« March Date June 27th, Tuesday, Day 11 | Main | March Date, Thursday, July 29, Day 13 »

March Date, Wednesday, June 28th, Day 12

Greetings Friends of Amty........ I would ask that you share our dispatches with any and all that have an interest. You can sign up to receive these directly. you can also sign off at any time, as is your wish....

March Date, Wednesday, June 28th, Day 12

Moving rom Breakneck,(camp 9) to Newton (camp 10) or.......moving from girls showers to horse stalls???

This seemingly endless storm, on our tail for some days now, continues to test our fortitude and our supply of dry clothing. Awake for reveille at 6:00 am, perhaps we should have moved a bit sooner. It starts to rain at 6:15 as we are hustling to take down the tents and stow gear before it really gets soaked. Actually, we do pretty well, only suffering a mild soaking of the equipment and ourselves. We issue oil cloths to the troops and drive to Rochambeau statue, off Artillery Road in Midlebury. It is now a water deluge, how can it possibly be raining like this, heavy rain and a soaked atmosphere.... We park near by the statue and trek the 50 yr trail, through the woods. The rain is almost overpowering. We honor the statue, take quick portraits and scurry, like the drowned rats we are beginning to feel like, back to the carriages.

Moving up the road in the blinding rain, we find the point at which we finished yesterday. The troop disembarks, and starts off on the mach to Newtown, and Camp 10. Rain or not, we are going....We immediately miss a turn and are estranged from the route, it is a bit before the troops discover their mistake, but we all know the road we are on, and the route will conjoin about 3 miles down route and they are but very short distance apart. Tis our first miss, and we blame it on the rain, falling NOT gently on the plain.

Drats........some one has stopped the troop and questioned them. He knows we are not on the right place, how can this be??? What route ae you guys following???? He goes away grumbling. Geez, who knew anyone was actually out here watching us?? Go figure........ he finds me in the baggage train (Camp Martha), a bit later, down route. He is still thinking we are lost and going the wrong way, even though by now, we are back on course. He finally calms down and we can chat, being Masonic brothers, as we quickly learn. His name is Gordon, and he did a large portion of this March back in 1776. He still knows the route like tha back of his hand. IN 1776, he has 60 people doing the March with a budget of $40,000. We have a budget of $2,500 and a group of 5, 30 years later. His group goes from Providence to Verplank, NY, and then a couple of years later, they continue on to Princeton, NJ.. That is far as they are able to go. We part friends, in the rain, and continue our seperate ways, I think.......

We take a quick break at 3 miles, another at 5 miles, and lunch at 9 miles. We have come through Middlebury, Southbury and are moving west into Sandy Hook. We pass over the Housatonic River and just touch on Lake Zoar. Sandy Hook is a picturesque village center, and I rest the team at the 84 road underpass, awaiting the troop. We move in Newtown, Camp 10 territory. The troop catches up and refreshes, and prepares for the last push to Camp 10. We have been invited for the evening, at the 2nd Company Governor's Horse Guard (Ct) military reservation

The baggage train arives, shortly before the troop, and who is that I see getting out of his carriage, but Gordon Oh no, I think, what have we done wrong now. But Gordon is smiling, the rain has stopped, the troop is here, and Gordon wants to chat and share memories and momentos. What at nice start to the evening.........thank you Gordon. He gifts us with artifacts from the 1776 March and we are stunned and delighted, finally humbled and honored.......How kind thou art, my Brother. WE invite him to join with us, in Camp, on Friday and he readily agrees. He will share with us his signed copies of the Brown & Rice books, printed in 1972, detailing the French reports of the Armies March to Yorktown.....We look forward to his visit then, from such rough beginnings to a warm and growing friendship.....

We receive a warm welcome at the 2nd Horse, park the baggage train, and get ready for a dinner out, this evening. It is in honor of David's 33rd Wedding anniversary, with his family to be in attendence. We discover the Horse Stall shower and quickly make ourselves presentable......The stable, earthy, smelling of horse, distinctive, vibrant, leather, hay..a distinctive melange' of aroma..truly farmlike and comforting.

We go to dinner in full dress Regimentals, quite the sight for the locals I can tell you. Rose is in satin red. Dinner is fine and we repair to the Tavern for refreshments and the company of some of the local Ladies. Perhap we should return here someday soon.......returning to Camp 10, we recap the day, have a night-cap, offer an evening toast, and hit the hay......Camp 10 indeed.

Richard Swartwout
For, 'AMtY'
Camp 10
Newtown, Ct.