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The Dove Series

Written By

Bonnie M. Wells

#1: Feathered Friends

Feathers & Fur

All my life I'd loved everything with feathers or fur.

One of my earliest memories was of the Rock Doves, or more commonly called Pigeons of Belpre, Ohio.

I can still remember looking out my grandmother's living room window and watching the pigeons. And I can still remember trying with all my might to get one of them to "come inside!" This of course was always stopped by my mother, grandmother or Uncle Bill who threatened to "tan my hide" if I brought one of those filthy things into grandma's house!

I wasn't sure what a hide tanning felt like, but it sounded painful when Uncle Bill said it .... still, I was willing to take my chances, but I never could talk any of my feathered friends into coming along. The fascination with doves would be something that stayed with me throughout my life, and would eventually lead to some very interesting and spiritual research.


* Notice the dark feather bands that run across the wings of the birds in the above picture. Although there are dozens of breeds of pigeons, only the Rock Dove has this dark band across its wings. *

The Bible contains many references to doves ...

"Then he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters had subsided from the face of the ground; but the dove found no place to set her foot, and she returned to him to the ark, for the waters were still on the face of the whole earth. So he put forth his hand and took her and brought her into the ark with him. He waited another seven days, and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark; and the dove came back to him in the evening, and lo, in her mouth a freshly plucked Olive Leaf; so Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth. Then he waited another seven days, and sent forth the dove; and she did not return to him any more." (Genesis 8:8-12 RSV)

"As soon as Jesus came up out of the water, he saw heaven opening and the Spirit coming down on him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven," You are my own dear Son. I am pleased with you." / Mark 1,9 -11

"Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves." (Matthew 10:16

And Jesus entered the Temple of God [see Temples] and drove out all who sold and bought in the Temple, and He overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. / Matthew 21:10-13

King Solomon reportedly used pigeons for communication purposes and there are indications that pigeons were used as far back as 3000 to 5000 B.C. Documentation shows "pigeon racing" in Palestine from 200 to 220 A.D.

The Romans used the homing pigeon as a military aid in 43 B.C. and the modern day homing pigeon came into international recognition during the Franco-Prussian war and are credited with the delivery of 150,000 official communication's during the 4 month siege of Paris.

The homing pigeon was the catalyst for the creation of the world's most prestigious news services, "The Routers News Service." During World War-2 the Routers war correspondent used pigeons to send the word to Britain, that allied forces had landed in Normandy, as it would be many hours before electronic communications would be established.

In the Civil War, a pigeon named "Old Abe" became the "Eagle Mascot," and in WW-2 the 101st Airborn Division adopted "Young Abe" as their mascot. The pigeon was reportedly a decendent of Old Abe.

During World war 1 the homing pigeon played a major role as a communications instrument and was used extensively by both sides. The pigeons used by our military performed flawlessly, and many times were the only means of communications available to our troops.

Our military maintained and used homing pigeons up to and including the Vietnam War. The O.S.S. later to become the C.I.A., made extensive use of the homing pigeons during the Korean conflict. Agents were dropped off 75 to 200 miles behind enemy lines with pigeons. The pigeons that were used had a 100% completion rate, of all messages sent. Even our modern electronics nets cannot measure up to this performance!

The homing pigeon is still a hobby that thousands of fanciers enjoy throughout the country and the world. It is a rewarding hobby that on a moments notice could be a first line means of communications should the need arise, and it does not cost the taxpayers anything.

The Most Publicized Pigeon

"Cher Ami" was an English bred pigeon, attached to the New York Battalion of the 77th division. The battalion advanced too far ahead of its own lines and was hopelessly cut off and surrounded. Certain annihilation or capture faced them. Several pigeons were released only to fall mortally wounded.

Cher Ami was released, circled and headed for home, only to be hit by a burst of shrapnel. In spite of her wounds, which left the message capsule leg hanging by only a shred and the breast penetrated, Cher Ami covered a distance of 40 kilometers in 25 minutes with the vital message that saved the now Lost Battalion.

Although we don't hear much about "Pigeons of War," nowdays, I remember the pigeons that were sent along with our troops as they headed into Iraq in the spring of 2003. Those birds could serve many purposes .... if the need arose.


I guess every word, every term, especially in the United States has to have at least one ulterior meaning, so in all fairness, I decided I should add the dictionary terms for "pigeon" and "dove."


(dov) alt. pt. of dive:

1. A bird of the pigeon family {Columbidae}, especially the smaller species with a fullbrested body, short legs, and a typical cooing cry; it is often used as a symbol of peace.

2. An advocate of measures in international affairs designed to avoid or reduce open hostilities:

3. A person regarded as gentle, innocent or beloved.


1. A bird of the Columbidae family:

2. A girl or young woman:

3. A person easily decieved or duped:

The Dove Dream


Bonnie M. Wells

Midi = The Girl I Left Behind Me

Page posted / updated: 11-07-03 / 7-07 // by BMW

PS: Although the background on this page was created by ' Backgrounds by Marie' photos of Pigeons Feeding and Cher Ami are "not" part of "Backgrounds by Marie."