After Action Report

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Dear Kind Sir,

 
 This dispatch is to report on the endeavors of the 71st Highland Regiment's visit to the 15th Annual Taste of Scotland Festival of this past June 17th till the 18th, in the village of Franklin located in the middle of the colony of North Carolina. 

 

     The Regiment's most intrepid Quartermaster, yours truly, embarked upon said destination, around 9 o'clock in the morning on the 17th.  His most lovely and gracious bride of thirty four years, Wendy, along with the dearest of grand-daughters Taylor and Bethany accompanied the regiment on its westward march.  After many hours of travel and obtaining sustenance along the way, the advanced party of the 71st arrived at said destination around half past 2 o'clock on the 17th.   Immediately we set out to establish the regiment's light encampment located near the town hall.  Soon after our arrival we rendezvoused with the Thane of Dunning, traveling from the port of Charles Town, in the colony of South Carolina, who greatly assisted in the establishment of the light encampment.  Our hosts ensured that the straw was of fresh quality and secured under a rainproof tarpaulin.

 

   We established contact with our most gracious hostess Clair Suminski and acquired our stipend as well ration notes for the regiment all the while visiting the Tartan Museum.  We learned that the lady who coordinated the Saturday morning and mid day meals had retired and that we were to forage for the morning meal.  None the less the heritage of the Highland Scots is well displayed for all to see in the Tartan Museum.  While in the museum we were greeted by our most esteemed Regimental officer, his highness of great regard, Denis Byrd, who traveled north from the penal colony of Georgia.  It was with great trepidation that he broke away from his convict neighbors, as he feared his property would be ransacked.

 

      The regiment outfitted in their proper uniforms, weapons, and with camp followers in tow, prepared to forage for the evening meal prior to the opening volley to start off the Ceilidh.  Please note that the Thane of Dunning was without his most trusted Batman, Miles, who was predisposed in the Northwest Territories of colonial India.  Both, Denis and I had our hands full keeping the "Charles Town dandy" Thane properly attired and equipped for his station while in the back country of North Carolina.

 

     We found a wagon converted into a tavern and after a lengthy wait for the cooks to get a proper fire, we were able to consume some of our meal before our scheduled volley to start the Ceilidh at 7 o'clock in the evening.  Once the regiment marched out and gave a brief introduction, we commenced by delivering a proper volley to start the evening's festivities!  We promptly marched back to camp, secured our arms, and returned to enjoy the evening of music and frivolity. 

 

    That evening, the young Bethany admired two local girls twirling hoops and she desired to play with the hoops herself.  After some coaxing Bethany finally asked the strangers if she could play and they cordially gave her a hoop.  She promptly displayed her twirling abilities, repeating her Fort Watauga demonstration for the public.  The ladies excused themselves to return to camp, and the lads enjoyed some of the local brew and they too returned to camp after the evening's final performance.  The quartermaster can attest to the fact that the young ladies were still invigorated with frivolity as their giggling laughter went on and on.  Once the stern retort from their grand mother was given, the girls settled into a quiet slumber.

 

  Saturday saw the regiment waking up to a foggy morning.  The quartermaster ventured out to acquire sustenance for the breakfast meal and located a local baker, whose coffee and scones were of good quality for the troops.  

 

 The regiment lined up for the opening volley at half past 9 o'clock in the morning, in the town square and upon the command of the master of ceremonies we delivered a loud and crisp report!  We lined up to participate in the parade, in line with the Celtic dancing units, and represented well His Royal Majesty's finest fighting forces for the local loyalists.  After the parade, we were consistently stopped to entertain portraits by the locals, who weren't accustomed to seeing the 71st Regimentals in the back country.

 

     Our detachment moved to utilize the meal rations and enjoyed the coolness of the local Presbyterian Kirk.  After replenishing our bodies with food and drink, we promptly marched off to participate in the 1 o'clock presentation of the 71st Highland Regiment followed by a musket demonstration.  It was during the historical presentation that a pesky thunderstorm came over the mountains, requiring us to cut short our discussion and hastily provided three rather weak vollies.  The Thane was noted to taunt the crowd as his musket fired all three times.  Soon after our military demonstration for the locals the rains hasten the ladies to return to camp and we stayed under the shade tents until the rain subsided.

 

     The men returned to camp, noticing the street festival packing up, and the ladies attempting to take a nap.  The afternoon rains subsided, finding the ladies visiting the Tartan Museum and afterwards the regiment sought out to forage for the dinner meal.  Upon completion of the dinner meal, the regiment scurried to provide the evening volley to kick off the Saturday Ceilidh at 7 o'clock that evening.  The troops performed with distinction firing a sound and crisp volley!  We were whisked into the tavern and enjoyed an evening of entertainment from a family of harpists from the Northwest Territories, followed by a Celtic band from the penal colony of Georgia.  An evening of merriment and frivolity was enjoyed by all! 

 

      Again the ladies excused themselves to retire for the evening while the lads remained enjoying the entertainment.  After the final song, the troops returned to camp and called it an evening.  The Quartermaster was surprised that the ladies were pretending to be asleep and startled him once he returned to the tent.  That evening the regiment was visited by another thunderstorm and found Bethany scurrying into the arms of her grand mother.

 

      The regiment awoke early Sunday morning and commenced to break camp.  All of the wet tents were packed up and the troops visited a famous Scottish eating establishment for breakfast.  Upon completion of a filling meal, the troops departed to return to their respective destinations. Overall the Regiment was well provided and felt extremely welcomed by our gracious hosts.

 

As always, I shall remain, your most loyal and obedient servant.

 

GOD Save our honorable KING!

 

Duly and respectfully submitted,

 

Kirk Smith
Quartermaster
71st HR of Foot

 

 

                                                                                                                                                          Excursion to Fort Watauga, May 20-23, 2011

This missive is to report on the actions of the North Carolina Highland Regiment’s martial duties in the western counties of His Majesty’s Royal colony of North Carolina.  We departed the upper Cape Fear Region, south of the Deep River on the morning of May 20th and ventured over the mountains ending up at Sycamore Shoals along the Watauga River.  There we established camp near the whig Fort Watauga after being shown the appropriate area by Chad Bogart to encamp.  

Our company included your most esteemed Quartermaster, his most loyal camp follower Wendy along with the young lasses Taylor and Bethany Smith.  We were soon joined by the every improving “awkward man,” Private Steve Harriman from the Quaker community near Guilford Court House.  He helped set-up the camp according to the appropriate essay of castramentations.

Soon after setting up camp we found wandering a camp follower named Amy Lober.  She was followed by our newest recruit Jonathan, their oldest son Kyle (with a K), daughter Ella, youngest son Isaac, and youngest daughter Journey.  After assigning them to their appropriate mess, the Quartermaster and his assistant worked to properly clothe this refugee family from His Majesty’s royal colony of South Carolina.  Once established the group foraged for food near the fort.  Upon return there was fellowship and frivolity around the camp fire until the eyelids were no longer able to maintain the vertical extended mode.  Most slept well with the Watauga River singing them to sleep.

Saturday morning found Private Harriman rising with the sun and stoking the fire for the morning fare.  We enjoyed copious amounts of coffee along with a breakfast hash of sausage, ham, potato, apples and onions.  There was plenty for the King’s men, whom failed to show and any extra vittles was summarily fed to the chickens.   Our men drilled to improve the skills of the trained and to introduce the newest recruit with the rudimentary movements of close order drill.

The Quartermaster attended the officer’s meeting along with the security of Private Harriman.  One never knows how soon in these parts of the colony a friend becomes a foe.  The plan included the natives attacking the fort and making haste to capture or dispatch as many of the rebels as possible.  Our focus was to ensure no one escaped from the Northwest end of the fort.  We would provide a skirmish line securing the Northwest side of the fort.   

The battle commenced with the natives yelling their signature hair raising scream, forcing the rebels into their fort.  With a manner noted the rebel militia cowered inside their fort as the Crown forces approached from the Northwest.  With some amount of courage the rebels came onto the field in an attempt to drive off our native allies.  Once the whigs were engaging the Cherokee, the Crown detachment came out as a skirmish line and began delivering a continuous fire thus disrupting their counter attack.  Our newest recruit Jonathan and his Batman Kyle (with a K) took on the responsibility of providing bodies on the field.  Again the militia withdrew to the confines of the fort, and we left the field.

Our hosts provided a delicious catered meal along with great fellowship.  There were games involving the youngest members of the encampment and the young Kyle (with a K) took it upon himself to venture in the fort.  He participated and came in second in the fire stacking game.  Many of us saw him participating in an 18th century form of hide-n-seek with the colorful natives.  After the evening festivities we retreated to our encampment and most of the detachment called it an evening.

Sunday morning saw our Private Harriman withdrawing with a severe illness and we bid him well.   He did leave a roaring and well stoked fire for the morning coffee and eggs.  The Quartermaster with assistance of Kyle (with a K) prepared the morning meal for the rest of the troops.  The unit attended the sacred service held in the fort later that morning.  Both women and the girls participated in the “ladies tea” as the men wandered through Sutlers row.

The Sunday afternoon battle was the same scenario as Saturday, with a twist.  Our newest recruit was confident enough to fire a round and soundly took to being a casualty to litter the battlefield with his body followed by his batman Kyle (with a K).  Once the whigs fired upon our skirmish line and withdrew, the Crown detachment counter attacked, moving up in close proximity of the fort, in perfect tight formation, and delivered a violent volley!   The volley took the whigs by surprise and we immediately withdrew.

Upon the conclusion of the battle, all returned and prepared to disembark for our homes.  The regimental encampment was meticulously disassembled, packed, and stowed in the regimental wagon.  During the operation, we were personally visited by Chad Bogart, Jason Davis, Earl and others.  All thanked us for coming and supporting one of the best events they had ever held.  We were awarded a pound and a half of powder to suffice our contribution to the battle.

I am glad to report that all returned safely to their home. 

As always, I shall remain your most obedient servant.  GOD Save the King!

Kirk Smith

Quartermaster

71st Highland Regiment of Foot 

                                                                                                                          

                                                                                                                       Guilford Courthouse , March 2011

   I apologize for the delay in my report of the action the regiment participated in at Guilford Courthouse. Many duties to the King kept me from sending my missive.
      Having arrived just before dinner, but after the heavy work had been done, the quarter master, Kirk Smith had already seen to choosing the best ground for the regiment. He was aided by Gary Dunning, Thane of Dunning, Stephen Harriman, his wife Ruthie and son Ian.
     Upon arriving I decided my presidential duties required the eating of food and partaking of ale so we all visited a local establishment near the encampment. Upon our return we discovered Scott wandering through the camp bringing our provisions as substitute Distaff, though I think we would all agree to a promotion to DIT, Distaff in Training. We were soon joined by David Phipps and Scott Womak and Scott's two sons, Samuel and Josiah all hailing from the colony of Virginia. Later in the evening, after I had taken my nightcap, Ron his wife Becky and their two son's Henry and Logan made their way into camp. 
     We all awoke to a shock Saturday morning.... NO RAIN!!! Perhaps we had camped in the wrong city or even the wrong colony. This can't be Guilford Courthouse, the same place where it has rained on the same dates for 230 years. Alas after some inquiries we did discover that it indeed was Guilford Courthouse, we would not have known the place were it not for the geese. We had a pleasant day with good weather. Ruthie prepared Scotch eggs to everyone's delight and as always we ate a hearty breakfast. No starving in the Kings Army.
     We prepared for the battle and waited.... and waited. Then we prepared to....wait some more. We spent some time in the woods till finally the foolish rebel militia pushed too far. We formed our lines and pushed them back to the open ground. Slugging back and forth between our hardened veterans and their militia  till we came to their cannon and regulars. Finally we were given the order Charge Bayonets! We pushed the rebels back to the road and when we finally stopped we realized that we alone had charged. Our Highland Brethren were jealous that they too had not performed with such vigor in the King's Cause.
     After the battle we were briefly joined by Scott's lovely wife Mary but as she was baby sitting a small horse, I mean large dog they say is a puppy she was unable to remain with us for the evening frolicking. Dinner was prepared by Ruthie, Becky and Mary. The stew was excellent and as always the distaff received high marks.  It is interesting to note that Saturday night we discovered that Gary has a talent for theatre, reciting and dancing the songs of the Wizard of Oz. Who says that the regiment lacks men of talent.
     Sunday's battle was a similar scenario but we pushed faster out of the woods and fought longer on the open ground. After some initial confusion on the right flank of the British line was in order as we pushed the rebels back. Alas the cowards ran before a bayonet charge was possible, not doubt our reputation preceded us and they chose flight rather than face the steel of the 71st Highlanders.
I have a special note regarding the palatial estate of the quartermaster. The front half of the tent was used by the ladies as a place to comfortably change out of sight. I believe it will be a popular addition and we should thank the quartermaster and his wife for their generosity. It has also come in handy as a meeting place to discuss matters of great importance with the quartermaster himself. However I do feel the constant bodyguard at the door is a bit too ostentatious, even for us. Perhaps we will need to speak with Stephen regarding this matter. Let it be noted that we do have photographic evidence of the said guard posting as future blackmail material should the quartermaster get out of line. Thank you to everyone for participating and making this a fun event as usual.
Thus concludes my report regarding the sunny and dry Guilford Courthouse.
Your humble and obedient servant in perpetuity.
Denis Byrd
NCHR/71st Highland Regiment
http://nchrhighlandreg71sthighlanders.org/


 

Moore's Creek  FEB. 2011

 

This dispatch is from the Moore’s Creek National Battlefield engagement involving our Regiment this weekend past.  Arriving Friday afternoon to encamp, the Quartermaster was able to acquire the assistance of two stalwart 84th Highlanders.  After putting up the troop tents, the regiment numbers increased with the timely arrival of Stephen Harriman and together we completed erecting the shelters for our troops.  The straw, firewood and necessary were adequate. 

The quartermaster tent featured the interior wall that the Mrs. insisted would allow the regiment’s better halves to enjoy changing into the finery without stooping uncomfortably in a less roomy wedge tent.

Our evening campfire was pleasant with visits from the new site director Jason Powell.  The evening was chilly just above freezing and the quartermaster woke up in the middle of the night actually thinking he was in his warm and comfortable quarters.

Saturday morning found the regiment’s two soldiers stoking the fire, followed with making coffee and breakfast.  That completed the regiment’s finest attending the safety meeting at 0900, rehearsed the drill with the Whigs and Loyalist for the wreath laying ceremony.   We completed the rehearsal and ventured back to camp to wash the dishes from the morning repast.  

During the ceremony, both the quartermaster and Stephen performed as awkward men.  One’s musket didn’t fire and the other tangled in a tree branch.  Overall the combined firing volley added a military air to the wreath laying ceremony followed by the playing of taps.  After the ceremony both of us went to the visitor’s center to view the film and survey the museum displays. 

We returned to the camp awaiting the arrival of the regiment’s distaff.  Just prior to lunch Mary Samson, “Queen of Scott” arrived with the troop’s sustenance and fed us well.

The regiment joined forces with the 84th Royal Highlanders to conduct the afternoon firing demonstration.  Again the quartermaster and Stephen performed as awkward men, my musket didn’t fire and Stephen’s drill needs a thorough purging of his naval habits.

Dinner was hosted by the Moore’s Creek National Battlefield. We found Patriot Hall decked out with red, white and blue table cloths, candlelight lanterns and table centerpieces.  Dinner was catered southern fare and filling.  Our motley crew was entertained by the author Randell Jones, with highlights from one of his books, Scoundrels, Rogues and Heroes of the Old North State.    During the dinner, our hosts presented each of the military units with a National Park plaque (rumor has it being posted on our website)!  After dinner the troops returned to their camps and we enjoyed entertainment by the 84th’s musicians around their campfire.

Sunday morning found it foggy and gray, but by breakfast time the sun was shinning brightly.  Both troops enjoyed a sumptuous breakfast hash along with plenty of coffee.  After breakfast we washed dishes and attended church services with the Anglican pastor Tim Weiss of the 84th.  Following divine service our troops mustered to conduct the firing demonstration at 1100 hours.  Mary, Queen of Scott arrived to fend off the hunger of the troops, aid in assisting the tourist and remind us that a nice Moore’s Creek means the next engagement at Guilford Courthouse will most likely be wet and cold. 

The regiment received a surprise visit from the fairer side of the Patton Clan as he continues to serve in the West Pacific Theater.   The quartermaster and Stephen still performed as awkward men.  Both made up for their deficiencies by the afternoon demonstration at 1500 hours.

Soon after the regiment broke camp, packed the wagon and departed.

As always I shall remain &tc. &tc. &tc.

Dutifully submitted

Kirk D. Smith

Quartermaster

No.CHR / 71st Regiment of Foot

 

 

Cowpens Jan. 2011
Dear Sir,
The stalwart lads of the 71st and North Carolina Highland Regiment arrived Friday evening to the site prepared for camp. As the area was still covered by snow the quartermaster sought an area that was moderately clear for the regimental tentage. After toughing out a cold night the regiment was stirring upon my arrival Saturday morning. Due to the recent weather most of the local inhabitants were suffering from a from of dementia known as cabin fever and therefore ventured out to the events at Cowpens. Most likely it was one of the largest crowds many of had seen at Cowpens in several years.
During the day we performed two demos and we made aquintance with our highland brethren in the other company of the 71st coming down from New Jersey and the Ohio territory. We were also visited by another fellow highlander from the 71st out of Kentucky, Dave Phipps. We look forward to having Dave fall in with us in the future and regale us with his stories from the Kentucky frontier. By Saturday evening our regiment was complete. In attendance we had Kirk Smith, Quartermaster, Ron, Becky and Logan Evans, The Thane Gary Dunning Sans his chaperone, Steve Harrington, Scott and Mary, Amy Massey and myself. This event also marked a special occassion where we welcomed Steve as a full member. We all hope he will make us proud over the coming years and NOT bayonet his seargent accidentally as others I will not mention in my report.
Sunday was much the same though breakfast was provided by the park. We again performed admirably during two firing demos. Here it should be noted that Quartermaster, an officer's rank of course, has secured for his use a luxurious new accomodation. His new wall tent looked so new and shiney we were all in awe. We did make good use of it for storage and a meeting place for the men. Upon breaking camp it did however take the entire regiment plus the assistance of several trained circus monkeys to take down the quartermaster's dwelling. I would like to thank Kirk for setting up camp on Friday and all those who helped as well as Head Distaff, Mary for bringing and preparing the provisions this past weekend. As always we dined well and lacking in nothing. Our next event is Moores Creek Bridge in Feb. I will send out an updated calendar in another email.
Your humble and obedient servant,

Denis Byrd
NCHR/71st Highland Regiment
http://nchrhighlandreg71sthighlanders.org/

 

Tryon Palace

Most Gracious Commander,                                             19 December 2010

 

I wish to submit this dispatch on behalf of The North Carolina Highland Regiment / 71st Highland Regiment of Foot apprizing you of our actions at the Royal Governor Lord Tryon’s Palace Christmas Candlelight Festival held December 18th, Year of Our Lord 2010.

The Regimental Quartermaster under the astute guidance and supervision of his most lovely and gracious wife Wendy Smith, and his most adorable Granddaughters Taylor and Bethany Smith, arrived at the Royal Governor’s Palace in New Bern, North Carolina under what could be considered intolerable conditions. 

The sky was heavily overcast and the rain was a steady to moderate drizzle.  We immediately set to establishing the encampment’s location within the Wilderness Garden of the palace grounds.  Soon after our arrival the advanced party was reinforced with the Regimental Serjeant Scott Samson and his lovely and gracious wife Mary (otherwise known as Mary, Queen of Scott) Samson.   We established the troop tents and then with the arrival of Private Ron Evans, his lovely and gracious wife Becky and their fine strapping young lads Henry and Logan, we were able to complete the raising of the dining tent, gather straw and firewood.

Once the tents were in place, the fire started, the regiment in uniform, and ladies in period dress, we were again the envy of the local rabble that meandered through the grounds of the Wilderness Garden.  Our presence was to add to the candlelight processions that toured the palace grounds.  There was rather interesting entertainment from the Eighteenth Century traveling troubadours as well a fife and drum unit, chamber orchestra and bag pyper that delighted the hearts of all. 

The evening was replete with large pot of fresh hot beef stew (I must confess to having three bowls full) and hot (most appropriate in the rather wet condition), and warming Wassel prepared by our distaff.  Surprisingly, the children didn’t seem to mind the damp dreary conditions of their surroundings.  They were amicable to fetching fire wood and chasing each other. 

The evening was rounded out by the rain stopping in time for a wonderfully colorful and delightful fire works display that would have been the envy of the royal fireworks on the River Thames.  After the fireworks we wished our guests a Merry Christmas and reminded them that the big jolly fellow in a Red and White coat was British!

All settled in for the night after the rains began anew.  The morning found the troops enjoying a light continental breakfast replete with plenty of coffee.  The breaking of camp was in good order, the wet tentage was separated for the Quartermaster to dry and the rest of the equipment and weapons were secure for the long trip back.  It was during our journey home that the clouds broke and the sun regained it’s dominance of the sky.

I am glad to report that the tentage is drying and hopefully in two days it will be properly stored in the regimental wagon.  We did discover the pole missing on the dining tent was the very one the Thane of Dunning had to cut at Walnut Grove.  I will make haste to replace the pole and make improvements to the Regiment’s equipment prior to our campaign season of 2011.

GOD Save the King!  And may you all have a Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas!

As always, I shall remain . . . your most loyal and obedient servant!  Huzzah!

Kirk Smith

Quartermaster

No. Carolina Highland Regiment / 71st Highland Regiment of Foot

 

 

 

 Walnut Grove  SC  Oct.  2010
Dear Sir,
I apologize for  the delay in my report on the recent action that took place at Walnut Grove.  Once again the 71st and NCHR marched off to the Carolina back country to put an end the those rebellious Whigs who inhabit the neighborhood.
Our quartermaster being called away for this engagement, thus our Lairdship the Thane of Dunning came to the rescue and arranged to bring tentage to the site. Despite being a member of the nobility he did an admirable job setting up the camp aided by myself. Here I must apologize to the Quartermaster and beg his forgiveness. Unfortunately 2 of the poles were too tall and well.... required modification or the president would have rolled out of his tent into the garden in the middle of night. All the pieces of the poles are duly accounted for and I am sure can be put back together with little trouble. The situation required that I make an executive decision. After the tent dilemma was resolved we were joined by Amy Massey, Ron and the Evans clan and Steve Herrington a new recruit.
Looking forward to the much anticipated dinner we were disappointed to find that the Whigs had already raided the provisions and left us with only beans and cole slaw. Alas we managed to make the best of it. The next morning we were joined by Mary and Scot and thankfully Mary brought provisions as Gary and myself only thought of the rum ration.
Come noon we prepared to march off to battle and formed our lines near the Dr's office to lay siege to the house. We performed the usual scenario, raid the house, shoot the children, run to camp, hide the rum ration from the rebels. The second engagement the regiment fared much better. Again forming at the Dr's office we marched in to help repel rebel horsemen who had attacked our cannon crew. Pushing them off the field we were soon confronted with Whig militia. Being unsteady when facing crack troops such as ourselves they fell to our withering fire and soon were routed once we began our bayonet charge. Again back to camp to protect the rum ration.
Unsure if our rations would hold out another day we ventured into town joined by John Meisssenheimer and found a local spot known as the Golden Corral. Upon entering said establishment it was clear all were impressed by our military demeanor and poise. Finding suitable seating in the back we found that some avoided our presence and ushered their children away, obviously not loyal subjects of the Crown. Having cleared out part of the Golden Corral Gary, Amy, Steve and myself decided it was imperative to make a visit to the local Walmart were once again our presence was commented upon. So taken were they with us that Gary, Thane of Dunning, soon became a celebrity and many locals were asking to have their picture taken with him. Hearing the call for security we decided it best to make our exit and thus acted as a security detail for the Thane escorting him to his carriage.
Sunday's battle went much as Saturdays and we were pushed back to camp by rebel militia.

Walnut Grove is also the site of our annual meeting. The results of our elections are as follows.
President   Denis Byrd
Treasurer   Wendy Smith
Secretary   Gary Dunning
Distaff        Mary Samson
Quartermaster Kirk Smith
We also voted to accept the proposed changes to our bylaws, updating the language to reflect the change from snail mail to email as our preferred form of communication. In addition to this Gary is working on a phone list for the members so we can better communicate with one another when coming to events. We also discussed ways we can ease the burden of the quartermaster as well as attending more events even with small numbers. These primarily focused on a lighter encampment as well as having the veteran members consider purchasing or borrowing tentage and camp supplies. There is a lot to be resolved before anything could be brought to a vote and we will discuss the matter further at a later event. Gary is working on a list of ideas for us to consider. We also approved the calendar for next year and as of right now the only new event is Latta Plantation on Labor Day weekend in Charlotte. The new calendar will be posted on the website and the face-book page in the near future.
God Save the King!
Your humble and occasionally obedient servant,

Denis Byrd
NCHR/71st Highland Regiment
http://nchrhighlandreg71sthighlanders.org/

 

 

House in the horseshoe August 2010

This dispatch is regarding the recent North Carolina Highland Regimental "Militia" force actions at the Philip Alston House near Carthage , North Carolina 7th and 8th August 2010 .

The diligent Quartermaster followed by the Thane of Dunning, Gary occupied the camp site promptly at the 12th hour on Friday and embarked upon setting up the provincial forces bivouac. The skies refused to drop rain upon our heads. We sought assistance from Patrick Montgomery in order to set up the dining tent. Later in the afternoon, the Regimental Pyper Colonel Cone arrived and by the 17th hour we departed to forage provisions. Upon returning from our foraging detail, we encountered Mary "Queen of Scott." She had left the provisions for the weekend and instructed us that our breakfast would be bacon and eggs.

After an evening of good fellowship and stories, we called it an evening. All the while we noticed lightening on the horizon to the south, fortunately the evening had no rain. The following morning the Thane of Dunning and the quartermaster prepared breakfast for the pyper. During the day we noticed that the Thane of Dunning was suffering from lack of adult leadership in the personage of Miles, who is currently becoming an officer of the Artillery Corps. The quartermaster attended the Officer's briefing and informed the commander David Fanning (Patrick Montgomery) that the No.CHR would have three muskets on-line and one stalwart Bag Pyper.

During the morning the Samson's arrived - Mary Queen of Scott, Scott and the rather large puppy Savannah embellished the encampment. The foraging by the distaff allowed us ample sustenance to weather the afternoon's battle at the 16th hour. The weather was dry, sunny and hovering over 90 degrees, a typical day at the "Shoe." Our rendition of the battle went according to plan, we held the far right of the battle and we failed to burn the house as David Fanning was more than willing to submit to a woman's wiles. Our pyper was raising the courage of all Scots on the line. We were able to run off the Yankee rebel scum after they signed their mark on a document swearing not to partake in the rebellion.

Upon rallying at the encampment, the Thane, the Pyper and the Quartermaster departed to partake of a refreshing dip at a nearby swimming hole in order to slough off the day's battle grime and sweat. We partook of another sumptuous feast provided by Wendy, along with the youngest son Jeffery, grand daughters Taylor and Bethany. During the meal we plotted the upcoming Historic event at the Museum of the Cape Fear .

The following morning Gary prepared another spectacular meal of bacon and eggs. We attended divine services provided by the Anglican minister Tim Weiss, with a large stately tree as his backdrop alter. The service was inspiring. The officer's call resulted in a discussion to consider next year's battle by doing something different on Saturday. The first thing that came to my mind was the capture of the Whig Governor in Hillsborough. Most likely the Whigs wish to portray a battle that they come out victorious. That shall be a discussion for the future.

Sunday's battle started at the 14th hour and the regiment's left wing had a lowly Whig who chose to fight on the side of goodness and light. We assured Steve Harriman that his "turn coat" foray would not be reported to his Whig brethren. Our battle played out the same, we held the far right line, expended our cartridge boxes in order to make way for the cart of burning straw, witness Mrs. Alston make a deal to allow the Whigs cower away into the country side.

We rallied at the encampment, entertained visitors and started disembarking after the 15th hour. With the encampment packed up and the wagons loaded the regiment departed with a plan to meet on the 18th of September at the Museum of the Cape Fear , Arsenal Park .

Dutifully submitted, &tc. &tc. &tc.

Kirk Smith

Quartermaster

No.C.H.R. & 71st Highland Regiment of Foot

Dear Sir, May 30, 2010

It is with diligence that I immediately send out this dispatch notifying you of the 71st Highland Regiment of Foot's successful mission in escorting His Royal Highness Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex.

On Friday mid-afternoon we linked up with elements of the 42nd and the 84th Royal Highland Regiments of Foot, north of the settlement of Greenville, S.C. Upon arrival I set up the encampment for the detachment from the 71st Highland Regiment's contingent.

That contingent consisted of the SGT Scott Samson, Mary "Queen of Scott," Gary - The Thane of Dunning, the newly minted Leftenant Miles Dunning, Recruit Tom Pulley, and just in the nick of time Pvt. Ron Evans, his son Henry, as well yours truly - the quartermaster.

The Highland Brigade consisting of elements of the 42nd, 71st and 84th with bayonets affixed, embarked upon the parade third in line following the S.A.M.S. Color Guard and a pipe band. The Royal Prince's vehicle with His Majesty followed his most honorable guard. The Highland Brigade requited itself well enduring the heat and long march. The hordes of loyal subjects lined the route cheering and clapping as we marched by. The commands barked by SGT Samson were as always, loud and clear. At the end of the parade route we moved from column to line and at the order of present arms saluted as Prince Edward moved from his car to the reviewing stand. The Pipe Band behind us played Scotland the Brave and Amazing Grace all the while our troops continued their salute and the Prince demonstrated his stalwart pose in honor of the moment. With that the Brigade Commander David Branson ordered the Brigade back to column and we marched off the parade route to the applause of the crowd! Our regiment performed well maintaining their discipline in the heat and distance of the march. We returned to the encampment and the troops enjoyed a robust meal provided by the 42nd Distaff. Later that evening the heavens let loose and the winds blew! You will be glad to know that the regiment's tentage and that of our Highland brethren withstood the winds, but not the same could be said for the Highland Games tents.

  The next morning had the regiment enjoying their meal provided again by the Distaff of the 42nd. The troops formed for that morning's opening ceremony scheduled for 0900 only to learn that the time moved to 1000. Upon the noted hour in a column of twos with bayonets affixed, the Highland Brigade marched out onto the field behind the S.A.M.S. Color Guard and deployed in a line to the left and right of the Colors parallel with the reviewing stand. Much to our honor the Master of Ceremonies introduced the Highland Brigade and the units comprised within it. Upon the arrival of the Prince's entourage, we received the order of Present Arms until the delegation assumed their seats. All the while the pipe band massed on the field behind us was playing inspiring tunes!

After a brief number of welcomes the National Anthems of the United States and Great Britain were sung all the while the Highland Brigade was at Present Arms. The bayonets glistening in the sun was seen by all. Once the formal greetings given by the officials of the games the announcement was made that the games were officially opened. That was the cue to our illustrious Commander Branson to order Make Ready, Present and FIRE!

There was a noticeable shock throughout the crowd after the crisp and loud volley! A piper was overheard commenting "he loved the smell of cordite in the morning." After which we faced right and marched back into column escorting the colors off the field. Soon after the opening ceremonies the 42nd Distaff again provided another sumptuous meal for the mid-day. After the meal the encampment honored the presence of His Majesty Prince Edward. Our illustrious SGT Samson, the Thane of Dunning, a member of the 84th and I entertained questions from the prince. He wanted to know what period we were portraying. I told him we were representing Highland Regiments during the American Rebellion and Scott added the battles that the Crown won! He acknowledged our participation and thanked us. Mary "Queen of Scott" was able to capture a couple of photos with the Prince addressing his Highland delegation. Most of the regiment enjoyed the festivities of the Highland Games and the evenings repast provided again by the most diligent and gracious 42nd Distaff. Another rain shower endowed the camp later that evening. The next morning a "continental breakfast" provided by the 42nd Distaff enabled the troops to fold up damp tents and the quartermaster to depart by 0930 for the long journey to North Carolina.

Respectfully submitted, &tc. &tc. &tc.

Kirk Smith

Quartermaster

71st Highland Regiment of Foot

Quartermasters report

The Quartermaster's regimental team (Wendy and I) arrived around 4:00 pm Friday to find two stalwart troops standing by Ron Evans and the Thane of Dunning along with a new recruit drummer Henry Evans. Soon after arrived the Regimental Pyper Col. Cone who assisted in the setting up of the camp in good order. The regimental representation in full regalia attended the dining event that featured a new caterer but noteworthy was the serving on china! Music, food, and froliking was in order for the evening. The Samsons arrived later after dinner followed by the intrepid President and Lee.

As always, dutifully submitted, &tc. &tc. &tc.

Kirk Smith
Quartermaster

After Action Report: Walnut Grove 2009

The presidential baggage train was late coming to Walnut Grove but thankfully the quartermaster and his "volunteers" had already prepared camp and were winding down the night. In attendance we had Kirk and Wendy, Mary and Scott, Lee, Amy, Dave, Miles and his protégée Gary second Thane of Dunning as well as Miles' girlfriend Devon, Ron and Henry, and myself.

Saturday we prepared for two battles, our first skirmish was around the house. The usual surround the house technique for some reason this never seems to work out in our favor year after year. We were firing well striking to fear into the hearts of the seditious scoundrels alas it was to no avail. We were repulsed back to camp. It seems Lee has been taking lessons from the Thane on the proper way to take hit as we have seen his most dramatic display to date, rivaling even the Thane himself. For the second battle we were wiser and we defended the house, we also had artillery support and our intrepid field commander arrived to lead us to victory. We defeated the rebel scum, pushing them back at bayonet point in a glorious assault. Unfortunately we pushed them directly into our camp and therefore had to quickly push through the rebels to secure the King's rum and provisions. After Saturday's battles we held our annual meeting, election results will be posted on the bottom of the page.

Sunday's battle was the second scenario and again we were successful even against greater numbers. The highlanders put on a great display with both bayonet charges and all were mystified by our military precision. On Sunday, actually Satruday night we welcomed Amy back to the regiment. We were all glad to see her back and hope to see her again at future events. As always we were well fed being well provisioned by Wendy, the quartermaster's wife. All the meals were excellent and I doubt that any other regiment in the kings army is so well fed. Though the rebels do look as though they are eating well. The weather was excellent for both battles as well as for the evening festivities and we were treated well. This is probably one of the most re-enactor friendly events we attend and nothing has changed in that regard over the years.

At our annual meeting we handled several pieces of important business. We approved next years schedule which will be posted on the website. Kirk and Wendy were voted, by unanimous decision, to be made lifetime members in honor of all the hard work and sacrifices they have made for the regiment over the years. Huzzah! This was also Ron's third event and he was approved for membership in the regiment. The treasurer collected dues for 2010, if you were unable to attend you may mail your dues to her before January 1st. Here are the results for the board of directors.

President Denis Byrd
Treasurer Wendy Smith
Secretary Gary Dunning
Quartermaster Kirk Smith
Distaff Mary Samson
Field Commander Miles Dunning

Your humble and most obedient servant,


Denis Byrd
NCHR/71st Highland Regiment
http://nchrhighlandreg71sthighlanders.org/