March Across Dixie – December 6-10, 2007
On Thursday, December 6,2007, I would resume the March Across Dixie Re-Union March approximately 10 miles from the Long Bridge in Shreveport , Louisiana. As I proceeded down highway 80 heading West, I would be stopped by a young police officer from Bossier City. After finding out that I was an outstanding citizen, and the reasons for a Black man to be dressed in a confederate uniform while brandishing the Confederate battle Flag; he would smile and tell me to carry on. I would be visited by several more officers from Bossier City, as I fulfilled their request to pose for pictures. God bless thse officers, for they would look out for me the entire journey to the bridge. I would hold conversations with many curious folks along the way as well as pose for pictures for them as I had done for the police officers. Several hours later I would arrive at the Long Bridge, and spend some moments on the bridge waving and basking in the ovation I would receive from those who pass me by.
As I cross the bridge and entered downtown Shreveport, I would be stopped by a very nice female officer from the Shreveport , who told me that someone had called the department and reported that a Black man dressed in a Confederate uniform and carrying a Confederate Flag and leaning over the bridge, and appeared somewhat distraught as if he was going to jump. I assured her that I had no intentions in doing that. After several moments of dialogue, she would give me a big hug, wish me Merry Christmas, and tell me to be careful, and that she would keep an eye out for me and my safety. I would commence to the end of the street (highway 80) and park myself outside the grand church at the streets end. After standing there for about an hour, I would be visited by a nice Reporter from channel 12 KLAS News. We would talk about my recent visit to Jena,Louisiana and the great ovation that I had received from the citizens there. He expressed some amazement that I could go to a place that appeared so volatile , and even more so that I would be brave enough to venture not only in Jena, but to where my path had brought me so far. The reporter and his cameraman would follow me back to the Confederate monument where he would interview several people along the way as to their thoughts about my mission and presence in Shreveport. I was only privy to the conversation that was given by a very intelligent and beautiful young Black woman, who expressed that she felt that I was very brave and was doing a very honorable thing. Channel 12 would air the interview on their evening, night and the following morning broadcast. Later that evening to a full house of the Richard Taylor Camp of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, I would deliver a speech and receive a standing ovation from those present that included many of my compatriots and friends who like Commander Paul Gramling and his family who had walked twenty miles with me on the Historic March across Dixie.
On Friday December 7, 2007, at the request of Mr. Porter Dowling, I would stop at the private school, Central, in Greystone,Louisana, (I may have the spelling wrong) as I headed for Mansfield. I would speak with the Headmaster, the History Teacher, and the Religion teacher for about an hour right outside the school. However, because the students were testing, I was unable to meet with them. I did receive an open invitation from all present to come again to the school. I would pose for several pictures, and present all with a copy of the Un-Civil War, written by my dear friend, Mike Scruggs, and one of my now famous shirts from Dixie Outfitters. I would be joined by a member of the Richard Taylor Camp who had ridden all the way to Mansfield on a bicycle so that he could march by my side. I would later be interviewed by a nice lady from the local paper in Mansfield; the Forum. Jena would again come up. She would present me with a copy of her paper that contained a story that she had written on Jena.It was a confirmation on all that I had learned about Jena;an honorable people had been wrongfully depicted as racist and their humble town tainted nationally by the implications. We would be joined later as I continued up Mansfield highway, by the Commander of the Richard Taylor Camp and others. We would pose for several pictures and have conversation with several more citizens. After the Commander left, I would spend a couple more hours outside the Mansfield Inn with my flag interacting with many of the citizens who expressed that they had seen me on the news, and were very impressed with my cause. None of the many that I would talk to, and pose for pictures had one negative thought. Later that evening while having dinner with Mr. Dowling and several other Sons, I would be embraced by an elderly couple and pose for pictures with them.
Saturday, December 8,2007. I would make my way through downtown Logansport, receive several gifts from those who passed me by , to include a love package that contain oranges and vegetables from the gentleman and his wife that were selling vegetables and coon. They too would embrace me, and take pictures. I would cross the bridge into Texas, accompanied by Commander Dowling, his grandson Christopher, and several young girls , and others. I would be met in the middle of the bridge by a group of Re-enactors from Oklahoma in full dress who had come for this occasion. I would receive a gun salute at the river, and continue to Carthage, Louisiana to the Catfish Inn where I would be hosted by the Texas Division of the Sons with State Lt.Commander Tommy Joe Holmes conducting. I would be presented the key to the City of Carthage by their Mayor and his beautiful wife. I would also be presented with donations for the Order of the Confederate Rose, the UDC and the Texas Division of the Sons. It just kept on getting better as I would be Knighted into the Sons of Confederate Veterans Texas Division , Texas Division Mounted Color Guard, Texas Order of Saint George, and be presented with their Medal of Honor; I later cried. After the completion of the evenings event, I would be whisked away to the City of Marshall where alongside the Sons, the ladies of the Rose, the UDC, and many others, I would march in the cities Christmas Parade. There were many high moments in this parade; I would hug, pose for pictures, short conversations, but nothing could ever be as heart warming as all along the way I would shout out the Rebel Yell, and all the participants would shout it out in kind.
Monday, December 10, 2007, I would head down highway 20 West towards Dallas, Texas, where I would be scheduled to speak. However, finding a mighty nice bridge over the freeway about 70 miles from Dallas(VAN,Texas), I would plant myself there until I was visited by the local Police, who after checking me out, would pose for pictures, and wish me well. It has been a great time in Dixie !