When Camp Mascots Are A Bad Idea, Or, An Unsurprising Series Of Events

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Feb 14, 2012
Central Pennsylvania
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We've had a problematic relationship with the animal world since Day One. Fascination with our wild things of the woods resulted in trying to rub elbows with them far too frequently. Ads like this one of performing bears in a traveling circus, 1862, may have given these soldiers some idea the bear cubs they adopted one day had a mother bear amenable to the signing over custody.

Disclaimer here is yes, I know I post too many newspaper stories. Despite the over abundance of threads based on era newspaper it's impossible to apologize. There are just far too many articles capturing one's interest, too many excellent writers narrating moments in time we'd have missed, too many connections that make you feel 150 years ago was yesterday. I'd rather read a newspaper published 150 years ago than yesterday anyway.

Despite the unfortunate demise of a bear in this story, someone set a scene of entertaining chaos ensuing that began with soldiers deciding bear cubs would make dandy camp mascots. Someone didn't think this one through.

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Momma bear is coming.

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So she's climbing down the smoke hole. It could have been ugly. Description of the dogs is wonderful although maybe just familiar. Our post woman won't come onto the porch anymore. We've arranged it that she beeps from the driveway and we'll come out.

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Writer is obviously a big softy. He stayed out of the fray to comfort the cub with the ouchy paws..

End of story was the demise of the bear, cub still raising heck and a voice out of the darkness, heard in the Union camp.

" Say Yank, you've killed a deer- now get up and kill that dev'lish cub and you kin have it said you've killed a bar, too. '

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No word on the fate of the cubs but you just know the goat got tired.