Our favorite civil war event of the season

I've written before about my (sort of secret) hobby of civil war reenacting.  Since I was a little kid I've been tagging along with my mom, who has a business making historic clothing and sets up a little tent shop at civil war events in Oregon.

The 4th of July weekend is a big civil war event for the organization we reenact with, and it's our favorite event.  We'll be out at a state park on the Willamette river this weekend, cooking over a camp stove, handsewing, wearing corsets and hoopskirts... I know some of you do reenacting, as well--are you out camping with your region's group this weekend, too?

Here are some pics from last year's 4th of July event.  Lots of junk to haul out there in a trailer and set up...

All set up, our kitchen area:

Sleeping tent:

Cooking over the fire:

Looking grand in a new dress...

Anyway.  Sewing for civil war events and other era historic events is part of how I learned.  It's definitely an odd hobby in some ways, but we've been doing it so long, we're pretty good at it by now. =)  Can you tell I'm not thrilled about leaving the comfort of my home and jeans?  Kidding... it'll be fun, it always is, but it's a lot of work!

Hope you all have a great holiday weekend.


  1. Have a wonderful weekend! Looks to be a lot of fun!!
    I really enjoy reading and learning about history, I am the family historian and have a whole room dedicated to it. Not only family but what was happening at the time of that persons life.
    We have the renaissance faire that begins next weekend for a month up in Wisconsin, I will be doing that for fun this year. Dress up time :) I do need to buy a few more items for my outfit and I will be ready.

  2. Looks like a nice set up. I learned to sew from reenacting French and Indian War and from working at a living history museum. I haven't been able to do as much of it since going to grad school, but learning to sew historic clothing has made the modern stuff seem a little less daunting (for me at least).

  3. Wow that's an awesome hobby! I grew up in Dallas,Oregon,whereabouts in the willamette valley does this take place? (My nephews would dig this!maybe next year on vacation we can check it out)

  4. I really wish I was out re-enacting this weekend!! I can't even go to my group's event next weekend. :( I re-enact the Rev. War with my husband. :) Unfortunately, we are living in Idaho right now, and our group (and activities) are in the east/Midwest (ohio/Kentucky). Doesn't stop me from creating new things to wear when we DO get to an event though! Lovely dress!! I hope you have a great weekend!! Equest2005

  5. I grew up in minnesota and we'd always go to fort snelling. I'd love to find a place in LA thta does re-enactment that I could bring my children to. To me that was such a fun part of the summer and I would love to show my husband and children what its like.

  6. It looks like at lot of fun.
    I do viking age reenactment (I am a Dane and I do it to teach people about our history, not of any other reason...), and I also learned a lot of the basics of sewing and fabrics through that. And also got the interest in sewing.

  7. Yes, it is fun!
    @themonkeyunderground, this event was at Willamette Mission State Park north of Salem, but the Northwest Civil War Council (www.nwcwc.org) has events at several parks in NW Oregon throughout the summer.

    @Shevy, there is probably a very large group of reenactors in the LA area! Try Googling "civil war reenactment los angeles" or something...

  8. Solange7/13/2011

    As a European, I find the American preoccupation with and enjoyment of the antebellum colonial period both shocking and horrendous. Very bizarre people.

  9. Solange7/13/2011

    I would love to see the reaction to something similar for the Jewish Holocaust. We would never do such a thing here, it's awful and in bad taste!


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