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Re: Thoughts, Sharpe, etc.

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  • Roger Fuller
    ... am ... and ... Paul, these are good points you are making. Sorry if I might have come off as strident re Sharpe, as I was trying to make a lighter comment
    Message 1 of 3 , Nov 6, 1998
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      >From: "Paul W. Schulz" <pwschulz@...>
      >
      >
      > a. On Sharpe: Perhaps I'm a bit sensitive about this this one since I
      am
      >the one who suggested the us of Mr. Moore, the shows RESEARCHER as a
      >possible source of information. But we need to remember some definitions
      and
      >some facts about the entertainment world.
      > Novel: a work of FICTION designed to entertain and produce
      >income, it may or may not have a historical premise.
      > Movie: a non printed action (live or animated ) version of the
      >above
      > Movie Prop: Ninja Swords, Giant War Clubs and apparently Chosen
      >men


      Paul,

      these are good points you are making.

      Sorry if I might have come off as
      strident re Sharpe, as I was trying to make a lighter comment on the phenom,
      but in Email, it sometimes comes out not quite the way it went in. Yes, Mr
      Moore was the researcher and adviser to the series' producers, who
      basically with the star Mr Bean, just ignored much of what he advised, in
      order to
      heighten the excitement factor or something. As Mr Moore wrote me a while
      back, he
      had told the producers that what they were doing was inauthentic,
      unrealistic, etc. wherupon, one of them said, ah, but think how bad it would
      have been had you NOT been here....

      I haven't heard from Mr Moore for quite along time, ever since he offered to
      send me piles of source materials on the 95th, which haven't arrived (that
      was in May 98), but perhaps he is quite busy . I hear he's on location a lot
      for movie companies. To be frank, he wanted me to advertise the 3/95th on
      the "Sharpe's" website; but, as I really don't know whether I want to get
      involved in someone else's commercial venture (and was not quite sure
      whether I wanted would-be Sharpes turning up at our events as they do for
      the 95th in England- these "ringers" are a real problem), I politely
      declined Mr Moore's offer, and have not heard from him since. That's all.
      I wish him well, and when we were in contact he did offer me some good
      advice on powder horns and the like; very knowledgable. But, when you work
      for a movie company, authenticity is a mere bagatelle to be gambled on or
      away, depending on the situation. After all, they're signing the checks. Am
      I right, Benton?


      >
      > Folks as I've told you before I am a Paramedic Instructor. I don't
      >particularly think "Rescue 911" or "Emergency" (1970's era) are good
      >training films. For that matter neither was the "Sands of Iowa Jima."


      No, but it's amazing to us end-of-the-century jaded types who look back on
      the callow innocent youth who fell for the John Wayne myth of the GI always
      doing the right thing, fighting fair, and being a good guy- and then we
      ended up at My Lai, just as the patriotic French ended up hated and despised
      in Spain, fighting their guerilla war- choose national myths carefully, I
      say.

      >These>shows did and do raise interest in EMS. The educate the public to a
      limited
      >extent and more importantly get people interested in the job and they join
      >our ranks. Shape has the same potential. Remember it was made for a
      >commercial purpose and therefore had to be interesting, exciting and have
      >eye catching characters.

      As long as everybody out there knows that it's all fiction, NOT history, and
      shouldn't be taken as such. In my experience, people don't read much
      anymore in general. I used to be a teacher and was continually amazed to
      find out how moronic the curriculum, students and teachers had become.
      Perception has become reality: if it's on the TV or Net, it must be true, it
      seems.....

      Oh, by the way I was a professional actor from
      >80-83. This shows informs a public that at least now knows they're army
      >fought in Spain in the 1800's (this the same public that thought the 1982
      >task force would be back in a couple of days as the Falklands was a bit
      west
      >of Scotland.)


      I'd think that, too, but an Email reenactor pal of mine, Richard MacFarlane
      of the UK 33rd Foot (Napoleonic) is forever chuckling at the "tourons"
      (tourist + moron) in the UK who think Waterloo is just a train station in
      England and that Wellington was famous only for the boots! War in Spain?
      Was that in World War Two? Peninsula War- what peninsula? He hears it all
      the time. Just because the British speak with "accents" (my wife is British-
      Scots, actually), doesn't mean they're all the sharpest knives in the drawer
      (exc. for her, of course), just like some Tourons in the States....

      >What a producer/director does with research provided to them
      >is up to them, ONLY THEM. If you don't like that, stop watchin' the show,

      I did. The books, as I said before, aren't bad, but as the guy who's in
      rifle green, I get to hear about it repeatedly more from the misinformed
      public than anybody else does, exc. maybe for the Glengarrys.

      >but stop grousing about it.

      Esp. in November, I am remembering the many veterans who fought, got
      wounded and died so that we may enjoy our free speech, ladies and gentlemen.

      >I get confused when some of you draw knives
      >over
      >a TV show but say come to Napoleanic events as Dutch the crowd doesn't get
      >close enough. Contradictions do that to me.

      yes, I'm not too sure about the US troops as Dutch, but in all fairness I
      think that was done so that others wouldn't feel left out. Reenacting
      politics can be a ticklish area; and as I' m sure anybody in the hobby in a
      supervisory capacity can tell us, it's damned if you do, damned if you
      don't.
      I have no idea what the Dutch reenactors feel about that, but I think a look
      at a recent entry in the Sharpe's Guestbook
      ( http://sharpe.stayfree.co.uk/guestbook.htm ) from a Marc Schafenaar of
      the Netherlands gives an indication of what the Dutch reenactors think of
      the British point of view.....man! We're talkin' bad hair day!

      >
      > b. Now on to some serious stuff. I do have one account of soldier
      >loading orally. This was a common but not "official" practice of some of
      the
      >US Mounted Rifles, particularly those from Kentucky (that much lead in
      their
      >mouths could explain alot of behavior from those Kentucky guys even to this
      >day). This was done while moving on horse back. By over boring the touch
      >hole the Volunteer was able to prime the weapon from inside the barrel and
      >loading was done in these cases strictly with the powder horn. Spillage was
      >prevented by insuring the horn was in the muzzle before dispensing the
      >powder.

      This was originally done by the Prussians with their "self-priming" musket
      of the late 18th cent. Basically an over-sized touch-hole. But loading
      powder DIRECTLY from a powder horn- I think some of that lead was going to
      their brains!<GGG>

      This technique was used primarily against Indians but may have been
      >used against the 41st (I have know hard evidence on this method at the
      >Battle of the Thames). Coffee's men were noted to have used this as well.
      >The advantage appears to be that it could be done by a practiced volunteer
      >(US Volunteers were well equipped, reasonably trained and well above the
      >"standard" militia) even at a trot, which if you will ask any horseman is
      >quite a feat.

      Even the British Cavalry realized that the sword was more effective then
      their Paget popguns, and dispensed with them before they came over here, if
      I'm not mistaken.

      > The practice feel out of use as weapons changed and has never
      >been seen at an event for obvious reasons. Now before you hit the reply to
      >author key... these men were not soldiers, infantry or more importantly
      >European. Theirs was a task somewhere between Cav and Inf with no real
      >guidance to work from. I have never, ever read or heard of accounts from
      the
      >British soldier or his officer that a bullet was placed in his mouth by
      >anyone other that the surgeon.

      Me either, and I got a howl out ofreading and seeing it in the series whose
      name we dare not speak of (like the Scottish play!- Ohmigosh- I just
      compared Cornwell and Bean with the Bard! *grin***)
      >
      > c. Safety: There is a man who can be located on John Secks website. He
      >commands Steele's Rifles (US unit out of Ohio) he has been working on a set

      >of comprehensive safety rules since the Civil War boys almost got our hobby
      >shut down this year a Gettysburg. His rules are complete but I don't feel
      >overwhelming. It might be worth a look.

      Amen to that- we are, after all, playing with 19th century assault
      weapons.....
      >
      > d. Rifles at New Orleans: This should be fun.

      The 95th did their job- and damned well. Just in a lost cause at Nawlins.

      Roger Fuller
      3/95th
      >
      >
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    • Stein
      Dear Roger, and other 1812 s, The Sharpe series has not been broadcast down here. It contains guns and violence and would be unsuitable for the children and
      Message 2 of 3 , Nov 7, 1998
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        Dear Roger, and other 1812's,

        The Sharpe series has not been broadcast down here. It contains
        guns and violence and would be unsuitable for the children and people with
        extensive dental work.

        What a shame that a number of gun-crazy enthusiasts pestered their
        Pommie friends to tape the series as they were put over in England and then
        imported the tapes. Complete with the advertisements. And then went to the
        UK and bought the videos in their original form and set up Sharpe nights
        and made popcorn and drank alcoholic beverages while watching. A disservice
        to public morality and good nutrition.

        It HAS had an effect. Whereas before a green uniform was generally
        thought to be characteristic of the Nicaraguan Sanitation Corps, now we
        have 95th types popping up all over the place. Reenactors are not only
        reenacting riflemen but one at least is reenacting a reenactor. It is
        rather like the optical trick of putting two mirrors face to face and
        staring into a virtual infinity of images.

        Still, there is this to be said for it. They are fairly well equipped
        ( aside from dodgy cartridge boxes...) and they are generally fitter than
        the rest of the line troops. At least they are skinnier than the rest of
        the line. Perhaps it is the slimming effect of the dark green or perhaps
        they are wearing corsets.

        They are using Pakistani Bakers for the most part - a smoothbored
        replica that looks surprisingly good against a more expensive Jesse Merlot
        rifled Baker. I cannot comment on their ability to shoot, but then again
        most do not shoot competitively. In any case the look is good and no matter
        what the frizzen and cocks are loike in the first place these can be tuned.

        Thank Heavens they have not chosen to be Chosen at this stage of
        the game - they still wear the regulation uniforms and they still behave
        decently - and they do not do that ridiculous walk with the hand ready to
        full cock the lock.

        And no-one has been observed to spit down the barrel. I think they
        retire surreptitiously and load the ball and patch with a ball peen hammer.
        I know I used to do that when I owned a Jesse Merlot Baker. There is
        another thing I am grateful to the Sharpe series for. When the 95th formed
        I was able to sell my Baker off for 1.5 times what it had cost new - such
        is the legend that is told about the Baker. For my part I find my .50 cal
        Leman rifle far more accurate for hunting or target shooting.

        As far as having to correct overzealous Tourons about correct drill
        - well we just grin and nod and eventually they go off happy. Then we go
        back to doing what we did before. It is the same when they start with the
        kilt jokes. We give them a bit of cheek...heheheh...and they go off happy.
        The real Scots are much funnier and kinder to us so we play our game for
        them.



        Cheers....Dr. Dick

        PS: Do not seek to emulate the Dutch or Belgians or French in all they do
        on the field. Ask me and Benton what the Dutch gunners were doing on our
        left flank at Waterloo - and what the French were doing after the battle on
        the lawn outside the Mairie.

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      • NINETY3RD@aol.com
        ... yep.
        Message 3 of 3 , Nov 8, 1998
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          In a message dated 06/11/1998 9:11:19 PM, you wrote:

          >After all, they're signing the checks. Am
          >
          >I right, Benton?


          yep.
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