Many members of the Civilians have worked to create accurate personas, or scenarios, based off of research about the people of the Spotsylvania County area at the time of the Civil War, along with information about the period in general. We present these people for the public to learn about the everyday person's life at this time; what the civilian population was dealing with while the war was raging on.
Here are some of the setups and people that you will commonly see when we are at an event. Feel free to come and talk!
Come see our civilian house setup, our largest display, and talk to the folks there about daily life during the Civil War. You might see someone sewing, reading, playing an instrument, or any other number of home activities.
Food Preservation without Refrigeration
Our flagship scenario! This program was developed at first to educate school children about how people of the past preserved their food when they did not have electricity. Today, adults and children alike discover the art of food preservation, without refrigeration. Stop on by and see how you, too, can fix a whole meal without the fridge!
Come see our period washing machine, an almost exact copy of an 1863 model. With the proper drying rack attached, this washing machine is completely functional!
If the last two scenarios made you thirsty, stop by the distillery for a refreshing drink. Or, at least, a drink. Come see the evolution of home distillation, another holdover from this time period. No samples from this station, sorry.
You know what they say- what's old is new again! At this station you can learn about candies and other sweets that have survived to the modern day from the time of the Civil War. A couple of favories include horehound drops and jelly beans!
Come and chat with our midwife to learn about- How many children does the average family have? What is her niche in 19th century society? How are certain women's issues going to be handled between her and a doctor? Also suitable for children, as she would have filled the role of general doctor during the time of war to cure such daily ailments as rashes, sprains, and infected wounds.
Rural folks were the hardy type and often capable of patching up their own minor medical issues. Come and talk about some herbs which might have been used to take care of problems such as a cold, a fever, or an upset stomach- some of which now have modern scientific support.
An integral part of the agriculturally-based community, the beekeeper is responsible for seeing to it that the crops of the county are properly pollinated. Come and talk with our beekeeper to get some pointers on how to raise and keep a hive!
Come talk about the importance of a saw mill during the time of the Civil War. Learn about improvements in technology, as well as what this business would mean as far as the growth of our country and economy.
This scenario is a perfect way to actively participate in a historic event! Temperance was one of the larger social issues at the time, so join us in a temperance march and get a taste of the movement. (We won't tell if you stop by the still afterwards!)
A major form of entertainment for the civilians, the Civil War Civilians of Spottsylvania love a good dance! We bring this activity to almost every event that we participate in. Please be sure to check out our dance page for more information!
Other people and activites that you will frequently see include quilting, open hearth cooking, bandage rolling, church sermons, a wounded war vet, and more!
Join us at our next event and see what we have to share with you!