A Fine Fossil

Provost Marshall Marsena Patrick

Among Civil Warriors, I’m old-fashioned. I wear bow ties to speaking events, and sign my books with a fountain pen.

But dog my cats if I have found a finer characterization of who I would like to be—don’t tell my wife—than the description one Federal officer gave to Union Brig. Gen. Marsena Patrick, as quoted in Chris Mackowski and Kris White’s Simply Murder: The Battle of Fredericksburg:

“the finest existing fossil of the Cenozoic age.”

Who wants to be an old timer? Few of us! But I’d be proud to have this on my gravestone!

2 Responses to A Fine Fossil

  1. I have always thought that Marsena Patrick takes first prize for oddest looking general in the Federal Army…cannot get over his egg shaped skull, surrounded by upward-swept side-tufts, combined with the dark ‘stache and white beard.

  2. I wear a dress to speak at events, and was gifted with a silver Cross pen to autograph my books. Not quite as far back as you go . . . but the same effort. I am partial to “I told you I was sick.”

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