After I change my underwear, I'm going to kill you......
Ah, the military. Is there anyplace they won't fight?
Actually, you'd be surprised. We've all heard of certain battles. We call them by name. But, those battles weren't always fought where you think they were fought.
We'll start with what could be considered a minor technicality. In July of 1861, not far from Washington DC, there is a town called Manassas Junction. It was the location of the first major battle of the Civil War. However, if you asked a union soldier how the battle of Manassas went, he wouldn't have known what you were talking about. The battle wasn't actually fought in the town, but on an open area overlooking a stream named, 'Bull Run'.
Now, I know, it's a technicality, but what the confederates called 'The Battle of Manassas', wasn't fought in Manassas Junction.
Union soldiers and civilians were so confident in their ability to crush the confederates that, hundreds of people traveled by train from Washington DC to watch the battle. They made a picnic out of it.
All right. Not odd enough? How about this?
The Battle of Bunker Hill. As kids in elementary school, (the American ones, at least), all heard about this battle. (or they did back in my day...). This is the battle at the beginning of the Revolutionary War where the famous line, "Don't fire until you see the whites of their eyes!" was uttered. Except, we don't know who said it. It's been attributed to 4 different men. One may have said it and it was repeated by the other three, or it might not have been said at all. Who knows? (it was uttered several times in the past and has been documented).
But, back to Bunker Hill. Except, the battle wasn't on Bunker Hill. At the end of the day, the British did have control of Bunker Hill, but the fighting took place on Breeds Hill. The militias and Minute Men inflicted heavy casualties on the British, but just could not stop them from advancing and taking over their positions on Breeds Hill. Instead of performing an orderly retreat to prepared positions on Bunker Hill to continue the fight, sadly, the Americans fled the field. (in their defense, they were green troops going against well seasoned combat veterans).
It ended up being a victory that the British wouldn't have been able to sustain. They lost almost three times as the colonials to killed and wounded. And, they lost a large number of officers.
Still not enough? Ok. NEXT!
Tell me, who has heard of Teddy Roosevelt, and how he led his Rough Riders in a charge up San Juan Hill? Most of us, I'm sure. It was a pivotal battle in the Spanish-American War. That was fought in Cuba, amongst other places, like the Philippines. But, not Spain, and not America. But I digress....
While there was a battle fought on San Juan Hill, Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough Riders weren't there. At the time the US 10th and 24th regiments, (the Buffalo Soldiers), were trying to dislodge the Spanish, TR and his RR were charging up Kettle Hill. While they did take part in very heavy fighting to dislodge the Spanish, (Roosevelt was awarded the Medal of Honor in 2001 for his actions in Cuba during the war), they fought for Kettle Hill, not San Juan Hill. There is some evidence that Roosevelt did climb to the top of San Juan Hill, but it wasn't a charge, and it wasn't until 2 days after the battle.
I was going to write more in this post, but this one is long enough. Maybe, if you behave, eat all your vegetables and clean your rooms, I'll tell you about some of the oddest battles to ever take place tomorrow.
And remember, it's all about location, location, location.