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Beef Smuggling - Interesting Facts and a Funny Story

Updated on October 22, 2011

Beef smuggling, true stories

Its no surprise that people love beef, its just a wonderful food. Personally, it doesn't get much better than the perfect steak cook just right. It just really "hits the spot". Other people love beef as well, and have even been known to smuggle it! Is it really that prized of an item? You be the judge. This first story makes me laugh, just the headline of it!

Corned beef sandwich smuggled into space

Restrictions can be rough when going into space. This particular mission, was the first manned Gemini mission to be launched. It may go down in history for more reasons than you would expect. Evidently one guy didn't like the idea of being without his corned beef on rye, for the period of time he would be in space. So he smuggled it on board! The beef smuggling perpetrator was John Young. One day, while in orbit he just whipped it out, and the commander in charge, Gus Grissom had to be very surprised. Not so surprised that he didn't get a bit of it himself though. While eating the sandwich, they both commented on how strong the smell of it was. I get tickled just picturing this whole thing. John Young landed himself into some hot water that day, but I bet they still get a kick out of this story, and I imagine its one of those stories that get told again and again in that family. They did learn something that day, that sandwiches like this fall apart, when gravity is not a part of the scenario. I wonder, would peanut and butter and jelly have done better keeping in tact?

Beef Smuggling during the war of 1812

This is another interesting story I had never heard before. During the war of 1812, American beef was smuggled, rather openly, from the states of Vermont and New York! The British army in Canada, evidently lived off of this beef, for the most part.

For example, one time in 1813, there was a young boy named Robert Rogers, that noticed a large drove of cattle near a line of what was then called, "Cory's smuggling road." By this time, the smuggling had gotten pretty bad, and for some reason there was not an officer there at this particular time. This boy caught sight of the cattle being led away to where they would feed the British army in Canada. Rogers went home quickly, and shared what he learned with Major Enos, the then US officer of customs.

They acted quickly (as beef stealing for the enemy is serious business! I for one, would be shocked and horrified). The story goes, that the Major, took the boy with him, and went quickly to Craftsbury where he knew he could gather up a posse of fellow beef lovers and determined men. to try and stop the atrocity from being accomplished. Such a herd of hungry cattle during war time, is not going anywhere quickly. An interesting part of the story, which gave the smugglers an added boldness, was that once over the line the other men would throw up their hats as high as they could. I mean, who wouldn't throw up their hat for a good steak?

The Major proceeded to let these smugglers know, that Uncle Sam wanted him to secure that fine lot of beef. He went on to say, he would take them back over the mountains, for the use of of their OWN men. There were shooting orders, should anyone touch one of the bars where the cattle went through. What struck me at this point, was that this Major, nor any of the posse helping him didn't even have a "horse pistol". What they did have, were some very determined men.

Finally, two men, Joseph Chamberlain and Onios Skinner, each lifted up their canes and rode up towards the men. They said, and I quote, "Hold, the first man that fires a shot shall be the first in hell." The man near the bars, where the cattle are driven, slowly laid out all the bars. Finally, the cattle that numbered 110 in total, were taken to a place where some citizens were watching till the morning. Then, they were started off the next morning and headed toward Burlington. It is said that several skirmishes occurred on their journey, and the last one was at Underhill. Evidently there was some blood spilled there. A suit was summoned to determine the value of the 110 cattle, but was thrown out of court. That is all I know so far about the story, but it is such an interesting recovery of almost smuggled cattle into enemy territory. What some people will do for beef.

There are many more stories, involving many countries around the world. These were just a couple that stood out to me. Hope you enjoyed them as much as I did.




A corned beef sandwich on rye.  This may be the kid of place he picked up the sandwich before the smuggle.
A corned beef sandwich on rye. This may be the kid of place he picked up the sandwich before the smuggle.
Gemini 111 being launched, with John Young, Gus Grissom, and the smuggled corned beef sandwich
Gemini 111 being launched, with John Young, Gus Grissom, and the smuggled corned beef sandwich
Here is John before the mission was launched.  Is that look on his face, one of guilt?  He has the smuggled corned beef on rye with him.
Here is John before the mission was launched. Is that look on his face, one of guilt? He has the smuggled corned beef on rye with him.
An artists depiction during the war of 1812.  The war where beef was smuggled in to aid the British in Canada at the time.
An artists depiction during the war of 1812. The war where beef was smuggled in to aid the British in Canada at the time.

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    • oceansnsunsets profile imageAUTHOR

      Paula 

      7 years ago from The Midwest, USA

      Thank you Phoenix, lol. The stories made me laugh, but are true too, it made them even more funny and interesting to me.

    • PhoenixV profile image

      PhoenixV 

      7 years ago from USA

      Funny hub lol

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