09 October 2015
Today I had the distinct honor and privilege of meeting and interviewing a relic hunting legend and Civil War artillery expert - Mr. George Whiting of Lexington, Virginia. Mr. Whiting is a courtly Southern gentleman and, at 95 years of age, still very sharp and knowledgeable about Civil War artillery and firearms. As a matter of fact, Mr. Whiting consults regularly with Virginia Military Institute officials regarding their vast collection. He began reading about WBTS artillery and firearms at age 9. And he recalls the days when one could walk over battlefields in Virginia after a heavy rain and eyeball Civil War belt and box plates, as well as Minie balls. He's led an amazing life.
We chatted for over an hour as Mr. Whiting recalled 85 years of reading and studying the Civil War and 70 years of collecting and relic hunting. He's given almost all of his collection away - many of the more valuable items to VMI. I hope to put the details of our conversation into an article for publication soon. Mr. Whiting knew several Confederate Veterans and is an army veteran himself. One of a dying breed for sure. I owe a big thank you to Colonel Keith Gibson of VMI for arranging the meeting and interview.