It's all good moods though, you know? We're all just so very happy to not only be back in the world of living history, but doing it at historic Greenfield Village! Being allowed to camp and reenact amongst dozens of historic homes and buildings from the 18th and 19th centuries is as good as it gets.
Well, they say a picture is worth a thousand words, so, as I have done in previous years, my review of Civil War Remembrance consist of a few hundred thousand words...
Hope you enjoy it!
|Our ladies love to sew, and they sew so much they can do it in unison!|
|Many, many visitors came by and received a hands-on history lesson on spinning wool into yarn. And that's one of the best parts about reenacting: allowing visitors to experience history in ways only reenactors can do!|
|Two of our lovely ladies. Jackie, the one on the left, does a wonderful first-person and oftentimes portrays one of my sisters.|
|Elaine has studied up on the occupation of operating a telegraph, and now enjoys explaining the process to the many visitors she receives.|
|This young lady is one of the finest seamstresses I know and has done numerous jobs for my wife and I. Here she is again, hard at work on another project. Yes, she can sew clothing of pretty much any era in time.|
|My lovely wife and I. Yes, we are a patriotic couple aren't we? We're also grandparents. Want proof? Well...|
|...here we are posing for a mock tintype with our grandson Benjamin at his very first reenactment! Oh! He will really enjoy spending time in the past with his nonna and papa!|
|Benjamin and his Nonna.|
|And here is our daughter posing with her nephew. We were so happy and proud to introduce him to our many friends as well as to living history!|
Here is a description of what it was like at this very same tavern from one who was here 150 years ago:
“It was a very popular place and supported the finest ‘orchestry’ music in that part of the country, especially the violin…of whom was one Ray Anthony Niles, who was a pattern of old Beau Brummell of ancient times. He played the violin that charmed all his hearers, and helped to make that old tavern popular.”
Obviously, we didn't have Ray Anthony Niles playing the fiddle, but we, instead, had JJ, who played the popular tunes of the day, and that was the perfect touch that brought out the realism.
Then again, maybe it was Ray Anthony Niles...
Anyhow, the following is a quick-clip I snuck of our fiddler.
|Yes, she and I both know that it was improper for a woman to dress in this manner to mourn for one outside the immediate family. We just wanted to take advantage of the photo opportunity allowed to us that we may not ever see again.|
|Unfortunately, I did not think to take pictures of all the building draped in mourning, though Town Hall was particularly striking.|
It was very well done and many who participated said it was one of the best scenarios they had taken part in. I must agree - - it's wonderful when civilian and military can come together to recreate a scene in an authentic manner that happened a century and a half earlier in such a respectful way.
I was proud to be a part.
|Townsfolk awaiting for the men to arrive|
|Many of the women could not contain themselves and wrapped their loving arms around their man as they marched to get mustered out.|
|150 years to the day that the men of the 20th Michigan were mustered out of the military, it happened once again...|
|Three Cheers!! (Photo courtesy of Lee Cagle)|
|We all listened as speeches were made of the bravery of these men. (Photo courtesy of Lee Cagle)|
|Tears of joy for some as they spied their loved one, while worrisome looks for others who did not see their boy in the line.|
|"Where is he? Why is it he is not here?"|
|Some fell to their knees in their embrace - it's been far too long since these boys have been home to see their loved ones.|
|A father holds his not-so-newborn son for the first time.|
|"My son is home, safe and sound! Praise the Lord!"|
|"Thank you, Senator Howard, for joining us in this celebration."|
On to more photographs showing Victorian life - - -
|I really like this picture of Laura Nutt taken by Elizabeth Topping. It's almost like a Harper's Weekly sketch come to life!|
|Meg (in mourning) and Jillian had asked me to photograph them in typical Victorian fashion, and little says Victorian as does a covered bridge & pond background.|
|Of all the pictures I took of Meg and Jillian, this one is perhaps my favorite.|
|Reflections of the way life used to be...|
Greenfield Village always holds a Grand Ball for Civil War Remembrance participants, and I thought you might like to see a few of the photos from this year.
|Lorna and Russ|
|This young couple became betrothed only hours before.|
|Stephanie and Meg|
|Allie and Noah|
|Patty, Larissa, and Heidi|
|Liz and Sophia|
|Laura and Robbie|
|Pam and Dave|
|My wife and I (photo by Beth Beley)|
The following two photographs were taken at the ball by fellow living historian Elaine Masciale. She has captured the essence of this evening that I have not been able to, and I thank her for the use of her photos.
And how about a video clip of the Grand March:
Back in the Village, we have a familiar face...the proprietor of The Victorian Needle:
|It's quite an honor to be asked to set up shop at such a venue as Greenfield Village. Kristen received many compliments from customers. |
Here we see my daughter (on the right) helping Kristen out.
|These three ladies were standing just as you see them, and this photograph flashed right into my mind. Sometimes these things just happen.|
|The lovely Laura Nutt and Elizabeth Topping joined us for the weekend. It was wonderful having these two as part of our group, and I look forward to more events with them.|
One of the most moving of all tributes I've seen is the Memorial Day/Decoration Day ceremony held on Memorial Day Monday. Tribute is paid to not only the Civil War soldiers, but to all military personnel who had died in all of America's wars.
|Waiting for the parade to the Village green. This picture was taken through the back window of Dr. Howard's office window.|
|A few restful moments...|
|For the general public, the time before the parade is a fine opportunity to snap some shots of 1860s fashions. Here I am with my friend Dan.|
|Two battle-weary soldiers awaiting their time to go home to see their loved ones.|
|Senator Jacob Howard - no relation to the Doctor - at the Logan County Courthouse, where President Lincoln practiced law before running for office.|
|The soldiers prepare for the ceremony.|
|These are the lovely ladies who will play an important role in the Decoration Day ceremony, for they are the ones who will reenact the laying of the flowers at the graves of those who fought and died during the Civil War.|
|The wreath, signifying the grave of all American military who had died, is brought out.|
|And the ladies lay flowers at the foot of the wreath.|
|They had commented afterward how honored they were to take part in this ceremony.|
There you have it. Just a few of the many pictures that I took (along with friends photos) to help give a general overview of this most splendid event. It seems that everyone I speak to that was there says the same thing: the best Greenfield Village ever.
And I believe it was as well.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
And now, time for some blooper/out-take pictures that will hopefully bring a smile to your face.
|The prim and proper Meg & Jillian. I wonder if 1860s women were just as crazy? Something tells me they probably were...when no one was looking, of course!|
|All fall down. I love the expression on Jillian's face!|
|"Anthony! Woo hoo!! Anthony!! Here I am!!!"|
|"Ooweeee, this can't be happening! Me? You want to marry MEEE??"|
|I wonder if Matthew Brady had problems like this??|
lady! You get out of that tree now!”|
“But mother, they made me do it. They dared me to climb this tree!”
“Us??? Why, we’re your sisters! We would never ask you to do such a thing! We are frightened you may fall and kill yourself!”
|Cinderella's stepsisters 1865: Just what are they up to now? Hmmm...|
Oh! Now we see...
when we danced on the porch of Susquehanna last year, Jillian?”|
“Yeah! That was fun! We should do it again – we can make it an annual thing!”
So, instead of the porch of Susquehanna, we danced in the grove of trees where we camped.
|Yes, the members of the 21st Michigan are quite a group of living historians. And I love 'em, every one!|