Frequently Asked Questions
Why do you do this ?
This is a question which gets asked a lot at events and in our everyday life.
The main reason is to keep alive the memory of the people who lived and suffered during those traumatic years. Why ? Because our nation would not have been what it is today without their blood and sacrifices. We honor BOTH sides of the conflict for each had their own beliefs they felt were worth dying for. Beliefs which made perfect sense to them in their time – beliefs which should not be looked upon with 21st Century hindsight. They were ALL Americans !!
What is a sharpshooter ? It’s a sniper, right ?
No, sharpshooters battalions were used as scouts, pickets, and skirmishers. Occasionally, they would be used in the same capacity as a modern sniper and there were rare instances of “independent sharpshooters”.
Do you use scoped rifles ?
Not really. The number of scoped rifles in Confederate use were extremely limited. The South was more interested in using metals for the production of arms and ammunition than frivolous things like telescopic sights.
Do you hide in trees ?
Again, no, not that often. The usual location for sharpshooter battalions were in advance of the main line of battle as skirmishers or protecting the army’s flanks. If the army was stationary for extended periods, such as in siege situations, the sharpshooters would “find a hole” and select targets in the enemy’s breastworks.
Why don’t you wear green uniforms ?
The only units that wore green were the 1st and 2nd US Sharphooter Regiments, also known as Berdan’s Sharpshooters. Confederate sharpshooters wore the same type of uniforms as the rest of the Confederate army. Other than Berdan’s, the Federal sharpshooter’s appearance was also the same as other Federal soldiers.
Do you get hot in those uniforms ?
Oh yes !! But after you sweat a little, the fabric breathes and you cool down. On really hot days, some guys will soak down the inside of the jacket before taking the field. As the water evaporates, it keeps you cooler.
How do you know if you’re hit ?
There are several ways. If you’re out of ammo or feel too hot, take a hit. At times when close enough to see someone aiming at you when they fire, take a hit. Often, you can actually make the eye contact to know it is you they are aiming at. Much also has to do with knowledge of the weaponry and the damage they can do. The closer you are to the “enemy”, the more “hits” should be taken. On rare occasions, you will be told when it is “your time”.
Who buys the equipment you use ?
We do. All of this comes out of our own pockets, but the good part is, you can deduct it on your taxes if you itemize.
Is it expensive to participate ?
It can be. Good equipment costs money and it’s best to get the good stuff right off. The most expensive part is usually the rifle.
Where do I get the equipment ?
The stores which carry re-enacting equipment are called sutlers and can be found at most events setup in large walk-through tents. Sutlers followed the Civil War armies around selling things to the soldiers not supplied by the quartermasters. However, depending on which one you visit, the modern sutler carries anything from toys to women’s attire to uniforms. When purchasing your equipment, it is best to have an experienced soldier accompany you to assist with choosing the right equipment. Sutlers known for good equipment are listed on our Links page.
Where do you travel for events ?
Most of our events in the southeast – Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, the Carolinas, and Alabama. However, we will at times travel to attend large national events or other events across the country.
Do I have to know a lot about the history in order to start ?
No, you don’t. If the genuine interest is there, you will read and do research yourself as you become more involved. We are in a constant learning process both from each other and through research. If you are asked a question by a spectator at an event and you don’t know the answer, don’t be afraid to say so and turn to someone else for assistance.
What type of events does your unit do ?
We participate in many different types of events. The majority consist of the first two listed below.
1) Mainstream battles – these consist of a lot of tents, a lot of people, and scripted battle scenarios at specific times
2) Living History events – these consist of either garrison ( with tents ) or campaign camp setup depending on the location and desired representation
3) Campaign events – we try to do a small amount of these each year and many members camp this way at every event. This means you have no tent and use either a shelter-half or sleep under the stars. Everything is carried on the back or left in camp. If desired, you may attend every event in this manner.
4) Immersion events – these are usually the most physical. These are done as realistic as possible for a certain time frame ( before dawn on a Saturday through afternoon of next day ). Once it goes live, anything could happen. Period rations are issued and everything must be carried on your back.
Do I have to attend EVERY event on the schedule ?
If you CAN and wish to do so, that would be great. However, it is not required. There are only two events each year everyone needs to attend and that is because we host them – Andersonville in March and New Manchester in September.
What if I do not want to do a military impression ?
We have civilian members and civilian impressions are very much welcomed as well.