The 53rd P.V.I. attends several battle reenactments and living history events throughout the year. Some of the reenactments we’ve attended include Sailor’s Creek, Gettysburg, Burkittsville, Bentonville, Spotsylvania Court House, 150th Anniversary of Chancellorsville , “Gates of Washington” (Monocacy), Cedar Creek, Antietam and other reenactments of battles. Our unit is a member of the National Regiment, a regimental-sized organization that embraces more than twenty Union infantry groups. At the larger events, the National Regiment acts as a single unit, giving its members a special thrill as we recreate a Civil War regiment, complete with a band and mounted officers.
We pride ourselves on the “living history” aspect of the hobby. Civil War soldiers did not fight all the time. More often than not, they spent lots of time in camp drilling, cleaning their equipment, cooking, killing boredom, and then drilling again. In this capacity, we seek to educate the public how the Civil War soldier lived on a daily basis. We regularly have living history encampments at Gettysburg National Military Park as well as Berks Heritage Center near Reading, Landis Valley Museum in Lancaster, Eckley Miners’ Village near Hazleton, Fort McHenry in Baltimore and many other state and national historic sites. We also participate in many other interesting and unusual events including background artists in movies and documentaries. Several of our members participated in the motion pictures “Glory”, “Gettysburg”, “Gods & Generals”, and numerous television documentary programs. We are also active in campaign marches, whether it is a march from South Mountain to Antietam or a march into Gettysburg, we get the feel of what a “hike” was like for the typical soldier. The 53rd also has participated in tactical events, similar to a simulated ‘war game’ where the officers must use their skill and knowledge of tactics to maneuver the men. Whether making an assault on a fort or protecting your flank against the enemy, anything can occur at a tactical!! Some of our members also specialize in speaking about the life of the soldier and Civil War medicine for schools, youth groups and other organizations. Contact us for further information and availability.
We wrap up the season with a festive holiday Christmas dinner. Members choose a place that recreates the ambiance for a mid-nineteenth century feast.
In essence, the 53rd Pennsylvania usually attends at least one event every month of the year. We meet over the winter to roll cartridges, drill, and integrate new members. The $30 per year dues are used to offset the cost of our monthly newsletter as well as buy company equipment such as powder and percussion caps.
2017 Event Schedule:
February 4th Winter Drill Landis Valley
February 25th Cartridge Rolling Party (Private)
April 1 Monument Cleanup Gettysburg PA
April 22-23 Spring Drill PA Monument Gettysburg PA
May 20-21 New Market Reenactment New Market VA
May 29 Memorial Day Parade Hummelstown PA
July 22-23 Landis Valley PA
July 30th Gruber Wagon Works Berks County PA
September 15-17 South Mountain Reenactment Burkittsvile MD
October 7-8 Gettysburg Living History Spangler Springs Gettysburg PA
November 18 Monument Cleanup Gettysburg PA
December 2 Annual Meeting (Private)
Secondary Event Schedule:
February 25-26th School of Instruction Gettysburg PA (Private)
March 18-19th Ft. McHenry MD
April 6-9 155th Shiloh Reenactment Shiloh TN
May 5-7th 155th McDowell Reenactment McDowell VA
May 20th Army Heritage Days Carlisle PA
June 2-4th On to Richmond Richmond VA
June 24-25th Corbitt’s Charge Westminster MD
July 1-4th Gettysburg Reenactment Yingling Farm Gettysburg PA
July 15-16th Civil War Days at the Winery Manassas VA
October 14-15th Battle of Cedar Creek Reenactment Middletown VA
November 18th Remembrance Day Parade Gettysburg PA