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September 2006

2006 Calendar of Events

October 6-8 Re-enactment at Perryville, KY
October 13-15 Re-enactment at Princeton, IL
October 20-22 Re-enactment at Minooka, IL
November 11 Board meeting at the Bierman's house at noon (pizza lunch will be provided while participants are asked to bring a dessert)
November 12 Color Guard Ceremony, Rosehill Cemetery, Chicago, IL

Remember that you can always find more event details and directions at the unit website, http://www.64thill.org/events/. We also have info on several Civil War dances/formal balls held throughout the year in the area.

Now Dollinger Farm Could Use A Few Good Civilians

Now that it's coming down to the wire for the Minooka event the 64th is asking for any volunteers willing to help out with organizing registration, selling tickets for the battle, or for any of the other duties needed to be completed in order to keep the event running smoothly. It is work but it is work well worth it, and we always manage to have a great deal of fun doing it, so if you're willing and able please contact Dianne Bierman at r-bierman@sbcglobal.net and sign up to join the laborious merriment.

National Library Week

Although it is still well within the initial planning stages, the 64th has been invited to participate to provide a living history presentation for the Joliet Public Library during National Library Week the weekend of April 14, 2007. There will be camps at the library's two sites, one being at their Black Street location and one in downtown Joliet. To invite members from other various units is being considered, since participation from other types of military forces, such as artillery, cavalry, etc., would be ideal to provide a full aspect of military life back in the day. Civilians will also more than welcome to add their special touch to the living history to give greater depth to the occasion. More specific information regarding everything will be provided later on.

The Question of Rosehill

Due to shrinking participation, it has unfortunately come to a point in which the 64th Board is asking its members if they would still like to continue being a part of the Rosehill cemetery ceremonies. We kindly ask that if you planning to attend as part of the military color guard please commit yourself to going and let Capt. Scott know beforehand.

A Newbie's Notes
By Melina McVicker

"Is that fire real?"

"Do you shoot each other with real bullets?"

"Do you know your ham's melting?"

"So where are the Nazis?"

Oh, come on, you must have at least heard one of these questions during your time as a re-enactor, if not straight from the mouths of spectators then from other re-enactors who have heard them from spectators. It's a natural phenomenon known as ignorance, my friends, and we are the remedy for it. Well, we might not be help with question number one unless we go and tell them to touch the fire for themselves to see if it's real or not (please don't, no matter how tempted you are!) but we can do something about the other off-the-wall inquiries we may hear. After you roll your eyes and wonder just how these people survive the day please remember than at least they are the ones who came out to try to learn something. Think of those who didn't and would rather spend their days vegetating in front of their computers being what they consider 'connected' with the outside world. 'Connected'? - I think not.

Okay, let me get off my soapbox and take a moment of reflection. I, too, was an annoying ignoramus not all that long ago. I admit I had my moments of not thinking before asking (heck, I still do) but I have to at least say, in my own defense, that as a history buff I wasn't quite as bad as some people. But people have to start somewhere in their process of better understanding, and unfortunately the starting point is sometimes a very stupid question. People say that there are no stupid questions, but we all know that there most definitely are, but instead of rolling those eyes of yours or snickering under your breath, try to understand their side of the situation. If they at least show up, allowing themselves to be dragged away from their computers and high definition TVs for at least a couple hours, then they should at least be given the benefit of a little patience and a kind response. Yeah, I know it can be tough sometimes, and it would be oh so much fun to jab a smart@$$ answer back at them, but this person could be doing a lot of other things at that moment other than wondering where we bought that wax ham we have roasting over the 'fire'. A person won't learn if they're being made fun of, because there is such a thing as pride, and we want people to learn. That is why we're out there shooting off fake rounds and dressing in painful corsets, isn't it?

But, honestly, - Nazis? - I still have to shake my head at that one.

Where Have All the Civilians Gone?
By Ken Gough

A couple of years ago I bemoaned the fact in the Fall Out column that military attendance at events had fallen off and civilians were projecting the face of the 64th Ill. at most events. Well, shut my mouth! Now you civilians have vanished as well.

I'm here to tell you that you're missing some great times. So far this year the weather has been great at nearly every event. The Logan House display is bigger, badder, and more fun than ever before. We've altered the old winter quarters into a shed so we have even more room to displays. Let's see. At the last few events here are a few of the activities we've tried. Carding, spinning, knitting, felting, and quilting. We've made cookies by the box full. Attempted a boiled pudding (key word is 'attempted') and even attempted to mold butter with an original mold.

At most events we now have civilians with other units bringing their projects to the cabin so as to have a more authentic and friendly living history setting. And guess what, no one's died. No one's even broken out in a rash. At Wauconda we had so many ladies with such a variety of skills being worked on at once we set everyone up in a kind of horse shoe of stations around the front of the cabin. It was great. Spectators could move to each station and learn something new before they even got to the cabin.

So come on out. Bring your period projects. Get dirty.

"Logan House Soldiers' Aid Society."
Tintype photo by Steve Ingram, Collodion Photographer (Lockport, 2006)

For Sale
By Mary Gutzke

I'm still cleaning out the re-enacting closet of some used by much-loved clothing. I have several 1-piece dresses and multiple piece outfits. Fits approximately 6/8 (petite). Great for starter clothing or if you know someone of this size. Please inquire with Mary Gutzke for details and/or pictures: roseof1861@lycos.com.

Next Board Meeting

The next scheduled board meeting with be November 11th and will be at the Bierman's home around noon. Pizza will be provided but those attending will bring desserts. Please make it if you can, if not for the talk then at least for the desserts!


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