Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Historical Reenacting

Okay, I used to be a reenactor. I'll fess up to that right now. Did Civil War reenacting from junior high school to post high school days. Did a little French and Indian War mixed in with that. Seriously considered dropping a significant amount of 1970's era currency to do Revolutionary War reenacting. (You cannot conceive of just how badly I wanted to take the King's shilling and enlist in the Royal Welsh Fusiliers. It was the red coat and the cool hat. See Image Below!)

The Royal Welsh Fusiliers

Then I went into the Air Force. Where I got to wear uniforms and get paid to do so. Rather than me doing the paying to wear a uniform.

While in the Air Force, I did some World War II reenacting. That was expensive, but my Air Force pay covered it nicely. Though the Missus Herself thought I had a large number of loose screws for wanting to do this, it did, as she said "get me out of the house and into the fresh air."

So what caused a relatively well-adjusted lad to want to continue to "play army" long after elementary school? In a word: it was fun!

Re-enacting is expensive. Uniforms, equipment and weapon(s) can run into the thousands of dollars, depending on the type of re-enacting one wishes to pursue. Some of the World War II re-enacting units actually have tanks. Real-live "need gas and maintenance but look awesome rumbling about the countryside" tanks.

I often wonder how some Congress-critters sleep at night, knowing that somewhere out there is a civilian organization, chock full of red-blooded Americans, with actual armored fighting vehicles. Not many of them, true, (and they're old) but armored fighting vehicles nevertheless. Much more potent than anything your average county sheriff can muster. I rather hope it keeps some liberals awake at night.

So expect to see some re-enacting tales in these spaces in the future. Though I did introduce this particular topic back in June of 2012, now that I think about it. I have many more stories to tell. The mournful mutter of musketry and things that go "boom".

I have seen a man get blown from a horse by a smooth-bore cannon (he survived). I've also seen the organizers of a Civil War re-enactment have to step in to prevent actual bloodshed during a "battle". But I've never seen "attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion." (Movie reference there, 20 Shrute bucks to anyone who can identify the movie.)

So expect more but for now some photographs which give you an idea of the authenticity we re-enactors strive for. (And an idea of just how much money we spend to get that authentic look. And I'm not talking Shrute bucks here!)

American Re-Enactors, First Infantry Division
German Re-Enactors
(Yes, that's an authentic German 75mm Anti-Tank Gun behind them.)
Now the following pictures I'll let you decide, re-enactors or the real thing? Evidence to support your answer is required. Otherwise, no Shrute bucks for you!


  1. Blade Runner, come on give us a hard one........that's what she said.

    1. Hhhmm, I see my readers and I have similar tastes in movies. That was too easy.

      But I'm a man of my word, 20 Shrute Bucks have been deposited into your account in the "The Shrute Buck Vault and Redemption Center". See the page of the same name herein for instructions, limitations, caveats and other special offers.

  2. As you already know, I'm sure, down here The War Between the States is serious business. About 45 miles north of here in Brooksville, Fl there is a huge annual re-enactment. I know a few of the participants. Some take a week's vacation from work. Big money involved here, too. I believe it's good way for the Boy Scouts to earn cash, its held at their camp. I can easily envision you taking place in WWII reenactment, we had fun as kids tossing 'grenades' and fighting hand-to-hand, thats for sure!

    1. I hear-tell that some folk call that one "The War of Northern Aggression". Or so I've heard from the odd Louisiana Tiger or three!

      Yup, we played Army a lot back in the day!

    2. Freakin' Blogger just ate my comment about "The War of Northern Aggression!" Some of us Georgia Crackers use that term, particularly those of us old enough to have heard then-living relatives tell tales about Sherman's burning of Atlanta (that would be my great-grandmother, who was a young girl at the time).

    3. Though he was gone before I was born, my paternal great-grandfather actually fought in the war (a Vermont regiment I presume, so yeah, a Bluecoat). He married rather late in life. Would've been interesting to talk with him. We actually have letters from a great-great uncle who also fought in the war. Heh. Any GI would recognize them.

      I seem to recall a mention of Sherman in an old post of mine. I do believe you Georgia "peaches" didn't much care for him and his Bummers. Can't say I blame ya. We kinda feel the same way up in these parts about redcoats!

  3. I've mentioned this somewhere before, but maybe not here. While watching an old B52 bomber type plane flying slowly along as the sun set in Lawton, OK, a few years ago, parachutes started dropping out. It was WWll re-en-actors, and it was cool!

  4. I can see how re-enacting would cost the Big Bucks. Better you than me, Chris. ;-)

  5. Well, I cop to being the guy in the middle of the 'German re-enactors' photo. I can tell you, It can be an expensive hobby but it is all relative. You will notice I am wearing StG44 (MP44) pouches. That gun appraises for around $20k if it is a Curio and Relics (C&R) piece, like mine, as it has to be all original. If fires blanks at 35 cents each at a rate of around 550 per minute. Brian, Mike and I are sitting in front of a real PaK40 valued at about $40-50k. It fires 1 lb. of black powder per blank @ $7/pound. We fire them at a guy in a M4A3E8 Sherman tank valued @ $500k all while being strafed by another guy in a real P-51D Mustang valued @ $2,500,000!!

    1. I do recall it being rather pricey. Probably why I was content to just be a landser. My G34t was 50 bucks in the early '70s. The rest of the kit did cost a pretty penny.

      You guys look great in that photo!

    2. Thanks, that was a few years ago but we have all managed to stay fit and are still in the hobby.

    3. Outstanding! There are days I really miss it.

      But at 62 it's tough humping a ruck and a rifle over hill and dale.


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