April 3, 2010
My fellow Bell Guards,
Last weekend saw a handful of us go to Port Hudson, Louisiana, while other attended the
Beggs event at home. Haven't heard much on the Beggs event, but Port Hudson was a good time. But more on last
It is next weekend, April 10-11, that is the center of this KC.
Our own Frontier Brigade is joining with the Holmes Brigade and Muddy River Battalion at Fort
Scott, Kansas, for the inaugural muster of the Army of the Frontier. The event itself will be similar
to the battalion musters held at Fort Washita. (Attached is Colonel Gross's insights on the event.)
This, like battalion muster, is a garrison event. Unlike Fort Washita, however, Fort Scott does not
have indoor barracks for our use. Company streets will be set up, with firepits already dug. Wall tents and A-frames
are standard, but dog tents and half-shelters will undoubtedly be acceptable.
will there be a battalion mess. Individuals should plan on feeding themselves. Civilians are welcome and will
have their own camp. As a garrison event, any period amenities are acceptable. Modern equipment should be kept
out of sight during both public and private hours.
Fort Scott is a National Historic Site
located in southeast Kansas. Though I have not been there, I have heard it was a marvelous historic site worth the visit
itself. The chance to participate in an army-sized drill and the first Army of the Frontier event should be
added incentive for everyone to attend.
Unfortunately, Prarie Grove's Work Day is also
this coming Saturday. Anyone that cannot make the Army Muster, but is available Saturday should consider helping at
Those of us who went to Port Hudson last weekend stopped by Vicksburg on
the way down. After visiting that National Park, we all have a renewed interest in National Historic Parks, Battlefields
and Sites, like Fort Scott. IF you have never been to Vicksburg, it is hard to understand why General Grant had such
a tough time taking it. One look at the terrain explains it all. The steep and open gullies were open fields of
fire for the Confederates to rain death on the attacking Union forces. Though is was a "two-hour driving tour,"
we were there four hours and only toured half the battlefield. The ironclad U.S.S. Cairo, raised and rebuilt
from the nearby Yazoo River, was a source of sheer fascination in itself.
The Port Hudson
event was fun, but like everything else, sufferred from the weight of the economy. Soldiers of the First and
Thirteenth U.S., as well as the 77th Pennsylvania, formed one company under the First's
Captain Brook Thomas. We fought a Saturday morning tactical in the back areas of the site and--by their own admission--whipped
the Rebels badly. Both the Saturday and Sunday afternoon battles saw our company (as Third Company) advance through
woods and thorns to fight it out on the open battlefield. The Cornfeds won the Saturday battle, but surrendered Port
I have heard little on the Beggs event and would welcome a report from anyone
in the 77th who attended there.
Later in April, the 17-18, Fort Gibson is holding
it annual Heritage Days. The 77th always makes an appearance there.
should be an exciting month. Wednesday, May 12 is the annual Civil War Day for Catoosa, I.T., schools. The
77th Pennsylvania's annual Missouri event is in Newtonia, May 15-16. Indian Nations Camp
#3 of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War has invited the 77th to join with them on Memorial Day
at the Union Soldier's Monument at Rose Hill Cemetery in Tulsa. And Chelsea, I.T., has been wanting the 77th to
put together a living history for their school, though the details are yet to be decided.
5 will see the Civilians of the 77th display their talents at Yukon, I.T.'s Chisholm Trails Living History event.
The military will show their prowess, also, but it should be a day for our Town to shine.
final note, on the weekend of celebration for the Resurrection of Jesus, please keep our Town Mayor, Beckie Kendrick, in your
prayers. She has recently been diagnosed with a serious health condition (it is for her to disclose, not me) and needs
all the support she can get. You might add Russell Gray and Frank Olivera, too, both of whom have serious back problems.