Friday, September 5, 2008

Slow February In Bowling Green

As much as we normally focus on the exciting, fast-paced world of battles and heroics in the Civil War, we also have to remember that there were far more tedious and boring duties that kept both officers and men occupied during the war. Excerpt from the papers of Benjamin F. Buckner, a Kentucky lawyer turned Major of the 20th Ky Infantry. Expect to hear more about Ben in the coming months as I am writing a seminar paper on his politics and military service. More on that to follow, now we off to his report of February 1863 in Bowling Green, KY.

Bowling Green Ky Feby 7/63
My Dear Helen
I have been so busy for the last five or six day's that I have had not time to write Genl Mc--- has appointed me Provost Marshall of the town forces at this post and I have been engaged in the pleasant occupation of swearing secesh women to support the government, ferreting out thefts of government property, and convicting the fourth Kentucky Cavalry by the wholesale for drunkenness. It is quite laborious, but will soon be more pleasant. ...

I just enjoyed the idea of an entire regiment of cavalry getting tight "wholesale" on a pilfered stock of Kentucky's finest. Sometimes it takes fun bits like that to make a day grubbing in the archives a bit brighter.


Jubilo said...

Dear Sirs,
Enjoyable post . Old Crow Bourbon , which is still available today , was reportedly drunk and enjoyed by Grant, Forrest, Basil Duke , Morgan and others. I believe it was first made in Kentucky in 1843 .
all for the old flag,
David Corbett

Patrick Lewis said...

If I remember correctly, John C. Breckinridge -- quite the bourbon connoisseur -- had a glass of Old Crow at the Phoenix Hotel in Lexington before riding out of town towards exile in Richmond in 1861.

It has since fallen from such grace and is an economy whiskey produced by the Jim Beam co.

Speaking from KY frat boy experience ;)