Monthly Archives: December 2017

Entertaining the Yorkers: Extra Billy Smith’s Sunday parade

More than 11,000 Confederate soldiers passed through York County, Pennsylvania, in the last days of June 1863 during the Gettysburg Campaign. Days later, most of the men, other than 100 or so deserters picked up locally by Federal authorities, fought … Continue reading

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Living historians honor York’s 87th Pennsylvania: Part 2

Recently, I began a brief series of posts with interviews with some of the Civil War reenactment community here in York County, Pennsylvania. More than 5,000 soldiers from this county served in the Civil War. Perhaps the most famous regiment … Continue reading

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Hanover’s “peculiar man:” Big Bill Otter

In 1885, a McSherrystown, PA, newspaper editor deemed William Arter (as he misspelled Otter) as “a peculiar man” who did “some very foolish things.” Otter, who lived in nearby Hanover from 1809 until 1821, was certainly one of the most … Continue reading

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Living historians honor York’s 87th Pennsylvania

I have long enjoyed speaking with living historians of various periods, those hobbyists who like to dress in recreations of historical uniforms or clothing and, most importantly, share a glimpse of what life might have been like for long ago … Continue reading

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