Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Birney's Division School of Instruction this weekend

Birney’s Division School of Instruction
Harry Sampey Park
Perryopolis, PA
May 2-4, 2014


Get ready for another season with one of the most important events the organization conducts all hear. This will be held at the Civil War facility in Perryopolis, PA which features heated period barracks. All units should take advantage of the years of experience provided by the weekend's instructors. Learn to do it right and take that knowledge back to your units. It is highly recommended that company officers and NCOs attend.

The following is the training schedule for the weekend.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

9:00 - Welcome and opening remarks [Gen. Maffei]

9:20 - School of the Company: Company officers will have soldiers run through the evolutions of the schools of the soldier and school of the company. [Co. officers and NCO’s]

10:30 - Duties of the NCO and company officer: A lecture / discussion will be held on the re-enactor appropriate duties and role of the NCO and company officer. [Col. Baltzer]

11:30 - Battalion Evolutions: [Col. Freeman]
- Formation of the Battalion
- Dress Parade [Col. Freeman and Major Murphy]
- Color Guard and Guidons
- Weapons Inspection

12:00 - Lunch

1:00 - Camp operations of Birney’s Division [Maj. Murphy]

1:30 - Battalion Evolutions: [Col Freeman]
- Basic Bugle Calls [Col. Rorhbaugh]
- From Line to Columns of Companies
- From Line to Marching by the Flank
- From Line to Double Columns
- To maneuver any of the above

2:00 - Safety: [Col. Baltzer]
- Small Arms and Artillery

2:30 - Medical Emergencies [Gen. Maffei]
- Heat
- Hydration
- Man down

3:00 - Battalion Evolutions: [Col. Freeman]
- Deployments from Columns, Double Columns and By the Flank
- Advancing in Line and use of guides
- Battalion Firings

4:00 - Closing thoughts and debrief of days activities

Sunday, May 4, 2014

7:00 - Reveille

8:30 - Dress Parade [Col. Freeman and Major Murphy]
- Formation of the battalion
- Weapons Inspection

9:40 - School of the Company: Company officers will have soldiers run through the evolutions of the schools of the soldier and school of the company. [Co. officers and NCO’s]

10:30 - Skirmish Drill [Col. Freeman]
- Deployments
- Maneuver
- Firings
- Assembly of Skirmishers

11:00 - Overview of Battalion Evolutions [Gen. Maffei]

Monday, April 28, 2014

New cavalry on the ride

My name is Jonathan Welch commanding a newly raised company of cavalry from Lancaster County, Pa (2nd Pennsylvania Cavalry/59th Regiment Co.D "Pequea Dragoons"). We are based out of Strasburg, Pa in particular and hold annual meetings at the Charles M. Howell Lodge #496 Fellowship Hall in Millersville, Pa.

We are capable of fielding at least five dismounted privates, myself, a 1st Lt, and a First Sgt. With four more enlistees in inactive or ready reserve status (meaning they make no less than two events a season to maintain membership) Our recruiting base of operations is in Lancaster, Chester, and York Counties.

My motivation for the creation of a Union unit started with my historical interest in Lancaster County, Pa. With family ties that stem in the county for over 300yrs, my ambition has been to bring a bona fide mounted/dismounted cavalry unit for and from this area.

We have been in search of a exemplary umbrella unit to affiliate with that is in line with our goals of a practical balance between safety and authenticity, to make an honest Civil War impression to visitors and spectators while not insensible to the fact that these historical events take place in a modern world and are subject to present day safety and event concerns.

It seems Birney's is a first rate fit, and I have been in communication with Col. Rohrbaugh, Chief of Staff to move forward with the companies membership into the division.

Co. D at its events hosts dinner for all of its membership every Sat night. We have two encampments every year at either the White Horse Mill (White Horse Lancaster County) or the Robert Fulton Birthplace, where we drill for the upcoming year and which serve as a base for interested recruits to come out and join the unit. We are in the process of becoming involved in the conservation of the two regimental state flags used by the 2nd Pa Cavalry in storage in Harrisburg (we are having one reproduced for use by the unit).

About myself I started reenacting in August of 1991 at the age of 13 and have been a member of the 35th Battalion Virginia Cavalry for the entire time I have been reenacting. Initially dismounted I was trained and taught mounted at 16 by the late Maj James Musser. ( I continue to have an almost family relationship with the Musser's and count his son Peter as my best of friends).

In addition to reenacting I am active in the Masonic fraternity and am a Past Master of Charles M. Howell Lodge #496 Millersville for the years of 04,07,08, and 2014, Past Grand Tall Cedar of Lancaster Forest #27 2013 and a Past Royal Patron of Lancaster Court #70 Order of the Amaranth 2009.

Check us out on Facebook.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Birney's events in the next few months - Register now

The 2014 reenacting season has already begun and we want to remind all of our members to dust off the wool and get your registrations taken care of. Here is what is coming up and how you can get more information:

Birney's Division Officer/NCO School
Perryopolis, PA
May 3-4

150th Anniversary of New Market
New Market, VA
May 17-18

Old Bedford Village
Bedford, PA
June 14-15

To check out the rest of the schedule and other registration information, go to

More information to follow on Argus Park (July), Hale Farm (August), Beaver Creek (September), Perryopolis and the 150th Cedar Creek in October!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Hale Farm Civil War promo makes its debut

Western Reserve Historical Society has created a series of short videos to promote the Civil War reenactment at Hale Farm and Village. In the next couple of months we will be rolling out the videos on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, on our website, and sharing it with others to generate additional buzz about Hale and the largest annual Civil War Reenactment in the state.
Here is the link:

We will be in contact with community partners in the Akron and Cleveland areas, the reenactor community, and others to help us share the video. We will also be providing the link to reporters who covered the event last year. Additionally, we’ll have it available for viewing at this year’s Legacy Award Benefit on May 17.

If you use social media, we encourage you to include the link in your preferred channels. And, feel free to share with friends and colleagues via email, as well!

We want to thank our good friends at Lost Tribe Media who shot the video and who edited it so beautifully. Additionally, we want to thank the Akron-Summit CVB who provided a grant to support additional promotional of the Civil War event at Hale; a portion of the grant was used in the production of the video.

If you are like I am, you’ll just want to watch it over and over!

Jane Mason
VP Communications & Marketing, CMO
Western Reserve Historical Society