Rolette's Voyageur Militia
- Well in the category of "we fight better than we look" ours is a group of militia drawn from voyageurs in response to the American capture in 1814 of Prairie du Chien in modern Wisconsin. I portray Jean Joseph Rolette who was part of the Northwest Company, Indian Department, and received a captain's commission. He, along with Thomas Anderson raised companies from the ranks of their voyageurs. Some sources have suggested that they may have had the discards briefly worn by the Canadian Corps of Voyageurs but I don't feel confident in that so we pattern our attire off of modern and contemporary drawings. I chose to do my coat with the blue Indian Department facings despite the year because of the remoteness of our arena.
While the men take a perverse pride in their scruffiness they also want to do a proper drill since it's likely that whenever possible they would have drawn from the ranks of the former CCV to be most effective. We have attended Mississinewa under my command once ('99?) and took our place on the left of the line. Numbers at Prairie du Chien in Rolette's company vary from 12-18.
As an aside (and plug) PdC lets you fight on the historic ground for possession of a blockhouse with pyrotechnics and cannons. The organizers greatly value the reenactors who support the event and make you feel most welcome. Besides the usual amenities, including powder, you get rations for breakfast and are fed lunch and dinner plus a generous allotment of medicinal beverages to.... um.... keep the mosquitos away. While the tacticals are totally scripted and don't vary from year to year (British always win) they are considering adding some things this year to make it more attractive to all. While it's a long haul (except for me for a change), you should give it a try.
And that doesn't even take into account the Victorian mansion, museum of the fur trade, and waterski shows.
aka. Capt. Jean Joseph Rolette
Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.
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From: "James Yaworsky" <yawors1@...>
Website picture today was supplied by Michael Mathews. I'll let him
elaborate on what it shows.
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