"Nothing except a battle lost can be half so melancholy as a battle won."
- At the Battle of Frauenstadt (February 12, 1706) 10,000 Swedes took just 15 minutes to rout 20,000 Russians and Saxons, who abandoned 7,000 loaded muskets as they fled the field.
- Tom Mix, one of Hollywood’s first Western stars, often claimed to be a veteran of the Spanish-American War and used the title “Colonel,” which he said had been awarded by the Liberals during the Mexican Revolution of 1911, but there is considerable doubt that he ever soldiered a day in his life.
- Between 791 and 883, the tiny Christian Kingdom of the Asturias, in northern Spain, was invaded at least 33 times by the Emirate of Cordoba, and itself managed to invade its opponent on at least seven occasions.
- Craps was not widely played in the U.S. Army until the Spanish-American War, when white regulars and volunteers for the first time served protracted tours of duty with the black regulars of the four “colored” regiments, among whom it was a common form of gambling, after which it became a favorite among American troops in two world wars.
- During the siege of Florence by Imperial forces in 1529-1530, one of the key defensive positions that enabled the city to hold out for ten months was Mount
San Miniato, which had been fortified under the direction of the distinguished military engineer Michelangelo Buonarotti.
- The U.S. Army’s “Heavy Cavalry Saber, Model 1840” – known to the troopers as “Old Wrist Breaker” – remained in continuous service until 1915, when it was replaced by the Model 1913, designed by a young officer named George S. Patton.
- Tradition has it that after losing badly to a Byzantine army in A.D. 626, the Persian general Shahin was executed by his sovereign, Shah Khushrau [Chosroes] II, by the unique method of being first skinned alive and then salted down.
- The haste with which the 7th New York Volunteers took ship for California during the Mexican-American War was perhaps dictated less by its enthusiasm for the fight than to the fact that regimental commander Jonathan D. Stevenson was trying to elude arrest for fraud involving the provision of uniforms, which proved a smart move, for the good colonel made a killing in crooked land deals around San Diego, and never returned to the Empire State.
Portions of "Al
Nofi's CIC" have appeared previously in Military Chronicles,
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Chronicles (www.militarychronicles.com), used with permission, all rights