I’ve been out of the reenacting scene for a couple of months now to focus on a new job (I was recently hired as an Academic Editor for the University of Wisconsin Colleges Online) and to hibernate for a while. It’s astonishing to me, but perhaps not so surprising, how exhausting living history interpretation takes out of a person. But regardless, I’m due for a summary of my last NWTA event from June and a weekend of interpretation at Old World Wisconsin and Pike River Rendezvous in Kenosha, WI.
Okay, this is a little behind the times, but I shall endeavor to make it a worthwhile read as always. 🙂 Anyways…
The first weekend of June saw my first NWTA-sponsored event of the year. For those new to the world of reenacting, my blog, or both, I am a member of the North West Territory Alliance, a volunteer organization dedicated to the education of various entities on the American Revolution.
As I sit waiting for a Skype call from a prospective employer with 90s music playing in the background, I figured I’d begin an ongoing series about my reenacting events for the year. And, the first event of the year was…? The U.S. Grant Pilgrimage in Galena, IL this past weekend. Founded by Virginia Carroll and Ruth Turner in 1955, the Pilgrimage started as a week-long event which has since its inception brought thousands upon thousands of Boy Scout groups to Galena for over 50 years.
In my last post, I brought up the term “living history” and sought to explore the dual meaning behind “living history” and living “history”. I discussed my personal experiences in reenacting, as in living “history”. In this post, I will be exploring what “living history” is and analyze its importance in terms of historic interpretation.
Before diving headfirst into this post, I would like for you to consider the title: “Living History Through Reenacting”. There are two ways to analyze this title. One, it could mean experiencing history by attending or participating in reenacting (“living history”). Or two, it could also connote the actual act of, or even art of, reenacting from the standpoint of someone who actually reenacts (living “history”). This post and the next deal with both interpretations of the term “‘living’ history”.