The editor of the Mayberry Gazette announces that in honor of the newspaper's 50th anniversary, it will sponsor an essay-writing contest for Opie's class. The essay is to be on the Famous Battle of Mayberry and winner will get a medallion and will have their essay printed on the front page. Opie is enthusiastic at the prospect of winning and takes his father's advice and decides to interview various townsfolk about the role their ancestors played in the battle. All Opie finds is that everyone - Aunt Bee, Floyd, Goober, Clara Edwards - claims that their ancestors played the most important role in the historic battle. Andy suggests that Opie spend some time at the library in Raleigh looking through old newspapers to see what he can find. Opie finds an account of the encounter but it certainly wasn't much of a battle and the when he wins the contest and has his essay published, there are a lot of long faces in Mayberry. Written by
Did You Know?
The sword that Clara displays as having been used during the 1762 'battle' was specifically a U.S. Cavalry saber, in the design of sabers produced between 1858 and 1865 - a full century after the battle. This is in keeping with the tall tales being told of the skirmish, none of which seem to match with one another. More specifically, there is every reason to believe the sword might ACTUALLY have been genuine, given the natural patina on the brass, iron, and leather components. Surplus Civil War swords, even though the war had ended nearly a century before production of the show, were still commonly sold as surplus in the 1950s and 60s. Such genuine articles were often purchased for use as film/television props and set pieces, as there wasn't much difference in price between the real items and their reproductions. See more