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 Posted: Tue Nov 7th, 2006 12:39 pm
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Widow
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Howdy from Northern Virginia, everybody.  I'm Patty Wheeler, and I'm new to this discussion board.  Sure am glad to visit with other folks interested in the Civil War, both here and in Shotgun's chatroom.

Although I've lived in Fairfax County (suburb of Washington, DC) for more than 40 years, I'd never paid attention to the Civil War history here.  Until August 2005, when I attended a living-history event at a county park.  There were uniformed reenactors as infantry, artillery, and even four cavalrymen.  Some civilians also in period clothing.

I got hooked, lined, and sinkered, right then and there.  Wow, what have I been missing?  Since then, I've bankrupted myself by buying books and traveling to battlefields.  I can't get enough, and I'll never get all of it.

I live 15 miles from the Manassas National Battlefield Park, and within easy driving distance of Antietam, Gettysburg, Fredericksburg, Richmond, Petersburg, Harpers Ferry, and of course the Shenandoah Valley.

I've joined two round tables and several other groups, mostly so I can receive the newsletters and learn of upcoming programs and tours.  I'm active in the Bull Run RT, which meets in Centreville.

As far as I know, none of my ancestors fought in the war.  There is no information on Mom's side.  Dad's ancestors were homesteaders in Nebraska Territory during the war.  I have no information about my husband's family either, except that they lived in Illinois.  I figure that if any of our ancestors had been in the war, there would have been family stories.

I love going to reenactments, living-history days, museums, and battlefields.  It's fun to go with a group, it's fun to go alone.  I cannot stay out of bookstores, though, and I'm worried about that.

Locally, I'm interested in battlefield preservation.  Fairfax County was the first to be occupied in 1861 and the last to be unoccupied in 1865.  The Federals and Confederates camped and fought here over the four years.  The county now has more than a million people, so you can imagine what's become of those historic campsites and battlefields.  There's not much left.

The more I read about the armies, battles, campaigns, soldiers, weapons, and other military aspects of the war, the more I learn HOW they fought.

I also want to learn WHY they fought.  That, perhaps, is an even more fundamental question.  So I've extended my reading to cover the period from the Missouri Compromise of 1820 through the end of Reconstruction.  I even re-read the Constitution's treatment of slavery.  All the conflicting and changing viewpoints during that time certainly must have left many citizens confused and doubtful.  I get confused too, trying to grasp this complicated subject.

Look forward to chatting with you good folks.

Widow



 Posted: Tue Nov 7th, 2006 01:38 pm
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javal1
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Welcome to the board Widow! What a great place to live for Civil War touring. Hope you enjoy your stay here.



 Posted: Tue Nov 7th, 2006 03:22 pm
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Fuller
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We welcome your knowledge and opinion!  How lucky you are to live so close to so many Historical sites.  Kudos to you for your efforts in preservation.  In your readings, have you read any regimental histories?

 

Fuller



 Posted: Tue Nov 7th, 2006 09:45 pm
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calcav
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Welcome aboard Widow! I used to be a resident of the Old Dominion myself and often find myself missing it.

Loved you comment about a bridge being blown up but not by William Holden!

Tom



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 11:14 am
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Widow
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Howdy from NoVa, calcav.

In your post on 7 Nov 2006, you said

I used to be a resident of the Old Dominion myself and often find myself missing it.

Well, you know I can't let that pass without interrogating you.  But rather than posing a list of questions, I'll just ask you tell us more.

Nosy readers want to know.  Patty



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 01:53 pm
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calcav
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Patty,

I'm a bit of a wanderer. I grew up in Southern California and right out of high school joined the Navy. I thought I'd do four years and get out and ended up staying for twenty. I was stationed in California, New Orleans, Norfolk, Buffalo, and ended my time in Norfolk again. In between I visited a couple dozen countries on most of the continents. When I retired I settled in Tennessee and a job with the Park Service. Last week we moved to Corinth, Mississippi. I wonder where I'll go next?

I was eleven years in Virginia and spent all of it in Virginia Beach. I liked it there but much prefered the country life I had on the park at Shiloh and now it's like a shock to be living in "town" again. Corinth is just the right size at about 15,000 folks.

Tom



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 04:44 pm
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Widow
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Tom, you joined the Navy, saw the world, and now you're doing what you live most.  Great life.  BTW, do you keep horses?  Patty



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 05:40 pm
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calcav
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Patty,

No horses here. I used to ride alot in high school. Had some friends that had a big spread and I hepled work the cattle. Another set of friends had Arabian show horses. They competed in Western Pleasure and I earned my keep as a groom. Had a lot of fun.

Do you keep horses?

Tom



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 05:59 pm
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Fuller
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Tom,

So you're from Cali?  I just moved from Simi Valley, Ca.  I stood out on my front lawn and watched the F15 (don't quote me on the type of jets) perform the missing man formation for Reagan's funeral.  It was very neat.  His procession passed right by me on the 118 (appropriately named the Reagan Freeway) Simi is also famous for "Hope Town" lots of old westens were filmed there.  It's funny watching tv shows and movies and recognizing the same hills in the background that I would stare at every day.



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 06:11 pm
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calcav
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Fuller,

Holy Cow! Utah and now California too? We were practically neighbors! I grew up in the San Fernando Valley in the town of Sylmar. All my family has since moved over to Ventura, a much nicer place. My sister used to live in the Simi Valley at the east end in Santa Susana Knolls (where all the big boulders are right before the 118 cuts through the pass into the San Fernando Valley).

Tom



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 06:38 pm
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Fuller
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Tom,

Sweet.  Yeah, I know the Knolls.  That's where Charles Manson had his whacko farm.  My father in law remembers driving that route through the knolls every day down to Long Beach for his teaching job. (before there was the 118)  I used to work in Moorpark at an enviornmental lab running tests.  My husband frequently surfed the shores of Ventura.  Where else have you lived?  I've also lived in Colo., Wyo., and Tx.



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 06:44 pm
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Fuller
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Oh yeah, does this sound familiar...

How do you get there?

Well, you take the 118 to the 5 to the 405 to the 1 to the 101...Ha!



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 06:54 pm
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calcav
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Fuller,

California, Louisiana, Virginia, New York, Tennessee and Mississippi. Got a kick out of today's paper where New Yahk Congressman Charlie Rangel put his loafer in his mouth and said "Who would want to live in Mississippi?" I sent him an email and told him having lived in both I'll choose Mississippi. Funny, he hasn't emailed me back yet.

LOL about the Hwy numbers. I remember the names; Take the Foothill to the Golden State to the Ventura to the San Diego to the Harbor, and hey, you're at the beach!

Tom



 Posted: Fri Nov 10th, 2006 09:49 pm
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Widow
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Tom, nope, no livestock here.  I live in a condo building, sixth floor.  Not even a pet.  With my lifestyle, the poor thing would be so lonesome, and sometimes I'm not here at the required times for the walk and exercise.

Dad kept a couple of saddle horses for the family when we were kids.  I learned to ride but had a really bad experience with another man's horse and never quite got over my mistrust of them.  Who needs horses when you've got a bike that won't buck and kick you in the face and stomp on your back?  I like to watch western movies - that's as close as I'll ever get to horses again, thank you sir for asking.  Patty



 Posted: Mon Nov 13th, 2006 08:59 am
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susansweet
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Patty I think I was on most of those Freeways this afternoon coming home to Huntington Beach from Sacramento .  I took the 5 to the 210 to the 605 to the 405, to the 22 . 

I was in Sacremento at the Civil War Round Table Conference .  Ed Bearss and Craig Symond were two of the speakers. 

I am still so excited I won the drawing for a print by John Paul Strain.



 Posted: Thu Nov 16th, 2006 04:38 am
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Widow,
It sounds as if you will be busy for quite a while touring sites there in the East! However~~If you should ever decide to explore the Western Theater the gentleman that you have been talking with~~Calcav~~is a very knowledgeable, helpful and gracious person to contact. He is located at Corinth but has been at, and knows bunches about Shiloh. :)
Bob



 Posted: Thu Apr 5th, 2007 10:04 pm
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Widow
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"The Stone Wall" is the monthly newsletter of the Bull Run Civil War Round Table, which meets in Centreville, VA.  A regular monthly feature is "Connecting to Our Past," an interview of a member.

The April 2007 issue came out today.  A certain red-headed widow lady is the subject of the article.  So if you want to see what I look like, click on

http://bullruncwrt.org/BRCWRT/Newsletters07/Stone_Wall_4-07.pdf

Patty, "Widow"



 Posted: Thu Apr 5th, 2007 10:20 pm
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Fuller
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Patty,

It's great to put a face with the name (cute little thing you!)

It was fun reading the article as well. (More antelope than people?  I think I have heard that before...you continue to crack me up girl)

Fuller :D



 Posted: Thu Apr 5th, 2007 10:37 pm
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Widow
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Fuller, thanks for the kind words.  That was no joke about the antelope and people.  Wyoming now has about 400,000 people in 100,000 square miles.  Possibly the antelope population has declined due to habitat destruction, but you get the idea.

Patty



 Posted: Thu Apr 5th, 2007 10:46 pm
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Fuller
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A tiny thing like you would just blow away in Laramie!  My gosh that wind can blow.   Did you ever visit Dubois?  Pretty little town...in the summer.



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