Last weekend I attended Greenbank Mill’s Civil War Day.
This was a living history at Greenbank Mill located in Wilmington, Delaware . The weather was fantastic; it was warm but not hot and had a nice breeze. Dating back to the late 1600s, the land around the mill went through a variety of transformations from milling foodstuffs to wool processing to milling animal feed. This site, similar to the mill I visited a few weeks ago, used the Oliver Evans milling system, which used cups and chutes to make the milling process automatic.
This event was equally enjoyable for reenactors and visitors. Reenactors were not told to simply “walk about and be Civil War people,” but given jobs that used their personal skills to an advantage. This arrangement was beneficial as reenactors spent the day doing something fun and visitors had many things to do.
The house contained an interesting and well-placed exhibit entitled “Household Heroes,” which demonstrated the home front aspect of the war.
The millhouse had a variety of activities and mini-exhibits that pertained to the Sanitary Commission, an organization that aimed to help better the lives of the troops. These activities included, medicine, refreshments for soldiers, the making of medical supplies, embroidery, making poke sacks and knitting. In camp, visitors could drill with the soldiers.
Visitors and reenactors alike took part in dancing period dances at a country-style dance and played baseball with period ball and rules. There was a lot for everyone to do but the day was relaxed and fun.
|The canopy above our camp.|
I forgot to mention that we attended this event as (*gasp*): Yankees! :D