Thursday, March 26, 2015

last shots of Bentonville 2015

I don't remember there being trenches at the previous reenactments, but they clearly had them here, and even had soldiers digging in them at various points. The Boy Scouts behind us were laughing at the soldiers doing the digging, because they all took their wool coats off. I don't blame them! It was warming up. The boys must have had binoculars, because I had to zoom with my camera several times before I found the soldiers they were talking about.
 The flank move below seemed to excite everyone in the crowd.
 The two "dead" federal soldiers (in the trenches) caused quite a bit of laughter among the Boy Scout troup behind us. Evidently one of them turned his head at some point, and they were making quite a few jokes about what the two dead soldiers were discussing.
 Maybe because of the almost teenage boys behind me, maybe because it was movement, but I started noticing the soldiers who "died". One, it was sad, but at the same time it became a little bit funny. Some of them clearly didn't want to hurt themselves and slowly knelt to the ground. Others put on quite the show by tumbling head over heels and writhing.  The guy below got quite comfortable. And I don't blame him. If I had to be still in one position for a long time, I'd die in a comfortable position too!
 Another scene enacted quite well was soldiers helping/dragging other wounded soldiers off the field.
 At this point the troops started a counter-attack directly in front of us. Like in the movies, row one fires while row two prepares their guns, and if there's a third row, they stand in line to advance or flank as needed. This group was doing that, so I knew they were about to fire and thought I'd have the perfect shot. About the same time they fired, the Feds fired a cannon shot in their direction, and EVERYONE in our section jumped. So instead of getting a good shot, I took a picture similar to one my mother would take...feet in focus and heads cut off. :)  Too bad the photo doesn't capture the noise, the smoke, or everyone around us cheering because they thought the "action" was about to begin.
 This injured chap drug himself under the shade tree in front of the crowd before he died. I know it was supposed to be serious, but it made me laugh a little bit.
 I think we were all amazed at how close the soldiers came to each other. Our guns today are so advanced and powerful that we forget that wasn't the case back then, and a lot of these battles resulted in bayonets (knives placed on the ends of the guns) and hand to hand combat.
I pray our nation will never face such a war again, whether "civil" or foreign. And as much as I hope that never ever comes our way again, should it happen, I pray we're well prepared.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

the Bentonville musicians

Federal Band performing for the crowd pre-reenactment. They even took a few requests from the crowd and played a few Rebel songs.

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One of my favorite shots. Most drummers were younger boys, though by this point in the war the South was decimated and most southern soldiers were Grandpas and young boys.



Not totally sure, but I think one of the flutists was a female.



And another female I don't think I posted yesterday.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

hat decorations

About half of this Federal unit sported the red caps. We weren't sure if they were supposed to be of French or Italian descent. Either way, they spoke a striking pose and were one of the groups that had a chant or song while marching.

Yeah, I know this guy doesn't have a hat decoration...but check out that quilt!

Saw quite a few feathers, which made me wonder if they got the idea from "yankee doodle"

A lot of this unit sported holly in their hats and had orangy-beards, making me wonder if it's an Irish thing (like shamrocks)
Don't fret. There's only a few more days worth of Bentonville's 150th anniversary pictures, and then I'll move on to other topics and such.