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June 01 , 2008

Complete Odd Tales & Fable


Fables of Field and Staff (1893)
From Headquarters (1892)

Fables of Field and Staff -
If you are of the volunteer service, you may be trusted, I think, to catch the spirit of these stories; if you are of The Army, you may consider the tales as illustrative of the customs of a service to which your own is but distantly related; but if it isvi your great misfortune to be an out-and-out civilian—why, then you must take your chance with what follows, and lay no blame upon me should you find yourself on unfamiliar ground.

From Headquarters -
The volunteer service of the present time means, to those who find themselves enrolled in it, something more than a mere pastime; and if those who hold it in small esteem could but know of the faithful, conscientious, and untiring work that, from year's end to year's end, is being done in armory and camp, they would leave unsaid, it seems[Pg vii] to me, the half-contemptuous words that too often come to the ears of the hard-working, long-suffering, and unrewarded citizen-soldier.

It has been said that the best is none too good for the service of the Commonwealth. If this be true,—and who can question it?—the stigma of whatever blemishes have been found in the militia must be borne by those men of ability and position who, while ever ready to point out weaknesses and faults, negligently have left to hands less competent, or, it may be, less worthy, the work which they themselves were in honor bound to do.
J. A. F.


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