I was recently contacted by a Kee Rodgers, a Cleveland born decendant (now living in Lima, Peru) of Captain Ephraim Kee's grandfather (Company B) of the 105th Ohio, a regiment that played a large role in the Perryville battle. He has been kind enough to share with me a poem written by the captain that calls to arms those men who did not join the army in 1861, but were now needed to put down the bloody rebellion. I am hoping that he gives me permission to post the poem here. It is filled with that type of patriotic fervor that this country hasn't seen since World War II.
Captain Kee was a close friend of Albion Tourgee, who wrote "A Story of a Thousand", which is the regimental history of the 105th. Tourgee called Kee "the most intellectual life of the regiment", a pretty strong compliment considering Tourgee's own mental prowess. Captain Kee died at the age of 26 and his funeral was the largest in Trumbull County. He passed away in early 1863 of sickness at Murfreesboro.
This "connection" with Mr. Rodgers is one of the results I had hoped for from starting this blog. Bringing awareness to the Buckeye State's contribution to Perryville (let alone as a general awareness to this pivitol battle), sharing details on Buckeye participants, and honoring those men with an Ohio memorial or interpretive sign are just parts of what I hope this blog will become. Sharing information about individuals adds the human element, and makes the story of Perryville come to life. I try to share human interest stories about Perryville on this hiking tours I lead, and having more stories about those men like Captain Kee makes my "job" on those hikes that much easier.
Speaking of the hike, looks like we will be having a large group in attendance. There are 20+ folks coming from the Louisville hiking group, and I have received emails from various other folks in the general area asking about the hike and stating their intention to participate. The better half and I are heading down to central Kentucky tomorrow, spending time in Danville, seeing some sites and enjoying a few brews. Saturday she will be dropping me off at the battlefield and then she'll head to Shakertown to take pictures of spring flowers (I've bored her on my hiking tour previously - grin
) then pick me up in the afternoon. We'll take in some more of what Danville has to offer Saturday evening, and perhaps see Fort Harrod in Harrodsburg on the way home Sunday. I will be certain to share my thoughts about Danville (where to eat and enjoy beer) here on the blog so that others who plan trips to Perryville have an idea of what else is in the area to enjoy.
More posts coming soon (Perryville pics and other assorted tales).