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We Are Coming Father Abraham - September 4-6, 2020

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  • We Are Coming Father Abraham - September 4-6, 2020

    we are coming father abe ad 10 4 19.jpg

    We are Coming Father Abraham
    Three Hundred Thousand More: Pennsylvania Soldiers and Civilians, August 1862

    Preservation / Restoration Effort for Old Bedford Village, Bedford, PA

    The Scenario
    On July 1, 1862, President Lincoln issued a call for 300,000 additional troops to help put down the rebellion in the Southern states. A week later, on July 7, the Adjutant General assigns quotas to the individual states. In Bedford County Pennsylvania, recruiting begins for Companies D, E and F of the 138th Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry. War Meetings are held in the town of Bedford in July of 1862 and across the state to raise recruits and support
    for the new regiments.

    For our program, we will focus on the raising of the last company from Bedford county, Company F. Troops already enlisted will be camped on the town green and officers are attempting to recruit the last men they will need to fill out the company. However, enthusiasm has waned and to help meet the call, the town fathers have called a war meeting to induce eligible men to enlist.

    Men who step forward during the War Meeting will join other recruits in the induction & mustering process and begin to learn the rudiments of soldiering and military discipline. On the second day, the troops will continue their training as well as enjoy a final Sunday church service at home. By early afternoon, movement orders have been received and preparations are underway to depart for Harrisburg to join the other companies of the regiment. Near the end of the day, a farewell ceremony will be held in the center of town. The company commander and town officials will speak followed by the issuing of parting gifts to the new soldiers. Then the company, escorted by the band will march off for the railroad station and the
    trip to join the rest of the regiment.

    What to Expect
    Bedford Village is an open air museum of thirty six historic buildings. These buildings were moved from their original sites in 1976 for the Bicentennial. They are staffed by participants during the event and some can be used for lodging. All participants are expected to help interpret to the public during the course of the weekend and cooperate with the museum staff in the care and security of the buildings.

    Since we are portraying a town of the period, camping by civilians is prohibited. In previous years, the organizers have always found sleeping space in the buildings for all civilians. Military participants will be housed in A- tents in the field adjacent the orchard. These are the only acceptable tentage for the event. If you do not own an A-tent, the organizers have some extras and/or you can share with other participants. You will need period bedding to sleep on. Any camp accessories must be documentable to the 1860s. Military participants will be fed from a central mess and are expected to help with chores related to the mess. Overall, the event strives to show to visitors a country town as it prepares to send her best and bravest to war. Everyone is encouraged to have fun, educate the public and gain a greater appreciation of what life was like on the home front that was rural Pennsylvania in 1862.

    The Participants
    There are a number of different roles that participants can take on for this program: Citizens of the Town: There are a number of slots available for participants to portray citizens of the town and help to man one of the historic building. Lodging space is available in some of the buildings. You will need a complete set of civilian clothing and will need to do a little reading when you receive your building assignment. Civilian Tradesman: If you have a period trade or craft you are good at and want to work at that during the weekend, we may be able to find you space. There also may be other participants who want to help and learn from you. Military recruits: The event is all about recruiting a company and for that you need volunteers. Those participating will need some basic civilian clothing as well as the US Army fatigue uniform. Your civilian duds do not have to be fancy- you can portray a dirt farmer if you want. However, they should reflect what would have been found in central Pennsylvania in 1862. On day two, recruits will don their military duds and take on their new roll as soldiers in earnest. You will need your musket and traps for that. Military Staff: There are limited positions available on the military staff. These would involve assisting the Quartermaster Sergeant and Recruiting Officers. The military staff is in full uniform and need to have an advanced knowledge of period military practices.

    Impression Standards:
    1. Government Issue Forage Cap.
    2. Issue Sack Coat.
    3. US Army issue shoes/bootees
    4. Sky Blue Infantry pattern trousers.
    5. Army Issue or Civilian Shirt
    6. Period Socks, cream or other natural colors.
    7. Period Suspenders- no all elastic, sheet metal clips or modern designs.
    8. U.S. Issue Waist Belt with U.S. Oval Brass lead-filled buckle
    9. U.S. Issue Cap Box M1850 or Shield front.
    10. U.S. Issue Cartridge Box M1857 or M1861 with sling and plates.
    11. Bayonet Scabbard, U.S. Issue, two rivet pattern or Enfield.
    1. Enfield M1853 .577 Caliber
    2. U.S. Springfield M1861 or Colt Contract .58 Caliber
    1. A Tents for Enlisted men and N.C.Os.
    2. Wall Tents for Officers only.
    3. Officers are required to have Fire Extinguishers in their tents.
    4. Camp chairs, beds, and camp furnishings to be period correct.

    All Military Participants will be provided with 5 meals through a Company Mess.
    Period Mess Gear is required.

    Find us on Facebook at:

    Further Information can be found at:
    John Zaharias, Sutler/The Button Baron

  • #2
    Re: We Are Coming Father Abraham - September 4-6, 2020

    Civilians/ Citizens have the opportunity to patronize Wolfe's TeaHaus & KaffeeGarten for meals and refreshments, camaraderie and entertainment.
    For more information, see the FB group or email Me (Elaine/Wolfie) at
    -Elaine "Ivy Wolf" Kessinger