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June 28, 2006

March Date June 27th, Tuesday, Day 11

Marching from Camp 8 at Marion, Ct (Barnes Tavern ---Southington, Ct) to Camp 10 at Breakneck, at Middlebury, Ct.

Greetings AMtY Friends, I trust all is well and the joy of the day to you.....

We are leaving the good park at Panthorn, this am, in Southington (Marion) and going to Breakneck.....again, reveille' at Six of the Clock in the Morning. This was indeed a good home for the evening, hot water in the waterclosets, and the krppes flush, nor had we ever seen the like... I am just recalling that we have been given a video cam by one of the local cable companies but none of us has the time, or techno to be able to operate it. Tis a shame really...... any volunteers out there. We only have aout 550 miles to go!!!!!!

So, we arise early, as is our want. We think we must leave by seven of the clock in the morning, this day, and we almost do it. We move off at 7:05 only to be flanked by the Southington Rochambeau Committee. We were intending to take a side road to the Southington Hill (big momma, you know...perhaps we could sneak up on it). The hill is a 10% grade for almost a mile and a half, the longest in this here Colony of Connecticut. As we round the corner we are met by the SR Comm. Now, Linda R., of this committee, had come out to the camp at Panthorn, last evening, with ice for us. (That is always acceptable, by the way).

Keith J., the local Postmaster of Marion station, came out with his child, and made a donation as well. Many thanks to you both. There is a 'rochambeau camped here' sign on the 322 road just acros from the Post Office.

So, here we are, going out to see if we can sneak up this mountain somehow, and lo behold, the SR Comm. awaits. Ambushing us as we come around th corner of School St, heading west. There is plethora of French Regimental Flags being carried, and many greetings of warmth and affection. We are ataken back with most pleasant surprise. Mike suggests that perhaps we may take the flags o Yorktown with us, and after there, return them to the committee. We shall portrait ourselves with them there. All are in gleel assertion, and before we step-off again, we are treated to the French Naional Anthem as sung by the young Master Daniel Dietz, (in perfect French, a language he does not know), sure to be a favorite in King Louis's Court. This is a wonderful moment of comradeship and support and our many heartfelt thanks to the SR Comm. folks: Bert, Carl, Vicki, Charles, Kirk, Dan, Ellie, Brian and Linda. WE offer the good book blessin and all join hands on the Book, including the Committee. And off again, with marvelous houghts, yet interrupted again but shortly up the road as we are presented with commemortive shirts....the giving is not stopping and we are mildly embarased by the riches received, again......

Finally under way to the big Momma Mtn., the troop heads out and I go about 3/4 of the way to the top, stopping so that they might refresh before reaching the peak. And it is about this time I see a kindly. older woman, grandmotherly sit-down-and-eat pancakes-with-me type, churning up the hill. We wave to each other and she tells me he boys are on the way. Do you climb this hill every day, I ask. She says, when she can, and since she is 65, it is getting harder all the time, and off she goes. Some minutes later, the boys chug, marveling in amazement at the woman who had come up behind them, chatted with them while they were all walking Big Momma, and then proceeded to walk away from them, uphill, leaving them in her dust.......look out for Grnm Road Warrior in your neighborhood.

We enter the center of Waterbury, a beautiful Green surounded by the Captains of industry. While snug, and picturesque, the place did not seem warm and friendly and move through it to a bit further down the road

Stephen Shaw joins with us there and continues with us to the camp at Breakneck..........now we are 4 walking today, and it is early afternoon. We pass under the 8 road and move along. We move into Middlebury and onto the really bicycle path that the Town offers. We have no camp plans and are figuring we will find a road side spot. but upon arrival, and within two hours, we have a camp next to the Town Hall, and showers offered at the Westover School (private school of girls, but we saw nary a one, it being after hours when they let us in.) This may be the most picturesque Town Center in America, at least it gets my vote. We are surrounded by wonderful early style architecture and others styles equally appealing. This place is unabashedly gorgeous. Some of the local papers show up, for story and pics. We finally set the camp and sit for dinner. Tis another Good Nurse offering from Rose, a very tasty beef stew, soft on the chew, long on the savor......

The remarkable turn around in the camp, from roadside to Town Hall was accomplished with the help of Catherrine P., of the DAR, Betty P. of the Park and Rec Dept., and Steve L. and Larry O. at Westover School. thanks so very much folks for your support of AMtY.

We really appreciated the late showers. Tis a daily ritual so sorely missed when not forthcoming........like one of those games that America loves, we were about to vote someone off the march, or at least 50 yards, before they were saved that humiliation by the hot water spicket........

After the late showers and a fini to the vino, we bid the day adieu and head for the beds, again wondering at our luck......morning seems to come to soon, and the evenings too, are .......can we be possibly be approaching Camp 10, Newtown, already??? Indeed, we are.........until the morrow

Richard
For AMtY
Moving to Camp 10
www.marchtoyorktown.org

March Date, Monday June 26th, Day 10

Greetings Friends of AMtY, the joy of the day to you.

It is early morning here in Farmington, and we awake in the yard of Corbett Manor. At least we try to awake, tis a bit difficult to struggle up from the wine induced sleep, methinks. But we struggle on, duty calls... (grins)

Tis another in a recent line of overcast and dreary days in the Connecticut Valley. We quickly gather the carriages and repair to Post Office Square to do our morning ablutions, have a break-fast, and await the arrival of the days troop. We are to be joined again by Dr. Richard, as well as KeLeigh, Zack, Olivia and Caleb. I am sure that we will have portraits of all posted in the Gallery, soon.

At 7:15 of the Clock in the Morning, we place our hands on the Good Book, and the troop departs, going to camp #8, at Marion, Ct. It is indeed another oppressive weather day. While the troop moves off, Rose goes back to Corbett Manor to offer thanks for our delightful sojourn there, and to offer apologies for our rather rapid departure from there in the morning.

The weather, a constant source of concern gives it all today, moments of sun, rain, wind, sun, heat, humidity and all not in any particular order that I can be oblidged to make sense of. And the rate of walk seems to be very slow today, can it be the wine still making its mischief, perhaps the rapid traffic all about us, or the low pressure storm front..probably a chaotic mix of all three, delivered at random and at the will of the Great Architect of the Universe....... Oh, great master, relieve us of this burden.

Well, not just yet as we certainly have not even crossed the Colony of Connecticut, yet. We take a break at the 2 mile mark to check on the younguns, and it is here that I meet with Charles Motes of the Town of Southington Health Department, coming out of the local coffee cafe. We chat a bit and it is then that I learn he has an official capacity. He enquires as to where we might be staying and I can only answer by the side of the road in Marion, somewhere. He suggests that he will make a call to the parks dept.

We break for lunch 9 miles out from Farmington, a long stay, and the weather finally seems to moderate, thank you Lord..... We are the junction of the 10 road and the 120 road..... The kids still seem energetic but that does not translate to the troop, camp is quiet, the troop eating, then rain, then sun... tis not over yet I fear.

We move off, on the 10 road and I set aside the road, awaiting the arrival of the troop. We have been doing this, the carriages moving in front of the troop, waiting for them to reach, and then refreshing them. I wait,....and wait....and wait, no troop. I grab the communication gear and walk back a 1/2 mile or so, fearing the worst on this busy road........the bell rings and the troop is located, already at our destination. They were directed by the locals ( Richard 'Jiggi' Egidio of the Southington Parks and Rec Dept) to another version of the Rochambeau march roadway. I gather up the carriage and meet them further down the road, we are allowed, by the Town of Southington, to stay at Panthorn Park. Very nicely cared for, quiet, peaceful.

We take a meal, offered by KeLeigh, earlier in the day. She has left us with a Chicken Pot Pie, and an Apple pie, we warm both over a campfire, only our second fire of the trip so far......the food is homecooked, and delicious. KeLeigh is a home cooking kind of Gal as well as home schooling her children..... thanks KeLeigh, perhaps we meet again soon.......She, the Children and Dr. Richard have been returned to their carriages, and the troop is on its own for the evening. Dr. Richard, I hazard to guess, is our 'unofficial liason' with the French Community here in New England. Doc., you have been terrific, thanks for all you taught us, about hiking and aging with grace, strength and dignity, our thoughts are with you.......

We have been met at the park by the Town Historian, Carl Sokolowski,and Linda Reilly of the local Rochambeau Committee. They shall see us off in the morning. Luis Jones of the Boy Scouts, has presented us with flags, one the French Tri-color (current flag) and a W3R Banner, that we shall carry along wih us, as we progess down-route. We were at the beginnning ceremonies in Rhode Island back on the 17th June, not knowing we were going to end up as the 'Official Carriers' of these Boy Scout momentos.....finally, after what truly became a longer day than it had any right to do, we close the camp.........tired, perhaps really exhausted and sleep is the order of the evening.........zzzzzzzz!

Richard
For 'AMtY'
Camp 8
Marion., Ct
www.MarchtoYorktown.org

June 25, 2006

March Date, Sunday, June 25th, 9th Day

Moving from Camp 6 at East Hartford, to Camp 7 at Farmington, Ct, in the Connecticut River Valley.........

Ah, the joy of a rainy day to you all. Grab the bateaus, troops, the river is definitely on the rise.... tis' early here in the valley at Hartford, and the first order of business is to reassemble the troop, and prepare for the crossing.

Mike and Dave are still in camp at Ticonderoga and we trust they at least, are dry. We also are sending wishes for good and long happy life to Master Kevin Sherman, and Mistress Luisa Craige who have married, but only yesterday, in the Camp at Ticonderoga. We wish you joy...............

It is bleary, this day, on the banks of the great Connecticut River, this morning. Rain is either furious or steady, with no let-up. Oil skins are issued to the troops, the gaiters have been freshly painted to help guard against wetness. Tis' the best we can do. The troops are at the ready and the guides/scouts are willing to help us navigate the River and to put us on the correct road going from Hartford to camp at Farmington.....adieu Bill and Betty (she of the fast carriage), and many thanks for your kindnesses.

Our constant night-in-gale, Nurse Rose, shares a French blessing and the troop is off. The crossing is accomplished in quick time, a bridge having been erected for the purpose.

The land west of the River is expectd to be relatively flat for many miles, and it is so as we travel through Hartford, West Hartford and Farmington. A mile or so out we are joined by Surgeon Richard, who had been with us just a couple of days ago, going from Windham to Bolton. Tis good and comforting to have him again with us. His fast horse was able to catch us in Hartford and he walks again the route of his forefathers.

The rain is unrelenting, pouring from the heavens. Tis more rain than the good earth can absorb, surely. Comes and goes, comes and goes, with lashing force.........the temperatures at least are cool, and the walking seems to go very well. At the west end of West Hartford, we finally stop for refreshment, the troops are really quite fresh and certainly up beat. Tis' a water treatment place, and we treat the water as best we can, and just down the road a sign that blares the following warning.....GEESE CROSSING! Only in our America......

The terrain is easy walking, the weather, while pouring rain, is cool and the troop is taking the distance in stride. At 8 miles out we cross into Farmington, we are still on the 4 road west, and come to the junction of the 10 road, going south. The good General Rochambeau shall be staying at the local Inn, the Elm Tree Inn, I believe. We have just passed it before the junction of the 4 & 10 roads. The engineers have found good ground for the first days camp in Farmington, and we halt the troop at Post Office Square, on the 10 road, going south in Farmington, at 1:00 of the Clock in the Afternoon.....12.3 miles from the camp at East Hartford.......

We are welcomed by Portia Corbett, and family, to their home, with a kindness that we are finding all along the this grand adventure.it is 3:00 of the Clock in the Afternoon and we shall soon be setting camp........

......More to follow, perhaps on the morow. Tis the first time, since this campaign began, that we have been able to file a dispatch, in real time. The communications seem to be geting better.....

Tis the morrow and I am taking an opportunity to extend this post before sending a new dispatch for the next adventure. Earlier in the evening (Sunday) we were visited by Vincent, the father of the clan of angels that has been following, supporting, and marching with us these past few days. His enthusiasm is infectious, even if we are practicaly drowning in our shoes out here today. Our soothsayer seems to think that this weather will stay this way, apparently we have displeased some entiry above. Arrangements are made to accept more troops on the morrow for the leg from Marion to Breakneck....that being done, messages dispatched, gear stowed and the good Doctor Richard returned to his carraige, we rest for only a moment...........

Happily, as I ponder the camp ground at Camp #7, one of the town's representatives does offer us a place to camp that would turn out to be infinitely more suitable for us, perhaps for Royalty even...Tim and Portia Corbett, and family have opened the doors of their home to us, as well as the hearth, the wine cellar, and their hearts. After a tour of the home, and meeting the children, we are treated to a fine dinner of pork and fish, vegetables in season, delightful conversation and a fine wine being offered from the cellar. Again, long in the lamp, we find we must traverse our way to the door yard (not as easy as it sounds,given the consumption of beverage) and our quarters for the evening.......mercifully, another really terrific day as been met, friends made, acquaintances acknowledged, history well served.....as I lay in my rack, the day only plays for a short time as my mind shutters itself for the rest until morning.......

Richard Swartwout
at Camp 7
Farmington, Ct.
Day 9

March Date, Saturday, June 24th, 8th Day

The joy to you all, friends of AMtY.

Yesterday, at East Hartford, while at Camp #6, we did a ceremonial for a RevWar soldier that had died in 1777, while returning home. Apparently he died of the Pox. It was noted that he had answered the Lexington Alarm, in 1775. We should have some pics of that for you in a couple of days. His name was Herman Baker...........

This day, Saturday, dawns as we are all at our respective homesteads, checking on the local sentiment concerning the French Army movement through Connecticut. We can only imagine the reaction of the folks along the route. So, they are on the stoop of the home, and lo and behold, they can see the dust raising for miles, along the horizon. Perhaps they can hear the military drums approaching. Into a clearing comes the Officer Corps of the French Army,with the good General Rochambeau following a distance behind the advance troops, resplendent in a uniform that is not familiar to the local inhabitants. Nor are these soldiers giving commands, or talking in a language that is familiar to us, and, to top it all off, they apparently are all CATHOLICS!! We, of course, are more modest Congregational Church goers. So, we now have a foreign army, French speaking, going through the neighborhood. It seems to take days for the Army to pass, and it does,one Regiment a day, traveling the same road, staying in the same camp area. It will takes approximately 5 days for the French to pass, some five thousand Officers and men, with asorted baggage train, wagons, artillery, horses, etc. It causes some concern, but, the word traveling about is that they have come to help in the fight againt King George. Well, a cautious welcome is put forth, and becomes more animated as the French are buying local produce, procuring horse and wagon, food stuffs....... the military bands are playing in the evening, to the delight not only of the soldiers, put to the local populace as we. The Ladies of he towns are all aglow, as are the Soldiers. Tis' a real mutual admiration society. The French are not as cunning as the local mechants, who make a windfall in the selling of needed merchandise, and it is some days before they learn how to conduct business with the locals. Until then they are paying premium for everything. But good for the economy, in any event.

The silver follows the French, as do the pockets, and hearts of the Americans.
It is time to start planning the crossing of the great Connecticut River, and the engineers and scouts are called. We re-assemble for the crossing...the Army shall leave on the morrow.....all is silent in the camp, a raging rain storm thunders in and ravages the camp, the ground is getting soggy,.....the engineeers huddle til late in the lamp.......tomorrow, tomorow........

Richard Swartwout
at Camp 6
Ease Hartford, Ct.
For, 'AMtY'

June 24, 2006

March Date 7, Friday, June 23rd, Camp at East Hartford

Greetings Friends of AMtY.....

Tis another earlier rising for me on this morning, however, I am able to use our communication device and we receive our dispatches....before breakfast. This day, both Mike and Dave must proceed with all haste to the Fort at Ticonderoga, in New York.....we have a scheduled ceremonial with the Mayor of East Hartford at a site, with plaque, commemorating the passing of the French Army, 225 years ago, this day.....

.......again, it is the dog days of summer here in the Connecticut River Valley, but two months early it seems.......we attend the ceremonial, and Mike and Dave depart.....the remaining troop, David, Rose and myself gather at the grave of a RevWar soldier, on the grounds of the Pratt and Whitney industial complex, to render honors to that fallen soldier. We offer a Present Arms and a Mourn Firelocks, and hope that he knows his death was not in vain. We are surprised, and pleased, to learn that the P&W folks have been taking very good care of this grave site for some years, on their own. I can attest that they are doing a terrific job of it.....

.....we then repair to lunch, courtesy of the DAR and the East Hartford Historical Society...after lunch we set up at the Raymond Library, a free publick library in East Hartford, to chat with folks and to set up our traveling store, (one of the ways we are financing this campaign, as the good General Rochambeau, and his box of Silver, are not with us)....

The weather is changing rapidly, and a storm front is moving in. We gather up the store, pack, and disperse to our seperate homesteads for the day and evening in order to check on the crops, see the family, attend domestic duties, and rest. We shall reassemble at East Hartford, the Greak River Park, to commence the journey, Sunday, June 25th, at 7:30 of the Clock in the Morning....

Richard Swrtwout
For, 'AMtY'
Camp 6
East Harford
Friday June 23rd

March Date 6, Bolton to East Hartford, Ct

Greetings Friends of AMtY.........

Tis a beautiful morning here on the high ground at Bolton, Ct., Camp #5....we awake to what seems to be a promise of a beautiful day. I am up early, as is my want, it seems, lately. I am awaking earlier than usual for some reason but does not seem disagreeable.......some of the troops are sleeping a bit later this am, yesterdays 18 mile effort starting to take its toll, I gather...David is still going along well, Mike is having a bit of hamstring trouble and Dave a bit of a blister problem, but none are debilitated yet. Again, Hans, Pam, Sue and the rest of the Bolton Historical Society come thru with an early hearty breakfast at 7:00 of the Clock in the Morning. We are under way at 7:30 and todays walk should be a mild grade down to the Connecticut River and its Valley.....We put our hands on the Bible, a tradition we started at the beginning of the march, to pray for a safe journey through the day that awaits......and step off follows quickly. The troop puts on their Regimentals for the first time in days as we think perhaps the day will be cool and dry, as it seems now....they look terrific. But not two miles down the raod, the temperature and humidity change and the coats come off. Seems the effort is hard this morning, the weather not co-operating, the troop tired from yesterdays forced march, the late night conspire to rob the troop of its energy this day. We encounter Seth Johnson, and his young boys, Corbett and Luke, at the Faith Baptist Church on the 44 road, moving toward Manchester, his conversation is good and he gives 4 gallons of waer, as well as ringing the Church Bell as the troop passes ( I really like this Bell Ringing Idea, how can we get that to happen all down the route?)......wow, that would really be terrific, aye?.........

.......shortly thereafter we meet Mark, and then the energetic Sue of the Manchester Historical Society. They are really happy to meet and chat, offer liquid refreshment, and support all the way through the Manchester town...... they point out some RevWar graves along the way and moments are given in respect. We have been doing this all down the route.....

......Betty and Bill Knose, of the East Hartford Historical Society, meet us about lunch time, and have their refreshment team up and running. The French Army took two days rest in East Hartford, before crossing the great Connecticut River, and we shall do the same......it starts to rain, mercifully, we think, but the day is a pot-boiler of steam heat, sun, rain, haze, and general low barometer uncomfortable feeling. The troop appears to be dragging a bit and tis' well understood......... they are not hungry, that concerns me, but they are taking liquids. I chat with
east Hartford Police Officer Paul Sulzicki for a spell, he is a history fan and we discuss the Yorktown Campaign.....I go to the Commerce Center very near the River and await the arrival of the troop, While doiing so I am finally able to post the first 3 reports to headquarters, as seen on this list .........

Betty and Bill have made arrangements for the troop to stay at East Hartford's Martin Park, beautiful grounds but all we can see is the wading pool, and we eventually go in, to dispel the ugliness of the day....ah, relief at last.... the park holds a soccer field as well and what with the World Cup going on, there seems to be a thriving soccer community here.......Nurse Rose offers up a pasta dinner in hopes of reviving the carb level of the troop....and, then, much to our delight, we are given copies of the Willimantic Chronicle, where we were featued on the Front Page for two consecutive days... but, we do not stay up late this night.....

Richard Swartwout
For, 'AMtY'
Camp 6
East Hartford

March Date 5, Moving from Camp 4 to Camp 5.....

Greetings to all friends of AMtY....

Morning comes early as usual, it just seems earlier than usual, must be the accumulating miles. David and Janet Haines are kind enough to fill us full of breakfast foods and beverages. We break camp just as the Shumbo family arrives, (remember them?). they are on time (7:15am) and ready to go. After a small negotiation we agree to have the children come with us, and indeed, they are ready and excited, they are Dana and Zack..... their Mom, KeLeigh, homes schools these two sharpshooters and they are at once engaging, and charming........ my heart warms to them and their excitement. Mom offers to do our laundry while we are on the road and promises to actually exchange the kids for the laundry (grins). We agree...... laughing. We were a bit skeptical at first, but they prove to be even more than they promised, and good soldiers as well. Off we go, on a beautiful day, bright, clear, sunny, no humidity on this day, it having been a close friend the last couple of days........

Shortly out, about a mile and a half I am interviewed by Wayne Norman, of WILI Radio, in Willimantic. The interview lasts some ten minutes and was quite the fun. We need to get fuel for the horse and wagons (gas/trucks) and we top off....while doing that we are flagged down by Dr. Richard, who not only wants to march along with us, but also makes a sizeable donation to AMtY, thanks doc. He joins us there, and actually spends the rest of the journey with us to Camp 5, in Bolton, some distance away..

......as we are traveling through the back roads of Tolland, New London and Hartford counties, we travel through a part of the towns of Windham, Willimantic, Lebanon, Columbia, Andover, Coventry and Bolton...... another break for a short spell allows a reporter for the Willimantic Chronicle to catch up with us and more pics and conversation follow....we move along and stop by Columbia Lake where we are visited by another group of WWII and Korean War Veterans....Marines and Sea-bees, our own group has a Marine and A Seabee on the March. the kids and the Doc are still with us and doing well, certainly much better than I expected.

.....we arrive at Andover, for lunch, about 2:30 or so, and are greeted by a wonderful site. Some 200 folks are waiting for us at the Congregational Church. with a hearty lunch. As soon as the marchers could be seen, they started ringing the Church Bell and that was really awesome,and very heartwarming... Local dignataries joined with us, Pam Sawyer (Ct. Minority House Whip), the 1st Selectman David Rhinelander and wife Anne. Also Serge Gabriel of the W3R, Mary Donoghue of the same, and Irv Stanley of the local W3R commitee, all on hand to greet us, as well as countless others. And our very own Bag-Piper, Mr. Cassella (I think, my apologies, I seem to have lost that note.) He was kind enough to go the last 4 miles with us, up to Bolton, finally,,,terrific to say the least. Some 50 of the folks assembled, joined with us for the walk, down route, to the marker unveiling ceremony, about another 1 1/2 miles from the Church . The ceremonies were brief but complete and we needed to get on with the walk as we had not yet reached Camp #5, another 3 miles or so down route. Dana and Zack were picked up by Mom, and the promised exchange of Laundry was accomplished......we get the duds, she gets the kids, they were really great and we were sad to see them leave, but, perhaps they can join with us again on another day.

......we leave Andover, stopping only briefly for quick liquid refreshment at the marker for the Camp in Andover that was part of the return trail of the French Army as it made its wasy back to Boston, in 1782..........

A short way to go now, but the steepest hill now awaits the troop, and Dr. Richard (did I tell you he is 77 yrs young?) still with us. Apparently he has hiked all over the world and he teaches us some really good tricks....in fact, he is first up Steel's Crossing hill, a remarkable achievement...we had eaten the late lunch in Andover, shared with the 200 townspeople, but the troops are still hungry......... Pam Sawyer, my local State Rep (geez, she will always get my vote after this), pulls up with a care package left over from the lunch, just as we reach Camp #5, she has Diane Grenier with her, another one of the most active Senior Citizens that I know....we survey the beautiful Connecticut countryside from the hill that is Camp #5, affording a view of many miles.......and finally, almost lazily, we get to the Bolton Town Hall, our headquarters for the evening. Hans Depold and wife Sue, have organized an impromptu BBQ, and that combined with the care package from Pam, gives us all a full stomach...we are joined by the 1st Selectman of Bolton and perhaps 14 of us set to the meal, on the green, no bugs, nice breeze, we are through moving for the day.......it is approx. 5:30, ten hours of walking, and they have covered some 18 miles, the longest day yet.

But the day is not ended yet, the Bolton Vol. Fire Dept. is good enough to keep the station open for us so that we may all have a shower, Sue Depold taked Nurse Rose home to shower there, and we reassemble, a bit later in the evening, to collect our thoughts and try to get ready for another day. The troops, are buzzed from the day, perhaps overtired and over stimulated, and we stay up later than expected..... of course, perhaps the last surprise of the day is the re-arrival of the Shumbo Family..(remember them?) KeLeigh and 4 children, includng Dana and Zack........"hey", she says, "you guys like Ice Cream? We brought the fixin's for Ice Cream Sundaies if you would like" If you would like I say to myself, get out of the way girl>>.... who are these angels, anyway.........we need to recruit more like them, for sure.. I set up a last ditch effort to up-link this report, but fail..... to tired, can't think, time to call it quits for a day.......

Richard
For, 'AMtY'
Camp #5 Bolton

June 23, 2006

March Date #4, Tuesday, June 20th

Greetings Friends of Amty.

The troop is setting out early today, they are headed for the 'hump' we are calling it, going from Camp #3 in Plainfield, to Camp #4 in Windham, Conn. Again they shall follow the 14 road, through Plainfield, Canterbury, Scotland and into Windham, at the Shetucket River.......

After the morning repast, and the good book words, the troop steps off going due east on the 14 road. The baggage train is left behind briefly, in order to instruct the students of Plainfield in the Military arts and a brief explanation of this 'particular expedition', as the good General Rochambeau called it.... after addressing approx. 150 students and teachers, we move along the same road to find the troop.. They are already some 6 miles out when we catch them and offer a succor of water and mild meals, they again are sans Regimentals and the pace is noticably quicker, they must be getting their 'marching legs'..........the weather seems to have lessened into something more tolerable, the temps are cooler and a good breeze seems to be with us. They have set off at 7:25 this morning

The first major break is in Scotland, atop the highest hill there, at Farmer Charles.........we converse a bit, talking of the tough time for the farmer then (and now)......I manage to leave my dispatch case there, but it shall catch up with me soon, perhaps in a couple of days... the troop is moving much more quickly than anticipated an I must alert the good folks down route as to these developments....we pass the Huntington Homestead in Scotland, home of arguably the very first President of the United States...but not to tary, we move along, with a lunch break scheduled for a bit later....right after we have reached the summit of the last hill (mountain, seems like to me, and I am not walking). Tis a moment to find a spot for the troop to have refreshment safely, at Windham Pond. I see the finest of Red Barns, south of the 14 road. Tis but an alluring piece of ground, so tantalizing that I can not resist. I search out the proprietor, with the help of Janet, the grounds person, and inquire as to availability of the Gazebo for lunch for the troop. In true New Englan pineapple fashion, she quickly agrees. The troop arrives and we set a long spell, enjoying the serenity of such a natural painting. Many thanks to the Innkeepers, David and Elmina, for your kindness......

But we can't tarry to long and too soon we are off to Camp #4, in Windham. As we arrive in the small Village of Windham, we are met by a group of the Towns people, led by Bev York of the Textile Museum ( a veteran of the New England Wagon Train of '76') offering the very best of wishes for the success of our campaign........we repair to the home of Innkeeper David Haines and wife Janet, for the evening. We are visited by many from the Town, while there, and have a moment to share a repast with the Innkeeper, mostly of chicken and some rice, with beverage supplied. Several of the local Anglicans come about to appear at this Catholic Army of French men, and women.......

The local radio station, WILI, has been on board for awhile and it seems that 'buzz' is starting to rise....the locals are as fascinated by us as we are by them. Capt. Mike, of the Southern Army cooks a dinner (get OUT of my kitchen), and much conversation again insues, much to our delight... it is here that we meet the Schumbo Family and more on them in a later dispatch...

Evening falls, and so do we, after 13.2 miles over the Connecticut Eastern hump, arriving at Camp #4, Shetucket River, Windham, Ct. at approx. 4:00 of the Clock in the Afternoon......

Richard
For, 'AMtY'
Camp #4
Windham, CT

March Date #3, June 19th, Monday

Greetings Friends of AMtY.

We have an early rise this morning at Camp 2, in Coventry, we must arrive at Camp #3 in Plainfield, in the Colony of Connecticut before the sun sets.....early breakfast, courtesy of Innkeeper Graham, gives us a good foundation for the travels of the day. It is hot very early, again, no breeze to speak of, and the troop decides to travel sans Regimentals, with my most hearty endorsement. Camp is packed, picked clean and ready to go. We say words over the good book, as is our habit upon leaving the safety of the camp. The troop does not seem to impress the barnyard animals that we pass, and the heat is very much.....while out on advance picket with the bagage train, I come across Young Julie, walking picket on Waterman's Hill road.....she announces our arrival to her Mother, and the alarm has been struck. They travel with us as guides for a short while and then point the way to us.......we are 3 miles out from Waterman's. We travel through the country side, following the #14 road, 3 more miles to the Connecticut border.....We travel through Rice City, RI, and shortly thereafter enter Oneco, Conn. at 11:00 am, 8.5 miles from the Tavern.

While we wait for the toop to catch up to the baggage train, (yeah I know, this is backward, but thats how we are doing it) we stop at the Sterling Memorial School and give a presentation to approx. 200 students and teachers there........

We move onto Plainfield, Conn. were Dan Rizer stops by to ask if we need help.....no, we are fine we say, just waiting for the Army to catch us up........

We arrive at Plainfield Cental School, courtesy of Jerri Davis and Russ Hart, and camp there for the evening, we will giving a presentation to approx. 150 students the next morning. Lee Anderson is called back by headquarters and must leave immediately. We take him by fastest carriage, to his own, and he is off in the early evening, perhaps to be with us again down route somewhere......it is a 16 mile walk today and we arrive at 4:30 of the clock in the Afternoon. The school has the showers opened for us, and Principal Davis shares his stash of Cherry Popsicles with us (this man knows how to make friends and influence people) (grins)...........after having to return Lee back to his Carriage, I arrive back a Camp #3, tired, and still dirty.....I would rather go to bed and I do.......at something like 2:00 of the Clock in the Morning Comes a knock, knock, knocking at my door..I bolt awake (no this is NOT Edgar Allen Poe), a light flashes my eyes and the voice says,"Sir, I am investigating reports of folks camping, with tents on school grounds' "Well Officer" I said, "those reports are correct" After much questioning, and answering, he decided that perhaps homeland security was still indeed safe for the populace (hm, we had set up the camp, on school grounds, at 4:00 of the Clock in the Afternoon, afterall...........and well, all is well that ends well...night falls again or is it morning now?????

Richard
For, 'AMtY'

March Date #2, Sunday, June 18th

Greetings Friends, please excuse the very tardy action report, it has been difficult communicatiing with head quarters for the last couple of days as we travelled through rural Rhode Island and Connecticut. We last sent message that we were leaving Andover, Ct. to assemble in the Town of Providence, and there to move the troop west toward New York. Indeed, the troop did rendevous as planned and has been on the move the past 5 days, as I write this to you...all the last preparations were made and the troops have assembled, at 8:35 am for the blessing and a toast to our good success. That finally accomplished, the troops step off at 9:20.. of the Clock in the Morning. The Troops, David Holloway, Mike Fitzgerald, David Fagenberg, Lee Anderson, are accompanied by the baggage train being drovered by Rose Morin and Richard Swartwout.

The baggage train immediately goes the wrong way and by the time we get turned ariound, (much to our chagrin) the troop has moved substantially up the road. We see them with Lydia, who stopped to ask, what's up.....a short time later, young Christian stops by, on Scituate Road, with his Dad to offer succor to the troop, which was well recieved. It is hot, in the 90's, and humid, the troop is in Regimentals, much to my displeasure, but they are determined. so be it.....the first Lunch break is 5.2 miles out, at the 'Shepard of the Valley United Methodist Church'. The lawn is dark and green, with some tree cover, for shade. The troop feasts on tuna and bread, with liquid refereshment.......I am in serious trouble as I have rubbed Martha against a pole and damaged the night curtain. The General is not very happy about that, I can assure you,.... krap-o-la!

We move along, shortly after being visited by Master Paul Graham, of Waterman's Tavern, our destination for the evening. The day is unbearably unrelenting, hot/humid, hot/humid..did I say it was hot/humid...at Lunch shoes are removed, inspect feet for blisters, dry out the clothing in the sun.....we have two more water stops.and arrive at the Kent Dam, while there two members of the 2nd Rhode Island stop to chat, and take a pic...they decline to join with us and that seem pretty smart, me thinks........

At 3:30 of the Clock in the Afternoon we arrive at Waterman's Tavern, (Camp #2, Providence being Camp #1), after 13.2 miles of travel.the troop is well received, by the Graham's, and friends. They are pretty tapped out and tis time to try to refresh them as best we can...

Some time later, they are on their feet and taking nourishment, and remarkably seeming not much worse for wear, it seems. The Innkeeper offers a repast of beef and vegetables, with seasonal salad, well received. Later, in the evening, we share some Grand Manier, supplied by the toop, the Innkeeper offers French Country Ale (smooth and wheaty), and the earnest good talk begins. a tour of the Tavern is offered and accepted, and Lady Rebecca finally has a moment to join with us (two small children, Young Henry and Elizabeth of the good smile keeping her extremely busy). The Lady, dark and mysterious, yet alluring was good company........we shall miss them all....the Innkeeper gifted us with a bottle of Newport Rochambeau French Red Table Wine, which we decided to open upon arrival at Yorktown,.....Bon Jour Innkepper, you are in our fond thoughts......blessing to you and yours. until again.....

Richard
For 'Amty'
Camp #2,
Coventry, Rhode Island

June 18, 2006

The March Begins

Bon Jour...........

Greetings friends of AMtY, the joy of the day to you. It has been a very interesting day of extremes here in Rhode Island, to kick off the March to Yorktown.

We started the day in Connecticut, drove into Providence, took the ferry to Newport, and met there with members of the USCG Auxilary who were kind enough to help us symbolically recreate the Crossing of Narragansett Bay by the French Troops, starting June 10th, 1781. The weather was glorious, the Bay calm, the folks friendly and helpful. What a terrific day is was becoming.

We then traveled, by carriage, from the Conley's Dock, to the Rhode Island State House, perhaps one of the most beautiful public buildings in the country. There we were part of ceremonial work to remark the efforts of General Rochambeau, with assorted dignitaries and Friends in History. The weather started to turn close, and humid, with rain in the offing in the near distant future. Many thanks to the folks in Rhode Island for their untiring efforts to promote the French Army, Rochambeau and their contribution to the Revolutionary War effort. Tomorrow, at approx. 8:30 of the Clock in the Morning, we shall be stepping off on the March to Yorktown. We will assemble at the intersection of Routes 5 & 12, Adieu.........