Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Wilson's Creek Part 2 - Imagining


Close your eyes and imagine what it may have been like back in 1861. There were no modern conveniences such as phones, air conditioning, or even bug repellent. You are a soldier under General Lyon's Union Command marching down from Springfield ten miles to the northeast. It is August in Missouri, the temperature is near 100 degrees, the humidity is almost unbearable and you are wearing a wool uniform. You have spent most of the day marching through tall grass with chiggers, ticks and mosquitoes your constant companions. You are now settling down in a creek bed where it is thick with poison ivy. You know the next day you will meet your enemy, boys from Arkansas, where they talk a little funny but they share the same aspirations you do, perhaps to own a farm or start a store and get married to their childhood sweetheart and settle down. You talk nervously with your companions, tired but too nervous to really sleep. The bugs and the heat, how in the world did I ever get here? The noises of the day and night are all around, cicadas and tree frogs make a constant drone of noise day and night and if they ever stop you better be alert.

This is what I imagine it may have been like to a soldier on his way to Wilson's Creek in 1861, you may have your own thoughts. The top photo is of the east battlefield overlook. The sun in the picture reminded me of the heat that those soldiers must have endured. The bottom photo is of the many flowers in the region, but I bet none of those guys paid much attention to those.

More tomorrow from Wilson's Creek, in the meantime have a great Tuesday.

9 comments:

Anna said...

I am sure there are many soliders in Iraq asking the same question in unbearable heat "how did I get here?"......this was a great post Mike. I for one am glad that I was born over a hundered years later....

That flower is stunning.

:) You have a good Tuesday as well!

Moksha Gren said...

It's always the human element that brings out the reality of war. Sadly, it's the human element that is the most difficult to capture

Stacy said...

We do that same type of imagining when we are in Virginia. Just looking over the rolling hills and picturing what things might have looked like then.

You're making me want to watch that PBS series on the Civil War again. (Ken Burns) I love the way the stories are told in that series. It does make it much more personal.

I like this series of pictures! Keep them coming!

bluemountainmama said...

there is something so incredibly haunting about battlefields.....

we are near a lot of civil war historic areas and battlefields in the shenendoah area and also only about 3 hours from gettysburg.

very nice shots that speak to the mood of the writing....

you should submit a photo for the gallery i mentioned on my most recent post. i don't think there are any wildflowers from missouri yet.......

Shelby said...

happy Tuesday - great post :)

Abraham Lincoln said...

I like your photographs and your story behind them. Makes interesting reading.

Abraham Lincoln
Brookville Daily Photo

JAM said...

Nice shots, Mike. Your commentary helps put us there a bit too.

photowannabe said...

Mike you have a gift of writing. I could feel every itchy sweat dripping mile of this post. Great photos too.
I too am thankful I live now...

Elaine said...

Very good text to go with these shots!