Thursday, May 3, 2018

1865 Blog- General Grant Langenkamp

Dear Diary,

Today, April 9, 1865, the war has ended. All the bloodshed is behind us. I wrote Lee a letter strongly suggesting he surrender this God-awful war before more lives are lost. He is a fine man, very proud, and he showed up to our meeting in his finest attire. I, on the other hand, came straight from battle and did not have time to change into any kind of nice clothing- I was simply in an old major's uniform, hair unbrushed and wild. He didn't remember me from the Mexican War, although I surely remember him. I just wanted this terrible conflict to be resolved, so I offered some pretty reasonable terms of surrender. It was agreed that all Confederate soldiers must relinquish all CSA issued weapons, although they can keep their personal ones as well as their horses. Also, they had to agree to stop fighting and just go home in order to keep the peace. Lastly, I have given them 25,000 ration meals for their efforts and hunger, its been quite some time since they have last eaten. Those boys fought long and hard, including Lee, and I admire that. They fought for what they believed in and they fought long and hard, so I felt it was only right to offer them very fair terms of surrender. It's strange, I should feel accomplished and happy, yet all I feel is sorrow for the South and red for the rebuilding of this country. I wonder what the country is going to do once Lincoln is gone. He asked me and my sweet wife, Julia to attend a play with him on the 14th of April, but we have plans to visit family so I don't think I will go. I am so tired, now that this war is over, I think I’m going to take a long awaited nap. I will write again someday, hopefully I will be in a better mental state then.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

1864 Blog- General Grant Langenkamp

My Famous Order of Rice Pudding with Lemon Sauce

Ingredients (Rice Pudding):

1 tablespoon butter
3 cups cooked rice
4 eggs, separated
2 cups half and half
2 cups milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lemon peel, grated
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt

Directions (Rice Pudding):

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  •  Stir butter into rice
  • Beat egg yolks, add half and half milk, sugar, lemon peel and salt
  • Add yolk mixture to rice, fold in egg whites which have been beaten until stiff but not dry
  • Turn into a buttered shallow 2 quart baking dish, set in pan of hot water
  • Bake 1 hour, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean
  • Serve warm with lemon sauce

Ingredients (Lemon Sauce):

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup boiling water
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon lemon peel, grated
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Directions (Lemon Sauce):

  • Combine sugar, cornstarch and salt, stir in water gradually
  • Cook, stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes
  • Blend in remaining ingredients

My dear wife, Julia used to make this for me all the time. Oh how I miss it and her. It's been quite a while since I've had my delicious meal of choice, but the thought of it still makes my mouth water like it did the first time. One of my favorite things about it is the element of surprise it brings to the table. When you take your first bite, your senses will be overwhelmed with flavors bursting from every inch of the pudding. It tastes like nothing else and no one makes it better than my Julia. I can not wait to be home again for many reasons, one of the main ones being biting into a cold spoonful of delicious rice pudding!

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

1862 Blog- General Grant Langenkamp

A letter home to Julia (Wife)

My dearest Julia,

I wish I did not have to trouble you with the perils of battle, but the my spirits are low because of the treason and murder I have witnessed. Recently, the Union secured a victory at Antietam, but not without much struggle and bloodshed. Going into the battle, the South was extremely confident having won many battles prior to Antietam, poor Butternuts never saw the Union victory coming. However, General McClellan somehow discovered the South's attack plans and rushed to the battlefield to end this little skirmish with very little casualties. Lee quickly took Sharpsburg including Dunker Church, it being higher ground. At the beginning, most of the bloody action took place at Dunker Church, in the cornfields, or in the West Woods. Despite the many advantages the Union had, we were never able to truly "win" for every time we took a small lead, our leading General would get shot off the ground. Just when we were suffering the most, near giving up, you will never believe what happened. A young Alabama officer called for an about face in the middle of a huge engagement, causing all of the South to retreat. They even named the ditch in the road Bloody Lane because of all the dead bodies that were piled in it during the battle. Much later in the day, Lee's right flank was in much distress and the General Burnside saw this as a fit time to try and cross the bridge he and had been trying to cross for hours. I wonder if he would have gone across if he had known there were Confederate sharpshooters on the other side waiting for him. Nevertheless, he pushed them back and eventually the CSA was forced to retreat. McClellan paused and waited for two whole hours before engaging in a final battle with Lee and his troops. The struggles we faced during that battle no longer matter, for General McClellan has been relieved from his duty as General. Maybe I will be a replacement for him- a man can only dream.  We need a good general with brilliant strategies and we need him soon or the CSA will have even more time to regroup and plan more battles. I miss you so and can not wait to see you again. Tell the children I love and miss them. Being apart from you all is the hardest part of war. I must get back to duty now, I hope you understand.

Sweetest Regards, Ulysses

Saturday, April 7, 2018

1861 Blog- General Grant Langenkamp

America Will Rise Again

A Poem by General Grant

was the battle of Bull Run
37,000 Americans marched
fighting on- though they were parched
To cut the railroad at Manasas
was their goal; nothing passes
But let them win, the Confederate did not
instead they built a blockade and shot
McDowell sent his men en route
into the left flank of the CSA troop
Unionists, sure they were to win
picked up souvenirs and put them in their bin
General Jackson was at a stall
and got himself nicknamed "Stonewall"
The turning point came
with General Bearegaurd's claim to fame
Calling reinforcements by horses and trains
caused the North to grimace in pain
All good things come at a cost
leaving the Union's brains completely lost
The South has won the battle at last
and the North will go home, out into the vast

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Enlistment Blog- General Grant Langenkamp

Enlistment Blog- Diary Entry

April 27, 1861

I have spent my whole life surrounded by strong, independent military-minded men that have shaped who I am and who I always will be. My name is Ulysses S. Grant. Growing up, I was a shy one. I did not really get along super well with other children because they would often bully me for being so shy and introverted by calling me "useless" instead of Ulysses. However, I have grown up and those weary school days are now a thing of the past. I was thrown into the world of horse care and riding from a very young age. In fact, since the very beginning of my equestrian career, I showed great promise for taming, riding and managing horses. I have served in the army for many years, but never for very long and never as a very high rank. No matter how many times I have tried to start up home-run businesses, farms or anything else, I have never felt as though it was my destiny, and I have never had any luck in that department anyway. I have made a life for myself, my sweet, sweet wife, and four kids, Nellie, Jesse, Buck, and Fred. They mean so much to me and I take pride in their accomplishments. The thought of being away from them is heart-wrenching to its very core, nevertheless, I will continue to do what I see fit to bring the country's spirit and heart back from the dead in order to win this war. Slavery is an issue that has divided our country enough, and we need to change the way our country is working, and if that means war, so be it. I understand that there is much work to be done in the South, and there are very few people willing and wanting to do it. However, instead of forcing manual labor upon innocent slaves with no reward, why don't you just pay for them to work, not a hefty amount of course, and get the job done that way. That is what I do at least. During a time of great struggle and angst in my life, I acquired a slave from my father-in-law named William. William could have sold for nearly $1,500, but instead of trading him for the money my family and I needed so desperately, I decided to free him because no matter how poor I ever became, I never wanted the guilt of a slave's life and well-being resting on my conscious. As soon as the Civil War came along, I found my place. I realized that I was not destined for a life in the common world, I was destined for a life in the military.