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Sons of Union Veterans

Of the Civil War

Oliver Tilden Camp #26

Chartered 1884

"Billy Yank"

By George J. Weinmann & Arthur P. Kirmss

Tilden Camp at Christmas 1998

The 1998 Christmas Party was the first dinner party held in the 7th Regiment Armory since the Tilden Campís 80th Anniversary Dinner held there in 1964. The Christmas Party of 1998 was a "First" in many ways. Chaplain Father John introduced the "Belsnickel", the wickedly funny masked Civil War soldiersí Santa Claus - who dealt out oranges and snacks to "Good Guys" while giving his bamboo stick to the "Bad Guys". The Belsnickel came to Tilden Camp and did his stuff.

Next Came the Banquet arranged by Commander George Weinmann and Tilden Womanís Auxiliary member Janice Lauletta. It was a Civil War soldierís delight - with corn bread, chicken, corn on the cob, fried "Taters" and all soda pop you can drink. Everyone chowed down and plenty was left over. Forty-one members, a record number, attended, showing the spirit of Tilden Camp. A sit-down dinner, George served and Janice dished it out. All had seconds and then some.

Featured entertainment was Co. H, 14th Brooklynís own "Brooklyn Society" singers - three graceful young women in gorgeous hand made period dresses, who sang Civil War Christmas music, accompanied by our uniformed Camp director of music, Bro. Arthur Kirmss. He played the piccolo recorder and sang the bass line. Bro. Matt Hyland also sang a vocal duet with Bro. Arthur and guitar. Bro. Matt then sang a solo of his own selection. There was also a short meeting where all voted unanimously to suspend any further business for the evening.

Commander Weinmann started the night of entertainment by giving us all a surprise: A working singing model of Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer was turned loose upon the crowd, with light-up red nose and hilarious rendition of song. Rudolf is owned by Janice Lauletta. Special thanks to Bros. Phil Kissel, Stewart Slattery, James Bond and auxiliary members Anna Marie Weinmann & Janice Lauletta for their help that evening.

It was a joyous occasion and Christmas at Tilden Camp was indeed celebrated "The Old-Fashioned Way".

General Robert E. Lee Ball

On January 30th Commander George and Sister Janice Lauletta attended the Gen. Archibald Gracie Camp #985 SCV and NY Society Chapter #1 Military Order of Stars and Bars 109th Annual Supper and Ball, to celebrate the birthday of General Robert E. Lee. The event was held in the Appleton Mess at 7:00 PM in the 7th Regiment Armory. Commander Weinmann and Sister Lauletta attended in full Hawkinsí Zouaves uniforms - He as a Zouave infantryman and she as a Zouavesí Vivandiere, however, none of the Confederate Sons wore period uniforms, though some of the women wore period dresses.

Commander Weinmann was given the honor to lead the flag presentation by carrying the National Colors. Our Commander stood in the center of the room, while Tilden Campís Bro. Mark Goret led the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by dual North - South member Rodger Cary who gave an explanation of the flags presented. Bro. John Hilliard is the Commander of Gen. Archibald Gracie Camp and Bro. David Brashear hosted the event. They are to be commended for their good work. We of Tilden Camp were well received . Civil War period music and dance, and the Confederate descendants were gracious hosts.

Community Board #1 Meeting for the restoration of the John Ericsson and U.S.S. Monitor Monument.

On February 8, 1999, Commander George Weinmann and Sister Janice Lauletta President of the Greenpoint Monitor Museum" attended and showed support for the restoration of the John Ericsson and U.S.S. Monitor Monument located in Monsignor McGolrick Park, in Greenpoint Brooklyn where the "U.S.S. Monitor" was built.

John Ericsson Society Meeting

On February 11, 1999, Commander Weinmann attended here and represented Tilden Camp. The society perpetuates John Ericsson, designer of the 1862 Union Ironclad Battleship "U.S.S. Monitor". Sister of Tilden Camp Janice Lauletta is Vice President. The Ericsson Societyís and Tilden Campís Web sites are now connected.

The Third Annual Greenpoint Monitor Water Parade and Concert

The day began 11:00 A.M. at the launch site of the U.S.S. Monitor at Bushwick Inlet in Greenpoint, Brooklyn (Home of a future U.S.S. Monitor Park). A musket salute was given by Co. H, 14th Brooklyn, headed by Bill Cashin, with Tilden Camp Color Guard in attendance. The dayís event was co-sponsored by The Greenpoint Monitor Museum and the Oliver Tilden Camp #26, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. A second salute was fired at Quay and Franklyn Streets, the original construction site of the ironclad Monitor.

At 12:30 P.M. the welcoming Concert was offered at the 1865 Episcopal Church of the Ascension on Kent St. Greenpoint. The concert began with the entrance of the Color Guard of Tilden Camp along with the 14th Brooklyn. Sister Janice Lauletta president of The Greenpoint Monitor Museum, introduced Karen Olszewski, the church organist and soprano soloist. Bro. Arthur Kirmss, Tilden Camp Music Director offered eight selections of Civil War songs accompanied by Karen at the organ; Karen sang Steven Foster Songs accompanied by Eero Richmond at the 1860ís rosewood Steinway, after which pianist Eero Richmond performed Chopin and Schumann. The three musicians ended with a trio of the "Battle Hymn of the Republic". At the concerts end, the performers received a standing ovation. At this time, Tilden Camp Commander George J. Weinmann spoke on the full meaning of Monitor Day and thanked the audience on behalf of the Church of the Ascension, the Greenpoint Monitor Museum and the Oliver Tilden Camp. Also thanked were Mother Lewis, pastor of the church, Bill Cashinís & Bob Danialskiís Co. H., 14th Brooklyn and lastly the three performers. Janice Lauletta was then introduced by Bro. George and spoke to thank members of The Greenpoint Monitor Museum. She also described the dayís events to follow. Coffee and cake was served at the church hall, and everyone boarded the bus for the pier.

Arriving at the Greenpoint Lumber Exchange Terminal pier, the Monitor crew boarded the sternwheeler river boat "Queen of Hearts" for a 3 hour voyage along the East River. Musket volleys were fired at Buswick Inlet (Where the Monitor was built)- Chaplain Fr. John blessing the launch site at this time, the Brooklyn Navy Yard (Where the Monitor was Commissioned), and the Verrazzano Bridge by Fort Hamilton (Where the Monitor departed New York Harbor). The "Queen of Hearts" thus followed the U.S.S. Monitorís original maiden voyage from New York harbor on itís way to the famous battle of 1862 at Hampton Roads, Virginia, where she fought the C.S.S. Merrimack. A New York City Fire Boat sprayed huge blasts of Red, White and Blue water in a patriotic display at each site, while the flotilla sailed with us, made up of a U.S. Coast Guard Cutter, and the large Department of Environmental Protection catamaran ship "Cormorant".

As the "Queen of Hearts" and our flotilla began to sail back towards Greenpoint, dinner was served on board. During the first part of dinner, the "Queen of Hearts" featured a special side trip around Liberty Island to view the famous Statue of Liberty. On the return voyage to Greenpoint we sailed into the setting sun. The Dayís events were greatly enjoyed by all!

Thanks to Sister Janice Lauletta and Commander George Weinmann for all their good work arranging the plans for the Monitor Day event.

Irish-American Parade, Brooklyn, NY

On March 21st 1999 in Park Slope, Brooklyn, Tilden Camp marched in the 24th Annual Brooklyn Irish-American Parade. Our Camp marched in the beginning of the parade with Bro. George Munkenbeckís Co. H, 14th Brooklyn NYSM regiment. The high point of the parade was passing the 1891 74-foot tall "Union Defenders" Arch at the Grand Army Plaza. Oliver Tilden Camp #26, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War was announced at the reviewing stand at the other end of Prospect Park by 9th Street. Commander Weinmann thanked all brothers and friends for attending.

177th Grantís Birthday Commemoration, General Grant National Monument, Riverside Drive, N.Y. City.

On April 25th at 11:00 AM the Call to Order was sounded by SVC William Mason. The Colors advanced to the tune "Rakes of Mallow" by Bro. Kirmss (piccolo), and Bro. Forsythe (bagpipes) playing. PDC & PCC Jim Grismer led the Color Guard into the interior of the monument. The invocation was given by Patriotic Instructor A. Kirmss, and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by JVC Richard Dobson, the National Anthem being sung by Bro. Kirmss. The Americanís Creed was recited by Treasurer Richard Wilson, and the Welcome was given to all present by Camp Commander George J. Weinmann, who expressed clearly our purpose for being there - to honor General Grant and Mrs. Grant on his Birthday, and to keep green the memory of the Grand Army of the Republic.

SVC Mason then introduced the guests of honor - with thanks to: National Commander-in-Chief, SUVCW, Andrew Johnson, Past NY Dept. Commander and National SV Commander-in-Chief, SUVCW, Danny Wheeler, NY Dept. Commander William Rave, and NY Dept. SV Commander & Past Camp Commander Cliff Henke. Also honored was NJ Dept. Commander Michael Logan, Jr.. Of the Womanís Allied Orders, the National President, DUVCW, Dorothy Prentice, was welcomed and Past Dept. President, Womanís Relief Corps, Lorraine Orton was introduced. Lastly, NY State Commander Gerald Fisher, of the Loyal Legion was our guest speaker.

Bro. Bob Lord of Tilden Camp recited the Gettysburg Address, and Commander George Weinmann surprised him with a special Certificate of Merit plaque to honor his many yearís role as camp Program Committee Chairman and in the memory of the Grand Army of the Republic; next, wreaths were presented by National Commander-in-Chief, SUVCW, Andrew Johnson, Tilden Camp Commander George J. Weinmann, National President, DUVCW, Dorothy Prentice, Past Dept. President, Womanís Relief Corps, Lorraine Orton, Commander John M. Hilliard of the General Archibald Gracie Jr. Camp #985, Sons of Confederate Veterans of NY City, also placed a wreath honoring the SCV, Children of the Confederacy, the United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Military Order of the Stars and Bars. During the ceremony, a selection of Civil War music was sung by Bros. Arthur Kirmss with guitar and Matt Hyland.

23 New members were initiated by Commander-in-Chief, SUVCW, Andrew Johnson, after which he spoke on the new memberís behalf. He further stated that he was honored to be at this Grant Day Commemoration given by Tilden Camp. Further remarks were also offered by National SV Commander-in-Chief, SUVCW, Danny Wheeler, NY Dept. Commander William Rave and Major James Grismer 2nd Military District, Sons of Veterans Reserve.

Benediction was given by JVC Richard Dobson, and the Civil War song "Just After the Battle" (1864) was sung by voice and guitar by Bro. Arthur Kirmss. Commander Weinmann gave Remembrance of brothers gone from us, especially Sergeant-at-Arms Frank Cook, who the ceremony was dedicated to. Taps was given on the bugle by Bro. Robert Fries of Col. Augustus Van Horne Ellis Camp #124 and closing remarks were made by Tilden Camp Commander George Weinmann. The retiring of the Colors while the "National Hymn" was played by Bros. Kirmss and Forsythe. He gave thanks to Bro. Bennett, Commander of Augustus Van Horne Ellis Camp #124 of Goshen, NY, Raymond Pickett and the 57th Virginia Inf., the 7th Regiment "Knickerbocker Grays," Bro. George Munkenbeck's Co. H, 14th "Brooklyn" NYSM, Bernard Murray of Greenpoint of 1812 Veteran Corps of Artillery, Fred Capisanoís Garibaldi Guards from Staten Island, and finally thanks to Gerald Fisher Commander of the NY State Loyal Legion; all of you did a great job to make this event a big success!

Michael A. Rawley Jr. Post #1636 American Legionís Memorial Field Mass and Parade

Commander George J. Weinmann, Patriotic Instructor Arthur P. Kirmss, and Sister Janice Lauletta represented Tilden Camp at the Michael A. Rawley Jr. Post #1636 American Legionís Memorial Field Mass and Parade on Sunday May 2nd, 1999 at 11:00 A.M. in the rear yard of the Post located 193 9th St. in Brooklyn. Tilden Campís Color Guard was honored to participate in the Field Mass and Parade. A collation was given after the parade.

Civil War Memorabilia Display

On Thursday, May 6th, the United Veterans and Fraternal Organizations of Maspeth co-sponsored with Tilden Camp an exhibition of Civil War memorabilia put together by Bro. Portanova. The display was open to the public from 9:00 AM to 5 PM in the Knights of Columbus Hall on Grand Avenue. Bro. Portanova had over 120 visitors who walked in from the street, along with teacher escorted children from the local schools. Commander Weinmann, NYDSVC & PCC Henke, Bro. Steinmaker, & Sister Lauletta gave support to Bro. Portanova. The event was a great success due to Bro. Portanovaís hard work and dedication. Great job Bro.!

Fighting 69th Memorial Service

On Sunday, May 16, members of Tilden Camp participated in memorial services in Calvary Cemetery, Queens, NY for members of the Fighting 69th who fought in all wars. Members of the camp placed flags at the 69th monument in tribute to men of the 69th. Commander George J. Weinmann placed a flag for his great Uncle Joseph Weinmann (WWI) and JVC Richard Dobson placed a flag for his gr.gr. grandfather William H. Berrigan (Civil War). After the service, we all were invited to the 69th Regiment Armory on

Lexington Ave. in Manhattan for food and drink. Commander Weinmann thanked Brothers Mason & Dobson & Sister CLauletta for attending this memorial event. He especially thanked Bro. Bond who served with the 69th for inviting us.

Annual Memorial Service at Cypress Hills Cemetery

On Sat. May 22, at 10:00 A.M., Tilden Camp held its Annual Memorial Service in the Civil War section in Cypress Hills Cemetery. The camp had a full Program and had the honor to have a three-piece musical unit which consisted of Bro. Forsythe (Bagpipes); Bro. Kirmss (Piccolo) & new Bro. Joe Korber (fife). The music and weather was Great! Bro. Forsythe had Greetings and spoke on behalf Sons of Confederate Veterans of New York City; NY Dept. SVC & Past Commander Cliff Henke had Greeting from the NY Dept.; Sister Janice Lauletta had Greetings & represented NY Dept. Auxiliary of SUVCW. The graves were decorated while Bro. Kirmss and Bro. Korber played "Battle Hymn of the Republic." In conclusion, Bro. Forsythe played "Taps", Commander Weinmann gave closing remarks followed by my his order to retire the Colors. All present members and friends participated in this event. Commander Weinmann thanked them all for making the event a great success. (See newspaper account of the event)

Pinelawn Long Island National Cemetery

On Sunday, May 23, Commander Weinmann & Sister Lauletta boarded a bus rented by the St. Stanislaus American Legion Post 177, Brooklyn, NY for a trip to Pinelawn Long Island National Cemetery. There family members placed flowers and flags on their loved ones graves. Family members of Commander Weinmann are buried there. A wreath was placed below the Cemetery flagpole. The Post Commander Johnston gave a short memorial service before heading back home. Commander Weinmann & Sister Lauletta represented Tilden Camp at the memorial service.

Maspeth Memorial Day Parade

On Sunday, May 30th Tilden Camp proudly marched in the Maspeth Memorial Day Parade. We had a good membership turnout. We escorted a float dedicated to MIA/POWís of all wars. Tilden Camp thanks Bro. Roy for bringing his daughter and friend to carry the camp banner. Special thanks goes to PDC & PCC Jim Grismer for attending in uniform and Bros. Kirmss on Piccolo and Forsythe on bagpipes. Commander Weinmann thanked all the members who attended this event. After the parade a collation was held at the Lithuanian Club on Grand Ave. across from K of C.

Lynbrook Memorial Day Parade

On Monday, May 31st Tilden Camp also proudly marched in the Lynbrook Memorial Day Parade. We assembled at 9:00 AM outside the McDonaldís Restaurant. The parade started at 9:30 AM. Tilden Camp thanks PDC & PCC Jim Grismer for making preparations for Tilden Camp to march in the parade, Bro. Kirmss for playing the Piccolo, Bro. Molloís Co. E, 14th Brooklyn and Capt. Ray Pickettís 7th Virginia Inf. for joining Tilden camp in the parade. Tilden Camp were guests of Tally Ho Fire Company after the parade. Members of the camp got to meet the Mayor of the town of Lynbrook at the Tally Ho Firehouse. He said we looked the best in the parade! Commander Weinmann thanked Raymond Pickett, Bro. Tony Molloís and all the members who attended this event especially Bro. Grismer.

New York Dept. Encampment

On June 4th to the 6th the New York Dept. Encampment was held in Albany, NY at the Quality Inn Hotel. Commander Weinmann delivered Tilden Campís 5 page camp report in front of high ranking officers of SUVCW. In attendance were C-in-C Andrew Johnson, SV C-in-C Danny Wheeler and JV C-in-C Alan Peterson. Tilden Camp was praised by the officers for keeping the GAR memory alive by having such an active camp. Be proud to be part of Tilden Camp!

Elections and Appointments were made. Tilden Camp is represented in the Department in the following way: PCC Cliff Henke is NY Dept. Commander, Michael Bennett is Dept. SVC, Signal Officer, Webmaster and Volunteer editor, JVC Richard Dobson is NY Department Historian, William Mason is Eagle Scout Chairman & PDC & PCC Joe Pucciarelli is a member of the Department Council. Congratulations and good luck with your new positions. Tilden Camp thanks Bros. Weinmann, Henke, Pucciarelli, Kissel, Bennett and Sister Lauletta for attending the encampment.

Huckleberry Frolic in East Rockaway, NY

On Saturday, June 12, Tilden Camp attended the Huckleberry Frolic in East Rockaway, NY. Tilden Camp had a tent and relics display. Tilden Camp Commander Weinmann thanked PDC & PCC Joe Pucciarelli, Bro. Kent Howell, Bro. Schlesier & Sister Janice Lauletta for attending this event. Thanks to Bro. Schlesier for making arrangements for this event which was a success. Great Job Bro.!

Anniversary Day/Brooklyn-Queens Day On June 10, Bro. Donald Steinmaker marched with his Kepi in Anniversary Day, better known as Brooklyn/Queens Day in Ridgewood, Queens, NY. The day marked the founding of Sunday Schools in Brooklyn.

General Slocum Memorial Service

On Saturday June 12th Tilden Camp attended the Annual Gen. Slocum Memorial Service, Lutheran Cemetery Queens, NY. The service is conducted in front of the Slocum monument which marks the grave of 60 of the 1,021 people (mostly woman and children) who perished in the General Slocum steamboat disaster on June 15, 1904 in the East River, NY City. The German Consulate Metternich, along with DC & PCC Henke & Bro. Steinmaker attended this event.

Flag Day Parade

On Monday, June 14th, Tilden Camp marched in Sons of the Revolution Flag Day Parade. The parade started at City Hall to Frauncis Tavern in lower Manhattan. Tilden Camp was happy to see the camp listed in the Flag Day Parade program. We marched proudly past the two grandstands while Bro. Joe Korber played his fife. We were properly announced as we saluted the grandstands. Food and drink was given upstairs in the flag room in Fraunces Tavern. Commander Weinmann thanked everyone that attended.

Have a great SUMMER!!!!!

George J. Weinmann, Commander

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