Educational and Informative

Discussion in 'General Conversation' started by AwShucks, Jan 4, 2008.

  1. AwShucks

    AwShucks New Member

    Guthrie, Oklaho
    Just ran across this... thought I'd pass it on....


    If any of you have ever been to a military funeral in which taps were played; this brings out a new meaning of it.

    Here is something Every American should know.

    We in the United States have all heard the haunting song, 'Taps'. It's the song that gives us tha t lump in our throats and usually tears in our eyes.

    But, do you know the story behind the song? If not, I think you will be interested to find out about its humble beginnings.

    Reportedly, it all began in 1862 during the Civil War, when Union Army Captain Robert Ellicombe was with his men near Harrison's Landing in Virginia. The Confederate Army was on the other side of the narrow strip of land.

    During the night, Captain Ellicombe heard the moans of a soldier who lay severely wounded on the field. Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederate soldier, the Captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man back for medical attention. Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the Captain reached the stricken soldier and began pulling him toward his encampment.

    When the Captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was actually a Confederate soldier, but the soldier was dead.

    The Captain lit a lantern and suddenly caught his breath and went numb with shock. In the dim light, he saw the face of the soldier. It was his own son. The boy had been studying music in the South when the war broke out. Without telling his father, the boy enlisted in the Confederate Army.

    The following morning, heartbroken, the father asked permission of his superiors to give his son a full military burial, despite his enemy status. His request was only partially granted.

    The Captain had asked if he could have a group of Army band members play a funeral dirge for his son at the funeral.

    The request was turned down since the soldier was a Confederate.

    But, out of respect for the father, they did say they would give him one musician.

    The Captain chose a bugler. He asked the bugler to play a series of musical notes he had found on a piece of paper in the pocket of the dead youth's uniform.

    This wish was granted.

    The haunting melody, we now know as 'Taps' .. . used at military funerals was born.

    The words are :

    Day is done..
    Gone the sun.
    From the lakes.
    From the hills.
    From the sky.
    All is well
    Safely rest.
    God is nigh.

    Fading light.
    Dims the sight.
    And a star.
    Gems the sky.
    Gleaming bright.
    From afar.
    Drawing nigh.
    Falls the night.

    Thanks and praise.
    For our days.
    Neath the sun.
    Neath the stars.
    Neath the sky.
    As we go.
    This we know.
    God is nigh.

    I too have felt the chills while listening to 'Taps' but I have never seen all the words to the song until now. I didn't even know there was more than o ne verse. I also never knew the story behind the song and I didn't know if you had either so I thought I'd pass it along.

    I now have an even deeper respect for the song than I did before.

    Remember Those Lost and Harmed While Serving Their Country.

    And also those presently serving in the Armed Forces.
  2. john catfish young

    john catfish young New Member

    Thankyou for that info. The last time I heard taps played was at my Uncles funeral. He had a military funeral and the 21 gun salute. It was many years ago and I was just a small child, but I remember it like it was yesterday. Thanks again.

  3. Ol Man

    Ol Man New Member

    Great story...
    Your worst humiliation is only someone else's momentary entertainment. (Karen Crockett)
  4. Wil

    Wil New Member

    Minden Nebraska
    in my high school i play the trumpet and im the one of the only trumpets that really cares/loves music enough to play taps at military. thanks for that brother, reps to you. ive played that song a lot and all i knew about it was that i had to play it like it was my family member that passed on because if was for someone who loved his/her country enough to fight for it at some point in time. thanks
  5. Gordhawk

    Gordhawk New Member

    Thank You,for that information on the origin of "Taps". The only thing that I knew about the playing of "Taps" was it was something that was done at a military funeral to show respect to that person for serving their country.
    It's been nearly 24 yrs. since we laid my father to rest,but it seems like it was just yesterday hearing "Taps" being played and the 21 gun salute. I have some of the shell casings from that day,and my oldest daughter has the flag that was presented to my mother that day. My mother has since passed on too. Reading this thread brings back a lot of fond memories of my father,who passed on when he was only 59 yrs old. There is not a time that I go fishing that I don't think about him,and wish he was still here to go with me. He was the man that taught me to fish,and even though he's not here now,I know he is right there in the boat with me every time I go.
    So again,Thank You Lawrence,for the memories!

    God Bless You,
  6. 1sporticus

    1sporticus Active Member

    I've known about the history for a while now, and it's a haunting story, just like the music. I get the spine tingles when I hear it, and I can't listen very closely or I might just have a private moment in public. I come from a Military family, and I served also, my Dad was the Commander of the Local VFW for many years, and I used to help out quite abit. One of my many duties was to keep the rifles cleaned. You've taken me back, Thanks. Later Andy