FAQs - Reenactment

A reenactment is when a group of people of the same interests gather to reenact a moment of history. It can be a real or imagined scenario, but should always be as accurate as possible.

We reenact to relive history instead of simply reading about it, and to teach the real history that is not covered in school text books, or perhaps by doing this, peak someone's interest in history.

Reenactments can be held anywhere there is land to support the event. A park, museum, near a battlefield, the actual battlefield in some cases. There doesn't have to have been a real battle on the land, we are just showing what it was like. Some times we do reenact real battles, and those are as accurate as we can make them.

Coordination is done by an "Umbrella Organization" such as The Union Volunteers, to which the 143rd PVI belongs. Smaller events are handled by those in charge of publicity, public relations, etc..

A reenactor can spend as much or as little time as he or she prefers in the hobby. You will get out of it what you put into it.

We usually meet at a restaurant, at some ones house, or an historical venue such as a museum for our meetings. We may also hold a meeting at an event.

Equipment can run from little money, if you are handy with a needle and thread and want to portray a "Camp Follower"  or "Civilian", up to the thousands of dollars for a full period correct uniform, campaigning equipment, accoutrements and muzzle loader. It depends on what you want to do with your character…participant or spectator.

A starter uniform will cost about $250.00. Eventually, the reenactor will want to better his or her impression with more accurate and expensive equipment. There is no rule that says you have to spend that much. Many reenactors purchase used uniforms and accoutrements. As per our specific by-laws, each member has one year to get his or her "kit" completed.

A soldier will need a complete uniform, which consists of the following:

  • Sack coat
  • Blue Kersey Infantry pants
  • Brogans
  • Drawers
  • Cotton or homespun shirt
  • Forage Cap (a.k.a. Bummer)
  • Suspenders
  • Belt (with US buckle)
  • Wool or cotton socks
  • Canteen and strap
  • Haversack (canvas or tarred)
  • Knapsack
  • Cartridge Box and strap (with breast plate)
  • Cap pouch
  • Wool blanket
  • Dog tent and poles
  • Ground cloth (tarred)
  • Poncho (tarred)
  • Tin plate, mucket & utensils
  • Candle holder & candles
  • Match box and matches
  • Housewife (needle, thread, etc.)
  • Bandanna
  • Ammo Box for carrying equipment to camp
  • 1853 Enfield 3-ring muzzle loader, cover & sling
  • Bayonet and frog (mid Civil War curved style)
  • Cartridges, caps and black powder
  • Gun cleaning kit
  • Great coat for cold weather campaigning
  • Frock coat for special events

--- Sutlers ---

Regimental Quartermaster

49 Steinwehr Avenue
Gettysburg. PA 17325
Phone: (717) 338-1850   Toll Free: 1-800-929-1863
Email: regtqm@aol.com

Philadelphia Quartermaster Depot

812 Madison Street
Birdsboro, PA, 19508
Phone: (484) 529-2464
Email: philaqtrmasdep@yahoo.com

Mercury Supply Company Sutler

101 Lee Street
Livingston, TX 77351
Phone: (936) 327-3707
Fax: (936) 327-3791
Email: twotees@mercurysutler.com

C&C Sutlery

2001 North Washington Avenue
Emmett Idaho 83617
Email: info@ccsutlery.com

The Winchester Sutler, Inc.

270 Shadow Brook Lane
Winchester, VA 22603
Phone: 540 888-3595
Fax: 540 888 4632
Email: tws@shentel.net

--- Company and Regimental Flags ---

Historic Flag Company

812 Madison Street
Birdsboro, PA, 19508
Phone: (484) 529-2464

--- Women's clothing, patterns, hats ---

Abraham's Lady

25 Steinwehr Avenue
Gettysburg, PA 17325
Phone: (717) 338-1798
Fax: (856) 853-6038
Email: information@abrahamslady.com

--- Hats for Men and Women ---

Dirty Billy's Hats

20 Baltimore St.
Gettysburg, PA 17325
Phone: 717-334-3200
Email: dirtybills@aol.com

--- How To sites ---

Civil War Reenactors Home Page

How To Be A Civil War Reenactor

--- Civilian Impressions ---

Historical Timekeepers

Timeless Stitches

Treadle Treasures (for quality corded petticoats)

Yes. Although the 143rd had no female soldiers, we welcome "civilian" and "camp follower" impressions. There are many online sites available to do research before making any purchases. (Please be sure to run it by your Company commander before making any uniform purchases.)

A well researched impressionist is going to have a lot more fun than one who buys "off the rack" and tries to pull off a realistic, period correct impersonation.

First and foremost, DO RESEARCH on your character.
Men will need period correct trousers, shirt, vest and drawers. They will also need shoes, a hat and jacket. Most of these items can be made at home with patterns from places such as Abraham's Lady in Gettysburg, ushist.com, or by visiting a sutler at any event.

Women will be required to wear camp dresses at camp. (Hoops are not acceptable attire at camp due to the dangers of catching fire.) Women will wear a corded petticoat, corset, a pair of drawers, petticoats, socks and boots, all in period correct fashion. Let's not forget the bonnets. Hair is never to be worn down on a woman of child bearing years or older. Again, if you are handy, most of this can be made at home by investing in period correct patterns for a minimal amount compared to purchasing them outright.

Some of the members of Co. A have extra uniform pieces that they may be able to lend you for one event, if possible. Not all sizes are available, so ask first.

Contact the unit in which you would like to participate. The reenactors will be more than happy to help you choose a sutler, patterns, weapons, etc. They will also invite you to a meeting or an event to show you what is involved.

You can find Company A, 143rd Pennsylvania Volunteers on facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/143rdPA or on our web site at http://www.143rdpainfantry.com/

2015 Officers

Ted Nafus Sr.

Mike Hogan

April Nafus

Scott Mecca

Mike Donahue

Bruce Geiger

Company A Leadership

Ted Nafus Sr.
Provost Marshal

Peter Wolf Cangemi

Jim Hummer
1st Lieutenant

Bruce Geiger
Quartermaster Sgt.

Ted Nafus Jr.
1st Sergeant

Michael Donahue
1st Lieutenant

Jesse Holzman
Senior Private

Union Volunteers Leadership

Frank Ruiz, Sr.

Frank Ruiz, Jr.
Lt. Colonel

Courtney Abel

Jerry Bergeron
Chief of Artillery

Ken Jansen
Chief of Cavalry

In Memoriam


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