Well my brothers, September is here, the first day of fall and almost time to
harvest the pumpkins.
Octoberfest is soon to be here along with Biketoberfest, so becareful out
riding with all the drunks.
Stay warm my brothers and see you again next month. We love our readers and
thanks to everyone for the reports and readership.
John and I love ya’ll and that is why do this.
Riding weather is improving and soon, the snow will fall, at least outside Florida.
I would like to thank all of our reporters from the Confederation for their contributions to the Cracker.
Well my brothers, September is here, the first day of fall and almost time to harvest the pumpkins.
Octoberfest is soon to be here along with Biketoberfest, so becareful out
riding with all the drunks.
Stay warm my brothers and see you again next month. We love our readers and thanks to everyone for the reports and readership.
John and I love ya’ll and that is why do this.
Knock on wood everything is running smoothly in Florida. I had the honor to send John Polo our
Hold the Line award and without his constant work, the Cracker would not be what it is today.
Thanks John for your dedication and hard work.
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS -
For personal reasons, I am going to have travel to Madrid and Andalusia. (Spain), during 9 days, September 18th - September 26th,
and will not be checking my inbox during this time, I will read my emails upon my return on September 27th.
I want to start work (Cracker October) as soon as possible, on the same day September 27th and distribute
the newsletter: 29th September. (God willing).
Please send me the Cracker reports before the day of my return. Thanks.
John J Polo
REST IN PEACE
Robert Adair #2291
August 29, 2019
Men of the Cavalry,
I am saddened to learn of a Brother's passing from the great state of Mississippi. Please pray for the family, Camp members,
and his SCVMC Brothers in Mississippi as they deal with this loss. All flags are to be lowered to half staff from now until one day after his services.
I will pass along further information as I receive it.
SCV Mechanized Cavalry Commanding
I am sad to report that Robert Adair SCVMC #2291 has crossed the river. Please keep his family in your thoughts and prayers.
I am ordering all flags in Mississippi be flown at mass staff until one day after he is laid to rest.
Captain Kevin Nelms
In Loving Memory:
August 5, 2019
Special Thanks to:
Chuck Clements, Adjutant Major Charles Q Petty Camp #872
Sons of Confederate Veterans
Men of the Old North State
With much sorrow I pass this information on regarding our last known NC Real Son.
All flags are to be lowered to half staff from now until Sunday August 11,2019, in his honour.
Commander NC Division SCV
It is my sad duty to report the passing of Major Charles Q Petty Camp #872 member and Real Son of a Confederate Soldier,
Mr Clifford Blair Hamm. He was called home on Monday, August 5, 2019 at 10:45 am.
Funeral possibly on Saturday, August 10,
2019. Details to follow.
Please be in prayer for the family.
Real Son Clifford Blair Hamm published in the Gaston Gazette
GASTONIA - Clifford "Cliff" Blair Hamm, passed away peacefully at his son's home on Monday, August 5, 2019
with his loving family by his side. Cliff was born in Gastonia and was the son of the late John Berry Hamm and
Annie Gillespie Hamm. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife of 63 years, Inez Davis Hamm;
brother, Glenn Hamm; two sisters, Beulah Brindle, Jeanette Hester. Last son of a Confederate Veteran, John Barry Hamm,
71st North Carolina Troops. He was born and grew up during the Great Depression and joined the United States Marine
during World War II. He fought with the Sixth Marine Division was among the victors at the Battle of Okinawa. After the war,
he came home, married and adored his wife, Inez Davis Hamm. Mr. Hamm worked in retail sales and was proud to be a salesman.
As a Boy Scout leader, he served for many years and dedicated himself to helping boys toward responsible manhood.
Some of those boys had no responsible male figure to guide them. Mr. Hamm was a member of Gastonia Masonic Lodge #369
AF&AM, Marine Corps League, Gaston County Honor Guard and World War II Last Man's Club. He was past president of the
South Gastonia School PTA and was a Deacon and Elder of his church. A long time member of Olney Presbyterian Church,
he always lived by Christian, Patriotic and Conservative principles. After a long absence, he spearheaded the effort to get the
Christmas Lights shining again atop the Firestone Mill, thus making Christmas brighter for all who saw them. His motto was
"There is never a right way to do the wrong thing". Cliff leaves to cherish his memories, his loving son and his wife,
Greg Hamm (Gail); his two loving grandsons, Nathan Alan Hamm, Sr. (Lynn), Mark Hamm; three loving grandchildren,
Kelli Ann Hamm King (Scott), Emily Gail Hamm, Nathan "Nate" Alan Hamm, Jr.; one loving great granddaughter, Adalynn King;
loving nephew, Forrest "Shot" Hester (Cindy), niece, Sara Ann Kizziah. The family will receive family and friends from 12:30 p.m.
to 1:45 p.m. Saturday, August 10, 2019 at Olney Presbyterian Church, 251 Olney Church Road, Gastonia with a Celebration
of Life Service to follow at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, August 10, 2019 at Olney Presbyterian Church with Rev. Elizabeth Sigmon,
Pastor John Stanley and Pastor Crighton Lovelace officiating. Interment will follow in the Olney Presbyterian Church Cemetery
with Military Honors by the United States Marine Corps, Marine Corps League and Gaston Honor Guard. Masonic Graveside Rites
will be by the Masonic Lodge #369. Pallbearers will be members of his Masonic Lodge and Honorary Pallbearers will be Gaston
Honor Guard. Memorials may be made to Gaston Hospice, P.O. Box 3984, Gastonia, NC 28054 or Shiners Hospital for
Children, 950 W. Faris Rd, Greenville, SC 29605 Online condolences may be made at: www.withersandwhisenantfuneral.com
Withers and Whisenant Funeral Home and
Cremation Service, 2916 Union Road, Gastonia, NC (704) 864-5144 is serving the
Published in Gaston Gazette on Aug. 7, 2019.
Subsequent to the notice I posted regarding the passing of Compatriot Clifford Hamm, one of the last two "Real Sons"
who are members of the Sons of Confederate
Veterans organization, many have inquired about the remaining "Real Son."
He is compatriot Calvin Robertson Crane. Compatriot Crane is a member of the Fincastle Rifles SCV Camp 2245 in Roanoke, VA.
He is a WWII Army veteran. Compatriot Crane is 102 years of age and resides in a Veterans Assisted Living Facility.
He is very sharp of mind and reads the Roanoke newspaper daily.
Billy Starnes has been elected to Captain of 2B.
At the last National officers call the General’s staff created the “Hold the Line award, which John Polo received
the first from Florida’s Captain David King, for his long and dedicated service
on the “Florida Cracker.”
The wording is:
This certifies that John Polo has aided and defended Monuments and Memorials, to all Southern Valor,
military and civil by holding the line while up holding a devotion for God, for the principles representing the Confederate States,
the honorable men for which our forefathers fought.
#266 John Polo is member of 3rd Battalion Company "D" - Florida (Overseas member)
and SCV Kirby Smith Camp #1209, Jacksonville (Florida), Overseas member
Dear Compatriots & Friends,
Tickets are on sale for the 2019 Hendry House Gathering on Saturday December 7th. Tickets are $8.00 each, and as always,
please bring a covered dish or a dessert. Coffee, Sweet Tea, and Soda as well as main dishes will be provided.
Please contact Camp Adjutant Jerry Shell -firstname.lastname@example.org or 757-749-6017 or myself –email@example.com or 239-217-0838 to get your tickets.
T.M. Fyock, Commander
Maj. W.M. Footman Camp #1950
Special thanks to Jim Edwards for the report:
Four Northeast Florida Mech-Cav members joined/transferred to SCV Camp 745,
General Joseph Finegan camp, located in Callahan, Florida.
They were all sworn in (something the cp cmdr does) pledging their allegiance to the SCV
at the August 19th camp meeting by Camp
Commander Robert Sieg.
Pictured from left to right: LT Joe Davis, the Northeast Florida Regional Mech-Cav boss, PVT Lee Penny,
new SCV and Mech-Cav member, SGT Randy Byrd, aka Randy Stones, and PVT Jimmy Edwards. Camp Commander Sieg is on the far right.
(Wouldn't that be something if all the remaining Northeast Mech-Cav members transferred to this same SCV Camp
-- great opportunity to hold group monthly meetings?)
This is the story Capt. King spoke about last month in his comments, The Captain also
said this gentlemen is working with him to get these artifacts back together for display.
My friend I am overjoyed at hearing you had acquired the davit off the Scottish Chief. I was the one who donated it to
the park, as I had nowhere else to leave it when I left Florida. They promised me, a condition of donating it to them,
that they would protect it and place a small brass plaque on it as to who donated it, in memory of my late son who helped
me remove it from the river. Unfortunately they never did it, but there was nothing I could do. The family of the late
Calvin “Poppa” Taylor, Sr in Tampa has a lot of items he salvaged off the Chief. He was the one who found the site using
a map I gave him. I am sure they might be willing to donate them to your museum in Poppa’s name. I have here a
small deck plank from the deck (see attached) that I kept, because I didn’t want to see it destroyed by someone who
didn’t care as much about the Chief as I did. Would you like it for the museum as well? I also have the “ONLY” cannon ball
in existence that was fired at Fort Brooke during the attack related to the attack on the Scottish Chief.
(See attached) Are you talking about
putting it in the SCV headquarters museum? If so, there’s more.
Poppa told me exactly where the bell of the Scottish Chief is located; still in the river partially incased in tabby stone on the bottom.
I never went after it and I’ve never told anyone about it. I can pinpoint it on the attached maps. (See attached) There is still
a lot of the Chief still there. I got permission from the state at one time to bring up the entire remains, if I would preserve it;
but I didn’t have the money to do it on my own and could never find anyone interested in financing it.
The entire boiler and its mechanism are
still there as well as the lower portion of the ship that didn’t burn.
The canvas art I did of Fort Brooke (see attached) was done to scale from an original drawing done at the time. In the event
you might be interested, the “Hamilton and Gray” map (see attached) was one I did, I am the author, (everything is factual) and
had a bunch printed years ago for sale; but we never sold them. I have the printer’s negative, in 2 sizes, that I got from the printer.
They are in good shape and could be used to print more, and if you would like to print them to raise money for the SCV I would
be willing to donate them to you. I also have some “original” black powder cartridges that were taken off one of the “Union attackers”
of the Chief. The black powder is
still in them with a bore-cleaner 2-piece lead bullet. I have attached some
items for you to look at.
James Gray, Cmdr.
SCV Camp 2160 Australia
In the city of Tampa, Florida there lived a friendly, civic minded individual who was honoured with the presentation of more
than thirty trophies and awards for his support, assistance, promotion and devotion to historical preservation through the activities of scuba diving
and divers from all over the world.
Calvin R. Taylor, Sr, affectionately referred to, and known as, “Poppa” Taylor by those who admired and respected him,
was born on July 23, 1910 in Tampa,
In the years to follow “Poppa” Taylor became well known and highly respected by historical preservation organizations and organized
preservation minded divers throughout
Florida and the rest of the United States; and was an inspiration to divers and
Most people see visions of gold and silver when they think about treasure, but with Poppa, historical items discovered and
preserved are worth far more. Giant teeth from ancient breeds of elephants reveal that Florida is actually a storehouse of archaeological information.
The remains of the world’s smallest horse, weighing only twenty pounds, is found in Florida where it once roamed in herds.
Tomahawks, spearheads and knives made before the white man discovered Florida are found in quantities in Florida’s rivers,
in less than ten feet of water. Poppa Taylor warned would be divers and collectors, however, that they should take lessons and learn to
“do it the right way”; not like a
Poppa Taylor was an average, everyday individual, living on Social Security as a retiree, except for one thing; he was
an active diver, collector and instructor for adults and children alike; everyday of his 77 years of life.
He said he worked part time at the family radiator shop, just to keep busy. Poppa’s weekends were always spent in the
endless pursuit and preservation of Florida’s history beneath the rivers and bays of Florida. During his twenty two years of diving
and collecting he preserved a hoard of
historic artifacts, which he kept in constant circulation in schools and museums
throughout the south.
As a member of the Florida Skin Diving Association, the Tampa Trident Club and the Florida Marine Archaeology Divers,
Poppa still found time twice a week to lecture to groups of old and young all around the state. His humanitarian efforts
rewarded him many times over with dozens of awards, trophies, and plaques; such as repeatedly being the FSDA diver of
the year and having the trophy named after him. Poppa was also a life member on the Florida Historical Research Foundation,
the only such group whose work was approved by the Florida State Department of Archives and who received exclusive permission to use the original
Florida Seal from the Florida Department of State.
One of Poppa’s greatest accomplishments was the discovery of the “War Between the States” Confederate blockade runner the Scottish Chief;
a 107 year old Confederate shipwreck. Using an historic map acquired from a friend, Poppa spent six weeks searching the
muddy bottom of the Hillsborough River. With the assistance of others, Poppa was able to discover, salvage and preserve many
precious historical Confederate artifacts for future generations. The wreck of the Scottish Chief and its running mate,
the Katy Dale, are steeped in Florida history.
Poppa Taylor was one man who knew what he was talking about. He represented six generations of Taylor’s in Tampa, Florida
and his enthusiasm for grooping around in muddy river bottoms was so contagious that he got hundreds of Florida divers
hooked on underwater archaeology. As Pop put it, “I’m better off than a millionaire. All the money in the world couldn’t buy
the enjoyment of diving with three generations of Taylor’s.” His two sons Calvin and Ronald, and their teenage sons, always
accompanied Poppa on his excursions. Poppa Taylor was the spark behind the formation of the Florida Marine Archaeology Divers club.
It had no officers, no meeting place, no dues, no by-laws, no obligations and no oaths.
Their meeting place was where ever they went underwater and anyone who went with them automatically became a member.
Their sole purpose was for the benefit of
Florida; preserving its history for future generations.
The only rules, strictly “enforced by the group”, was that any object found must come from underwater and all members were
required to live by their motto; “To Enjoy, Not Destroy”. Members also worked closely with experts to identify and preserve all
the artifacts they discovered. Any unwanted object, or those that could not be properly cared, for were left on the river bottom
or were replaced on the bottom where they
were found; so that others could search for and preserve them later.
In what spare time he found after managing and operating his own business and helping out young divers, Poppa organized
and assisted groups of divers who struggled with the task of cleaning up the debris and man-made trash and garbage polluting
Florida’s pristine waters. Poppa and the groups have worked, without pay, in the Suwannee, Rainbow, Santa Fe, Crystal,
Ichatucknee, Hillsborough, Weekiwachee, Homosassa and other rivers all over central and northern Florida.
Poppa often dug into his own pocket to
finance the trips and was always ready to help anyone in any way possible.
While doing such charity work, Poppa was fortunate enough to find and amass many fascinating items.
He refers to that as “goodie hunting” while
working. Such objects include a wooden axle grease pot used in the
1800’s on wagon axles; and it still had the grease in it. Beautiful glass tumblers and antique bottles of every description,
Indian arrow heads, scrapers and spear points. Poppa found the first example of a large spear point made of “petrified cedar wood”,
in 1965. It was custom for such a find to be named after the person who discovered it, so it was known far and wide as the “Poppa Taylor Point”.
Several years layer, however, University of Florida Professor Ripley Bullen acquired a similar point and promptly discarded the
“Poppa Taylor Point” name and replaced it with his own; calling it the “Ocala Point”. Unfair, but true.
Everything Poppa found and preserved he kept on display in a solid rock house he built for himself from rocks he
gathered while on his various trips. His ‘goodie collection’ also includes numerous fossil bones and petrified teeth.
A great many of his goodies have been placed on permanent display in museums and institutions he has donated to.
Poppa Taylor really was a man who cared.
Calvin Rollie “Poppa” Taylor, Sr. passed away on August 26, 1987; a loss to not only to his family and Florida,
but to all mankind. He was given a Masonic funeral and laid to rest in the Garden of Memories Cemetery in Tampa, Florida.
Florida Boys @ 2-Dogs 2019 Event
Reported by Jimmy Edwards
It was a long, one-day, 10-hour ride to Marion, NC, departing on Friday, 23 August, at 5am and arriving about 4pm
(after stopping for gas, lunch, beer breaks, etc). LT Joe Davis and PVT Jimmy Edwards made the adventure, riding through Georgia,
South Carolina and on to Marion, North Carolina. The majority of the road trip was dry; however, just about 1 mile short of reaching
our Super 8 hotel destination in Marion, an ungodly rain fall set in. Upon arrival, greetings was had by a number of arriving Mech-Cav members,
to include some of Georgia boys LTC Tim "Trigger" Hawkins, LT Robert "Road Dog" Ballard & wife Kathy, SGM Chris May, "Cowboy" and others.
Friday and Saturday was filled with various bike riding throughout the hills of the surrounding area, awesome waterfall observing,
cave exploring, trail walking, Mech-Cav Fri/Sat cookout evenings, Mech-Cav motorcycle entry competitions, a lot of beer/moonshine drinking,
and just genuine camaraderie among Southern fellow bikers. Also, North Carolina 2-B held their leadership elections during this 2-Dog event.
Florida's MAJ Johnny Strickland and PVT Ron Thomas also attended 2-Dogs. The hard, one-day ride home was high and dry all the way.
GOOD TIMES AND FUN AHEAD WITH MORE EVENTS IN THE MECH-CAV BROTHERHOOD!!!!!
Ken Handy of 2-B and Duste Craig with the
coolest dog in the Mechanized Cavalry...Electra!
At 2 Dogs in NC
The men of 3rd Battalion, Company A, South Carolina Mechanized Cavalry were
presented this banner by General Kevin Stone at 2 Dogs.
National HQ Sergeant Major Slim and Duste Craig at 2 Dogs.
Reported by Cpl. Gary Burleigh (Breeze)
Co.C Cap. Frank Polk and troopers working
Finished Monument for the Columbia Blues at East Columbia, Tx. Present and helping were Billy Cast,
Charles Dunagan, Jimmy Thevenet, Bill Yates, Rodgers Collins, Frank Dietz, Coy Freeman,
Red Yauch, Randall Tennison, and Bubba Goode. SCV, SCVMC, and more Texans.
Finished #3, for the photo op, we had two Dance pistols, one made right were we are at, a sword made
in 1860 in Houston TX, one rifle made during Republic of TX and the other an 1860 rifle,
to Honor the Columbia Blues who mustered into service at this location.
Number Three of five monuments, Camp 1565, 13th Texas Infantry, are erecting across Brazoria County,
Texas commemorating historic places or events.
Also on this spot was the Dance Brothers Armory, who made guns for the South.
Finished on 8-4-2019.
This is pictures of the Swearing in og Tony Curent to Co.C. Atending are Capt Herbert Jacks, Sgt Scott Lewis.
And members of 5th squad. 1st Sgt. Paul Smith, Lloyd Kirkham Kem Kirkham,
the Thomas Jefferson Chambers UDC,and the Moss Bluff Rebels Children of the Confedercy.