Monday, July 22, 2013

Rain and the Battlefield

150th Commemoration, Battle of Buffington Island

Portland, OH

July 20-21, 2013

Our camp, with us preparing to drill. Courtesy Martin Unrue.
Friday night arrival through torrential downpours revealed an empty park where the event was held.  We set up camp in a back corner.

Buffington Island is Ohio’s only Civil War battlefield, and this was to be the 150th commemoration.  Unfortunately, there seemed a lack of interest among reenactors.  There were two small groups of Federals, one of the units was members of the 76th OVI.  The total Federals matched our numbers of about 12.

It seemed sad to me, as I had heard of spectacular event some years back for Buffington Island, and for the fact that this was the 150th commemoration of the only battle in Ohio.  But I looked forward to the time with my friends.

Awakened by Reveille.  Photo courtesy Martin Unrue  
Saturday held a basic ceremony, and we provided a firing salute with the Yankees.  We had planned to perhaps have a small skirmish with the Yankees.  But unfortunately, the weather did not cooperate.  At first the winds whipped up, where the Yankees decided to pack up, followed by torrential rains.  We kept semi-dry underneath Kletzli’s fly.

That evening, Capt Sharp took us through some safety issues and training to fix some of the issues encountered at Gettysburg.

Sunday wasn’t much better for rain—most of the morning brought a soaking experience.  But we did get a good breakfast from the coordinators. Once the rain finally cleared, we went through the manual of arms.  A small crowd gathered, so we switch to a bit of drill, segueing to skirmish drill, firing as we advanced.  At one point, we neared the sutlers’ tents, and one of the sutlers popped a few rounds at us through the tent flaps.

It was a slow weekend, but we enjoyed each other’s company.

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