Books I’ve Known and Loved (2)

Just because you’re nice doesn’t mean you’re going to be popular. This is what General Ben Grierson must have said to console himself. A hero of the Civil War, Grierson commanded the Buffalo Soldiers out West against Victorio and his Apache warriors after the war, but do you think that would have gotten him some…

Books I’ve Known and Loved

Okay, don’t be disturbed by the man’s weird stare and ugly hat. While On the Border with Crook is about the Indian fighter General Crook it’s more about the erudite and humorous John Gregory Bourke— the dashing military man and entertaining writer. Invariably the military men of the late 19th century had such enthusiasm, intellectual…

Books I’ve Known And Loved

This is one of my all time favorites. Good old John Billings. Don’t you just love a soldier who gives you the inside dirt with some wit and great illustrations? I do. John enlisted in The Army of the Potomac, but don’t let that remind you of the boring history teacher with coffee breath and…

A Christmas Card For A Soldier

“A green wrinkled sheet of thick card in his empty money pouch caught John Weldon’s eye. He pulled it out between his two long fingers. Hand-drawn timorous trees in black ink dressed the card’s message from the only care package he had ever received that first Christmas of the war . . . Christmas ….

Books I’ve Known And Loved

My favorite catty man moment when a cavalryman, Benteen is a no-show for a visit: “I guess he did not care to trouble himself- He is a true Cavalryman & would rather superintend the work of his stallion than attend to the courtesies of life– Nothing lost to anybody–but one feels degraded to think that…

Books I’ve Known And Loved

I haven’t actually read this one yet, but my husband surprised me with the book and I know I’ll love it since it’s by one of my favorite historians, Oliver Knight, of Life and Manners of the Frontier Army fame (famous to me anyway). A book about the journalists who traveled along with the army…

Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition . . .

And the mashed potatoes with gravy, please. Dear Parents, Don’t let the picture fool you. Outdoor feasts are not quite what they’re cracked up to be, but it’s better than fighting. Happy Thanksgiving. Your loving son, Charles Foster   illustration courtesy Time Life Books

Captain Charles King, A Soldiers’ Writer

If there were a McDreamy writer of the Western Army it would have to have been Charles King. This man lived and breathed all things military. His grandfather happened to live next door to Commanding General Winfield Scott and when, at the age of five, Charles spotted him in civilian clothes he gave the general…

Endangered Species, Pretty Buttons and the Military

Remember when you were bored at your grandparents’ house and your grandmother gave you her collection of old buttons to look at? Those were the days, weren’t they? Anything was better than snacking on stale Saltines that smelled like Fig Newtons and staring into the glass enclosed case of Kewpie dolls. Well, these buttons drew…