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    Corporal wienhusen's Avatar

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    Quantum Leap an American AAR

    Greetings, this is my first AAR, so any suggestions or comments are greatly appreciated. In addition, I do not have any experience writing short stories, so I am not sure what my writing style will be, so don't be surprised if the style changes/evolves during the story. Finally, I am intending to try to complete a chapter each weekday or possible every other weekday.

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    Now, on to the story.

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    Quantum Leap an American AAR

    January 2, 2036

    Professor D. Jurich reviewed the results from the final computer simulation and handed the report over to his associate Dr. M. DeAngilis, while saying, ‘Well, Michael, every simulation has worked perfectly, all of the equipment has performed flawlessly, so I think it is time.’ Dr. DeAngilis scanned the report before replying, ‘Yes, David, you are right, I cannot delay it any longer, we have done everything but actually flip the switch. You can schedule the test whenever you are ready.’ ‘Tomorrow!’ was David reply before the last words left Michael’s lips.

    Early the next morning, Michael and David arrived at the lab to begin the prep work on the computer and electronic systems. The University Administrator and seven reporters, some of which had setup cameras in the lab, greeted them. Michael looked around and whispered to David, ‘I wonder what they broke running around the lab.’ David on the other hand did not whisper but instead shouted, ‘WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING IN THE LAB! You have no idea what type of damage you can do to this equipment’, he then gestured at one of the reporters about to enter the room labeled VR Chamber, ‘Don’t go in there, and all of you, GET OUT OF THERE!’ A few minutes later, all of the reporters were standing outside in the cold New England air, while Michael and David discussed the situation with the University Administrator. Michael addressed the administrator, ‘Look Stephen, we delivered the report yesterday and told you about the test today, so you could be prepared to issue a statement IF we are successful.’ David interrupted, ‘Not to go out and bring a pack of hyenas into the lab to wreck havoc.’ The discussion continued for almost an hour, before they allowed the reporters back into the lab. The administrator was the first to address the reporters, ‘Welcome to the window to the past gentlemen, may I present Doctors David Jurich and Michael DeAngilis, soon to be world famous quantum physicists. At this point, I will let Dr. Jurich explain why we are here.’ David stepped forward, ‘Historian know the big picture, we know what happened and sometimes if we are lucky we know why things happened. What we hope to accomplish here is to find out the little things as to why things happened.’ David continues will a long discussion of quantum physics and the theory of time travel, but after about 90 minutes, he has slowly worked his way around the lab and is standing next to the room labeled VR Chamber. ‘But now that I have put everyone to sleep with the technical talk, let me show you what you are all here to see, the Time Pod’, as he gestures to the room. ‘You see, we cannot actually send someone back in time, but instead we can ‘access’ history via a time portal, the data is then processed through the three super computers sitting in the other room and converted into sight and sounds. Our subject, that would be me, stands in this room, while Dr. DeAngilis accesses a point and place in history, then the sights and sounds of that place would be projected onto the screens that are on the surfaces of this room. Of course I would not be visible to anyone in the past, though Dr. DeAngilis theorizes that many ghosts are actually watchers from the future, but I would be able to move around, see and hear what is happening. Just imagine, I could stand in the audience while President Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg address.’ At that point, the reporters were invited out for lunch, while the two doctors checked over the equipment for that afternoons test.

    David welcomed back the reporters, ‘Today is January 3, 2036, but in a few minutes, it will be January 3, 1836 inside that room’, as he gestured to the VR Chamber. He continued to explain, ‘While I am in the chamber, you will be able to see what I can see on those monitors on the wall’. At this point, David entered the chamber, and Michael started to speak with the reporters. ‘I need just a few more seconds to finish initializing the equipment, and then we will access history. We will be observing a Presidential dinner celebration on January 3, 1836. Ah yes, there we go, alright gentlemen, please watch the monitors.’ Michael flipped the last switch and the equipment started a steady hum, it was more than two minutes before the super computers had processed enough information to generate any images, but once they did, it was awe inspiring, David was standing in the middle of the dining room within the White House, President Andrew Jackson was sitting with Vice President Martin Van Buren, David walked over to listen and discovered that they were discussing the next election. Jackson was trying to convince Van Buren to run for President by explaining that Sen. Calhoun would not challenge him because Jackson was going to endorse his Vice President. David continued to walk around the White House, listening in a various conversations, while Michael continued to monitor equipment, power levels, etc. But, unknown to anyone in the room, somewhere below the lab, the amount of power being used was too much for the forty year old wiring, the first breaker popped, the lights flickered in the room. Michael turned to the reporters, but before he could explain that they there was nothing to worry about because of backup systems, one of the reporters took a panicked stepped backwards and tripped over one of his cameras. The camera fell one way, while the reporter fell another. The camera fell onto some wiring, disconnecting one of the dozen or so data feeds for the super computers, while the report fell in the opposite direction landing against one of the backup power supplies with sufficient force to disconnect it. So it was the combination of the first breaker and loss of one of the backup power supplies that started the chain reaction. A second breaker popped, then a third, Michael turned back to the equipment and realized that he had to shutdown the test before they lost containment of the time portal. He started the shutdown process and yelled at the reporters to evacuate the room, but it was already too late. David was completely unaware of what was happening, he simply thought he might be hearing a slight hum in the distance, he started to look around, when the world suddenly looked as if it exploded and then everything went black.

    The next day the local paper reported that an accident as one of the University Labs resulted in the death of 10 people: a University Administrator, two University Professors, and seven local reporters.

    His whole body ached, but the pain inside his head was completely unbearable. David kept his eyes closed and tried to will the pain away, when he thought he heard a voice with a southern twang say, ‘Good morning sir’. ‘I must dreaming’, David thought, ‘just go back to sleep’. That southern voice continued, ‘Excuse me Mr. President, it is past 9 o’clock in the morning, you are suppose to meet with Vice President Van Buren at 10 o’clock’. David jumped up immediately and looked around and thought, ‘Oh my god, I am still in the White House, I need to get out of the time pod’. David yelled out, ‘Michael, shutdown the time portal and get me out of the pod.’ David then realized that he was sitting in the President’s bed and that southern voice had a face and tha face was looking directly at David. Harrison had been President Jackson's morning butler for almost four years, but had never seen the President look so confused. ‘I am sorry Mr. President, but Michael only works in the evening, I am Harrison and I don’t know anything about time portals or pods’.

  3. #3
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    Wienhusen, excellent start so far. If I may make a friendly suggestion. Try and break up your larger paragraphs into smaller ones. It makes for much easier and less intimidating reading. That said, I look forward to reading about your adventures.
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    Interesting approach. I am assuming you will have to bring him out again to get him into other bodies. Either that, or Andrew Jackson will have to live a hellof a lot longer. Great start and I look forward to more.
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    Imperator General Ksim3000's Avatar

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    Good start and I must say it has had a good start although perhaps if you broke it up into smaller paragraphs it would be better to read. Still good job and update soon!

  6. #6
    Corporal wienhusen's Avatar

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    Quantum Leap an American AAR

    Chapter 2: The Jackson Administration

    David thought quickly, ‘Harrison, ahh, what, ohh, I must have been dreaming, yes, that is right, just an old man talking in his sleep. I will not be needing your help this morning, you may go, ahh, go back to wherever you usually go when you are not here.’ Harrison looked a little puzzled, but replied, ‘yes Mr. President, I will downstairs in the kitchen, and you may ring the bell if you need anything’. Harrison gestured to the rope hanging nearby and exits quickly.

    After Harrison left, David jumped up and moved over to a mirror, he was surprised to see the face from the twenty-dollar bill looking back at him. Yes it was true, he was Andrew Jackson, yet he was also David Jurich, his thoughts were getting confused. David was starting to remember some of Jackson experiences, so was this Jackson own memories or was it simply David remembering his history lessens. ‘Must focus’, David thought, ‘I need to get back to my time, but I cannot do anything here, Michael will have to come get me.’ David, then move around the room looking at all of the furniture and almost as if by instinct, he went to the various dresser drawers and gathered the clothes that he was going to wear that day. ‘That is odd, I wonder how I knew where to find those clothes’, David begin to realize that somewhere in the Swiss cheese memory of his, some part of Andrew Jackson was there.

    After getting dressed, David intended to sit down and concentrate on how to contact Michael, but a knock at the door interrupted him. It was Harrison, ‘Excuse me sir, but Mr. Van Buren is waiting.’ David headed down to the Oval Office to meet the Vice President, ‘Good Morning Martin, how are you feeling.’ ‘Fine Fine, Mr. President, I have considered you offer and have decided that I will run for President this year’. David was surprised by the wave of relief that he felt and even more surprised when he heard himself respond, ‘Wonderfully Marty, wonderful, I am truly looking forward to retiring back to my home in Tennessee.’

    David was left in peace for the remainder of the day and he spent most of the time alone in the Oval Office. To the fly on the wall, it appeared that the President had gone insane; he was constantly trying to talk with an invisible friend Michael and was getting more and more frustrated that Michael was not responding. David realized that even if it took ten years for Michael to track down David, he should still be able to return to this day. But as the day wore on, David began to accept that he was not going to be rescued, that instead, he was here to stay.

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    Chapter 2a: The Jackson Administration

    David went to sleep that night hoping that it was all a dream and that tomorrow he would wake up in his own bed and in his own apartment. David was awakened the next morning with, ‘Good morning Mr. President’, and after opening his eyes, ‘Good Morning Harrison, what am I scheduled for today.’ Harrison smiled, ‘Oh nothing sir, today is Sunday sir, a day of rest, and if I might say so, you look like you might need it.’ David smiled back, ‘In that case, I think I might spend the day reading in the library.’ David had accepted that he could do nothing about his situation, but that he should do whatever he could to learn and record what he experienced. But something in his subconscious bothered him, maybe it was Andrew Jackson telling him that he should not just watch, but that he should act.

    Late in the afternoon, while reading the history of the Oliver Cromwell, David set the book down and called for Harrison. ‘Yes Mr. President, what do you require?’ David said, ‘Sit down join me in a drink and conversation.’ ‘Oh no Mr. President, it would not be proper for the son of a slave to sit with the President.’ David insisted, ‘Please sit down Harrision, I would like to hear about your parents.’ Harrison looking very uncomfortable, took a nearby seat, ‘There is not much to tell sir, my parents were slaves in northern Virginia, they were young and in love, so they ran away across the border with the help of some Pennsylvania Quakers, they were married and I came along a few years later.’ David asked, ‘How did you end up in Maryland?’ ‘Well, the Quaker family let my parents stay for a few years, but they did not have enough land for everyone to farm, plus my father was being trained to the be the plantations blacksmith, and Washington needed blacksmiths with the War.’ David thought for a minute, ‘Yes, the War of 1812’, David smiled at the thought of the victory in New Orleans. ‘So Harrison that would make you twenty five?’ ‘Actually twenty six Mr. President.’ David glanced down at the book about Oliver Cromwell, ‘Harrison, do you know who Oliver Cromwell was?’ Harrision also glancing at the book, ‘No Mr. President, my family left the Quakers before I was old enough to learn how to read.’ David looked back up, ‘No matter, Oliver Cromwell was the leader of one side in a civil war, he did many great things during his life, but he also made many terrible mistakes.’ David continued, ‘If you could warn Oliver Cromwell about his mistakes, would you? Knowing that you might cause even greater mistakes to happen.’ Harrison thought for a moment, ‘Yes I would, my parents always taught me to trust in faith, so if I can prevent someone from making a mistake, I would and trust that fate gave me that ability for good and not evil.’ David started to hear the voice in his subconscious again, ‘Act, Act’. David looked Harrison in the eyes, ‘Yes, you are right, we all must do our best and act in our fellow man’s best interest.’

    The next morning David was awake and dressed when Harrison arrived, ‘Good morning Mr.’ David waved Harrision quiet, ‘Yes, Yes, good morning Harrision, I have some task you need to do this morning, please summon the Secretary of State, Secretary of Commerce, oh wait, he doesn’t exist yet, make that Secretary of the Treasury and finally I need you to go down to that Teacher’s College nearby and hire one of the new graduates, preferably a Quaker.’ Harrison nodded, ‘Yes Mr. President’.

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    Chapter 2b: The Jackson Administration

    Harrison returned thirty minutes later to inform the President that the Secretary of State is scheduled for 11AM, the Secretary of Treasury is scheduled for 1PM and that he would be returning with the teacher by 3PM. David was please but added a request to also have the Secretary of War meet with him at 11:30AM.

    The Secretary of State was ordered to dispatch two diplomats to Texas and Mexico in the hopes of trading technology for land. Their missions results were mixed, the USA was able to acquire the rest of Oklahoma from Texas in exchange for technology; however, Mexico was unwilling to deal. David’s Jackson subconscious took this as a personal insult and vowed revenge.

    The Secretary of War was told to disband the active militia and start retraining those men into regular army; in addition, he was to form a National Guard that would replace the existing state militia structure and its cronyism. The National Guard would train periodically and its officer core would be either regular army or retired regular army. Initially this National Guard would consist of just five divisions.

    The Secretary of the Treasury role was expanded to include commerce. The unemployment problem was the greatest concern. With the large influx of skill craftsman from Europe, it was determined that the USA needed to build factories to put them to work, so over the next few months as resources became available, multiple steel, cement, lumber and fabric factories were built, as well as one glass, one ammunition and one canned good factory. To pay for these factories, a new tax code was introduced, including incentives for skilled clerks and business owners. Though it was expected to take up to two year to pay off the debt.

    Late that afternoon, Harrison returned with the teacher, he introduce the young teacher Katherine Sherbal and after introductions, the President explained that he was hiring her to teach Harrison how to read and write. Harrison tried to explain that with his duties he did not have anytime during the day and that his wife and young son occupied his evenings. David explained that he no longer needed Harrison help dressing himself in the mornings, so he would be required to ‘attend school’ for the first two hours of each workday. David paused, and then asked how old was Harrison’s son? Harrison responded that James was six years old. David smiled to himself, and explained the his son had just been hired as a stable boy and that he along with all of the other stable boys were required to attend school two hours each day. Harrison and his son would be in the morning class. David thought to himself, I can help my fellow man both by making a factory for ten thousand workers and by teaching one six year old to read.

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    Imperator General Ksim3000's Avatar

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    Three brilliant Chapters wienhusen, I really did enjoy reading them! Very good, I like how David is acting as Andrew Johnson and of course I like how you have based the whole story aswell, very good! Anyway update soon!

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    Chapter 2d: The End of the Jackson Administration

    The hardest adjustment for David was the lack of information, he would learn about things weeks after they had happened. Texas declared their independence on March 3, but David did not learn about it until mid-March. Slowly David began to adjust to the world of 1836. Belgium and the Netherlands were at war, Texas was fighting for it independence from Mexico, Argentina was fighting Boliva, etc. David thought someone was playing a practical joke when on April 1st, the Secretary of War arrived in his office asking for a decision on which Military strategy should be used in training, Jominain or Clausewitzian. David could not help but laugh at the thought being asked to pick either French military theory or Prussian military theory. Of course, the US Army adopted the Clausewitzian philosophy.

    The first true crisis that David faced was when the Texas navy seized the brig Pocket, when word reached Washington that the authorities in New Orleans had arrested the crew of the Texas navel ship that docked for repairs. David immediately ordered that the crew was to be released; their ship repaired and in fact went as far as to order no more military shipment to Mexico.

    Later that month, word reaches Washington that Texas had defeated the Mexican Army at San Jacinto and captured Santa Anna. Texas forced Santa Anna to sign a treaty recognizing Texas’s independence and surrendering the territories of New Mexico and Colorado.

    Spring turned into Summary and the Fall, David continued to monitor the expansion of industry throughout the United States as well as the education of Harrison and his son James. November rolled around and Martin Van Buren was easily elected the next President of the United States. David started to prepare for his retirement, though he made one personal request to Martin that he continue the school in the Whitehouse for Harrison and the stable boys.

    As preparation for the March Inauguration started, the first reports on the industry expansion started arriving early in January 1837: Farms expanded, Mines expanded, and Timber Lodges expanded. The Secretary of War reported the adoption of Army Professionalism and the Secretary of State reported that a young Queen Victoria had been crowned and that a northern Germany confederation had been formed. Between late January and inauguration day, all of the new factories David had ordered were completed and started production.

    As David, watched Martin Van Buren take the oath of office, he prayed that his one year in office as Andrew Jackson would have a positive effect on ‘history’. That night, David went to sleep in a nearby hotel and as he fell asleep, he thought of the Presidents chamber.

    David was awakened to Harrison’s voice, ‘Good Morning Mr. President.’ David jumped up, ‘Harrison what are you doing here’. At this point, David realized that he was back in the Presidents chamber; he quickly went over to mirror and was stunned to see Martin Van Buren looking back at him.

  11. #11
    Corporal wienhusen's Avatar

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    I would like to thank everyone for the suggestions and feedback. I have tried to shorten the paragraphs and made other adjustments to my writing style (you have probably noticed the reduction of dialog). The story seems to flow easier (at least from my head to the keyboard) with less dialog; however, I personally tend to enjoy the dialog, so I may continue to adjust the 'mix' of descriptive paragraphs and dialog.

    I also want to give credit to 'For the Glory of Persia' as the inspiration for me to write this story. I do not intend to compare the two, because that would be like comparing my first finger painting with coz1's Mona Lisa.

    I hope to include some screen shots and eventually I may even add a 'sig' to my post.

  12. #12
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    Wow. Superb stuff!
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  13. #13
    Imperator General Ksim3000's Avatar

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    Another great update, I really like how David has become Martin Van Buren, very good! Anyway hope to see an update soon!

  14. #14
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    I think the mix has been done great so far. Dialogue can be hard, but it can also flesh out a scene a bit better than just narrative. It's a very interesting premise you have and I would like to hear more about how he's moving from President to President as well. And thank you for the mention of FtGoP - you make me blush. Glad she inspired and keep up the great work!
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    Corporal wienhusen's Avatar

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    David does not understand how and why he leaps from President to President, so in that way he is similar to Sam Becket from the show Quantum Leap. Though, I have decided that the 'key' is the person who has taken the oath of office and has slept in the Presidents bedroom, which is why David will always wake up as President.
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    Chapter 3: The Van Buren Presidency

    David was stunned, ‘How and why ran through his mind over and over again’, he even occasionally mumbled ‘how and why’ out loud. After a few minutes Harrison moved closer, ‘Are you feeling well Mr. President, do you need anything?’ David chased the cobwebs out of his mind, turned to Harrison, ‘Yes, Harrison, I need a bottle of brandy, two glasses and bring them to the library. You and I need to talk.’ David spent hours that morning talking with Harrison, trying to explain what had happened to David Jurich, Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren. He could not explain why David have leapt from Jackson to Van Buren, was it fate or God or the office or hell even the bed that was the cause. David just understood that he was here and that he needed someone who knew to help him. Through all of the conversation, Harrison tried to comprehend what the President was saying, outwardly he appeared supportive, but inside his reactions swung from ‘this has to be a joke’ to ‘this must be the Hand of God’ then on to ‘Oh my, the President is completed mad’. Harrison eventually decided the no matter the answer, his job was to serve the President, madman or not.

    That afternoon, David had an invitation sent to former President Jackson to join him for dinner that evening, he had hoped find out what the former President remembered about the last year. Early in the conversation, David asked Jackson if he had ever heard of a scientist named David Jurich, to which the Jackson replied that he had never heard of the man. David continued by asking what prompted the former President to initiate the industrial expansion of previous year. Jackson replied that is was ‘As if one of those muses from Greek mythology whispered in his ear.’ David chucked to himself and thought, ‘A muse, very interesting comparison and maybe not too far the truth’.
    Scott Wienhusen

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    David woke up the next morning ready to start his ‘new’ administration. It took some concentration to remember that he was not longer Andrew Jackson, but instead Martin Van Buren. He could not treat everyone like he had the previous week. He found that it was easier to adapt to being Van Buren that he thought, since he no longer had that strong Jackson subconscious in the back of his mind, but instead, he had the quieter Van Buren. David laughed out load when the thought struck him, ‘Who is the muse now.’

    David had been in office less that three weeks, when a telegram arrived from Austin, the Republic of Texas was requesting formal recognition from the United States. David quickly called for a clerk and drafted a letter back to President Houston informing him that the United States officially recognizes Texas. As the clerk was leaving, David added, ‘Oh and have a copy made and sent to Santa Anna.’ The next few months were uneventful; David concentrated on improving the countries financial situation. He had decided that the country needed to expand the railroad system and that expansion was going to be the corner stone of this administration. Just prior to submitting his first budget to Congress with the Railroad Expansion Amendment, the Panic of 1837 hit. David was forced to reduce the scope of the railroad expansion and concentrate to unemployment and financial hardship caused by the Panic of 1837.

    As the spring turned into summer, the economy showed no signs of improving; David was concerned that he would not be able to stop the downturn from becoming a multi-year depression. If that was not enough, the Texas and Mexico navies were battling in the Gulf of Mexico. David was concerned as to how long before the two governments made it official and declared war on each other. But, to help the unemployment, David authorized and expansion of the National Guard in the spring and then again later in the year, so that by the end of 1837, the National Guard could muster 15 divisions. In addition, the regular army division were brought up to full readiness due to the Texas-Mexico crisis. Even though David remembered his history lessons, he needed to remember that he was no longer in ‘his’ history, but somewhere else, so he did not realize the potential consequences of the large numbers of Americans immigrating to Texas because of the Panic of 1837.

    In Early 1838, the Texas election swept out of power the Republican Party, and voted in the new Unionist Party of Texas. The very first act of the Texas Congress in 1838 was to petition for admittance to the United States of America. Congress argued for over a week regarding the admission of another ‘slave’ state. Late in the week, David meet with Northern opponents of Texas and suggested that they introduce a compromise that would admit Texas and Florida as slave states and Michigan and Wisconsin as free states. The compromise passed and Texas was admitted.

    David called the Secretaries of State and War. He explained that he believes that Santa Anna will not simply accept the loss of Texas. David continued, ‘I believe that even though Texas was an independent nation, Santa Anna always view it as simply a wayward child that he would someday bring back into the fold of mother Mexico.’ Now with Texas joining the United States that dream is gone and Santa Anna will try to take ‘his’ territory back by force. David ordered the Secretary of State to dispatch just one courier to deliver the news to Texas first and then Mexico in order maximize the time needed to mobilize the National Guard and move them west. David realized that this would strain the budget, but he decided that the reduction of education and criminal expenses could be tolerated during a time of war.

    What David did not know was that Santa Anna had already declared war and was moving north, that the election of the Unionist Party in Texas was sufficient to anger the General.

    David summoned his top generals: Scott, Taylor, Harrison. The three generals proposed various plans of attack, each with themselves leading the critical main force. David quickly dismissed Taylor’s and Harrison’s plans as ‘too Napoleonic’. However, he made some adjustments to General Scott’s proposal. General Scott was ordered to take the first division from Maryland load them onto transport and sail for Florida, there he would pick up the second division, sail across the Gulf of Mexico and perform an amphibious assault on Matamoros to link up with the third division. The third divison out of New Orleans would march through Houston and assault Matamoros from the north. General Taylor was ordered to take command of the National Guard forces forming, he was to spread them across the US – Mexican border and prompt the Mexicans to attack and either pursue retreating forces to capture undefended provinces, but he must maintain a solid line to prevent the Mexican army from penetrating into the US. General Harrison was given the most difficult assignment, he was to take a train and get to Texas as quickly as possible and take command of the remnants of the Texas army and delay the Mexican army until General Taylor arrives with reinforcements.
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  18. #18
    Imperator General Ksim3000's Avatar

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    Good update, I am indeed interested in how this War with Mexico will go. Also very fun AAR, I really am enjoying it, it is nice to have something new for a change I must admit. Anyway update soon.

  19. #19
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    I laughed at that bit about Jackson and Van Buren as well. Quite true. Good luck with the Mexican War. I don't suppose David will be gaining any visits from the current time as they did in Quantum Leap?
    Northumberland Lives - new AAR for EUIV

    And check out the Guess the Author thread - back and active!

    The fAARq & Forum Rules
    Find all my AARs listed in The Ink Well

    Visit my blog at Hear the Hurd

  20. #20
    Field Marshal

    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Cornfields
    Posts
    3,374
    Keep up a great job.

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