July 4 marked my 6th wedding anniversary, and apparently, that is to be celebrated by the exchange of iron. It is supposed to signify strength and stability. I gave my husband some irony, but he gave me an actual iron artifact–General George Custer’s stirrup!
He kept hinting around at what it might be, but I never even got close. Even after I opened it, I was pretty bumfuzzled. It was not until I read the excellent letter from Mr. Craig Wofford that I finally understood what I was looking at. The letter reads:
Thank you for your purchase. I dug this stirrup myself from George Custer’s 3-day camp here in Halifax, VA. This was about 7-8 days before (the) Appomattox surrender in 1865. I remember it was at the base of a large tree that roots had intertwined, about 7 inches deep. I remember about 30 minutes spent getting it free without damaging or breaking (it). I’m sure it was discarded and thrown against the tree while in camp on that hillside. I have detected that camp for over a year now and always find something. Regards, Craig Wofford
Now, I realize that nowhere does Mr. Wofford state that the stirrup belonged to General Custer. He never misrepresents himself in any way. But–in my whimsical mind–well–it’s gotta belong to Custer–right? I mean, who else would have tossed aside a stirrup in such a “cavalier” manner? OK–I know it probably does not belong to George Armstrong, but a girl can hope … and it is a beautiful wedding anniversary gift.
So thanks and all my love to Robert, and to Mr. Wofford, for the gift of some impressive cavalry trash!