The 15th New Jersey - 25 Years On

Let me add my high-pitched and squeaky voice to those congratulating the 15th New Jersey on her 25th anniversary. Frankly, given the political half-life of Civil War reenactment units, I wouldn't have thought it possible, especially given the heady mixture of personalities in the 15th and your captain berating you every month about attendance - but there it is, 25 years. A remarkable achievement!

I should mention I had the honor of making the acquaintance of the 15th nearly half her life ago, at the 1984 Rouzerville, PA event. I was camped all by myself, minding my own business and trying to sleep when I heard the incessant and repetitive call of a Carl LaFong routine, pulled out whole and bleeding from a W.C. Fields movie. My interest piqued, I walked up to the Unholy Three - Sangi (spelled "Sangee" in those olden times), Berger and Styple - and discussed greasing Wheezer. It was at this point I knew I had met a reenacting rarity: a true gonzo unit who could export Bayonne to a needful world. No, not another one of those northern "let's-pretend-we're-Confederates" units, but real, live Hard Core Yanks! Talking to youse guys is a yeasty experience, like riding a Coney Island coaster or smelling the toxic waste sites along the parkway - the Real Thing. Geez, no wonder the North won.

Anyway, pluuuueeezzze accept my congratulations on behalf of The Camp Chase Gazette and Jonah's Hell Tent on your 25th anniversary. May your rubber chickens and uncompromising bad attitudes be found on many a future battlefield! (Yeah, yeah, I know about all the preservation work you do - but it's the scumbag stuff that impresses me more.)


Jonah Begone