Okay, okay, it’s a vintage Civil War reenactment recruiting poster, but it’s still neat.
Mom’s been cleaning out some old stuff this week and found a box with this relic of dad’s living history days inside. He caught the Centennial reenacting wave and was pretty active in the hobby for a number of years.
The reference to LMU’s museum means this thing can’t be older than 1977, but Dad hung up his shell jacket and kepi not too long after I was born. That dates this poster in the late seventies or very early eighties. A nice bit of curatorial detective work on my part there.
In the same box was another item of some historical interest. It’s an envelope from the Kennedys to my mom. She sent the family a sympathy letter when Bobby died, and they sent back a printed card and a mourning photo bordered in black.
If my conservative father had known we had a thank-you card from the Kennedys in the house, he would’ve gone thermonuclear.
Also in that box was a 1984 clipping from the Knoxville News-Sentinel, covering the Olympic torch relay’s passage through town. This piece isn’t really significant, except that my family was in the crowd and the reporter ended up quoting us for his man-in-the-street sound bytes.
My aunt stated, “I don’t understand how Russia can miss all of this…This is a great thing.” This, you may recall, was the year the USSR boycotted the games.
Here’s the scenario I imagine. Somewhere in Moscow, a couple of Politburo officials read that and said, “You know what? That American woman from Tennessee is right. We missed the torch relay. This Marxist ideology stuff just isn’t worth it anymore.” And the Soviet Union’s downfall began that very day. Of course, I could be wrong about that.
When my turn came, I left the geopolitics out of it and tried to focus on the sunny side: “Michael Lynch, 4, of Tazewell, son of Sylvia Lynch, admitted he did not know what the Olympic Games are. He did say one thing about the rally: ‘I liked all of it.’”
I’ve never been a very keen follower of athletic events.