NEW ULM - A July 3 event at Riverside Park will commemorate the participation of The First Minnesota Infantry in the Battle of Gettysburg.
The commemoration will include music and actors portraying everyone from Lincoln to Minnesota personalities from the 1860s.
Local musician Dick Kimmel recently completed a song, "The First Minnesota - Their Last Full Measure," specifically about the First Minnesota Infantry's participation in the battle. It will be performed for the first time on July 3.
Dick Kimmel has written “The First Minnesota — Their Last Full Measure,” specifically about the First Minnesota Infantry’s participation in the battle, and he will perform it for the first time on July 3 at Riverside Park in New Ulm. A second song, “Lauralee,” representing a Confederate soldier’s perspective, was written by Tony Rook will also be played at the concert.
"All of the resources that I've checked speak of the importance of the First Minnesota infantry at Gettysburg," says Kimmel. "My song is completely fact based from these resources."
A second song, "Lauralee," representing a Confederate soldier's perspective, was written by Tony Rook, a North Carolina musician/songwriter who recently relocated to New Prague for work. Rook will be at the July 3 event in New Ulm to perform his song, backed by Dick Kimmel & Co.
Here are words to the chorus of the "The First Minnesota Their Last Full Measure"
The First Minnesota, they held the line.
At the battle of Gettysburg, too many gave their lives
Hundreds fought at Cemetery Ridge, 47 returned.
Their last full measure is what they gave, and the course of the war was turned.
Here is a portion of lyrics to "Lauralee"by Tony Rook:
While I dance with Lauralee,
Sing the songs you sing to me
I've seen Death and he's seen me
And I don't know if I'll return to thee.
The band played Dixie and the flag it waved,
Bound for glory and our land to save.
Chests filled with pride and victory
So were the boys who followed Lee
These boots may take me where they will
From Shiloh to Manassas and on to Chancellorsville
But I'll not forget what you mean to me
And how I long to kiss Lauralee