Beaufort News

Civil War group seeks reenactors for sesquicentennial commemoration

The Lowcountry Civil War Round Table is looking for reenactors of Union and Confederate forces to camp out near the Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn in December as part of a calendar of events to mark the war's 150th anniversary.

Although they won't be engaging in battle, the reenactors will sleep in tents overnight Dec. 3 and show what life was like in an encampment -- down to what the soldiers ate -- the group's former president John Monkaitis said.

Because of the lack of local reenactment groups, Monkaitis and other organizers of the sesquicentennial celebration planned for Dec. 1-4 are hoping experienced reenactors will join the nationally renowned historians expected to participate. A member of the Lowcountry Civil War Round Table is a reenactor and has contacts with others who might suit up. Ideally, organizers would like to see as many as 50 participants, Monkaitis said.

They'd also like to recruit an artillery and a cavalry unit to round out the demonstrations, he added.

The Coastal Discovery Museum, Bluffton Historical Preservation Society and other groups will meet next week to schedule events, according to Natalie Hefter, the museum's vice president of programs.

"I want to create an atmosphere where families would bring their children," Monkaitis said. "Maybe they'll get the love of history we've all gotten intoxicated with."

One confirmed guest is Civil War expert and Virginia Tech history professor James "Bud" Robertson, who, in his capacity as an ordained Presbyterian minister, is expected to conduct a battlefield church service for the encampment Dec. 4, Monkaitis said.

Other events include morning lectures, evening social gatherings, a Civil War exhibit at the Coastal Discovery Museum and chartered boats sailing from Harbour Town Marina to Port Royal Sound to relive the Battle of Port Royal.

Follow staff writer Allison Stice at twitter.com/BlufftonBlogIP.

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