TAPS...The Story Behind It

TAPS...The Story Behind It

This is a discussion on TAPS...The Story Behind It within the Bob & Terry's Place forums, part of the The Back Porch category; I received this email from a friend this morning, and I thought it was very interesting, hope you enjoy it too!!! Near the bottom, as ...

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Thread: TAPS...The Story Behind It

  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array Stubborn's Avatar
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    TAPS...The Story Behind It

    I received this email from a friend this morning, and I thought it was very interesting, hope you enjoy it too!!!

    Near the bottom, as you scroll down, are the words. The first stanza frequently comes to mind at sundown...

    If any of you have ever been to a military funeral in which taps was played; this brings out a new meaning of it.

    Here is something Every American should know. Until I read this, I didn't know, but I checked it out and it's true:
    We in the United States have all heard the haunting song, 'Taps'. It's the song that gives us the lump in our throats and usually tears in our eyes.

    But, do you know the story behind the song? If not, I think you will be interested to find out about its humble beginnings.
    Reportedly, it all began in 1862 during the Civil War, when Union Army Captain Robert Elli was with his men near Harrison's Landing in Virginia . The Confederate Army was on the other side of the narrow strip of land.

    During the night, Captain Elli heard the moans of a soldier who lay severely wounded on the field. Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederate soldier, the Captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man back for medical attention. Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the Captain reached the stricken soldier and began pulling him toward his encampment.
    When the Captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was actually a Confederate soldier, but the soldier was dead.
    The Captain lit a lantern and suddenly caught his breath and went numb with shock. In the dim light, he saw the face of the soldier. It was his own son. The boy had been studying music in the South when the war broke out. Without telling his father, the boy enlisted in the Confederate Army.

    The following morning, heartbroken, the father asked permission of his superiors to give his son a full military burial, despite his enemy status. His request was only partially granted.
    The Captain had asked if he could have a group of Army band members play a funeral dirge for his son at the funeral.
    The request was turned down since the soldier was a Confederate.
    But, out of respect for the father, they did say they could give him only one musician.

    The Captain chose a bugler. He asked the bugler to play a series of musical notes he had found on a piece of paper in the pocket of the dead youth's uniform.
    This wish was granted.
    The haunting melody, we now know as 'Taps' used at military funerals was born.
    The words are:

    Day is done.
    Gone the sun.
    >From the lakes
    >From the hills.
    >From the sky.
    All is well.
    Safely rest.
    God is nigh.

    Fading light.
    Dims the sight.
    And a star.
    Gems the sky.
    Gleaming bright.
    >From afar.
    Drawing nigh.
    Falls the night.

    Thanks and praise.
    For our days.
    Neath the sun
    Neath the stars.
    Neath the sky
    As we go.
    This we know.
    God is nigh.

    I too have felt the chills while listening to 'Taps' but I have never seen all the words to the song until now. I didn't even know there was more than one verse. I also never knew the story behind the song and I didn't know if you had either so I thought I'd pass it along.
    I now have an even deeper respect for the song than I did before.
    Remember Those Lost and Harmed While Serving Their Country.

    Also Remember Those Who Have Served And Returned; and for those presently serving in the Armed Forces.

    Please send this on after a short prayer.
    Make this a Prayer wheel for our soldiers... please don't break it.
    I didn't!
    oldnfat likes this.
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  2. #2
    Ex Member Array Yankeejib's Avatar
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    Excellent post. If you want some chills, listen to this version that was written to honor the passing of trumpeter Maynard Ferguson:
    (and yes, I already know the controversy behind it):


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    This past weekend was the 150th anniversary. There was a celebration at Berkeley Plantation where it was started.
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    Mors est libertas


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    VIP Member Array BugDude's Avatar
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    I heard TAPS played by a bugler Monday at my Father-in-Law's funeral and it ran chills through me as I cried my eyes out. He was a Vietnam Veteran who died from Agent Orange related lung cancer. They produced a video of pictures from throughout his life and they showed a lot of pictures of him in Vietnam. I couldn't help but think when I saw those pictures how he had no clue of the ramifications it would have 43+ years later. Like I told my wife, he had a good life up until the last two months. A lot of the guys never even got that chance.
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    No Guns, No Safety, No Peace.

  7. #6
    MJK is offline
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    Interesting story but probably not historically accurate. I studied 19th century field music for 20 years and have committed much of the bugle, fife and drum music to memory. I've often times performed the tattoo at reenactments, which signaled the end of the military duty day. Taps followed tattoo by one-half hour and consisted of three drum taps to signal lights out. This is more likely the source of the term "taps."

    If you do a little internet research you will find more accurate versions of how the bugle call came into existence.
    Last edited by MJK; June 27th, 2012 at 07:03 PM. Reason: spelling
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government story behind taps
if any of you have ever been to a military funeral in which the last post was played; this brings out a new meaning of i
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taps i now have an even deeper respect for the song than i did before.
taps..near the bottom, as you scroll down, are the words. the first stanza frequently comes to mind at sundown...
the story of taps
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