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The Bees are Back in Town

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  • Stephen Recker
    I was flipping through a stack of old CW magazines and came across and article by KM Brown entitled, Mama s Darlings Amidst the Honey Bees, 132n Pennsylvania
    Message 1 of 7 , Jul 23, 2008
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      I was flipping through a stack of old CW magazines and came across and
      article by KM Brown entitled, "Mama's Darlings Amidst the Honey Bees,
      132n Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry at Antietam." It is in Virginia
      Country's Civil War magazine from 1986.

      "As the 132nd moved through the Roulette farmyard, they came within
      view of a cluster of whitewashed crates behind the house. Beehives!
      Farmer Roulette raised bees. The officers and men were unconcerned. The
      air was alive with bullets and shells. Case shot burst overhead. On
      came the 132nd. The order was given to "double-quick" the pace. "Mama's
      Darlings" stormed through the Roulette yard. Suddenly, a shot from one
      of D.H. Hill's distant Confederate batteries crashed into the hives.,
      sending swarms of bees into the faces of the pennsylvanians. As the
      troops crowded into the grounds around the farmhouse, the bees swarmed
      among them."

      It goes on for three very long and detailed paragraphs. Alas, no
      attribution.

      If anyone runs into Kent M. Brown at Ted Alexander's Gettysburg
      conference this weekend, maybe you could ask him where he got the story
      about the cannon hitting the beehives.

      Cheers,
      Stephen Recker
      Antietam Battlefield Guides

      P.O. Box 705
      Sharpsburg, MD 21782
      240-217-3664
      800-417-9596

      http://www.virtualantietam.com
      http://www.virtualgettysburg.com
      http://www.anothersoftwaremiracle.com
    • thirdpaclugh
      ... I have been trying to respond to this post for over a week now. It bounces back to me as undeliverable. Here is my final attempt: I recollected reading
      Message 2 of 7 , Jul 28, 2008
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        --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, Stephen Recker <recker@...> wrote:
        >
        > I was flipping through a stack of old CW magazines and came across and
        > article by KM Brown entitled, "Mama's Darlings Amidst the Honey Bees,
        > 132n Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry at Antietam." It is in Virginia
        > Country's Civil War magazine from 1986.
        >
        > "As the 132nd moved through the Roulette farmyard, they came within
        > view of a cluster of whitewashed crates behind the house. Beehives!
        > Farmer Roulette raised bees. The officers and men were unconcerned. The
        > air was alive with bullets and shells. Case shot burst overhead. On
        > came the 132nd. The order was given to "double-quick" the pace. "Mama's
        > Darlings" stormed through the Roulette yard. Suddenly, a shot from one
        > of D.H. Hill's distant Confederate batteries crashed into the hives.,
        > sending swarms of bees into the faces of the pennsylvanians. As the
        > troops crowded into the grounds around the farmhouse, the bees swarmed
        > among them."
        >
        > It goes on for three very long and detailed paragraphs. Alas, no
        > attribution.
        >
        > If anyone runs into Kent M. Brown at Ted Alexander's Gettysburg
        > conference this weekend, maybe you could ask him where he got the story
        > about the cannon hitting the beehives.
        >
        > Cheers,
        > Stephen Recker
        > Antietam Battlefield Guides
        >
        > P.O. Box 705
        > Sharpsburg, MD 21782
        > 240-217-3664
        > 800-417-9596

        I have been trying to respond to this post for over a week now. It
        bounces back to me as undeliverable. Here is my final attempt:

        I recollected reading about this in John Priest's book, " Antietam:
        The Soldiers' Battle" a few years back. I pulled the book and located
        the reference but it credits the bee's disturbance to the 130th P.V.I.
        who broke down the Roulette farm fence in this manner...." Rushing
        across the open ground, the 130th Pennsylvania quickly smashed the
        picket fence bordering the orchard to splinters with its rifle butts.
        The air buzzed and whirrled with thousands of enraged honey bees,
        after the bumbling Pennsylvanians disturbed their hives on the eastern
        end of the lane. The bees, as Private Hemminger put it, "urged them
        forward."

        the citation was credited to the John D. Hemminger, Co. E., 130th PA.
        Diary, September 16 and 17, 1862, located in the Michael Winey
        Collection at the U.S. Military College at Carlysle, Pa.

        Since the 132nd PVI was in formation to the rear of the 130th and to
        the left, might it be possible that the bees were disturbed by the
        130th as they entered the Roulette Orchard and that the 132nd then
        received the brunt of the bees afterwards? There is no mention of any
        artillary rounds destroying the bee hives but this may have occured
        after the 130th left the grounds and were already advanced to the area
        in front of the sunken road.

        Dave Clugh
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