Bloodshed at Antietam!

by Ted Shealy and Jonah and Honoria Begone

Okay, this one takes some explanation.

Ted Shealy was the unit teenager in the old Third Maryland (U.S.) with whom I used to reenact back in the late 1980s/early 1990s. He enjoyed filling the walls in his basement with enormous battle scenes from the Civil War rendered with ballpoint pen ink on rolls of butcher paper. One such drawing of his was the example included here, with what looked to us like a female in a man's uniform waving a flag about. It was used on a cover of the unit newsletter. "Can You Caption This Scene?" was at the bottom; I forget who the newsletter editor was who came up with that. Mal Stylo, probably.

A big conversational deal at the time was the presence of women dressed earnestly (or, often, badly) as musketmen. My wife got a look at this drawing and suggested that we name it "Bloodshed at Antietam" and do a page in the style of those cheesy promotional flyers for "collectable" historical art which people were getting through the mail. Her idea was that the bloodshed was this female musketman having her period arrive inconveniently during the battle. Hence my wife - "Raglan Blut" - coming up with the epic poem at the bottom of the page.

She's very proud of the poem.

So here it is.