Monday, August 30, 2010

Digression: Historic Fort Wayne

While this blog is intended to be for 18th century tangible things, I couldn't help mentioning where I've been the past few days. Over the weekend the hubby and I participated in a historical re-enactment at Historic Fort Wayne in Indiana. The re-enactment was of Fort Miamies during the Seven Years' War. Technically, the English and French didn't fight against each other at this fort. What did happen was that Hazen's Company of Rangers (our unit) came down from New France to tell the inhabitants of Fort Miamies that the war was over and the English had won. The Rangers then made a December trek all the way down to Fort Ouiatenon to tell the French there that they were the losers.

Since there were no actual historical battles at Fort Miamies, our goal was to interpret a "standard" weekend of battles and camp life. My brother and I played duty calls on our fifes for the soldiers, all of our unit participated in the battles, and our lovely ladies of the camp cooked the meals we'd worked out for the weekend. In addition to the battles, we also participated in some drilling, which included a very entertaining bayonet drill. Generally, a good time was had by all. We're an extremely young unit and have yet to learn a lot of the finer details of managing a camp, but we're getting there. Here are a few pictures from the event - and I promise I'll return you to your regularly scheduled program in my next blog!

Rachelle and myself working on batter for pound cake for the Saturday night participant potluck. Unfortunately, we still have a lot to learn in matters of cake-making over the fire... Oh well, live and learn! We were proud of the fact that we at least tried, and that we used a period recipe (just eggs, flour, butter, and sugar).

Rachelle seems to be enjoying her newly established role as a Camp Mother just a little too much, much to James' chagrin!

Ruth slaving over a hot fire in order to provide the rangers with a delicious lunch.

We put a chicken in one of the dutch ovens to boil - and left it there for about five hours. When we pulled it out, it was literally falling off the bone. Hubby Erik carved it up nicely for us - what a feast!

The boys set up an impromptu tomahawk target and had fun with some practice. I tried once or twice, but was feeling much too awkward in front of everyone to actually have fun doing it, so I decided to wait until I've had some practice at home and can throw with confidence before I try in public again! I enjoyed taking a few quick pictures of Luke (above) and the others, however.

Our set-up for the weekend - we were sleeping in the building directly behind our fly, so the fly was the only outside set-up we had for the duration of the event. You can tell by the random scattering of dishes that we don't yet have proper places for things in our camp. Luke (left) and Gerret don't seem too concerned about the mess, however.

These lovely ladies were just too pretty not to take a picture of - as you can see, I'm in the back practicing my ninja ranger guarding techniques. :-P I was also promoted to the rank of Sergeant at this event (Erik came up to me and said "Guess what, you're the sergeant now, so go to the sergeants' meeting." Oh. Okay then), so I'm now Sergeant Bob instead of Private Bob, at least for the time being. My musician duties are such that I probably won't have that rank for long (the sergeant was responsible for keeping the men in line, etc, and since I have to march with the musicians and not with our rangers, I can't exactly be there keeping them in line).

P.S. The camp box that Erik and I just completed worked wonderfully at this event. I'll talk about its construction in my next blog - stay tuned!

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