September 23, 2013

Ridley Creek Civil War Reenactment at the Colonial Pennsylvania Plantation

This weekend I found myself staring down some sheep. Sheep look nice and fluffy. At night, we are told to count them hopping jovially over a fence. When you look at a sheep, it conjures up relaxing pastoral images. Until you have to give them their medicine, that is.




This weekend, I went to the Civil War reenactment at the Colonial Pennsylvania Plantation in Ridley Creek State Park to help give tours in the farm house.

This event is one of my favorites as it is local and the scenery is unbeatable for bringing the past to life. I was originally upset that I might have missed this event because I was planning on attending the 150th Chickamauga in Georgia as I hadn't been there in over 5 years but the plans fell through.


I offered to assist with the tours as I normally did. Unfortunately, I have been sick. I have had a terrible cough, angry running nose and little energy. When I woke up on Saturday morning the only thing I wanted to do was go back to sleep. I might have, if it wasn't for the sheep deworming that I had promised to take part in.

I stood there at 10 AM in the muddy sheep stall, wearing my mothers boots with my dress and holding a syringe full of medicine. Sheep are heard animals. They are soft and fluffy but they also have horns and hooves. I didn't think much of those until the wrangling began. Once the sheep were aware that something was amiss, they fiercely ran in circles, knocking everything out of their path.


The guy I was assisting, had a pretty good technique in cradling the sheep and getting them to open their mouths to take the medicine. But catching each sheep was a challenge. With every new sheep it was like the running of the bulls. The sheep took off, one even pounced against the wall near where I was standing like a ninja sheep, with all fours very close to my head. The medicine I was giving must have tasted terrible, as the sheep were very keen on spitting it back at me. Regardless, we finished in good time and the sheep forgot about it seconds later. Sunday's deworming went much smoother as my friend Jeff lent a hand and we both got to laugh at the new, exciting experience.

After that the tours went as good as can be expected, I had limited voice and a harsh cough. But the guests were very interested and engaged. On Saturday, about twenty soldiers from the local military base came out to visit.

   
The battles were phenomenal. As always the fighting is over great terrain, around walls, fences, hills and barns, very close to the spectators. The reenactors gave a very emotive performance with specialty scenarios which included robbing the farmhouse and caring for the wounded.  The house display was fantastic, as always.



It was a great event and I'm glad that I went, especially because I was sick. I got to learn new things, see a lot of friends I haven't seen in awhile and enjoy the great weather instead of just staying in bed.

7 comments:

  1. I love hearing about the specialty scenarios and enjoyed seeing your "after battle" photos of the wounded men and the civilians who took care of them. Military reenactors tend to just fight battles and civilians tend to just cook over the fire at most reenactments. I've been trying to change this attitude here in Michigan and I'm glad to see it happening elsewhere.
    Glad you are feeling better.

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    1. Thanks Ken, I am frequently disappointed by what is allowed for civilians but am happy that civilians are starting to get to be stars in the show instead of stage crew.

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  2. Awww, neat. I wish I would have went. I haven't been feeling well lately. Hopefully next year!

    http://clayxmatthewsxfan89.blogspot.com/2013/09/if-it-makes-you-happy-then-why-hell-are.html

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    1. It's a very nice event I hope you can make it next year.

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  3. What fun. Attending Civil War reenactments is a new experience for me and I intend to take in some more next summer....:)

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    1. I hope you do. It's a great community to be a part of.

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  4. These photos are absolutely wonderful!! My friends and I were at the event and we were wondering if you put your pictures up online, as we are interested in seeing more of your photos.

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