Saturday, August 22, 2015

Society Saturday - Spelunking with the C.A.R.

Every summer, the National President of  the National Society of Children of the American Revolution travels around the country with members of the N.S.C.A.R. Board and Senior Board.  They have fun skits and member participation workshops to help promote the current National Project.  There are 9 Regional stops on this Regional Tour.

The Great Lakes Regional was hosted by the Wisconsin C.A.R. in Madison, Wisconsin.  National President Erin Jackson has chosen to support the Museum of the American Revolution which is being built in Philadelphia.  Specifically, C.A.R. is raising funds to restore Washington's Headquarters Tent.

After learning about the C.A.R. projects and goals for the upcoming year, we visited the Cave of the Mounds.  This is a National Natural Landmark which was discovered in 1939.  Descending underground we saw many natural rock formations in the limestone - present and changing for the past 450 million years.  Much of the limestone is derived from fossilized animals from that period.  The only natural life form present now are microcopic snails in the water that drips from the ceiling of the cave.  This fact elicited a lot of eeeeewwwww's from the children.

After touring the cave, members had an opportunity to find their own fossils in a bag of dirt.

Saturday, August 01, 2015

Society Saturday - McAllister's Battery

The Dames of the Court of Honor leaned about the First Illinois Light Artillery Company D (aka McAllister's Battery) from Tina Beaird, Reference Librarian at Plainfield Public Library.  She has researched this company extensively and told some of her findings.

Edward McAllister from Plainfield, IL joined the Union Army as soon as he heard the news of Fort Sumter at church.  Seventy-seven other young also enlisted immediately.  They signed up for "100 days", because of course, everyone thought the war would be over quickly.

Their Company was known for their bravery during the battle of Fort Donaldson, Shiloh, and Vicksburg.  They were in charge of cannon during these battles.

During the battle of Shiloh, McAllister saw the carnage on the field, and soon resigned his commission as Captain so that he could return home to his wife and baby.  He was succeeded by Captain Henry Rogers.  Rogers was killed by a sniper at Vicksburg and was succeeded by Captain Edgar Cooper.

The Battery itself served from April 19, 1861 until July 18, 1865.  They lost relatively few men, but almost all of the survivors suffered from hearing loss due to their proximity to the cannon.