Marlin had been in touch with an old Air Force friend who lived in Jack's Creek and we arrived a couple of days before the reenactment event to visit with the Huff family. Denver insisted we camp in their yard instead of heading for the State Park. While we were there we visited some of the local attractions in nearby Jackson.
Jackson was the home of Casey Jones who was made famous by Jimmy Rogers in the folk song "Casey Jones". He was a real engineer and the train wreck in the song really took place.
A replica of the engine in the crash
Carl Perkins, the well known "rock a billy" singer, also came from Jackson. We tried to visit the museum twice but the posted hours were not as advertised. This mural was painted on the side of the building - that was all we got to see.
If you recall the movie "Walking Tall" you will recognize the name Buford Pusser. This is the locale where all that action occurred and of course there is a museum with all the Buford Pusser artifacts, including the wrecked car in which he met his end.
The Shiloh National Battle Field was a full day tour for Marlin and Denver. The official anniversary celebration was held on Shiloh National Battlefield grounds the weekend of April 6 and 7, 2012. They do not allow reenactments on park grounds, so that event took place April 1 and 2 in fields near the official site.
Between visiting local sights and getting to know the Huff family we filled up the week before the Shiloh reenactment. On Saturday we left Jack's Creek around 10:00 for the scheduled 12:00 show. After braving the hour long traffic jam, we wandered around the "Settlers Camp" where, in addition to the soldiers in uniform, a great number of people were participating in period costumes.
After the opening ceremonies there was a "Ladies Tea" Attended only by women in costume.
Thank you Adam for sharing your pictures. We were not in a place where we could get any close pictures of the troops and these are excellent shots.
We did not get to see Mike until Sunday night after all the action was over. He and two friends met us at Denver's home. Mike spent the night there with us and the next day we said good by to our friends the Huffs and headed for several more Civil War Battlefields near Nashville.
The first stop was at Parker's Crossroads, just west of the Tennessee River, where a skirmish between North and South took place when Confederate forces, led by General Nathan B. Forrest, were trying to sever General Grant's rail communication in Tennessee. The battle wavered back and forth but in the end General Forrest escaped and headed to the Tennessee River
From there we spent the afternoon touring Fort Donaldson, which is located north west of Nashville on the Cumberland River, near where it merges with the Tennessee River. This was a strategic intersection between the River and the railroad. Both transportation routes supplied Nashville and the Confederate troops to the south. This fort was taken by the Union army
Overlooking the Cumberland River
Winter housing built for troops stationed at Ft. Donaldson
The remaining trenches where soldiers defended the fort.
Passing straight south through (sigh) Nashville We visited Stones River National Battlefield near Murfreesboro, where one of the bloodiest encounters of this tragic war took place. Twenty Three Thousand casualties.
Mike has been involved with Civil War reenactment in Washington State for more than 15 years and he is well versed in all the facts and figures. However he was very excited to be at some actual battlefields and review where specific encounters occurred.
Our final Battlefield stop before heading to Memphis was the Carter House in Franklin just south west of Nashville. This is a privately run location instead of a National Battlefield. The actual house where the museum is today was owned by a local mill owner whose son was wounded during the battle by union forces and he died in his own house. In November1864, the Confederate General Hood was attempting to recapture Nashville for the confederacy. Approximately 20,000 men, half Union and half Confederate, collided here in the small town of Franklin. The battle that began around 4:30 pm was lost by the south with 7,000 casualties.
The next day we toured Beale Street, home of the blues, in Memphis We had lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe, which surprised me by serving one of the best hamburgers I have had in a long time. Naturally they had a huge collection of Elvis memorabilia, in fact the entire second floor was all Elvis collectables. My favorite was the sign below that told about the guitar his mom bought him in place of a bike she could not afford.
Aah Graceland. How could you be in Memphis without going to Graceland.
The kitchen was just the size anyone would have in their home in that era. My picture was washed out by the under counter lighting so I did not post.
Graceland is certainly worth the time and expense. For me, it brought back lots of High School memories and I learned more about Elvis as a real person. I would recommend a visit if only to get a feel for the era long past.
The next morning we dropped Mike at the airport for his return to Tacoma Washington and we headed east toward Maine. Three long days an we were back in Dixmont on April 8, 2012. Another eventful winter behind us.