What do you think of the re-enactments?

13TH MISSISSIPPI INFANTRY REGIMENT

I’m not sorry to be missing Gettysburg’s 150th anniversary these next three days. Too much of the occasion will be taken up by reenactment events, which reenactment participants call “impressions.” But too many of the reenactors are too corpulent and all of their uniforms too clean to give a true impression of the ragged, lean and hungry Rebel and Union soldiers who fought in the plowed fields and orchards south of the Pennsylvania town on July 1-3, 1863.

The 13th Mississippi Infantry Regiment, of course, fought at Gettysburg on July 2, as the color regiment of Barksdale’s Mississippi Brigade. Their experiences before and after their share in the battle also are interesting—particularly their approach to the field and the disconsolate retreat back to Virginia after, by some estimates, 49 percent casualties. All of that has been recorded fairly dispassionately in various posts here.

I attended the 125th anniversary of…

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