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Stickbug
05-23-2006, 10:40 PM
This is a short message in a higher profile area, directing you to a thread we've posted in the Event Announcements Forum.

http://www.cwreenactors.com/forum/showthread.php?t=81

If you are already committed to a unit and a parade on that day, please keep your word with them.

However, if you're free and can attend the National Memorial Day Parade with us, we'd be very pleased to have you among our company to honor those who gave "the last full measure of devotion."

I will underscore two points:

1) EAT BREAKFAST

2) BRING WATER, much more than a canteen full. Present forecast calls for 85 degrees. Let's have enough and to spare.

I got a call today from the Pentagon Channel, which broadcasts worldwide, asking us for details on our company. It is quite an honor to be part of this thing.

All for the Union,

Doug
aka Stickbug

Gary
05-23-2006, 11:29 PM
Boy, was I off scheduled. I was in Washington in the last days of April. I should have scheduled myself in late May. It would have been wonderful to see a Memorial Day Parade in Washington. Have fun and don't dehydrate.

Remise
05-24-2006, 08:36 AM
Too bad you could not make it. Next year we will start talking about this event much sooner, as we are hoping to put a battalion, not a company, in the parade.

B.C. Milligan
First Penna. Reserves, Company K

Remise
05-24-2006, 08:41 AM
Maybe we will look slightly like these guys.

Stickbug
05-24-2006, 11:22 AM
Note the slant that their rifles all have over the left shoulder?

We should print this out and bring it along with us... :)

Remise
05-24-2006, 03:10 PM
Not only that, but if you march that way, it is a lot more comfortable. Since this photo has been around for -- oops -- almost 140 years, you would think that reenactors would emulate it, when they go to "right shoulder shift!"

B.C. Milligan
Company K, First Penna. Reserves

cblodg
05-24-2006, 04:09 PM
Note the slant that their rifles all have over the left shoulder?

We should print this out and bring it along with us... :)

Uh.. that would be right shoulder. And yes, we should all attempt to have this kind of slant. It never fails, even after showing someone period images, and even sketches from the manuals, they still want it straight up and down!

Chris

Stickbug
05-26-2006, 03:24 PM
Please note the updates to the thread linked above. Hope some of you will drop me a line and join us in DC on Monday.

Cheerz!

Doug

Stickbug
05-29-2006, 10:14 PM
Brief AAR on DC's National Memorial Day Parade:

Despite the first broiling day of the season, we had a fair number of stout souls show up for our little stroll down Constitution Ave. in DC.

Negotiating DC streets is one thing. Close off half a dozen and it gets pretty wierd. Add in a few "no left turn" signs and we wandered around for the better part of a half hour before we got to park on Penn. Ave. At least the lads in my car got to see the sights in the big city.

We got everyone out of the car and onto the sidewalk, suited up and got our flags squared away. It was about a mile hike to our assembly point so it took us a bit longer to get there than I'd anticipated. But we made it with about a half hour to spare before things began to crank up.

As we walked up to our assembly area there was a marching band from a well known military academy beside us. A tall African-American boy said, "Hey, look, here come the Continental soldiers!" I stopped dead and fixed him with an icy stare and barked, "Who's your history teacher?" He looked taken aback, so I repeated myself and he answered, "Why, I don't have one!" I responded, "It shows!" and flashed him a grin. He grinned back and all his friends around him gave him a hard time and beat on him. It was a nice moment. I doubt he ever mistakes Federals for Continentals again. ;)

Our assigned muster spot was among the equestrian parade elements, so we got to have shade and there was plenty of water being handed out by the staff. Due to a parade staff snafu they misdirected a few of our boys to the SUV parade element down the street. We missed them, but we managed to soldier on. I regret that I only got one picture of anything in the day, and it wasn't even of us. I was so busy making sure that everything was attended to that I forgot to take pictures. Not like me at all! :)

The turn out of spectators along the route of march was enormous, MUCH bigger than last year and VERY enthusiastic in their applause as we marched along. The parade announcer even got most of the script right that we sent in to them.

I have to give our crew high marks for learning how to wheel as a color guard on very short notice. We looked pretty smart, if I do say so myself. Being the center flag bearer I set the cadence and for once enjoyed not being out of step once in the whole parade. <g>

We made the trip down the parade route in about an hour. Wound up near the White House on the Elipse, then swung right onto Pennsylvania Ave. to rest up a bit and watch a few other elements of the parade come past. There was one unit that sticks in memory, they were from Cody, Wyoming and they had a contingent of blondes in deerskin minidresses with lots of fringe. Not sure how they got the blonde Indians... <shaking my head in wonderment>

One of my guys was borderline heat exhaustion so we got him watered down, cooled off and back to the car and into A/C asap. We decided not to stick around for the rest of the parade and tried to make our way out of town. It turned out to be as hard to get out of town as it was to get in but we managed.

Notes for next year:

-Begin beating the drum for participation earlier and more loudly. We had about 8-12 guys no show for various reasons. :( It was a privelage to participate and we'd like to spread that thrill around.

-Start heading down to DC earlier in the day so we can enjoy walking along the parade elements and talk to some of the veterans, etc.

-Make sure that everyone is swilling more water well ahead of time to cut down on heat related risks.

-Make sure that I have a little more pre-parade training for my young fellows so we're not so rushed on the day.

What went right:

-Cell phone numbers being shared widely. Being able to talk to each other was a godsend.

-Carrying extra water and using it liberally.

-Having a designated rally site outside the city at White Flint Mall. (Outside Dave and Busters, top deck of the parking lot in the back of the mall.) (We've also got one set up in Falls Church, Va. across from Bob Mosher's house for next year as well.)

Lastly, a big thank you to all who gave of themselves and their time to be there today. A special thanks to BC Milligan for his encouragement and drive as a recruiter, and to Marc Hermann and Shaun Grennan for bringing a special color to our little band.

It was a privelage and honor and we hope to expand this effort in the coming years to give due honor to the "Boys of '61".

Doug aka Stickbug

TimKindred
05-29-2006, 10:47 PM
Comrades,.

Indeed, Please do start things up early. I'll pass it along to the events schedular, and see if we can't get a better crew down to support you.

Respects,

bill watson
05-29-2006, 11:02 PM
Yes, this could be a highlight of a season, please stick me on any lists.

Chris, he really meant "left shoulder," as in, the musket is physically is on the right shoulder and the weapon then slants behind the head toward the left shoulder. As opposed to the way most of us were taught in reenacting, with the darn thing lined up straight fore and aft and almost vertical to the ground.

Which is the way support arms is supposed to be done, now that I think of it, weapon just about vertical in relation to the ground.

I'm thinking all the things we do slightly backward one way or another and the only way I can think of to explain it is one very active dyslexic proto-reenactor who infected all drill instruction starting about 1971..... wheels, manual of arms, all have been handed down off key with some little problem that eventually has to be straightened out. Best explained by theorizing the existence of a master dyslexic somewhere in the pipeline.

Not to mention "fire by the left oblique." :) We turn that one into a weaponized game of Twister.

Anyway there's a pencil mark by next Memorial Day. Scribble me in for a rear rank two spot.

flattop32355
05-30-2006, 01:34 AM
...Which is the way support arms is supposed to be done, now that I think of it, weapon just about vertical in relation to the ground.

The most common error there is that we tend to place the left hand too high up, approaching shoulder height, rather than across the right breast.


Not to mention "fire by the left oblique." :) We turn that one into a weaponized game of Twister.

It's pretty darned clear in Casey's what the command is and what foot goes where. Yet it still gets done wrong so often...

The inverse of it is that it's a whoooooole lot easier to carry out commands than to give them. If you don't believe me, try studying the manuals until you have them down cold, then park your arse in front a group of men and try to point them in the right direction, or worse, to move them from point A to point B in the most efficient manner. Yeah, you can get them there in sequence of about a dozen maneouvers, but then you realize it could have been done in three. And that's just with a squad or section!

Remise
05-30-2006, 07:52 AM
....I had too many personal highlights to list, but some of these were: Seeing a 105 year-old veteran of World War One go by; seeing vets from many other wars, as well as knowing (since we didn't actually see them, being 40th in line) that the parade was led by 600 troops just returned from Iraq; watching the various bands and and WWII military vehicles going by after we were through, and -- the best of all -- having the opportunity to march down Pennsylvania Avenue in a parade whose inspiration goes all the way back to the widows of the Civil War.

There was a lone trooper from a Federal cavalry unit marching behind us. He said that originally a number of his unit's guys were going to march in the parade, but they had told him they "had other things to do" yesterday.

"I wonder," he said to us, "what would have happened, if the troops going ashore at Omaha Beach had said they had other things to do?"

That remark stayed with me all day. We were marching to honor every American who was died in every war since 1776. I cannot imagine a local reenactor being "too busy" to do such a thing. I was pleased that after I sent out my personal AAR to my own unit last night, the first response I received (within the hour!) was from Baghdad, thanking us -- us! -- for what we did yesterday. I wrote back, of course, thanking him for his real service to his country.

It was hot, hot, hot, but it was more than worthwhile, and I share Doug's hope that next year, we will have far more people in this event, as it was also a great chance to make the public aware of who we are and what we do. Thanks to Doug for organizing this contingent, which I know will grow each passing year, as will the parade itself. And thanks to the other guys who marched with us.

My personal humorous highlight was encountering Rob Hodge as the parade was winding down. He was dressed in as good a Confederate kit as one can get, which was proven when the Capitol Police, according to Rob, encountered him on the streets of Washington and held him for a while as a "homeless guy with a gun." He insisted he was not homeless, and that he was marching in the parade, to which the response was, "Oh, yeah? Well we don't see anybody else around here carrying a gun!" which was apparently true at the time. Luckily, some SCV friends of his, dressed in suits instead of homeless uniforms, rescued him from custody.

B.C. Milligan
Company K, First Penna. Reserves

Button Whizzer
05-30-2006, 09:07 AM
It's pretty darned clear in Casey's what the command is and what foot goes where. Yet it still gets done wrong so often...


Attending a camp of instruction would help reenactors learn the manual of arms.

Brandon

zouavecampaigner
06-02-2006, 12:11 AM
Doug, et al.,

thanks for allowing Marc and I to participate in the Parade, especially as NY Fire Zouaves. It was a very memorable experience, and I hope to make it a yearly event!

Thanks again!

Shaun

cookiemom
06-02-2006, 02:04 AM
Thanks to all of you who participated in the Memorial Day parade. While growing up in D.C. (native, with family there since CW days), I always wondered why we didn't have a parade. I'm glad the tradition has been revived (and it couldn't be done without you.)

Congratulations, too, on making the lead story on the local 5 o'clock news that evening. The segment started off with a quick but unmistakable view of the CW contingent (although I'm not sure who among you I saw, since on my B&W television all the uniforms looked more gray than blue... :) )

Anyway, thank you again. Maybe next year we'll bring y'all cookies...

Carole & Angie
(CookieMom & The Hardtack Kid)

Remise
06-02-2006, 11:57 AM
Shaun --

It was great having you guys with us, and your flags looked great, too! I hope there are many more of us next year.

Carole and Angie -- Do you remember what channel that was?

B.C. Milligan
Company K, First Penna. Reserves

cookiemom
06-02-2006, 04:49 PM
BC -

I think it was either Washington, DC Channel 9 (CBS affiliate) or 7 (ABC). I was alternating channels in the hope of seeing more coverage, but the effect was to miss parts of both segments. [There's a moral in that story somewhere... :) ] Sorry I can't be more certain.

Carole

zouavecampaigner
06-04-2006, 12:01 AM
Shaun --

It was great having you guys with us, and your flags looked great, too! I hope there are many more of us next year.

Carole and Angie -- Do you remember what channel that was?

B.C. Milligan
Company K, First Penna. Reserves

Bruce,

thanks! It was nice to finally meet you in DC, even though we live, what, 10 minutes apart? And the 8'x7' red flag I carried, the one that got all the "YAY NEW YORK!" shouts along the route, as well as blinded the left end of the line, was handsewn by yours truly. There's 2 weeks of my life I'll never get back! It was just such an honour to be walking in the very steps of the 1st Fire Zouaves 145 years later.

Truly, there is NOTHING "better to do", and it was great to know that the true heroes overseas got to see their pards-in-wool marching for them, and those before them, in DC. I know we can make next year's contingent much larger, as I'm going to push my b'hoys to do it, even IF we have to wear "regulation"!

Regards,
Shaun

Remise
06-04-2006, 02:33 PM
Shaun --

Ditto, on finally meeting you. It was fun to see how many people actually realized who you guys were supposed to be. It was fun not to be asked, "Are you guys supposed to be from the Titanic?" for a change, for that matter!

It was a great day, and I look forward to next year's edition. Maybe by the 150th this parade will mean, if not as much as Remembrance Day, at least as much as St. Patrick's Day, to some units.

We are going to be looking for a battalion organization into which we can fold all our marchers next year. I have sent an email to the NR, but we have no great preference, I think, if any one of them expresses interest.

B.C. Milligan
First Penna. Reserves, Company K

Remise
06-11-2006, 08:24 PM
P.S. Next year we are planning for a battalion each of Confederates and Federals. We hope you will think about joining us!

RJSamp
06-11-2006, 09:40 PM
When did the CSA dead get included in list of 'wars' veterans to remember?

I know that Decoration Day started out with Order No. 11 and Logan, and remembering those who had died in the defence of their country in the late rebellion.....


Somewhere along the way it had to change to Monday, and add Wars to the list.....and add the CSA veterans? I know when I sounded Taps on Memorial Day at Confederate Rest in Forest Hill Cemetery (farthest north CSA gravesite for war dead) in Madison WI there was some 'controversy'..including the lack of attendance by the VFW, Legion members

Thanks!

Remise
06-12-2006, 10:17 AM
I don't know when Confederates became part of Memorial Day, but the SCV was in the National Memorial Day Parade before I was, so I cannot question their presence this year or next. Personally, my theory is that they were Americans, too, and there doesn't seem to be a huge flap about their marching on Remembrance Day. There were lots of groups in the parade -- such as the girls on unicycles; the sports car clubs; the veterans of armies from other nations (such as the Republic of China, for example), and some others -- whose presence I might have questioned. But I think they were there for the same reason we were: to honor those Americans who fought and died for their country.

And even if you don't like the idea of Confederates marching in a Memorial Day parade (and my family lost a lot of people fighting them), they did, after all, call it the Confederate States of America.

B.C. Milligan

Regular3
06-15-2006, 01:37 PM
When did the CSA dead get included in list of 'wars' veterans to remember? I know that Decoration Day started out with Order No. 11 and Logan, and remembering those who had died in the defence of their country in the late rebellion.. (snip) ...
While what was first named Decoration Day in the North was indeed started by Black Jack but those observances had actually started in the states of the former Confederacy as a day to decorate the graves of their war dead, and he took up the cause: "General Logan had been impressed by the way the South honored their dead with a special day and decided the Union needed a similar day. Reportedly, Logan said that it was most fitting; that the ancients, especially the Greeks, had honored their dead, particularly their heroes, by chaplets of laurel and flowers, and that he intended to issue an order designating a day for decorating the grave of every soldier in the land {including, presumably, former Rebels - dc}, and if he could he would have made it a holiday." Wikipedia