The 28th annual Civil War Re-enactment will take place on Saturday and Sunday, April 29-30, 2017 at Neshaminy State Park, located on 3401 State Road in Bensalem, PA, from 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM, rain or shine. Admission is free.
This event is the largest Civil War re-enactment on the East Coast outside of Gettysburg and is coordinated by the Neshaminy Living History Association, a 501 c 3 nonprofit organization. The theme for this year’s re-enactment is “The Battle of Antietam”. More than 1,000 reenactors will converge on the park for this event featuring:
· Authentic battle re-enactments
· Camp life scenarios
· Military and civilian life demonstrations
· April 30 only at 11:00 AM: 1860’s Exhibition Baseball Game by the Monmouth Furnace Baseball Club at the Drill Field
The Battle of Antietam took place from September 16-18, 1862. Union commander Major General George McClellan organized a series of assaults against Confederate forces led by General Robert E. Lee, at Antietam Creek near Sharpsburg, Maryland. At dawn on September 17, Major General Joseph Hooker went after the Confederates and began the single bloodiest day in American military history. Despite Union forces having more troops (87,000 Union vs 45,000 Confederate), the Rebel forces, including the troops of Stonewall Jackson, held their ground.
Later in the day, the Union Ninth Army Corps under Major General Ambrose Burnside moved across the bullet-strewn bridge over Antietam Creek and jeopardized the Confederate right flank. During the battle, A.P. Hill’s Confederate division arrived from Harper’s Ferry, Virginia (now West Virginia) and counterattacked. The Confederates were then able to drive back Burnside and save the day for Lee’s forces. On the morning of September 18, Confederates skirmished with Union troops while Lee moved the wounded south of the Potomac, yet McClellan did not pursue them. The battle was a draw from a military perspective. Still, it did drive Lee’s forces from Maryland and it gave Lincoln a “victory” he needed before issuing the Emancipation Proclamation.
While admission is free, a voluntary collection will be taken each day of the event and all proceeds will go toward historical preservation efforts. The Neshaminy Civil War Re-enactment has raised over $55,000 during its 28-year history for various Civil War organizations.
This event is sponsored by the following businesses and organizations: Parx Casino, Neshaminy State Park, the Bensalem Historical Society, the 28th Pennsylvania Historical Association, the First Battalion of the Army of Northern Virginia, the Delaware Valley Civil War Roundtable, The Grand Army of the Republic Museum and Library, and Republic Services.
For more information about the re-enactment, go to www.neshaminycwevent.org; like the Neshaminy Civil War Reenactment on Facebook; contact Chuck Gilson, Event Executive Chairman, at firstname.lastname@example.org or write to Neshaminy Living History Association, 3211 Knights Road, Bensalem, PA 19020. See you there!