Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day Musings

Memorial Day could not have been more beautiful: Gary & I in our lawn chairs, under a shade tree, the American flag flying over veterans in a place that is loved and valued. There were many visitors who had never been to the cemetery before and kids who were interested in learning history. Was I in my element!

The local Sons of Union Veterans and Boyscouts had placed the flags and we hadn't been there long when one of the members of the SCV Camp, Jerry Reiman, showed up in period clothing with his drum. He played between the graves of Civil War veterans. It was beautiful.

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On May 12, I had the opportunity to speak at Mine Creek Battlefield, Pleasonton, Kansas. Adrian Zink is the new site administrator and he is wonderful! Plus, he does a mean impersonation of Arnold Schofield, the previous director!

There was a great crowd--lots of people and lots of enthusiasm for the subject. I was thrilled to speak in this wonderful site and here I am, standing in front of Andy Thomas's wonderful painting of this battle, the second largest cavalry engagement of the war.

Just a couple of weeks before, we had the great pleasure of leading a bus tour for Washburn University's History Department. Mine Creek was one of our tour sites and some of the students walked the soggy trail. We visited Fort Scott's Civil War Days where our old friend, Greg Higginbotham, below, demonstrated firearms and drilled the Holmes Brigade. It was great!

We visited the John Brown Cabin in Osawatomie (below), where site administrator Grady Atwater gave a great tour. We had a wonderful visit and it was great for the students to see all kinds of people passionate about history. One of those passionate folks who dedicate so much time and energy to history is John Mackie, with Gary and me below. Kudos, John, Greg, and all those dedicated reenactors who sweat and work to educate the rest of us!

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