Re: The Bees are Back in Town
- --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, Stephen Recker <recker@...> wrote:
>I have been trying to respond to this post for over a week now. It
> 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
> 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.
> Stephen Recker
> Antietam Battlefield Guides
> P.O. Box 705
> Sharpsburg, MD 21782
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
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.