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Let's Call it Humor


Battle of Bound Brook April 13th

Click the thumbnails for a full size version.

Would you invite these guys to dinner? Photo by the Cabral family.

Let us now commence with the 2002 AARs.

The Battle of Bound Brook turned out to be much more fun than anticipated, in spite of the modern setting.   It helped to keep in the back of our minds that we were fighting on the actual battleground. Some of which was still visible. We mustered at the Statts House, a nice period house with a collection of artifacts.

Next we marched down a residential street and across a metal bridge to where there was a "brief" ceremony for the fallen on both sides.  This ceremony took place on the portion of the stone causeway that Ewald was pinned down on.  It still exists in between the Amtrak line and a feed store.

From the causeway we fought up modern city streets to the middle of town where we fixed bayonets and drove the Rebels past the intersection that marked the boundary of the tactical. A really nice pork lunch was served by a bunch of nice Amish fellows in the municipal parking lot. The public turnout, so far, was excellent and the public interest made up for the questionable surroundings.

It was at this time that some of the sharper eyed men in the Regiment noticed that we were within striking distance of one of the more high class establishments in downtown Bound Brook called Torpedoes. A heavily armed squad of picked men, led by their intrepid Captain Vilardi, made a lightning raid on this establishment. Plunder is not a word we like to use in the British Army, all goods and services were paid for in hard money. Or failing that, gold buttons off of the Captains regimental. A strange occurrence also took place in Torpedoes when a detachment of the infamous Helms Company of the 2nd New Jersey Regiment snuck in by a back door. Fortunately, the feelings of brotherhood and comradeship were so high by that time that the two adversaries forgot their differences and sat side by side, similar to the Christmas truces we hear so much about. It was also here that two new Regimental artifacts were christened and firmly enshrined in the halls of Regimental lore. These being the Captains walking stick and Private Brucias whig. Here is the full story: \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\HIGHLY SENSITIVE MATERIAL CENSORED BY THE WAR DEPARTMENT NOT TO BE VIEWED IN THE PRO UNTIL JUNE 1 2052/////////////////////////. So, now when you hear the cries of "The Cane! The Cane!" or "The Whig! The Whig!" you will regard these artifacts and their bearers with the honor they are due.

Photo by the Cabral family

Properly fortified and flush with excitement, we boarded the yellow busses for the ride to the next phase of the event. This was the surprise and capture of the American HQ and battery at the Van Horn house. (This episode historically took place before the battle in Bound Brook town but I guess the event sponsors had some logistical problem with the timeline.) The Van Horn house is the original 18c dwelling where General Lincoln had to make a hasty and undignified escape in his nightclothes after being caught napping. The building is in a quaint setting nestled between the new Target store and the Somerset Patriots baseball stadium. The cool part was that the concession stands at the ballpark were open for business so we went over and shared a pretzel and drinks in plastic cups. After about an hour we formed up with the Germans for our surprise attack. We looked very impressive as we marched in line of battle across the stadium parking lot. The Rebels had two guns in their battery and they each fired a shot at us. (Again, a little less than accurate. In the original attack the guns didnt get a shot off, but hey, the crowd loved it and if I was an artillery dude and lugged my gun all the way to Bound Brook, NJ and didnt get to burn some powder then I might be just a little cheesed off.) Luckily they missed and we charged bayonets then ran up a hill and took the battery. After that we lowered the American flag and raised the Union Jack. The crowd wasnt too pleased with this, post 9/11 and all, but hey, we earned it. We then hung out for another hour or so and ate more free food and drank more free soda and mingled with the Public, of which there were "thousands". (Its true, I read it in the newspaper.)

The charge to take the Rebel guns from the Sunday Star Ledger

Captain Vilardi teaches the Hessians a new dance step from the Sunday Currier

Back on the busses for phase three of the battle of Bound Brook where the Americans push us Imperialists out of town. Another "feel good" scenario. We fell back in good order, street firing by retiring. If it wouldn't get me in trouble with the Rebels I would say that our rate of fire and rate of withdrawal was greater than our enemys,  so I won't. We did burn up all our powder though and finished up back at the Statts house. Finally, in the words of Private Gump, "We had free food, again, and we had free soda, again. All in all this was a great one-day event. Here is what my friend Private Torkos had to say in an earlier 18th Century type after action report:


You missed a great time in New Jersey! We bayonet charged the doodles down Main Street forcing them to route!!!! We were fed breakfast, lunch and dinner. Plus the local women of the peasantry showed us their hospitality and some unusual local customs!!!

I am looking forward to the Corporal Lackluster report on this one!!! (We will never see the good Captain's cane as it will be retired to the Regimental Museum after the good service it gave in Bound Brook!!!)

Humbly presented,

Private Parts"

Photo by the Cabral family.

Click here to see more Bound Brock pictures.

The Battle of Sag Harbor

OK,  it would get me in trouble with my friends in the 3rd NY Regiment to say that they bamboozeled us into this event by voting for it on the 22nd Regiment calendar and then falling out as 3rd NY,  so I'll go on record as not having said that.   (Actually a couple of the dual members donned the madder and filled out our near transparent ranks. Thanks men.)   It is pretty tuff to be mad at someone who has convinced you to go to Sag Harbor. This was the first event in which the dashing Ensign Archibald Lackluster commanded a detachment of the 22nd.


The event got off to a bad start when a Nor Easter blew in on Friday night and didn't let up until around 3:00 PM on Saturday. This was especially trying on the new Ensign as he had his wife and two children with him, (Hey, we all know this is a FAMILY ORIENTED HOBBY), in a marquee whos dubious ability to shed water was totally defeated around 1:00 AM.   Being resourceful,  he rigged a slightly out of period blue nylon tarp inside the marquee to keep he, the wife, and most of his borrowed kit dry. The kids slept through the whole thing having already found the only two dry spots in the place. One has to admit that Sag Harbor aint such a bad place to be rained out in.

So by about 3:00 we were dried out, more or less, and in uniform and coming up with a plan to salvage Saturday as much as possible.  Boys,  you had to see Chris Stress a.k.a. Eighteenth Century Man,  work on this event.  He was over here talking with the Mayor, over there coordinating with the reenactors then on the other side of town babysitting a film crew. Props out to Chris!

We decided to march into town and "search for deserters or Rebels".   I can attest to the fact that there weren't any Rebels in any of the taverns we went into. The 4th Batt. NJV, under Sergeant Braisted,  found a cigar bar and searched it for over half an hour!  While we searched,  the music,  under Fife Major Vorwald,  entertained the locals with some rousing airs. We were about to form up and march back to camp when we were invited in to the bar of the American Hotel for a round or two of drinks.  Actually,  it was a two-hour open bar.  Yep, duty in Sag Harbor was sweet. A couple of funny things occurred while we were at the American: First, there was a meeting of the local GOP, which we entertained. Second, Privates Stress, McClane and Cpl. Corwin, all materialized in their madder regimentals in time to partake of the open bar. Those boys can smell a free beer at over five hundred yards!  That was about it for Saturday. We marched back to camp, (on the front lawn of the original Customs House, by the way), then went into town for dinner. Did I mention that Sag Harbor has nice restaurants?  It was around this time that Chris and Nate reenacted the maiden voyage of the C.S.S. Hunley using a replica 18th Century whaleboat sans life preservers and drain plug. This, however, is an adventure of the naval wing of the 3rd New York, so I won't  mention it here.

We used Saturday's schedule for Sunday. The scenario was to mirror the original raid as closely as possible. The Continental troops were to make an amphibious landing but that portion was cancelled due to the weather, so they used a bus instead. The next part of the action had a hapless crossroads outpost, portrayed by the 22nd,  surprised and captured without loss. The men performed this duty, then we piled back in Ben's van and headed back to town.  The Americans marched on. The attack on the town came in two prongs, hitting two Crown strong points simultaneously. The 22nd was detached with some red coated Delancys and the NJV at the Old Burying Ground. (A very old cemetery with some rev war casualties buried there.) The mixed bag of Rangers was posted at the customs house a couple of blocks away. The attacks were admirably timed and both wings engaged in a hot skirmish, falling back to the center of town where the two wings met and continued fighting and fighting on and on and on until the town got their hours worth. Finally the Rebels pushed us all the way down to the end of the pier where we were forced to surrender. Sag Harbor looses some of its luster here. We clubbed our muskets and marched back to the cemetery for a nice ceremony honoring the Loyalists buried up there in a mass grave. Ensign Lackluster would like to thank Todd Braisted and David Mutter for their great support as NCOs. It must be pointed out that he had a great core of pros to work with that didn't even blink (much) at turning on the march so that they could fit through some tight spots on the march back to the Customs House and the entrance to the cemetery. Then hidy ho its time to go. A shame really as the sun was out and, well, it was Sag Harbor.

Oh, Yea, I forgot the tall ships. Friday night before the gale blew in the Providence, a topmast schooner of about 12 guns rounded the mouth of the harbor, fired a gun and docked at the pier. She was supposed to fly British Colours but I never saw that. She was also supposed to bombard the town, as it became clear that the Rebels had won, but I didnt see this either. (This after mooching powder from the 3rd NY.) What I did see was the Providence standing off the pier flying the skull and crossbones as we were surrendering. I think you could get a ride on her for $75.00 or so but dont quote me. There was also another smaller schooner there called the Mary Rose I think. She was supposed to be burnt but the smoke generator didnt make it for Sundays show. The Brit Colours on this ship showed a remarkable reluctance to be taken down.

As usual the hospitality from our Long Island brethren left nothing to be desired. Imagine the welcoming committee headed by Ben Foster at the registration tent (its always good to see a familiar face after a long ride) and Mark "Cookie" McClain, who I found strolling around town with a tumbler of something that looked like iced chocolate milk. I asked Mark if they didnt have open container rules in Sag Harbor and he just smiled and told me not to worry about any trouble with the police for the weekend as his cousin is the Chief.  Did I mention that Sag Harbor was a great event?

You will be happy to note that Ensign Lackluster and his men were quickly exchanged for an equal weight of turnips and a slightly worn copy of "Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure".


Chris Stress checks in:

Harry ,

You missed nothing , however the Providence did in fact fly the Kings colors both days . I raised them myself !! They held their bombardment of the Village for a half hour and stopped as we appeared on the wharf . They weren't suppose to strike their colors though until we left the pier , they did so pre-maturely . The original British vessel was never captured .

Oh , and that was McClain M. at the bar (of course) . Suppose I didn't have to clarify that eh ?

Three Huzza's to you my friend - well written .

-18th Century Man

To see and read more on the Sag Harbor event click here.

Seeing as this is my third AAR in two days I might be going a little off.

The Battle of Short Hills (Short Hairs)

Listen my friends and you shall hear

How the Rebels did vex us in front and in rear

We were leaving the Jerseys good riddance I say

Were sailing on ships for Chesapeake Bay


To Head of Elk from Perth Amboy we steer

Well eat English beef and drink English beer

But before we can leave well make one last stand

And teach quite the lesson to this impudent band


The weather was hot at least ninety that day

Good thing were not in Williamsburg I say

But we rested a while under trees in the shade

Near a school and a field where soccer is played


Many comrades where there from near and from far

They came in their van they came in their car

From The Island there came such a wonderful crew

Two Bens, Nate and Bill but wheres Mark and wheres Drew?


Gary the Fifemajor from the Island came too

God Save The King on his Fife he b blew

And with his two Drummers young Bobby and Scott

The 22nd's music was the envy of the lott


Harry, John and Andy filled out the ranks

With Sergeant Krentler who's fond of his tanks

And Captain Vilardi with his new parasol

With his quite special cane he's the envy of all


Then assembly was played with the drum and the fife

Com on my brave fellows tis a play soldiers life

Fall into your ranks and dont hesitate

Tis the old soldiers fate to hurry and wait


To the flag we did march to listen to speeches

Politicians they rambled those sons of a beeches

We stood in the sun, the heat and humidity

No wonder the wife laughs and calls this stupidity


After the speeches back we did march

To our old familiar place in the shade of a larch

And what should we see that filled our hearts full of cheer

Liz Naratil was there with cheese, meat, bread, and beer!


We ate and we laughed we drank some good porter

We talked to the tourists and a surly reporter

Some took naps in the shade or the sun

Then the Sergeant he told us to pick up our guns



We crept through the woods as quiet as could be

The Rebels did too, pretend you dont see

We formed up for battle down a hot weedy road

The Captain gave the order to prime and to load


You ask what Regiment was the center of our force

The steadfast veterans of the 22nd of course

On the left Peters Corps, the NJV on the right

It must be pointed out that in the shade they would fight


It wasnt very long that we fell in with our foe

We presented and fired they answered our blow

The weeds and prickers did tangle and trip

The sweat from my brow and my nose it did drip


I have to admit though it is a sham battle

With the fife and the drums and the musketry's rattle

My face splits in a grin and my heart gives a skip

I look over to John "Man ain't this a trip!"


We pushed them and pushed them our brave Rebel foe

But the more we did push them the slower they'd go

"This will not do," the Captain did say

Weve another half of the scenario to play today


A flanking maneuver was the gist of the plan

So over to the men the Sergeant he ran

He pointed and pointed oh please God not me

Welcome my boys to Krentler's light infantry


Through the tall grass we ran to the left of the fight

Rebels they took no notice we were out of their sight

Our main force came up and blocked the weedy road

Krentler moved us foreword he's in 18th Century Mode


The hammer did swing and the anvil was there

And the Third New Jersey Regiment was caught like a hare

Oh they did cry and oh they did grumble

But thats what you get when you cant move on the double


With muskets clubbed they were forced to yield

Then off to join their comrades on the big soccer field

For only half of the scenario was over that day

We reformed our ranks and continued to play


The crowed on the sidelines now came into view

How disappointing they're only but few

Thats ok cause here's a sideshow

Peters Corps is chasing two farbs down the hedgerow


Out in the field theres a gun on our right

We charged it and took it with the 40th Lights

Then we went forward and took another gun

Pretty soon it looked like the Rebels would run


We charged bayonets and forward did charge

I jumped over a rifleman who was really quite large

The battle was over and we all were quite merry

There is something that's special in bayonet imaginary


We reformed again and marched in a review

Then back to the trees and the shade and cold brew

They fed us chicken from aluminum trays

If I were a lady I'd have to loosen my stays


The main point of this excursion it turned out I'll admit

Was seeing my comrades they're the best that's no shit

Im not going to cry or make a big fuss

But you have to admit that there's none quite like us


We said our good-byes and got into our car

And bid fond adieu to the brave BAR

And gave quiet thanks we lost no one that day

Except those who got lost on the New Jersey Parkway

Sitting pooch

Brown horse

225th Anniversary of the Battles of Saratoga

The happy few who survived the unsupported bayonet charge on Morgan's Riflemen at Freeman's Farm

The BAR frowns on hand to hand combat or physical contact. Our Officer sets the example!

Henry and Bill

Harry and John

Sergeant Krentler & Captain Vilardi

The 22nd and the 55th make their final stand in the Bloody Ridge Redoubt.

A tired 22nd Regiment leaves the field on Sunday.

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