Though Wilder's play Our Town is not an unfamiliar experience here, it was surprising to hear two separate instances of the Civil War being cited. The first was both pleasant and amusing; the second was poignant:
Mrs. Gibbs: … it might make him discontented with Grovers Corners to go traipsin' about Europe; better let well enough alone, he says. Every two years he makes a trip to the battlefields of the Civil War and that's enough treat for anybody, he says.
Mrs. Webb: Well, Mr. Webb just admires the way Doctor Gibbs knows everything about the Civil War. Mr. Webb's a good mind to give up Napoleon and move over to the Civil War, only Doctor Gibbs being one of the greatest experts in the country just makes him despair.
Mrs. Gibbs: It's a fact, Doctor Gibbs is never so happy as when he's at Antietam or Gettysburg. The times I've walked over those hills, Myrtle, stopping at every bush and pacing it out, like we was going to buy it.
Stage Manager: … Over there (down L.C.) are some Civil War veterans. Iron flags on their graves – New Hampshire boys – had a notion that the Union ought to be kept together, though they'd never seen more than fifty miles of it themselves. All they knew was the name, friends – the United States of America. And they went and died about it.