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  • Writer's pictureRobert Daniels

MO-TELL Member of the Month: Robert Daniels

My name is Robert Daniels. I am a member of Alexander/Madison 9th and 10th Cavalry Buffalo Soldiers, historical storytellers. My interest in storytelling started when I learned about the Buffalo Soldiers rich history in their involvement in the United States Army. After doing some research I discovered that I had relatives who had served in all branches of the armed services, during the time that Buffalo Soldiers served. This only piqued my interest and I wanted to learn more about them and to tell those brave mens’ story. After that I took the course offered by the Mid-Continent Public Library Story Center and received my oral storytelling certificate in December 2022. After that I joined the River and Prairie Storyweavers. Next, I attended the Chicken festival and became a member of Missouri Storytelling. Another reason I became a storyteller was because of my father, who wrote short stories and poems.

Someday I would like to take some of his poetry and expand them into story form in his honor. I also believe that with the world going the way it is today, people are banning books, we have to save our history and several types of books. ‘Cause if we do not learn from the past, we will repeat it in the future.

I have not been a MO-TELL member for very long so I cannot tell you much about how to improve MO-TELL. I like the way they encourage participation in storytelling and how no one is disrespected by other members. I suggest that for the drawings at the conventions we might look for gifts from members like gift cards (I don’t know about you, but I get some I will never use). I also suggest we do silent auctions or white elephant auctions (members bring junk from home) and I suggest they invite the public to hear stories.Storytellers who have influenced me are Hal Holbrook (Mark Twain), Garrison Keillor (Prairie Home Companion), My fellow Buffalo Soldiers, Jim Two Crows Wallen and members of River and Prairie Storyweavers.

Some of my favorite movies are Song of the South book and movie, Sergeant Rutledge, 1960 movie, Once Upon a Time in the West, and The Great Escape. Raisin in the Sun, They Call Me Mr. Tibbs. I was a child who grew up as a baby boomer, so I watched a lot of TV westerns, science fiction, comedies, boxing, football and wrestling.

These are my holiday memories. The Christmas I asked for a Mattel burp gun, and I got a plastic Machine Gun, (big bummer at the time, look back now and was lucky I got anything). Trick or treat was fun as a child but as I got older found out about girls. Everyone has experiences they can talk about. I was in an intercity Boy Scout troop so we never when camping or fishing, until high school age then we went to summer camp. Camps were segregated so we could not swim with the white kids. Our school motto was “Lee Township against the World.” I graduated in from HS in 1965 and was drafted after that and sent to Vietnam 1966. I have learned a lot in my life and have lots of stories to tell.

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