This event is the largest Civil War re-enactment on the East Coast outside of Gettysburg. The theme for this year’s re-enactment is “Spring 1862 Campaign -1st Kernstown and 1st Winchester”. Over 1,000 re-enactors will converge on the park for this event featuring:
· Authentic battle re-enactments
· Camp life scenarios
· Military and civilian life demonstrations
· Performances by the Camptown Shakers, a band specializing in Civil War era music
The Spring 1862 Campaign -1st Kernstown and 1st Winchester were two battles fought in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia and they were part of the offensive Confederate General Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson undertook to prevent Union forces from moving eastward to take the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia. 1st Kernstown was fought on March 23,1862. In that battle, Jackson’s 3,400 troops fought against 8,500 Union troops lead by Colonel Nathan Kimball and Jackson lost. (He received inaccurate intelligence about the size of Union forces and that lead to the only loss of his military career.) 1st Winchester was fought on May 25, 1862. Union General Nathaniel P. Banks endeavored to reorganize his troops after a defeat at Front Royal two days earlier and to defend his base from the hills on the south side of the town of Winchester. On May 25, General Richard Ewell’s Confederate division attacked Union forces at Camp Hill, whereas the Louisiana Brigade of Jackson’s forces overran the Union position at Bower’s Hill. Subsequently, Bank’s forces were forced to retreat north across the Potomac. These two battles will be staged during this year’s re-enactment.
While admission is free, a voluntary collection will be taken each day of the re-enactment and all proceeds will go toward Civil War preservation efforts. Proceeds from last year’s collection went to preserve Grant’s Headquarters at the Wilderness, in Locust Grove, Virginia and to local Civil War preservation efforts. The Neshaminy Civil War Re-enactment has raised over $40,000 during its 23-year history, for various Civil War causes.
This event is a joint project sponsored by Neshaminy State Park, the Bensalem Historical Society, the 28thPennsylvania Historical Association, the Army of Northern Virginia Re-enacting Organization, the Delaware Valley Civil War Roundtable, The G.A.R. Museum and Library, and Waste Management, Inc.
For more information, go to www.neshaminycwevent.org, visit the Neshaminy Civil War Reenactment on Facebook or contact Ken Gavin, Event Executive Chairman, at 610-291-0838 or firstname.lastname@example.org.