What makes this event so special?

Sidney, Ohio Civil War Living History Weekend

September 17-18, 2016

September 15-16, 2018


Event Synopsis (Military Perspective):

The event in Tawawa Park offers several different types of terrain for re-enactors, all within a 20 minute march from their own campsites. These sites will be utilized in varying ways during the event to help add scale and immersion for the participants as well as the public attending the event.

Tawawa Park consists of the following general areas:

  • Main Battlefield – Approximately 10-acre parcel located between camps.
  • Covered Bridge – Situated across the Tawawa Creek, offers a great opportunity to pass spectators across the lines. Pickets should be set up on either side of the bridge to facilitate this.
  • Tawawa Creek – Natural boundary between sides.
  • River Ford – Located approximately 15 minutes from CS camp, this offers a great opportunity for a very intense firefight.
  • Big Rock – Large rock located on the edge of the woods, with an orchard type terrain approaching it.
  • Brookside Park – A separate 40-acre park recently absorbed as part of Tawawa Park that offers several different terrain features, including a firing pit.
  • Parallel Path – A path runs parallel to Tawawa creek from the CS camp, excellent opportunity for shots across the water.

The intent is that between the hours of 9am and 5pm the event to be “live”.  While this affords opportunities for free-form tactical, these situations will be handed out to individual company commanders in the form of issued orders from their respective HQ. Their job will be to raise a company and move out at the appointed time. There will be no spectator areas for these battles, just a loose set of rules of engagement, which should be completed in 15-20 minutes. The goal of these is to just set a tone and have a little fun on the side.

Transferring groups of spectators across the bridge can be accompanied by pickets exchanging goods and banter. It is not yet determined the frequency of these exchanges. The pickets should be semi-versed in first person exchanges to allow for deeper immersion for those involved.

The main battle scenario will be non-descript. There may not be a battalion formation leading up to it as the “orders system” presents an opportunity to have units spread all through the park, arriving at the battle piecemeal by “coming to the guns”. This will ensure that our numbers will fit adequately on the field. Rules of engagement will be observed to keep interpretation accurate (ie “No flanking battalion with a company of 10”).

After the battle scenario, there will be no resurrection. The dead will be collected by the one holding the field for the day and passed to medical personnel for appropriate triage and care. There should only be approximately 10% dead on the field with an additional 20% in wounded status. These wounded could make their way back with their respective armies, or remain on the field for participation in the scenario. It is essential that soldiers do not break the no-resurrection portion to show the public the aftermath.

The event will provide re-enactors with a Saturday night meal as well as rations for Sunday morning. Rations should be distributed by Saturday evening by the appointed battalion officers. These rations should include a generous amount of food per soldier. These will be provided based upon registration. If your company registers 10, you will get 10 rations for that company.

All leftover food items should be collected by battalion HQ’s so they can be donated to the local soup kitchen. Nothing goes to waste!

There is a pancake breakfast planned for Saturday morning within the park (near the parking grounds) provided by the Rotary Club of Sidney for a small fee.

Saturday night entertainment will consist of a band playing for spectators and re-enactors alike.

The potential exists for a night fire of some sort. The details have yet to be determined; this could include a candlelight tour through camps, ending in a small skirmish at dusk or just the traditional artillery firing.

The fee for the event is set at $10.00 per re-enactor.  The event is non-profit in the regard that all monies collected from re-enactors will in turn be matched by the event committee and placed in a fund to restore the gravestones of the 350+ Shelby County Civil War Veterans. If the participants choose, this could also be returned to them in the form of a powder ration instead.