Undertoad Monday Jun 6 03:52 PM
6/6/2005: Union boy drummers
xob writes, "The recent discussion about the beating children take in a war made me think this picture of us sending children to war was quite poignant."
Yessir, I do agree.
capnhowdy Monday Jun 6 05:46 PM
"this picture of us sending children to war .............."
Were they actually deployed, or is this a novelty pic?
I'd like to learn more.
Happy Monkey Monday Jun 6 06:00 PM
They were deployed, but on a case by case basis they may have been kept out of battles. They didn't fight* - they played the drums to regulate marches and relay orders.
* That doesn't mean they didn't get killed.
mrnoodle Monday Jun 6 06:05 PM
be interesting to know the whole history of boy drummers (drummer boys?)
googling those terms only gets me Beach Boys links (i dunno) and gay porn. anyone know where's a good place to read up on that stuff?
the drummers, not the beach boys or porn.
Happy Monkey Monday Jun 6 06:26 PM
This site has some info, despite apparently being a clothing site and having two 'g's in 'bugler'. As for history, my guess is that it was considered the best way to handle the kids who insisted on joining up with their older siblings or friends.
(ignore the login prompts, they only affect the images)
Troubleshooter Monday Jun 6 09:31 PM
Back when war was still semi-civilized, armies would deploy buglers, drummers, guidons and so on. It was considered very bad form to shoot any of those.
xoxoxoBruce Monday Jun 6 09:40 PM
Thousands of children were directly involved in the Civil War. Older boys served as soldiers. Many younger boys were also invoved, some boys as young as 11 years old. The younger boys generlly served as drummer or buggle boys. Commonly the drummer and buggle boys were 13-15 years of age.
Of course, 150 years ago getting married at 16 as more common and 40 was old.
Beyond the use of very young boys as deummer boys and buggle boys, about 1 million boys 17 years of age and under fought with the Federal Army alone. Almost surely very large numbers of similarly aged boys fought with the Conderacy, although actual records are less available.
chrisinhouston Monday Jun 6 10:24 PM
Worked on it a bit...
Happy Monkey Monday Jun 6 10:45 PM
Not that most of the soldiers actually aimed at specific targets.
Originally Posted by Troubleshooter
It was considered very bad form to shoot any of those.
LCanal Monday Jun 6 10:53 PM
When life was simpler, but not easier and there was no compulsory education at what age does a boy become a man and a what age would a youth be deemed to be self-sufficient? In some “primitive” societies boys become men at 12-ish and go through a right of passage and live in the men’s hut. There they take part in hunts and ritual celebrations as men.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-comfficeffice" /><o:p></o:p>
Many younger boys were also invoved, some boys as young as 11 years old. The younger boys generlly served as drummer or buggle boys. Commonly the drummer and buggle boys were 13-15 years of age.
So we should not consider it unusual that 150+ years ago that youths now considered men should be sent by their parent to join the military. They served as midshipmen and powder monkeys in navies and as we know drummers etc. in the army. There they were not a burden on the families, got 3 squares a day and, as long as there was no war, a reasonable life for the time. A better life than could be said for the one’s that went to the then fledgling industrial revolution or worked the land. <o:p></o:p>
wolf Tuesday Jun 7 01:30 AM
what smiley were you actually going for there?
smithgr Tuesday Jun 7 09:28 AM
The youngest drummer to join via official recruiting was 8 years old though some younger ones simply joined the ranks as armies marched through their towns.
They definitely came under fire and in some cases were seasoned combat veterans at very young ages. Willie Johnston, the United States' youngest recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor, earned the nation's top military honor just shy of his 12th birthday for valor under fire.
Can you say PTSD? I wonder how many of these child soldiers actually led normal lives after the war.
magilla Tuesday Jun 7 11:04 AM
As I understand it, drummers were often detailed as stretcher bearers once the shooting started.
xoxoxoBruce Tuesday Jun 7 09:20 PM
When my father was 12,(1930) he was unloading 150lb bales of hemp from railroad cars for a rope mill.
When life was simpler, but not easier and there was no compulsory education at what age does a boy become a man and a what age would a youth be deemed to be self-sufficient? In some “primitive” societies boys become men at 12-ish and go through a right of passage and live in the men’s hut.
Shame he didn't know you could smoke it.
LCanal Tuesday Jun 7 09:31 PM
Bet they don't get many law suits. Plaintiffs wouldn't have a leg to stand on.
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