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Caulk's Field Wreath Ceremony

Oct 16, 2012 08:36PM ● By Anonymous

In a poignant ceremony, timed to take place on the exact date, representatives of both sides of the conflict raised their flags and placed wreaths alongside the monument that has marked the Aug. 31, 1814 battle site since it was put in place in 1902.

The battle site, on the Tulip Forest Farm property on Caulk’s Field Road off Route 21, is essentially unchanged. The home of Isaac Caulk, for whom the field was named, unscathed from both the battle and the ravages of time, still looks out over the field where the combatants met in the early morning hours under a moonlit sky. The British commander, Capt. Sir Peter Parker, along with 14 of his men, lost their lives on the field. There were no fatalities among the Americans, commanded by Lt. Col. Philip Reed.

About 150 people, with state and county officials, members of the Friends of Kent County, Maryland, War of 1812, invited guests and visitors, watched the ceremony that included members of the Maryland National Guard and British Royal Marines.

After the national flags were raised by honor guards, with accompaniment by bugler Jari Villenueva playing first one then the other national anthem, wreaths were laid at the monument. Maj. Gen. James A. Adkins, commander of the Maryland Army National Guard, and Lt. Col. Colby Corrin of the British Royal Marines, made comments.

“It is amazing how often in this bicentennial year Americans have mentioned the War of 1812 to me. But never once in the spirit of recrimination or resentment,” Corrin said, adding that he has served more than once alongside American soldiers in such places as Afghanistan. “We have more often faced a common enemy shoulder to shoulder than we’ve ever face off against each other.”

Villenueva closed the ceremony with a mournful rendition of taps.

Afterward, about 85 invited guests were treated to a luncheon at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church parish hall where presentations on the history of the battle were given by Scott Sheads, of the National Park Service, and archaeologist Dr. Julie Schablitsky of the State Highway Administration.