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July 2005

July 5
* Guest Speaker- Southern Indiana Civil War Roundtable Annual Dinner Meeting, Evansville, Indiana
Signing at my first speaking engagement

My first public speaking engagement in support of Thunder From a Clear Sky. The folks at the SICWRT were extremely supportive and very eager to hear about our very own little Civil War saga. Although I spent hours making an outline and practicing, when I stepped to the podium I switched to autopilot. I barely looked at the notes and just starting talking about myself and the raid. I looked at my watch and it was time to stop. Nineteen copies were sold that evening, but more importantly, I got the feeling that the SICWRT was my home base.

July 8 * Page 1 feature newspaper article on Thunder From a Clear Sky appears in the Henderson, Kentucky, Gleaner.

July 9 * Book Signing- Henderson County Historical Society, Henderson, Kentucky
Inside the new Henderson County Historical Society

Thunder From a Clear Sky would not have been possible without the help and encouragement of the Henderson County Historical Society staff. When I was in the research phase, then Society President Frank Nally was the first person in Kentucky to show me dedicated enthusiasm about my project. Apparently, in all these years, no one had considered looking for the story of the Newburgh Raid in Henderson, Kentucky. It turns out that's where you had to look to find a large part of it.
       Linda Hallmark and Mike "Manfox" Buley sort of adopted me. If you go to the Historical Society at the Depot in Henderson you will see them. They're always there, plugging the history of Henderson. Members of the Adam Rankin Johnson camp of the Sons of Confederate Veterans turned out in support of my appearance- brass cannon in tow. We sold thirty-eight books that afternoon for the benefit of the Society, which was a nice start for Henderson. I knew I'd be back soon... as usual.

July 10 * Short newspaper article appears in the Henderson Gleaner, with photos, recapping the successful event at the Henderson Historical Society.

July 13 * Guest Speaker- Evansville Optimists Club, Evansville, Indiana

Bob Levi at Rivertown Antiques was the first person I talked to about having a book signing for Thunder. After we talked a few times about planning details for the upcoming launch of my book, Bob asked me if I was interested in being a speaker for the Optimists. I said yes not knowing anything about the organization. I'm glad I agreed as it was an interesting lunch. Although I did give a rundown on my book and the raid, for some reason I felt like talking about the charitable goals of the book and how the process of following my dream changed my life. I felt good about the speech and Bob said later the Optimists were grateful I came.

July 14 * A short newspaper article on Thunder From a Clear Sky appears in the Madisonville, Kentucky, Messenger.

July 14 * Guest Speaker- Hopkins County, Kentucky, Historical Society Meeting, Madisonville, Kentucky

Harold Utley, President of the Hopkins County Historical Society, was one of the many amateur historians who helped me piece together Johnson's activities in the days leading up to the raid. He did a wonderful job of paving the way for my successful appearance at the Society's monthly meeting. During the research phase for Thunder, Harold took me over to the hill where the Battle of Browning Springs was fought. The Browning Springs Middle School stands on the spot today. There is a site marker noting Johnson's attack on the 9th Pennsylvania Cavalry at the foot of the hill near the spring. I signed fourteen books, which was nearly half of the members there.