A life time

Discussion in 'General Reenacting Discussions' started by tenngun, May 14, 2019.

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  1. May 14, 2019 #1

    tenngun

    tenngun

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    It’s near my birthday. I was born in 1957. Had I been born two centuries before I would have been of an age to fight in the revolution. Had I survived the war and not suffered a major wound, chances are I would be pretty healthy, as I am today.
    In 1802 I would have been no longer required to be part of the militia, however I was pretty healthy at fifty five so may have went out in-the war of 1812.
    Now it’s been four years since that war ended. Saw some land I wouldn’t mind living on on my walk down to New Orleans. I’m still able to do a days work but have enough put away that I don’t have to work like I did on my first homestead.
    Some times we don’t think about the passage of time at our events, or how close the past was. My Grandfather knew Frank James, my brother was thirteen when the last WTBS veteran died in 1959. There are people alive today that knew him.
    A young apprentice who worked on the USS Constitution, Old Ironsides,or any of its sisterships could have been alive to see the first ironclads, like USS New Ironsides.
    In 1859 a guide was printed for trails west. Important was the horse ranches along the way and restock station.... not twenty years after the last rendezvous.
    My wife’s visiting my daughter and I was running some ball. Dip,pour, open,drop, over and over, your mind runs free. Beware.
     
  2. May 14, 2019 #2

    azmntman

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    Ya, I been thinking along those line lately. Had I not rolled my buddies bosses car we weren't supposed to have I would just be getting outta the marines (or the brig?). I was born 200+ year too late
     
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  3. May 14, 2019 #3

    Eutycus

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    My luck a horse would have kicked me like the one that did grandpa in. Or stepped on my foot? Not everyone stayed healthy back then. Modern Medicine was not that modern or available.
     
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  4. May 14, 2019 #4

    Shot deer

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    Very, very good point.
     
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  5. May 14, 2019 #5

    azmntman

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    Surgery has extended lives tremendously. W/O hip/knee/shoulder replacements, insulin, cataract replacement etc. getting old back in "the day" was a lot less fun than we have it! Snake bites kill like 2% these days back then w/o modern treatment it was a much worse. I'd like to get in the ol time machine and take 500 amoxicillin back to the wild wild west. I'd be either real popular of stoned as a with DR! Ol time machine being maintenanced now though :(
     
  6. May 14, 2019 #6

    tenngun

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    Well it’s true that medicine wasn’t real good back then. Everyone you know that’s diabetic or has had some sort of heart procedure would have likely died young (40ish) back then.
    In general low life expectancy was secondary to unbelievable child mortality, and child birth mortality.
    What's today a mild injury could lead to uncontrolled infection. Then with a treatable injury ‘good’ care killed. Jackson lost an arm, and that’s pretty devastating, but he died of pneumonia. Simply getting him out of bed and walking the next day or so probably would have prevented it.
    However, since childhood was so dangerous, kids that survived generally lived with a pretty tough immune system. Most everybody was physically active and diets were mostly pretty well balanced. Sugar was a treat, deserts were small. Should you make it to sixteen and were a male, you had a real good chance of making your ‘three score and ten, or four score’.
    The graveyards were full of the young, but life’s as long as today was not unheard of.
     
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  7. May 14, 2019 #7

    Juice Jaws

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    I like living today and just playing cowboys and Indians.
     
  8. May 14, 2019 #8

    SDSmlf

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    It was a tough time back in the day. Life expectancy for someone born in the 1750s was 36. 40% of the children in New England did not reach adulthood. If you were in the early Colony of Virginia the life expectancy was 25.
     
  9. May 14, 2019 #9

    brawny man

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    Grandfather on my Dad's side of the family got killed when a farm horse kicked him in the head. Left behind was his widow and three young children. Mom's side of the family lost two children to pleurisy. Some of the rest lived into their 90's. Walked to school, survived blizzards, ate lard sandwiches, drank river water, fished, planted their gardens, chopped wood and cut ice in the winter, collected yarrow and herbs to self medicate. That was the norm back then.
     
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  10. May 14, 2019 #10

    Loyalist Dave

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    My maternal grandfather was an illegal immigrant from Canada. When he was born, humans did not have powered flight, there was no tv, no color movies, no antibiotics, kids died of polio and whooping cough (although some doctors successfully treated kids with whooping cough by using heroin), and there were only 45 states that were part of the United States, and there was no interstate highway system....
    He was five when the Wright Brothers flew at Kitty Hawk,
    He was sixteen when he volunteered for the RCAC (Royal Canadian Air Corps) but was told to come back in two weeks.
    He came down with rheumatic fever 36 hours after being at the induction center, and thus was not eligible for military service. We think the Canadian Doctor knew my grandpa was getting sick.
    He was 41 when Germany went into Poland. He was 43 when Pearl Harbor was attacked, and his son and both step-sons, went into the Army Air Corps. All three were lucky to come back. Being a miller, even if he got around the rheumatic fever he had as a teen, they'd a told him he was in a war industry....
    He was 49 when Yaeger broke the sound barrier
    He was 71 when Armstrong stepped onto the moon.
    When he passed he had four grandkids and two great grandkids, and now he has 10 great grandkids.

    LD
     
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  11. May 15, 2019 #11

    Brokennock

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    Good points, interesting topic. While it's true things could/would kill you back in the 1700s and 1800s that are survivable today, many folks lived very long lives. They didn't have the ridiculous numbers of people with diabetes we have today, or the same high incidence of heart and coronary artery disease we have today. They ate real food, often fatty, but not all the grains and highly processed carbohydrates we eat today, not all the chemical and preservatives. Breakfast was may have been heavy on protein and fat, but today, somehow, breakfast has become desert. Folks smoked, but not a pack or more of chemical laden cigarettes a day.
    Folks walked, breathed fresh air, got some natural sunshine.
    And if you didn't make it to "ripe olde age," in my opinion, you had lived those years better than most of us do now.
    Some people may live longer now, but do they live better?

    And, have a Happy Birthday Tenngun,
    -Dave
     
  12. May 15, 2019 #12

    Eutycus

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    We've seen enormous change in our day and are still seeing it. But I'm still amazed at my grandparents lifespan. From horse and buggy to a man on the moon.
     
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  13. May 15, 2019 #13

    tenngun

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    Thanks
     
  14. May 15, 2019 #14

    Eutycus

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    Sorry I got busy and sort of forgot that you opened this thread mentioning your upcomming birthday. Happy birthday tenngun. And as they say..."and many more"
     
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  15. May 15, 2019 #15

    azmntman

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    Another thought, when our ancestors went out for a deer for the family they had a VERY limited range for the most part, 75 yds +/- (taking into consideration eyesight etc.). Today the average (I would guess) deer is killed at 200 yds + (at least out here), with a scoped 30-06. Archery was homemade bows and arrows not 350 fps compounds, carbon arrows and $400.00 sites! They drug it upon their mile not the back of the air conditioned F-150. They navigated by instinct, the stars a compass or maps. They smoked there meat, or salt cured it, no deep freezers.

    Ya, we have gotten VERY spoiled the last 75 years or so! GPS, Ford, Chevy or Dodge, deep freezers, cell phones airplanes, food processors and on and on. Time machine to 1830?....I'd still go! :rolleyes:
     
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  16. May 15, 2019 #16

    smo

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    Great topic Guys!

    I just finished reading a book written about the local history of Northern Alabama ,the area I grew up in .

    Several of the first settlers came from NC/ SC and VA.,

    I recall one account of family moving from NC to the New Promised Land of Plenty in N. Al.

    Along this journey the Elder Statesman of the Family passed, he was buried along the trail somewhere near what is now Knoxville Tn.

    It is said when the group arrived in Northern Alabama there were 40 + wagons with oxen , horses and mules being driven .

    As it appears the Gentleman that passed along the trail , could have been my GGGGF.

    Unforuntnatly my Family didn’t keep good Family records , and by the time I came along in 57’, most of the older generation had already gone under.

    My Parents never spoke much of our Families history , which in later years I’ve attributed too possible mixed emotions during the WBTS years...

    Several of my family members from the late 1800 to the 1930’s or so passed during Childhood.

    Times were hard then...

    Happy Birtday Tenngun, I’ll turn 62 in a couple months myself.
     
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  17. May 16, 2019 #17

    Artificer

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    Happy Birthday Tenngun!

    For some reason in my late 50's, when I had to have my first cataract surgery, I remembered that Simon Girty was so blind from cataracts at age 60, that he had to be cared for the rest of his life.

    The advancements in medical procedures in my own lifetime of 65 years, is absolutely astounding, when I think back to my earliest years.

    Something else not mentioned in the period was not only the high infant and child mortality rate, but also the high rate of women dying during or after child birth. I will never forget visiting a small graveyard in Conn on an island on a small lake. There was a Civil War Veteran's Maker on the grave of one man and buried beside him were his six wives. All but the last had died during or shortly after child birth.

    I know I would probably have died in my mid to late 20's in the period, had I gotten pneumonia like I did when I was not much past my 18th birthday. If the first time didn't get me, the 14 additional times I've had pneumonia since, would definitely have done me in.

    My Grandfather lived to be 96 years old even though he smoked 8 to 12 cigars a day. My Dad just passed a few weeks ago at age 92, even though he was in better general health in his senior years than his Dad and never smoked even one cigarette. He did live to see two of his Great Great Grandchildren become toddlers, though. I have no allusions that I will live that long, even with the advancements in medicine now and in the future. Actually I am surprised I'm still alive, as I can count a dozen or more times I should have died or been killed.

    Gus
     
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  18. May 16, 2019 #18

    Eutycus

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    I never gave it much thought until now but I was subject to Epileptic Seizures when I was in my teens and twenties. I probably would have been locked up somewhere in some snakepit of a sanitarium or even a prison. And who knows for how long. I would have been deemed a Menace to Society . If you go back far enough the general public would had me declared "Demon Posessed". Modern Medicine, you cant beat it!
     
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  19. May 16, 2019 #19

    Brokennock

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    Sorry for your loss Gus. Lost my grandma in January, age 96. We were very close. In 96 years she was sick, maybe, 2 or 3 months,,,,, total.
     
  20. May 16, 2019 #20

    mushka

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    If living back in the late 17 or early 18 hundreds I very well would have died at age10 from a bad case of flu, or when 17 a severe upper respiratory infection. I'm 74 now and am grateful for the modern medicine we have today. They can't fix or cure everything but they do a lot better than they did in antiquity. Life is good if we let it be.
     

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