"Roundheads and Ramblings"
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"Roundheads and Ramblings"

puzzlements

Will the Real Nellie Chase Please Stand Up?

Here's a puzzle for all of you who read "Beyond All Price." David Welch, my tireless researcher for all things having to do with the Roundhead Regiment, has turned up more pictures that might be Nellie M. Chase. We'd like to know what you think.


This is a confirmed picture of Nellie, taken in Spring, 1862, in Beaufort, SC. 

And this is a picture of an unidentified nurse who worked in the same Nashville  hospital as Nellie did in 1863. The picture was definitely taken in 1863.  Compare this image with the one aabove. Is this the same woman?




We know a couple of things about Nellie. 

 (1) Between 1862 and 1863, she suffered a serious illness, which undoubtedly caused some weight loss.  

(2) In 1863, she had a picture taken by a famous photographer named Gutekunst  in Philadelphia. That carte de visite has never been found or identified.

Here are two unidentified pictures David has found on Ebay, both taken by Gutekunst, in the right time frame.


























Which one looks more like your idea of Nellie? Or are they all pictures of the same woman?  We'd really like  your feedback.

For more pictures that illustrate Nellie's story, please check out our board on Pinterest:



This book is available in paperback, Kindle, and Audible formats. 

The Ups and Downs of Cat Ownership

There was something of a kerfluffle yesterday when an old document emerged from the US Patent office showing a diagram of a "new idea" — putting perforations in a roll of toilet paper to make it easier to pull off a reasonable amount of paper. That’s so much the “way of things” today that no one thought anything of it. But what was shocking was the diagram that showed the paper unrolling from to top — or “over” the roll. Apparently many households still argue about this today — whether the proper form is “over” or “under”, and people are passionate about their preferences. Here was proof that the “over” crowd was right, and members of the “under” crowd were hopelessly misguided.

I first giggled at those who could get so upset over such a minor detail. (See a blog posting from a few days ago (Friday, March 13th)  when I asked where all the anger was coming from!) And then I checked my house. Yep, I’m vindicated; I’m an “over.” But why?

Then I began to look at the problem logically, and when I did so, I realized that all four of my OLD cats have had a part in this decision. I remembered their kittenhoods vividly. Every kitten I’ve ever owned (and I use that term advisedly!) has passed through a stage of playing with the toilet paper roll. Invariably we ended up with a pile of unwound paper on the floor. The only solution was to use the “under” routine until the kittens got the silliness out of their systems. Then we changed because the paper was easier for us to reach if it came "over."

How does a cat unwind the paper, and what makes it so much fun? The movement is always the same. The cat stands on its hind legs and uses its front paws to make the roll spin. And the paw movement is always downward, from top to bottom.  If the loose end comes over the top of the roll, the paper comes loose and falls to the floor. What would happen if  the loose end comes from underneath?

Nothing. To make it unwind, the cat would have to push up from bottom to top, a most unnatural motion.

Therefore I have to argue against the correctness of the diagram so widely distributed yesterday. It just may be that the decision is dependent upon whether the household does, or does not, have a normally curious and playful kitten.