Monday, April 22, 2019

Foolin' round

Took a little down time the last few days.  Not that we needed it, more just because we could and some opportunities for some fun presented themselves.

Spring has officially sprung (meaning we've had our first, but not last, 90o day.  The Bluebonnets are in full bloom.



And the Oryx Males are out chasing the Females.

Don't know if he caught her.  None of my business.
Our winemaker friends celebrated their 20th year in the winery business.  That makes them, while not the oldest winery in Texas, at least in the oldest 15.  I think their TABC license serial is 13.  In any case, we went over there Saturday to celebrate with them.  Their kids and grand kids came down from various locales to celebrate also.  Lots of fun.  And we discovered a future star.



This is their grandson. He's 13. While this, admittedly not professionally filmed video taken by his mother, was not taken this past weekend, it does demonstrate that he's got talent. We were impressed.

Last Thursday, Mrs J and I took April's Road Trip.  (It seems that one a month is just right.) This one, again, was to one of the Mid-1800's Texas Forts.


The dark line of Forts, in the above picture, ran from the Red River down to the Nueces River and then to the Rio Grande and served as protective screen for the more settled eastern portion of Texas.  They were built about 50 miles apart or a couple of days travel via horse.  Towns tended to be built about 20 miles apart, so relatively close (a day or so away) from a Fort.

The map above was pretty well completed by the mid 1850's.

This road trip took us to Fort McKavett which is about 25 miles north of Junction, which is about 45 miles west of "The Burg", where Fort Martin Scott is located.

As might be expected, I've spent quite a bit of time on I-10 (75MPH starting at the nearest entrance to me, 80MPH within about 10 miles of that all the way to El Paso. Got to Love Texas Highways).

The byways aren't so bad either! Saw a total of 2 vehicles on this road in the 25 miles between the Fort and I-10,  coming and going. 
So, I had seen signs for Fort McKavett several times, yet hadn't known anything about it.  On the last trip out west (Big Bend for a Texas Whiskey tasting), I resolved to rectify that lack of knowledge.  Unfortunately, cell service is not all that spiffy out that way (I wasn't driving), so couldn't do the research on the fly and promptly forgot.

But, Mrs J suggested another road trip and mentioned that she'd found the Fort at Mason fascinating and weren't there others nearby?.

So...DuckDuckGo came back with an interesting synopsis of the history of Fort McKavett.  I found the linkage to Civil War POWs interesting, and dug a little deeper.

Well turns out that in February of 1861, Texas decided to secede.  General David Twiggs was the Commander of Federal troops in Texas.  He was from Georgia.  After negotiations, He surrendered to the Texans and his Federal troops were ordered to move from their bases to Matagordo bay (near Corpus Christi) and evacuate via ship.  Said movement was supposed to be completed by May 1.

General Twiggs gave the order to march to San Antonio.  Which the 300 or so troops at Ft Bliss, Ft Davis and Ft Quidman did.  On Foot.

According to Google earth, that red line is 471 miles.  Given the terrain, they most likely would have been closer to the yellow line (now I-10) which would make it closer to 550.

 But as they got closer to San Antonio, the Confederates considered them to be a hostile force and organized about 1800 soldiers to defend against them.  On May 8, the Federals arrived at Adams Hill just west of San Antonio, (3 miles as the crow flies from the parade field at Lackland and, interestingly .4 miles from Little Juvat's house when he was stationed in San Antonio.) and encamped for the night.  The next morning, surrounded by Confederates, they surrendered.  This was the "battle" of Adams Hill.  Something I'd never heard about in my Texas History Classes or I would have sought it out on a visit to Little Juvat's place.

An interesting side note for Sarge, one of the now POW's was Lt Zenas Randolph Bliss.  A native of Rhode Island, he would later be paroled, make his way home and rejoin the Army and during the battle of Fredericksburg (VA not TX) perform gallantly and be awarded the Medal of Honor.

But the other poor schmoes had to walk back to Ft McKavett and other posts in the vicinity which had become POW camps.  So, another 250 miles or so.  Apparently, they were treated comparatively well.

Unlike Ft Mason and most of the other Federal Forts in the area, after the war, Ft McKavett was reactivated and kept active until about 1890.  Additionally, there was little civilian growth in the area surrounding the fort, so a city didn't grow up over the fort thereby preserving it somewhat.

So,  after an exhilarating  drive up to the Fort, Mrs J and I got out and started our walkabout with the old Hospital building  (now the park headquarters and museum) as the first stop.


We met the Texas Parks Service attendant who was also the park historian and a nice lady.  Paid our $4, asked her what the "must see's" were (barracks, morgue, officer's quarters), and began to peruse the exhibits in the small museum.
Hospital is the dark roofed building in the top left.  CO's house is bottom left, Enlisted barracks are the long buildings in the top right.
 Properly oriented, we meandered a bit and read a bit of history.


Had known that the Black Soldiers had been assigned out at Ft Davis because of the visit out there a few years ago, but did not put 2 and 2 together to figure out that they were probably elsewhere also.

However, the exhibits lead me to believe that McKavett was one of the few posts where both White and Black soldiers were assigned at the same time.  Indications were that, as one might suspect, at times there were "issues", but much less than was expected at the time.
Period specific weaponry.
Exited the Hospital/HQ to visit the facilities before wandering and came upon the Morgue.

The two door left building is the enlisted and officer "Sinks".  What a great name for an Outhouse.  The building on the right is the morgue.  Nothing much to see there, other than its close proximity to the hospital and as a reminder of the realities of frontier life.

As we begin the walkabout, we Air Force types were quickly able to deduce why the Fort is located where it was.  "See 'em coming" distances were excellent.

A quick glance across the Parade field at the restored Enlisted Barracks and Old Headquarters building

Enlisted barracks #1 Center and #2 (rubble on the right).  The Bakery is the white building on the right in the distance.

NCO quarters in Barracks #4.  Sarge, if you think your back hurts now...


Enlisted quarters.

Took me a bit to figure out what this was.  Any Guesses?

Then it was out to check on the company grade housing.  The ruins in the center are the CO's house, destroyed in a fire in the 1890's.
Of the quarters we were able to look at in detail (Field Grade and CO quarters were in ruins), we both thought the Company Grade at least was livable.  We had certainly lived in smaller quarters.
Bedroom

Living Room

Dining room.  Door behind the table lead to an outside kitchen (keeps the house cooler).
Wives and Families were not prohibited, but not encouraged.  It was not only a difficult, dangerous life, but the realities of the Army at the time, meant that quarters were assigned by rank.  If a higher ranking person was assigned, everybody with less rank had to move to the next lowest quarters until the person at the bottom had to find a place for his family to live.

The civilian community around the fort was known as "Scabtown", and wasn't a desirable place to raise your family.
Anybody who's served in the Military knows exactly what this sign is saying.

Next stop was Lieutenants quarters.  If Company and Field grade families were discouraged, Lieutenants were highly encouraged to  not  bring their families.  These quarters were two bedrooms with a common room between to share.

 Not unlike some of the BOQ rooms I lived in as a Lieutenant.  A family could be brought with you, but they'd be sharing the one bedroom with you and the common room with another Lieutenant who could be either single or with a family of his own.  As I said, HIGHLY encouraged.
I'm not sure what the placement of this cannon was intended to do, but it was right outside the door of the Lieutenant quarters we visited.  Pour l'encouragement des autres I suppose.



I'd say about a 3 inch muzzle.  Could cause some heartburn in the hands of a crossed wife!


Walked up to the CO's house.  Rank sure had it's privileges.  8-10 rooms with front and back two story porches and a basement.  Separate kitchen behind with a wash facility attached.  Not bad living in the late 1800's.  The Field Grade quarters are to the right of this pictures, not much to see other than a pile of rubble.  Given the size of what walls were standing, I'd say, as expected, bigger than company housing, smaller than the CO's.

Took us a couple of hours to wander around.  Made our way back to the hospital, asked a couple of questions of the lady behind the desk and made our way out to the car.  Heading back, I was feeling all "historical", so when I saw a Historical marker 1 Mile sign, decided I'd stop.

Thought it summed up life in the mid to late 1800's pretty well.  Not sure if some of the younger generations would be up to it.




On a personal note, Mrs J is having a "procedure" done this afternoon.  Nothing horribly serious, but one never knows. Responding to comments might be at the whim of the hospital wireless.  But, if you've got a second and can put in a word with the big guy, I'd appreciate it.  Thanks.

69 comments:

  1. Prayers sent and fingers crossed. Long gun holder for $500 Alex? That's mighty thin padding for wooden boards in those beds, geeez. Didn't expect to wake up on a Monday morning to learn about Army life on the Southern/Western frontier, two thumbs up juvat!

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    1. Thanks, I think you're right. The band at the top would hold the muzzles in in case someone bumped in to it.

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    2. And note that the metal band has ears with holes for a padlock.

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    3. Yeah, I saw that and figured that was what it was for. I'll defer to my Army brethren on whether it was locked on not most of the time on the wild frontier. "Don't need your rifle, til you need your rifle, then you need it bad!" comes to mind.

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    4. So things back then on the frontier regarding ROE were about as silly as the ROE on bases today. Okay, got it.

      Interesting that they did it in a circular platform, rather than a wall mounted rack. Conservation of floor and wall space? Or did the fort carpenter get bored?

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  2. Great post. My parents were from Texas, and always proud of it. My son still has a gorgeous oil painting of blue bonnets and an old, old road somewhere in the center of the State. Dad from Corsicana, Mom from Marshall. Great grandparents working and fighting through the war, great grandfathers meeting in a POW situation up North.
    On another personal note, my Jeanie is under the knife today as well. An all day affair apparently. We are in Gainsville for the best doctor for her specific needs. I am beginning to like Hiway 40. Prayers all over the place today. Still remembering with a thankful heart that my Saviour walked out of the tomb, as celebrated by many yesterday.

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    1. East Texans, eh? I was in 4th or 5th grade when Dad got assigned to Webb in Big Spring. Considered myself a Texan ever since.
      I will include Jeanie in my Prayers. Yesterday is a reassuring reminder on days like today, isn't it?

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    2. Dave, good luck and prayers to you and your wife. Shands, VA or North Florida? Did not know there were any Chanters in my area, makes me feel less lonely. I have always hated waiting on procedures and after procedures.

      40 is nice, so is 441, and the bypass around NE Ocala. I especially like the passing lane sections on 40, where everyone, including the slow ones, speed up.

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    3. She's at North Florida, nice lady Doctor. Doing OK. Yes, and the fifth wheelers automatically pull over left to the fast lane. Truckers, wanna-be's, I guess. No guts for I-10, 75 or 95! Takes a real man (or stupid fool) to get-r-going up the ramp onto one of those things.

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    4. Glad she's doing OK! That waiting for the 'OK' or even the 'ok' is a sucky time.

      I-75 from Wildwood to I-10 is just crazy. Speeds normally 5mph over what even juvat experiences, 85-90mph are normal, with lots of weaving in and out. Surprisingly low number of accidents, though. The on-ramps are usually not designed well and you do have to take your life into your own hands.

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  3. Yes sir, equipment storage.

    I really liked your pictures. Great info, too. Those old forts are something else. There is an old building that burned out near Big Lake, north of town. CO's quarters reminded me of it. It's on private land, but it's a pretty neat thing to look at even from a distance.

    I've read that the climate in the 1800's was a bit cooler than we experience now. Due to the end of the Maunder Minimum and a couple volcanic eruptions. But still and all, living out there was rough. Getting dirt in a scratch could kill you.

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    1. Yep.

      I thought the whole fort was very interesting and educational. Up til I visited Ft Davis a few years ago (for the first time), my mental picture of a fort was from F-Troop. Apparently, and once again, Hollywood has it totally wrong. Nothing at Ft McKavatt led me to believe there were any fortifications at all, other than solid limestone buildings. The restored buildings gave a very understandable picture of life back then. Even the ruins were interesting. I spent a considerable time looking at the CO's house and how it was constructed. With the basement, it was essentially a three story house. You could see where the floor joists were set in the walls. One of the questions, I had for the park ranger was how/where the stairs were constructed. I didn't see any markings in the wall for any step joists. She didn't know. Puzzling.
      The exhibit in the morgue was set up to reflect the death of one of the officer's kids, an eight year old girl who had died of sepsis. So, you're exactly right, getting dirt in a scratch could kill you.

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    2. Building at most forts were kinda spread out to create separation and air space. Plus the openness of the forts allowed rapid increases in troop numbers via tents, so officer tents would go up on officer row, and enlisted tents on the backside of the enlisted barracks. (That is, if there was no room for cramming people into buildings.)

      Did you notice that all the officer and main facilities are completely opposite of the stables areas, separated by those lowly enlisted quarters? Interesting....

      Re: Dirt in the wound. At Kwajalein the hospital had orderlies who would hold you down while they scrubbed out wounds of coral 'dirt' or 'sand' due to the ease of sepsis forming if even small chunks of coral debris were left in. Scrubbed as in using stiff fingernail brushes until the wound bled freely. My mother became quite adroit at bleeding us using this method.

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  4. Fascinating bit of history. Major General Bliss (for so he was when he died) was born in Maine according to the Medal Of Honor website www.cmohs.org.

    My first thought was "rifle rack" as the slots looked perfect for such a thing. (Though it looks a bit frail, one hopes it is nailed to the floor.)

    Prayers for Mrs. j's procedure and for Mrs. DDDD's surgery as well.

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    1. Rifle rack is what it is. It's actually fairly sturdy and heavy. The picture angle doesn't really show the base very well, but it's about 8" thick, so a fairly low COG.

      Thanks.

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  5. Thoughts of the frontier and “fort life” made me think of this book:

    http://www.leevalley.com/us/wood/page.aspx?p=50620&cat=1,46096,46100,50620

    I think you can scare up used copies cheap on Amazon or whatnot.

    One problem with online acquaintances is, you can’t just loan them stuff...

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  6. Having driven in most of the states, found Texas to have the best highways. Even the secondary roads are much better than other states. Worst? Illinois.

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    1. You can tell when you come into Alachua County, FL by the lack of road repair. They've been collecting taxes to do road repairs, it just goes 'elsewhere.'

      Yes, AC-FL is run by demon-rats, can you tell?

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  7. Thoughts and prayers for your wife , and Dave's as well. Hope all goes well!

    As I have said before, I was born and spent the first 24 years of my life in Texas, so I am a Texan before I'm an American (we learned Texas history from a 'comic book' before any lessons on American history). Agree on Texas Highways (do you get the magazine by the same name? It's really excellent and a great source of ideas for weekend excursions.). Many of what were called Farm to Market (FM) roads are better and have wider shoulders than many US highways in other states. And generally courteous drivers - remember when my yankee wife was with me driving on a road northwest of Dallas toward Wichita Falls - the car in front of us pulled over onto the shoulder, and my wife asked me what they were doing. I don't think she believed me when I told her they were letting us pass since we were driving a bitnfaster than they wanted to go.

    Interesting post on Ft. McKavett - reading a book, "Winchester Rangers", about the Texas Rangers of Company D ("The Frontier Batallion"). In 1874, the Rangers were camped in Menardville, and they didn't think much of the soldiers. One of the Rangers wrote to the Texas Adjutant General, "The Regular Troops from McCavit [sic] have commenced scouting [and] are afraid that the Rangers will get into an engagement with the Red Skins first." Another update a few days later said, "...[Rangers] being stationed in the vicinity of Menardville has caused the Regular Troops from McCavit to commence Scouting, but their force does not amount to much ..."

    Of course, after some sub-optimal encounters with larger forces of Comanches and Kiowas, the Rangers were longing for help from those same troops ... not that the Rangers were bad fighters, just that they were badly outnumbered and recognized their limitations.

    I'm headed down your way, juvat - spending time in SA with my son next week - looking forward to some good BBQ and TexMex as well as seeing the countryside in spring. Driving down, going to take my time and enjoy the trip ...

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    1. I did a post on Tx monthlys 50 best bbq joints a while back. With contact info website and maps, might be useful. If you decide to visit fbg, give me a call. Sarge has my info

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    2. Thanks, juvat - if I get up to FBI I will get in touch. And I used to like TX monthly, and their 'destination' articles are still good - like the one you referenced - but the 'Austin' political bent to a lot of their other stories does nothing for me.

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    3. Agreed. I only buy the annual 50 best BBQ edition any more. Moscow on the Colorado, doncha' know?

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  8. Prayers up for Mrs. j. Successful procedure and a speedy recovery.

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    1. Thanks, shes getting prepped. Waiting room is fabulous. TV is hard wired to The View. I may be insane shortly.

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    2. If there ever was the need for a handheld EMP flashlight, 'The (lack of any coherent, adult) View' or any other wimmens' programming would be it.

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    3. The waiting room here in Gainsville was similarly hard wired. First, Dr. Phil and some poor lady who wanted a divorce, except for the shame, not to mention she, herself, was a serial abuser of the poor XY of the arrangement. Then Whoopi et al came on and I couldn't read in peace any more, I had to move to the back of the room. BUT, everyone else was enraptured by their vitriol.
      In that picture of the officer's quarters, it looks like they found the same dress I bought for Jeanie to wear on our honeymoon. Small world.

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  9. Prayers are up.
    I don’t see how frontier army life could’ve been a whole lotta fun for anyone.
    Though I guess Custer kinda liked it.

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    1. Well...until he visited South Dakota, anyway.

      Thanks

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    2. Sorry, forgot that you were exposed to The View, that's enough to addle anyone.

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    3. From what I gathered, it was either lassez-faire, with semi-ill kept facilities (which would get people in major or minor trouble when the IG came through depending on political clout of the base commanders) or something much like the 2nd Marine Division is currently experiencing at Camp Lejeune. (Seems the current commander of 2nd MarDiv got assed up over the slovenly kept quarters, slovenly kept ground and the slovenly kept personnel, so he dropped a daily schedule of 'get up early, clean, PT, clean, do your jobs, clean, ACT LIKE MARINES, clean...)

      Many forts 'lived' for the monthly dance or other major social events. In between drill, fixing and maintaining kit, staying alive, not getting on the head NCO's wrong side, etc. All the fun of living on a ship except, well, no ship.

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    4. At the end of the day, I was the last remaining being in the waiting room. Some soap opera was on on ABC. A maintenance man walked in to empty trash and refresh the coffee machine. I asked him for mercy...would he please find the channel changer and turn it to a different channel...He took mercy...found the channel changer....spent fifteen minutes pushing buttons only to find the battery was dead. as I began my funeral wail...he took pity and .....unplugged the set. By the power vested in me as a monetarily contribubuting Catholic, I proclaim him St Carlos of Kerrville. As Brother Yul would say....So it is Written...So it shall be!

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    5. I coulda swore SD, but you're right. I'd been planning a BIG road trip to see that area, and musta got confused with Mt Rushmore. I mean, Mt Rushmore, Little Big Horn? Two twenty, two twenty one...Right? Waiting rooms....Sanity....Don't cross the beams!!!!

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  10. Prayers for Mrs. Juvat and you, juvat. Procedures, even fairly innocuous ones, do have a certain level of 'what if' and it's especially bad for those locked out of the procedure room and forced to wait.

    What you are doing on your monthly trips reminds me of what my mom and dad did with us kids back in '68 and '69. We toured many of the Spanish Missions within easy driving distance of Vandenberg, and often suspiciously ended up somehow getting lunch at Solvang, which has instilled a lifelong love of pumpernickel bread with Swiss cheese, a strong mustard, and ham. Some of the missions were barely standing, others were lovingly restored or were still actively used by one religious order or another. Those were good and fun times, and it's amazing how the dry words in history texts come to life once you see the realities (or, you discover exactly how much a boob the history writer was as what you see directly contradicts what was written, but try to tell that to said history writer? Nooooo...)

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    1. Yes, well...they certainly do bring to the forefront the risks of livings and remind us how fragile life really is to, hopefully, bring a feeling of gratitude for its continuance. I am grateful.

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  11. Thought and prayers for both Mrs J and Mrs DDD.

    What a lovely pic of the blue bonnets!! And the fort tour also looks very interesting! I very much enjoy that sort of thing. I am hoping to get Hubbie into history up here in Michigan, but so far not much luck.

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    1. Thank you Ma'am. I appreciate it. Your counterparts down here are doing a very nice job of taking care of her this evening. I appreciate it.

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  12. It's a rifle rack. Circular to save floor/wall space.

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    1. Yep...20 Rifles in a couple of square feet of floor is pretty efficient use of space. Now...If I could figure out a similar way to store my tools....Hmmmm!

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    2. It's called... a new building! One of those metal buildings like they advertise on tv late at night, maybe even a Quonset hut...

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  13. As much as you love Texas history and exploring the byways of this beautiful state, consider reading the following:
    "Five Years a Cavalryman; sketches of regular Army life on the Texas Frontier" by H.H. McConnell. I found it interesting that he traveled from the coast to San Antonio passing through the small town near which I live. Soldier's hard life that had no romance to it (nothing like what the recruiter described to me!).
    "A Texas Ranger" by N.A. Jennings. Joined the Rangers in 1874 and has stories of ranging out around Menard and west. Also crossed into Mexico and kidnapped a suspect and carried him back across the Rio Grande. Tough hombres they were.
    As a former Soldier I find the rifle rack interesting. Appears that back in those days they trusted the Soldiers unlike the latter part of my career where weapons were secured and the youngsters would be nervous when issued their weapons. FWIW, I have a photo of my father's room with his M1 Garand on the the Quonset hut wall over his bunk. It was taken when he was in the Army Air Corps working to collect meteorogical data on an Aleutian Island. I have his photos of him and others inflating weather balloons, firing M2 heavy machine guns on the gunnery range, Arctic foxes coming to the Quonset hut looking for food, lots of wooden buildings and photos of one of the buildings burning to the ground at night. Would have been somewhere around 1946 or '47. I don't know the name of the island but his photos show a volcano on one end of the island.

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    1. Ah,the Aleutians, the forgotten front of the forgotten theater WWII. Love watching video of Dutch Harbor today when the photographer flies over the concrete bunker observation posts surrounding the Harbor.

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    2. Barry, I've heard of the 5 Years a Cavalryman, but not read it. I think I'll try and rectify that. Thanks.

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  14. Prayers sent for the wife, juvat.

    Great post. When I worked on a ship for Boeing, we were instructed about the importance of immediately cleaning any 'wounds' or 'scratches' we incurred when working in the "Marine Environment". Had a couple of people who didn't clean their scratches, and wound up in Sick Bay with festering sores on their hands/arms/legs.

    We've done a bit of exploring out here, but not quite at your level. Maybe this summer.....

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    1. Sea, lake, and river water is full of all kinds of nasty critters. Sea water, in particular.

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    2. Thanks, drjim. I appreciate it.

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  15. Might that be a 6 Pdr. Mountain Howitzer?
    Retired GMC (USNR) neighbor of OAFS

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    1. Neighbor? Fellow Little Rhodian?

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    2. Who do you know that has a personal 6 Pdr Carronade in working order?

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    3. Um... you know someone with a working cannon? And you're not over there shooting it all the time?

      Dude....

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    4. Because you're just a big kid and would have crowed about it by now. Duh...

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    5. What Beans said.....You're very predictable in certain areas.

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  16. Just spoke with the Surgeon, Mrs J came through with flying colors! Thanks for all your prayers!

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  17. Excellent news juvat!

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  18. I'm later than usual because of a medical appointment and shopping in the bigger town. Happy to read that Mrs. J's procedure went well and am hopping that Mrs. DDDD's procedure also went well .

    The post on Texas forts is most enlightening. We live in such much more comfortable times and yet some people ( sometimes even me ) whine about how hard their life is.

    Thanks for the post.
    Paul L. Quandt

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  19. That's a rifle rack, where they stacked the arms. Prayers that everything went well with the Mrs.!

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    1. She came through with flying colors, as did Mrs D4. So...a good day all round.

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  20. Delighted Mrs J excelled with her procedure.
    Indeed a rifle rack, of a standard pattern approved by the Ordnance Department. The metal legs on the base were to be bolted to the barracks floor, and the leather covered ring around the top was to be kept locked This is the tall version for the .45-70 Trapdoor rifles, but there was a shorter one for cavalry troops with carbines.

    The first of the barracks rooms with the low single bunks and blue foot lockers are typical of the 1870s onward, all standard Quartermaster Department furnishings. The other barracks room with the bunk beds is in the earlier style where troops indeed had a "bunkie" to cuddle up with.

    Two reading recommendations- Ben McCulloch and the Frontier Military Tradition- by Thomas Cutrer. An unbelievable life, even for a Texan, albeit born in Tennessee, neighbor to Davy Crockett and pupil of future Tennessee Governor Sam Houston, who incidentally went on to be at various times President, Governor or Senator of Texas. McCulloch is worthy of a movie!

    Francis Roe, wife of a young Lieutenant wrote of their experiences shuffling around many of the Army posts of the west, with incomparable details of dress, dining, housing, entertainment, pets, weather, boredom and terror. And of being "ranked out" or bumped from their meager accomodations if a slightly more senior officer arrived. "Army Letters From an Officer's Wife, 1871-1888" is available in hard copy, but also as a FREE audio book at
    https://archive.org/details/army_letters_officers_wife_sa_librivox
    Great family entertainment for long trips.
    John Blackshoe

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    1. Excellent! Thanks very much.

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    2. John Blackshoe for the WIN!!!!

      Again, truly amazing as to the scope of knowledge shown by Chanters!

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