"Dying" in Reenactments

Discussion in 'History Forum' started by KenH, Dec 28, 2003.

  1. KenH

    KenH
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    This question can probably be answered by Dr. Bob:

    In reenactments, such as the ones for the War for Southern Independence movies, how is it decided who will "play dead" while marching into the gunfire of the enemy?
     
  2. KenH

    KenH
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    bump
     
  3. Joseph_Botwinick

    Joseph_Botwinick
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    The re-enactment I participated in went something like this:

    When you got tired of fighting, you waited for the next canon fire or gunshot and then fell down,

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  4. Johnv

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    Perhaps they cast lots. If so, is that a form of gambling? Doh! I hear the can of worms being opened... I'm now ducking to avoid the tomatoes!!!
     
  5. Dr. Bob

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    When "having fun" you just charge and fight and stand and shoot until you're too tired, your gun fouls (regular, black powder is tough) or you get nailed - you are standing there and somebody fires at you "point blank".

    When seriously reenacting a battle (like Shiloh) your unit does what it did in the actual battle. Mine took 80% casualties on the final charge of the Hornet's Nest.

    So the Captain walked behind the ranks and tapped each man with his sword. Said, "Dead, dead, wounded, live, wounded, dead, dead, wounded" and when we charged we went down.

    When the whole shebang is over, they play taps and the dead rise.
     
  6. Dr. Bob

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    My two boys were in line with me at Shiloh. Half way through the battle scenario (which was being filmed and now shown in the visitor's center at the National Park) my gun fouled and I was NOT supposed to die.

    We were laying down, with 60+ canon, axle to axle, firing volleys over our heads and ground charges exploding out ahead of us. A few "dead" from previous charges lay in the field. Sgt said to crawl ahead and exchange rifled muskets with one (whisper who I was and when the battle was over we'd swap back).

    So in a lull I dashed out to a couple of "bodies", laid my weapon down and told the guy I was taking his gun. Rolled him over and it was MY SON! I started screaming - actually caught up in the smoke, noise, action - and two of my privates had to drag me back to the line.

    One of the most surreal experiences . . .
     
  7. Joseph_Botwinick

    Joseph_Botwinick
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    YIKES Dr. Bob!!!!!!!!! :eek:

    I never experienced anything quite that scary in my experience. It was a lot of fun though. I would love to go back and do another one. I need to save some money and get my own gear though. The one I participate in was with a friend who loaned me one of his uniforms and a rifle. It was AWESOME!!!!!!!!!

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  8. ChurchBoy

    ChurchBoy
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    War for Southern Indepedence? Never heard of that war. Do you mean the War to Crush the Ungrateful Southern Rebels? [​IMG]
     
  9. Dr. Bob

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    We'd all agree, it was NOT a "civil" war!

    it was . .
    War of Northern Aggression
    Second War for Independence
    War Between Brothers

    and me favorite . .
    The Late Great Unpleasantness

    [​IMG] Save your Dixie Cups, the South will rise again!
     
  10. KenH

    KenH
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    I guess it depends which side you would have fought for? [​IMG]
     
  11. Tractster

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    A recent episode of "The Outer Limits" dealt with the Civil War theme in which three re-enactors at Gettysburg were transported back to the actual battle. The three youngesters had an interesting time trying to change history. Not all of them made it back to the present time.


    BTW, you guys have fun with this topic, but when I lived in Gettysburg, I met people where were literally obsessed with it. I was there when the movie, "Gettysburg," was filmed. Some of the scenes were shot on my campus at Lutheran Theologiccal Seminary.

    Lots also been done about the "Ghosts of Gettysburg." For what it's worth, I'm featured in the tape and book (by Mark Nesbitt) even though I don't believe in ghosts.

    Roscoe
     
  12. Bob Farnaby

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    Wouldn't it be easier just to use real ammunition ('civil' war standard) and then let a touch of reality decide the casualties ... could give a differentoutcome to the war.

    Regards - from Australia
    Bob
     

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