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"'Keep 'Em Rolling'" Topic

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Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2019 4:15 p.m. PST

If anyone is interested, there is a ca 1930s movie, 'Keep 'Em Rolling' being played on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) on 18 October.

It is about a US artillery horse of War I, but the interesting part is the actual photography of active duty horse-drawn artillery in part of the movie. It shows what horse teams could do and how fast they could actually travel when necessary.

epturner Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2019 8:15 p.m. PST

Nice. Now if they'd just do something for the US Army mule, which any proper historian knows carried the real load, not the proverbial horse, that'd be just sweet.

But I'm just a Bleeped text historian, thumping for the poor… Bleeped text

Yeah. Something like that.

1956, The Year the last Bleeped text Battery and the last Mule Train QM unit went out of service… oh, I'm sorry… you were talking about a horse…

Sorry, Kevin, do please, carry on…


Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP08 Oct 2019 4:37 a.m. PST

The horse's name is Rodney…

Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP08 Oct 2019 8:02 a.m. PST
dibble08 Oct 2019 11:42 a.m. PST

The horse's name is Rodney

Rodney Trotter :)…The UK posters should get the joke

Old Contemptible08 Oct 2019 11:53 a.m. PST

Is this anything like the movie "Warhorse" with a horse, I think is named Joey.

Why is this thread on the Napoleonic boards? Bug?

Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP08 Oct 2019 12:14 p.m. PST

I thought it appropriate here as there are questions from time to time about artillery horse teams.

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP08 Oct 2019 1:38 p.m. PST

Absolutely. I very much doubt that HA gun teams in Napoleon's time moved any differently to those in ACW, WWI or even our Hyde Park for a parade thing (OK, surface is a bit better now)

I did not get the gag, even when reminded. I am ashamed I did not. I apologise to Brechtel for missing that and thank dibble for developing it for us thickos

That is very subtle. But it might just be brilliant, if totally lost on our Cousins over the Pond. @Brechtel198 "Oh you Bleeped text" was the quote, as I recall.

Oh can you believe it? It censors what Del boy always said to Rodney… rhymes with conker.

Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP08 Oct 2019 3:58 p.m. PST

From Sound of the Guns by Fairfax Downey, 200-210:

''Rodney', the most famous horse of the US Field Artillery, was a near-wheeler. Ridden by the driver of the rearmost pair of a six-horse team, his was the most important post. It was his duty and his mate's to furnish part of the draft, to swing the pole, or to hold back in the breeching, aided by cannoneers at the brakes, when the limber and gun behind them descended a down grade. When he joined the service in 1896, he was eight years old, an unusually good-looking light bay with dark points, of Thoroughbred and Clydesdale blood, 15.3 hands high, weight 1,250 pounds. He was named after Caesar Rodney of Delaware, who made a noted ride to Philadelphia to affix his decisive signature to the Declaration of Independence; or, as some say, he was the namesake of Colonel George B Rodney, a Civil War artilleryman.'

'Rodney was the pet of every driver who sat him and the pride of every battery with which he served. He was never sick and never refused a feed or a task. Intelligent, strong, and willing, he pulled so hard that sometimes he broke his harness. His great moment came at El Poso, Cuba, in 1898…When the guns of Light Battery A, 2d Artillery, badly needed on the firing line, became mired in a churned-up, almost impassable slough, Captain George S Grimes ordered all teams unhitched. Rodney and his teammate 'Shaw' alone were kept in draft. Urged by their driver, the mighty pair, belly-deep in mud, threw their weight into their collars, tugged for dear life at traces, and hauled limber and gun out onto firm ground. Then they extricated all the rest of the stalled carriages, and the battery galloped forward into action. The same day they rescued another bogged-down outfit, much to its chagrin, and later, before Santiago, repeated their feat. After the Cuban campaign Rodney made many a long route march, including one of seven hundred miles, averaging twenty-one a day, and in maneuvers always outlasted his fellows…'

'When the years began to tell on him, he was retired on the understanding that he would not be discarded and sold to pull a huckster's cart, dray, or dump wagon, but in 1916, without the knowledge of the battery, he was inspected, condemned, and put up at auction. Just in time his friends in the ranks got word and rushed to the sale, where against the competition of a mean-spirited dealer, who bid up the price, the artillerymen in heart-warming loyalty pooled their money to buy him for $107. USD A plea by the battery through military channels required nineteen endorsements but resulted in orders that at government expense Rodney would be provided stable, forage, and care 'wherever he may be for the rest of his life.' He lived it out doing light work, hoisting hay and grain to a loft, but playing hookey to graze whenever disposed. At the ripe old age of thirty his legs failed him, and he was mercifully put to sleep.'

So were the horses of strength and character that pulled the artillery in all weathers, under fire-stoically standing in place with their drivers without the satisfaction of shooting back.

epturner Supporting Member of TMP08 Oct 2019 7:13 p.m. PST

The poor benighted Army mule did more to haul wagons and guns than did horses.

Sorry for the Jack and Arse reference. It wasn't meant as a dig against you. It's just a term for the prime mover of said wagons and guns.

I was also trying to apply a bit of Army humour.


42flanker08 Oct 2019 10:38 p.m. PST

You said 'arse.'

Quel plonqueur


14Bore09 Oct 2019 4:26 p.m. PST

Hopefully will get to see it

14Bore12 Oct 2019 3:56 p.m. PST

4:30 pm have it marked

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