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Chloe convinced me not to dial 911. “Our computer, television and furniture are all here,” Chloe pointed out.
“Remember what Mom said about not jumping to conclusions before gathering all the facts.” I took Chloe’s advice and decided to do some investigating. Using my Sherlock Bone’s Detective Kit, I investigated and Chloe recorded our findings. There was no sign of breaking or entering, and like Chloe said, other than our drum set, everything was in its proper place. I pulled out my binoculars to look for clues.
“Use your magnifying glass instead, Woody,” Chloe said. I grabbed my magnifying glass and looked around. “Interesting, very interesting,” I said, spotting shoe prints on the hardwood floor. “It looks like there were two robbers,” I informed my assistant. We carefully tracked the prints out the door and ended up one block over from the house at an old barnlike garage.
We knocked on the back door of the garage, but nobody answered.
“Let’s go, Woody,” Chloe said. “This could be dangerous.”
“We can’t go now,” I responded. “This is our chance to bust the burglar. Besides, if we leave, we may never find our drums.” I noticed there were some rickety old crates and boxes by the garage. “Chloe, help me pile these up, and I’ll climb on these boxes and look through the window,” I said. “Make sure the boxes stay steady and tell me if anyone comes.”
“What do you see?” Chloe asked as I made it to the top of the boxes and peered in the windows.
“There’s lots of stuff in here. There are old guns and swords, some shotgun shells and knives. I see a dingy hat with ‘Union’ written on it. And guess what I see in the corner? Our drums! We’ve caught the thief. Call the cops!”
“Wait, let’s go tell Dad and let him help us decide what to do,” Chloe advised.
Deciding Chloe was right, I crawled off the boxes and we hurried home. When we arrived, Mom and Dad were waiting.
“Mom, Dad, you’re never going to believe it! Our drums were stolen, and I know exactly where they are,” I panted, still out of breath from the excitement. “C’mon, I’ll show you. Bring your cell phone and we’ll call the cops.”
Mom and Dad smiled and winked at each other before Mom spoke. “It’s OK. We know where your drums are. And don’t ask why they’re gone. It’s a surprise. Go wash up for dinner. We’re ready to hear about your day at work.”
I had many questions about my drums but decided to obey.
We told our parents the things we’d learned about Lincoln, Jefferson and Kentucky. We told them about the Civil War battle reenactment and how The Barkstreet Band would be performing.
“That’s great, Woody. Exactly which battle will you be reenacting?” Dad asked as we finished eating dinner.
“I guess the Civil War Battle. What do you mean?”
“The Civil War had many battles, not just one. In fact, here in Kentucky there were several battles.” Dad got up from the table and retrieved his laptop from the shelf.
“According to this site,” Dad said, “there were 11 battles fought in Kentucky. Early in the war, Confederate soldiers entered Kentucky. During the Battle of Mill Springs, the Union Soldiers kept the Confederates from going farther. Even so, the Confederates captured Richmond, Frankfort and Lexington.”
“Frankfort?” I asked. “That’s our capital.”
“Exactly,” Dad confirmed. “It says here Frankfort was the only state capital in the Civil War to be captured by the Confederacy. The most famous battle in Kentucky was the Battle of Perryville in October of 1862. More than 1,300 soldiers died and more than 5,000 were wounded. Afterward, the Confederates gave up trying to control Kentucky, though there were small battles until the war’s end.”
“Thanks, Dad! Now Chloe and I have a great deal of information for the ‘Battles’ room at the library,” I said.
With the exception of not knowing why my drums were in that garage, things were taking shape. Our job was going well, our band was booked for gigs, and I would soon have enough money for drum lessons and the window repair. Best of all, we hadn’t really been robbed, but I sure wanted to practice. I was counting my blessings and remembering I was one lucky dog when Bark arrived at the door.
“Dawg,” Bark said as he entered the house, “the band has a huge problem!”
Thanks to Kentucky Utilities/LG&E, Kentucky Press Association and the KY Secretary of State for helping to make this statewide literacy project possible. Go to www.kypress.com to hear each chapter and try the chapter activities.