574Re: 1812 vs Napoleonic events
- Mar 2, 1999
>From: probably Lynda and maybe Derek Leopold <leopold@...>I can't imagine where that would be coming from, certainly not from the
>I must agree with Betsy (but I don't have the guts to agree as STRONGLY :)
>as she does...) that there seems to be an impression around here that
>Napoleonic is somehow "better" than War of 1812 reenacting...and that's
>something I've encountered HERE on good ol' North American soil...
unit I represent. We respect ALL individuals and groups who undertake to
represent the men and women who have been willing to make the ultimate
sacrifice. Who put on the uncomfortable clothes, endure the foolish
questions, and half to lose half the time when they *know* on that
particular *reenactment* day they could win. Please don't mistake
regimental pride for a "better than" mentality. There are obviously always
going to be some individuals, but don't throw out the baby with the bath
I have a
>great amount of pride in doing War of 1812 AND especially when I get toAnd well you should, it's an honorable portrayal.
>educate some poor ignorant soul about it....(snip)
>I'm sorry to offend any of those Nappy types out there (well, in NorthPerhaps my newness is showing again, have "Nappys" ever gotten to
>America at least), but I really have no sympathy for you...there's a
>perfectly good little War to reenact right here on THIS side of the water
>for that very same time period...Imagine if all the Napoleonics joined up to
>War of 1812 reenactment (and I mean CORRECTLY, not as "Observers" as is
>usually the case)! Not only would 1812's numbers skyrocket, but the whole
>thing would come across as more accurate instead of all these big stories
>that Nappies have to concoct as to why they are on a War of 1812
participate in a War of 1812 event? My understanding is that this had not
yet happened, so of course predicting public reaction would be pure
speculation. Since you specify North American Nappys, have you (or anyone)
had a bad experience with someone coming over to play?
>I guess my point overall is....if you are so interested in history, getFor me my interest in European history goes back to before I could heft a
>interested in your OWN history in your OWN backyard! The people you will
>educate about things that happened where THEY live will astound you!!!
>That's one of my greatest rewards for reenacting...when a "civilian" listens
>to me explain something an then is genuinely impressed and says, "Gee, I
>didn't know that! That's pretty cool." It's actually been said by a few
>I would like to hear from Napoleonic reenactors (in North America) as to why
>they chose to do it instead of War of 1812....I'm not sure I'd end up
>changing my mind about you all, but it would be an interesting excercise.
musket. There's just so much more of it! But growing up and attending
public school my knowledge of the War of 1812 was the USS Constitution and
New Orleans. Cool, but nothing on the scale and grandeur of Napoleonic
warfare. So with Chandler's "Campaigns of Napoleon" tucked under my arm I
took the inexorable path (for me).
Now in fairness to me and most everyone I know in our regiment, we all
reenact other periods. I do F&I and War of 1812 (shock!), but my first
love of history will always be the Napoleonic era. If by an accident of
birth that dooms me to frustration then so be it, but not without trying.
Others in our group do everthing from F&I to SpanAm to WWII. Most everyone
was doing something else first when they fell under the spell.
My F&I group never passes on an opportunity to do school days, some of us
(me) take leave to go into schools as individual educators. You're right,
there is nothing quite like seeing the lights come on in the eyes of a
youngster. I suppose that's why I chose education as a career.
BUT, sometimes you should do things for yourself. When I was at Waterloo
in '95 I can't adequately put into words what it meant to me. To stand
forever waiting for the word to move, to feel the mud sucking at my shoes
as we marched, to be charged by Prussian uhlans in the flank, to be in the
seventh rank of an eight rank column... It gave me, if but for a day, a
real sense of what it was to follow the Eagles. Heck, I even scraped some
mud of my shoes and put it in a bag to bring home. I hope you can't blame
me if I want to recapture a bit of that feeling a couple of times a year.
Being an educator, by definition I'm not rich enough to go to Europe more
than every few years. ;-)
This in now way diminishes my pride in being a U.S. citizen, my willingness
to serve my country for real, or my rancor when I see the flag sullied.
But when I got to Europe and visited churches 900 years old it was truly a
humbling experience. Something more Americans should experience IMHO.
Thanks for asking, and thanks for (hopefully) listening.
Michael Mathews -- ITV Specialist
Winona State University
Voice: (507) 285-7585 Fax: (507) 280-5568
"Loyalty to pertified opinion never broke a chain
or freed a human soul" -- Mark Twain
- << Previous post in topic Next post in topic >>