Welcome to Camp Cameron, Cambridge’s Civil War Barracks.
Saturday’s Living History of the Civil War was a great success. There were about 60 re-enactors, one from as far away as Pennsylvania, representing the 22nd Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, the 28th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, the Lawrence Civil War Memorial Guard, and the United States Sanitary Commission.
Each of the re-enactors had an amazing amount of knowledge and ensured that every detail was perfectly met – from the portrait of Samuel Gridley Howe (director of the United States Sanitary Commission) in the Women’s tent to the puffed, salted corn the soldiers snacked on that visitors were lucky enough to sample. (The corn is much better than the hard tack.)
Some of the re-enactors create an impression or adopt a first person persona of someone from the Civil War era. Some impressions are entirely made up and others are based on historical figures. Jeff Lawrence of the recreated 22nd MVI bases his impression on Orrin Cook, a private from Springfield, Massachusetts in the original 22nd, who was left for dead during the horrific Battle of the Wilderness. Cook survived, returned to Springfield, wrote prodigiously, and suffered from PTSD. Read more about Lawrence’s fascinating research of Cook’s life and get a feel for how the re-enactors treat the subject of living history.
It was wonderful to walk among the tents, where no detail was spared from the private’s bedrolls to the stacks of women’s crinoline, and to imagine yourself back in time 150 years ago.
More photographs to come soon!