Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Off to "Indian Territory"

There will be no blog entries from 13-22 July as I'll be off to Oklahoma ("Indian Territory" in the Civil War) for a week to visit parents and sibs. One nice thing about moving to Houston from Chicago a few years ago is that we get to see everyone there in Oklahoma City more often than we did.

Nevertheless, I won't be without historical things to do...especially as regards the Civil War:

One of my favorite places in Oklahoma City is the 45th Infantry Division Museum. While in the main it concentrates on the Division's contribution to WWII, there are some fantastic 19th-century artifacts, including the Reaves Weapons Collection...I wrote about the Civil War pieces in the collection in an issue of The Artilleryman a few years back...Among the most important weapons in the collection is the Mosby Cannon. The Confederate cannon was used by the Forty-third Virginia Ranger Battalion led by Major John S. Mosby. The cannon was captured by the Union Army at Catlett’s Station on May 30, 1863. Ownership of the cannon remained in the "North" until the 1950’s when it was transferred to an antique dealer in Dallas, Texas, who sold the cannon to Jordan Reaves in 1960.

Across the street from the museum is the "Union Soldiers Cemetery" (aka "Oklahoma Veteran's Cemetery"), the final resting place of a number of Civil War veterans; it is now closed to burials.

One place I've never been is the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City...It's definitely on my agenda next week and I'm sure to find some outstanding weapons and historical displays there as well.

I also hope to visit with my good friend, Dr. Jack D. Welsh...Jack is the author of several books, including Medical Histories of the Union Generals, Medical Histories of the Confederate Generals, Tarnished Scalpels (with Dr. Tom Lowry), and most recently Two Confederate Hospitals and Their Patients: Atlanta to Opelika (Mercer University Press, 2006). He has been a kind supporter of my "Medical Department" column in The Civil War News, and a wonderful mentor.

One place I've never been - and, unfortunately, it's not on the agenda this time - is the Fort Sill National Historical Landmark and Museum, which includes the U.S. Army's artillery museum.

A Very Happy Week to All Readers of the Blog...

I'll be back on 23 July with some new posts.

Best Regards,

Jim Schmidt

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