and others of like caliber -- have handled their weapons many times, but never knew one of them to carry a notched gun.

"There are two other points about the old-time method of using six-guns most effectively that do not seem to be generally known. One is that the gun is not cocked with the ball of the thumb. As his gun was jerked into action, the old-timer closed the whole joint of his thumb over the hammer and the gun was cocked in that fashion. The soft flesh of the thumb ball might slip if a man's hands were moist, and a slip was not to be chanced if humanly avoidable. This thumb-joint method was employed whether or not a man used the trigger for firing.

"On the second point, I have often been asked why five shots without reloading were all a top-notch gunfighter fired, when his guns were chambered for six cartridges. The answer is, merely, safety. To ensure against accidental discharge of the gun while in the holster, due to hair-trigger adjustment, the hammer rested upon an empty chamber. As widely as this was known and practiced, the number of cartridges a man carried in his six-gun may be taken as an indication of a man's rank with the gunfighters of the old school. Practiced gun-wielders had too much respect for their weapons to take unnecessary chances with them; it was only with tyros and would-bes that you heard of accidental discharges or didn't-know-it-was-loaded injuries in the country where carrying a Colt was a man's perogative."
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Old March 21, 2005, 09:51 PM   #65
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Drown 'em

A Confederate cavalry officer had set up camp in an area protected by deep streams and heavy brush. He wanted a defensible location that wasn't easily accessible. He balked when he received the order that his company would be inspected. He and his men had little desire to clear the brush, line up the tents in orderly fashion and lay everything out per regulation.

He turned to his lieutenant and told him that he would escort the inspecting officers to the camp. It was clear to the lieutenant that he wasn't enthusiastic and the lieutenant was unsure about his orders. In frustration, the good captain ordered, "Drown 'em on the way here." Off rode the lieutenant and many many hours later he returned. The lieutenant was wet to the skin and covered with mud. In fact, all the horses and the wagon that the inspectors were riding in were wet and covered with mud. The inspectors were visibly shaking from cold when they dismounted their perch.

The captain strode up to them, smiled and threw a regulation salute and welcomed them to his camp. The inspectors complained about how he had set up his camp in the most inaccessible location that was surrounded by rivers that could barely be forded. Predictably, when they left, they were still unhappy campers.

The captain went to the lieutenant and asked him what happened. The lieutenant explained that he had taken them through the most difficult roads (if the paths could be called that) and through the deepest streams he could think of. The captain stared in disbelief and asked why. The lieutenant reminded him of the order to drown the inspectors and said that he had tried his best but had failed.
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Old March 21, 2005, 10:26 PM   #66
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Must have been a Second Lieutenant.
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Old March 28, 2005, 06:57 PM   #67
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Raccoon routs Rebels

Early in the Late Great Unpleasantry Between States or the Mother of American Family Feuds, two Rebs were out camping and chanced upon a deer which they promptly killed. Desiring to take it back to share with their comrades, they tied it to a pole and were about to carry it back when a piece of bark struck the ground. Looking up, they saw a coon. The Lt. in charge (there were only two Rebs involved) suggested capturing it and releasing in the barn where the boys slept. Well, the first coon in the tree turned out to be too big for one man to capture in a blanket but by the third coon (they brained second with a stick), they were successful. Note: spelling & other errors are the authors.

"Ike caught the coon by the back of the neck and the hind legs and after having untied him, carried it up to the house, slipped it in and closed the door hitching the chain over the staple, then sat down on the step to await developments. Pretty soon one of the boys, Sam Bane said to Uriah Lease, 'Uriah, Uriah, what is it climbing over me. Uriah there is some kind of an animal in here and I believe it's a pole cat.' Then there was a general scramble. In a very short time the boys were all perched up on the joist holding consultation as to what it was and how it got in, the door being shut. Sam Bane declared in very emphatic language that it was fast on the outside as he had tried to get it open and couldn't. 'Well boys,' said the Colonel, who was almost dying from laughter, 'we must have a light, who has a match.' All seemed to have but they were all below and no know would volunteer to get them. Day was beginning to break in the east. We quietly slipped the chain from the staple and then ran to the boat and shoved out to a large rock in the river to await further developments as soon as it became light enough. They discovered the little coon 'scrooched' up in a corner. Then some roared with laughter and some roared with anger and swore vengeance against Parsons and Blue. We were soon discovered and dire threats were made as to what our fate would be when they got us though most of the boys took it as a joke and laughed at those who did not see in that light, when we told them he had a deer and they wouldn't get any of it unless they promised not to molest us. But they did not believe that we had a deer. Finally they agreed if we had a deer we could land without being disturbed, but if we had no deer then we must submit to a thorough ducking. So we pushed ashore, we had the deer, they settled the matter though we had to tell the boys all about the coon hunt. We soon had our deer dressed and frying for breakfast."
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Old March 29, 2005, 04:23 PM   #68
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Custer almost gets it...

At Appomattox, holding a red handkerchief aloft, General Custer rode up to General Longstreet and rashly demanded the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia. Longstreet refused stating that talks were being conducted between Lee and Grant and that they, as subordinates, would have to wait. Custer insists at which point an angered Longstreet orders his officers to prepare for battle. Crestfallen, Custer rides away. Check out Longstreet's memoirs (From Manassas to Appomattox) if you want to read more about it. However, I found this tidbit from another source.

"From the left we saw a Federal officer riding at full gallop into our lines, waving before him a red bandanna handkerchief. When he came near enough to be heard, he inquired who was in command, and some one said: 'General Gordon.' He then went on, waving his handkerchief, until he met the General and had some conversation with him in connection with the surrender. When he galloped by us and in easy range, a brave soldier of the 31st Georgia Regiment, whose face was set with tears, threw his gun up and said: 'I'll get that scoundrel.' But some one who was more thoughtful knocked his gun up and said: 'Don't, John; it may be that the surrender has already taken place, and it may cause trouble.' Thursby replied: 'That's not a white flag, and I am not bound to respect it.' But his comrades would not allow him to shoot, and Custer, the bloody tyrant (shall I use the word?), who had shed so much innocent blood that devastated the Valley of Virginia with the torch, rode on, not knowing how near he came to the expiation of his heartly cruelty, only to meet a fate later on which he richly deserved if the command, 'Thou shalt not kill,' means anything."
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Old April 5, 2005, 08:33 PM   #69
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Confederate style recon mission

"A few days after the battle of Franklin my regiment was in position with right resting at Dr. Berry's (new) residence, just outside the city limits of Nashville. One morning Gen. R. L. Gibson, our brigade commander, asked me if I knew the position of the Federal troops on Brown's Creek. I was ignorant of any creek by that name, even although it was close by us. One of Dr. Berry's boys said to me, pointing with his finger: 'Colonel, that's Brown's Creek where the railroad bridge crosses.' The bridge was about halfway between the lines. I gave orders to cease firing on our side, and without any side arms I waved a handkerchief, which was promptly answered by the Federals. I made my way toward the small bridge, and got ahead of the Federal officer and two men, and took advantage of the time to carefully take in the position of the enemy. On their approach the officer asked me what I wanted.

"I told him I wanted 'a ball of shoe thread to make a pair of boots (this was true); He replied: 'That is a queer thing for a flag of truce.' I thought so myself, but I did not know anything better to say. I promised to pay them in tobacco. The officer said he did not believe the general would allow him to do that. 'Well, let me know to-morrow at noon.' We shook hands, and I asked the two cavalrymen what command they belonged to. They replied, 'Second Kentucky.' I said: 'Ah, boys, you should be on my side.' They smiled, and we returned to our respective lines. The information obtained seemed to be sufficient, as Gen. Hood ordered an advance that afternoon and drove the enemy back some distance. The next morning Capt. Samuel Haden asked me if he might reconnoiter and get a newspaper and see what they thought of the 'shoe thread trick.' I said, 'Go ahead,' and he approached their lines. I saw them point their rifles at him and force him to enter their lines, and thus I lost one of my most gallant and skillful captains, who had been in many tight places with me."


BTW folks, I'm going to be in Washington, D. C., for the rest of the week and won't be back until April 15th. Be good and if you have a good rambling anecdote, share it.
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Old April 5, 2005, 11:31 PM   #70
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Beer.

Stop by Ft. Lewis while your here.

Spc. John Taylor, A Co, 296 BSB.

I'll buy ya a beer or three
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Old April 5, 2005, 11:52 PM   #71
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Thanks John. Sorry, but I edited my post to show which Washington. BTW, I'll be going to Philomath, Oregon next month for the Oregon Gun Makers' Fair.
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Old April 15, 2005, 11:13 PM   #72
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Cover v. concealment

The former not only hides you, but also offers some protection. The later only conceals you but offers you no protection. Here's a tidbit from the past that illustrates this lesson:

During the advance of Evans' Brigade across the wheat field from the end of Brooks' Hill to the Thomas house, a Federal soldier fired at the advancing enemy from bheind a wheat shock. The man himself was not visible, but the smoke of his rifle was. Immediately the guns of many Confederates were turned upon that particular wheat shock, and when the Confederates in their onward go, came to the shock of wheat, the Federal soldier lay there dead with a dozen bullet wounds in his body.
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Old April 22, 2005, 08:13 PM   #73
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The James boys loved their mother

There's no dispute that Frank & Jesse robbed banks. Teddy Roosevelt even called Jesse the "Robin Hood of America." Well, there's no proof that they ever gave to save a widow's home from a mortgage. However, they did share their loot with dear old mom. After all, she was the woman who bore them, raised them and fed them as babes. They repaid her by giving her stolen revenue stamps stolen from the Liberty Bank. One day Mother James took her revenue stamps to the Liberty Bank to pay off a loan. Said bank refused to accept them as they figured (rightfully) that they were stolen. Indignant, she paid in cash. History does not record what if anything she said to her boys but it sure would have been interesting.
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Old May 5, 2005, 07:58 PM   #74
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I'll pass on the johnny cakes

Johnny cakes are Corn-fed food. It's generally corn mixed with water and a pinch of salt (if available) which is fried to perfection in bacon grease (generally the only grease available). While quite yummy, I'll pass on this batch and so will you:

"When we Crossed into the town of Fredericksburg, the men Captured many things & thease three, Davis, Howells & Hill got into a house [and a] Carpenter's store room & Dye Davis said, 'We be got him now, lads. Fill your haversacks.' And the Haversacks was filled. Dye Davis [said], 'Now, lads, lets go down to the fire & we will have some Johnny Cakes.' And when they reached the fire, Dye said, 'John Howells, do we get some wood & make a fire?' & 'Bill Hill, do we get some water & I make some Johnny cake' & the work went on & Dye [made] a Cake on the old plate & he turned it up to see if it was done, but [it] was not browned yet & Jack said, 'Turn 'em over any'ow." & Dye turned [it] over & said, 'Jack he is hard any'ow' & they got the other side hard & Dye wanted it to get browned but Bill Hill got impatient & said, 'Damn, 'em, Dye, less [let's] have him!' & the Cake was handed to Bill & the Cook put another on the pan & while Dye was working at the second one, Bill Hill could not get his Knife to splite the first one & Jack Howell says, 'Bill, get a stone & Break 'em.' & they got a stone & Broke it & tried to bite it, but it was no go & Jack examined it Carefully & exclaimed, 'Damn 'em, Dye, 'e is plaster [of] Paris!' & the Cook stopped instantly & he examined & exclaimed, 'Well, Jack, I did think he was Damn heavy flour in my haversack.' & sure enough it was white Plaster of Paris."

It almost sounds like a script for the Three Stooges.

Sorry but I've been busy with the manuscript. A couple of readers have made suggestions and I've been incorporating them.
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Old May 8, 2005, 03:25 PM   #75
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Lie, lies & more lies

When I was at the Smithsonian a couple of weeks ago, I picked up a book by Charles Minor Blackford. He's the older brother of Eugene B. of the 5th Alabama. Well, anyway, here's Charles' passage after Gettysburg:

"Eugene just left my camp, where he stopped while the regiment was passing, to get something to eat, and I never saw anyone enjoy a meal so much. He was very hungry having been in the line of battle four days without the chance of cooking anything and having anything but hardtack and water."

Yeah, sure. Sounds like the younger brother suckered the older brother out of his chow. Here's what Eugene really ate:

July 1: "That night I slept with my men in a barn in the outskirts of the town. In it there were countless [illegible], of which we made a great soup, thickened with artichoke. In the morning [July 2] the enemy now crowded on the heights, our lines were drawn around, and my men thrown out into the meadow between the lines. Here we lay in the broiling sun until about 1 p.m. when beginning to feel hungry, I sent a detail to catch chickens, which they cooked in a large pot found in a cottage, thro' which my lent went. This soup contained about 60 chickens, and the entire contents of the garden in the way of onions & potatoes. Saw it was necessary to feed the men as no rations had been issued..."

Lying dog ate well and then bummed chow off his older brother. But hey, what are brothers for?
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