Last week, I went to Mount Eagle for a retreat and forgot to let my wife know that I arrived safely. Whoops…
My wife simply texted me to see if I arrived, and within seconds, I was able to let her know that I had done so. This is nothing compared to the “timely” importance of correspondence between spouses during the American Civil War. Colonel Lyon’s wife, Adelia, must have been very relieved to receive this via snail mail:
New Orleans, Fri., July 14, 1865.—We arrived here at eight o’clock this morning, sound and well. I found that our corps have moved and are moving for Indianola, Texas. Our division went several days ago. Lieutenant Fowle and I leave tomorrow on steamer Zenobia. [Source: DOTCW]
I imagine spouses, parents, sibling, friends, etc. must have worried a lot about their loved ones fighting in the war as well as traveling so much. What’s worse, they had to wait so long to receive word that they actually arrived. What other thoughts they must have had among their prayers for their beloved soldiers.
Perhaps Adelia worried further about her dear William Lyon having to ride a “steamer” that could have been fired upon or even captured and burned. How relieved she must have been by each incoming letter. Thank God, he’s still alive!
Until next time, let ’em know you made it safe!
I’m all verklempt. Talk amongst yourselves. I’ll give you a topic. [A solid oak tree] is neither [solid] nor [oak] nor [tree]. Discuss. (Source: SNL Sketch)
Talk Amongst Yourselves
Solid oak trees are profoundly amazing to me. A few months back, I took my family to the New Orleans Audubon Zoo, a place that I grew up going to over and over again. I didn’t think much of it when I was a kid, but this oak tree has been around much longer than me and will more than likely live past me.
Aside from Monkey Hill and the spiderweb rope, this oak tree was perhaps my favorite thing to climb at the zoo. I knew each knot on it, I could climb it with ease, but little did I know how much my knowledge of this tree would expand as I aged with it.
I learned on my recent visit that this tree is about 250 years old. Furthermore, it very well could live to be over 500 years old! But, you may be wondering, what on earth does this oak tree have to do with the American Civil War? Well, check out this timeline (click on it, literally):
During the Civil War, the area in which this tree grew was nothing more than underdeveloped land in what is now Uptown New Orleans. It served as a staging area (Camp Lewis) for Confederate Army recruits very early on but was soon occupied by Union Army troops in 1862.
Men of the 5th Company, Washington Artillery, camped outdoors at Camp Lewis (now Audubon Park).
If you’d like to read more about these wonderful Southern Live Oaks and see some great pics of them, visit Monumental Trees.
Until next time, stay Solid as a…