CivilWarTalk Throwback Thursday, November 5, 2020

James N.

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152313973509WP.jpg


This time of year I always remember the several Living History events and occasional reenactments once held annually or semi-annually at Old Washington Historic State Park near Hope, Arkansas, so thought I'd feature it again as the subject of this week's Throwback Thursday. I believe these photos are from before 2010 and show our field hospital behind the local doctor's house above at left and Yours Truly sitting on the porch talking with Surgeon and Major Larry Mink at right. We attended this Fall event for several years in either October or early November and always looked forward to it, both because of the welcome we were given by the park staff and the authentic surroundings of a truly historic old town that actually served as the Arkansas Confederate State Capitol following the fall of Little Rock to the Federal Army in September, 1863. Below is another view showing our tentage and outside surgery at right - a door placed upon two sawhorses and covered with a rubber blanket and canvas tent fly! - and @1863surgeon Doug Garnett in the center of the seated group. Be sure to note the pile of "amputated limbs" in the foreground - this was mainly for the benefit of the local students attending Friday School Day!

ow_4.jpg


Anyone else having (preferably) old Civil War-related photos, mementoes, or memorabilia from reenactments, living history or other events, or vacation or other travel they would like to share with us is welcome and encouraged to do so in this weekly thread!
 

Rusk County Avengers

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Apr 8, 2018
Location
Coffeeville, TX
My second reenactment was at Old Washington way back when I was sixteen. My Dad took me there on what was supposed to be a weekend of him, my brother, and myself, but my Stepmother wasn't having it. Only got to be there for part of Saturday then go off to Beavers Bend in Oklahoma so she and others could soak up a great weekend for themselves in a cabin. I've never been back.

I've often heard the reenactment itself fell on hard times due, I'm told, to a certain Park Ranger, but I've also heard that things have improved. This year was supposed to be a new beginning, but 2020 happened.

Old Washington may have never had a battle, but it being the site of the Arkansas Confederate State Government, and the building still standing, with so many parts of the town preserved, it deserves attention.
 

Lampasas Bill

Corporal
Joined
Sep 24, 2018
In Oct. 1985 the battle scenes for the mini series North and South were filmed near Natchez using reenactors from around the country. I attended with fellow members of Holmes Brigade, a unit made up of Federal reenactors from Missouri and adjoining states. It was worth it to play soldier on one of the most fantastic reconstructed "battle fields" I have experienced. Below is Sergeant "Lampasas Bill" Fannin posing in the Confederate works. The Federal trenches are on the far side of the field. The fiberglass gabions really look the part.


N&S me.jpg

Exterior of Confederate works. (I apologize for the large pictures, but I haven't figured out how to downsize them.)
N&S CS trenches.jpg


Interior of Federal trenches.
N&S Fed. trenches.jpg


N&S Arty.jpg


If you've ever taken part in filming, you know that a lot of the time is spent waiting. Five of my pards from Holmes Brigade.
N&S Pottlers.jpg


Captain Dickson Stauffer from Holmes Brigade. Dickson was chosen to command the Federal infantry
N&S Stauffer.jpg


James Read, who played one of the lead roles as Gen. George Hazard, confers with Lieut. Greg Higgenbotham and Capt. Dickson Stauffer of Holmes Brigade. Read was a great guy to work with. In preparing for our grand assault on the Confederate works he conferred with Dickson on details about how an officer would deport himself, where to stand, how to carry his sword, etc. The day before filming the assault the reenactors were allowed to make a practice attack. Read asked to join us for the experience. Amid a storm of musketry he and Dickson led us to the ditch and down into it. Read managed to fall and actually bend his sword! He was really pumped, but the director nearly had a heart attack when he heard what had happened.
N&S James Read & Dicksen.jpg


The only farby part of the assault was the "engineers" who led the attack carrying these portable bridged. They were intended to carry them into the ditch, put them in place, then support them in the middle while attackers ran across them and climbed the parapet. In a close up, one of the sub-stars, who played an officer of Berdan's Sharpshooters, was to cross the bridge and fight hand-to-hand with a stunt man on the crest. I remember it well because I was one of four or five reenactors who were to follow him across the bridge. As soon as I can find it I'll post a publicity shot of the scene. None of us fell off, but I know that at least one Federal was wopped in the head with a musket butt and taken off in an ambulance. It proved to be a busy week for the ambulance.
N&S engineers.jpg
 

Rusk County Avengers

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Apr 8, 2018
Location
Coffeeville, TX
In Oct. 1985 the battle scenes for the mini series North and South were filmed near Natchez using reenactors from around the country. I attended with fellow members of Holmes Brigade, a unit made up of Federal reenactors from Missouri and adjoining states. It was worth it to play soldier on one of the most fantastic reconstructed "battle fields" I have experienced. Below is Sergeant "Lampasas Bill" Fannin posing in the Confederate works. The Federal trenches are on the far side of the field. The fiberglass gabions really look the part.


View attachment 380799
Exterior of Confederate works. (I apologize for the large pictures, but I haven't figured out how to downsize them.)
View attachment 380812

Interior of Federal trenches.
View attachment 380814

View attachment 380815

If you've ever taken part in filming, you know that a lot of the time is spent waiting. Five of my pards from Holmes Brigade.
View attachment 380817

Captain Dickson Stauffer from Holmes Brigade. Dickson was chosen to command the Federal infantry
View attachment 380818

James Read, who played one of the lead roles as Gen. George Hazard, confers with Lieut. Greg Higgenbotham and Capt. Dickson Stauffer of Holmes Brigade. Read was a great guy to work with. In preparing for our grand assault on the Confederate works he conferred with Dickson on details about how an officer would deport himself, where to stand, how to carry his sword, etc. The day before filming the assault the reenactors were allowed to make a practice attack. Read asked to join us for the experience. Amid a storm of musketry he and Dickson led us to the ditch and down into it. Read managed to fall and actually bend his sword! He was really pumped, but the director nearly had a heart attack when he heard what had happened.
View attachment 380819

The only farby part of the assault was the "engineers" who led the attack carrying these portable bridged. They were intended to carry them into the ditch, put them in place, then support them in the middle while attackers ran across them and climbed the parapet. In a close up, one of the sub-stars, who played an officer of Berdan's Sharpshooters, was to cross the bridge and fight hand-to-hand with a stunt man on the crest. I remember it well because I was one of four or five reenactors who were to follow him across the bridge. As soon as I can find it I'll post a publicity shot of the scene. None of us fell off, but I know that at least one Federal was wopped in the head with a musket butt and taken off in an ambulance. It proved to be a busy week for the ambulance.
View attachment 380823

Oh that looks like it was fun....
 

Lampasas Bill

Corporal
Joined
Sep 24, 2018
Here's the publicity photo I referred to. I'm the sergeant kneeling on the parapet while the actor playing the sharpshooter officer climbs up behind me. The Confederate with the kepi and dark coat is the stunt man who is intended to confront him (note the rubber musket). We started this scene on the other side of the ditch, crossed the engineer's "bridge" and climbed the parapet. A friend sent me this photo before the series aired; "Oh boy!" I thought, "I'm gonna be on film!" But it was not to be. Like many of us who have been extras, I ended up on the cutting room floor. Still, it's a pretty near picture and I treasure it.
publicity photo.jpg
 

captaindrew

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Location
Whereabouts Unknown
In Oct. 1985 the battle scenes for the mini series North and South were filmed near Natchez using reenactors from around the country. I attended with fellow members of Holmes Brigade, a unit made up of Federal reenactors from Missouri and adjoining states. It was worth it to play soldier on one of the most fantastic reconstructed "battle fields" I have experienced. Below is Sergeant "Lampasas Bill" Fannin posing in the Confederate works. The Federal trenches are on the far side of the field. The fiberglass gabions really look the part.


View attachment 380799
Exterior of Confederate works. (I apologize for the large pictures, but I haven't figured out how to downsize them.)
View attachment 380812

Interior of Federal trenches.
View attachment 380814

View attachment 380815

If you've ever taken part in filming, you know that a lot of the time is spent waiting. Five of my pards from Holmes Brigade.
View attachment 380817

Captain Dickson Stauffer from Holmes Brigade. Dickson was chosen to command the Federal infantry
View attachment 380818

James Read, who played one of the lead roles as Gen. George Hazard, confers with Lieut. Greg Higgenbotham and Capt. Dickson Stauffer of Holmes Brigade. Read was a great guy to work with. In preparing for our grand assault on the Confederate works he conferred with Dickson on details about how an officer would deport himself, where to stand, how to carry his sword, etc. The day before filming the assault the reenactors were allowed to make a practice attack. Read asked to join us for the experience. Amid a storm of musketry he and Dickson led us to the ditch and down into it. Read managed to fall and actually bend his sword! He was really pumped, but the director nearly had a heart attack when he heard what had happened.
View attachment 380819

The only farby part of the assault was the "engineers" who led the attack carrying these portable bridged. They were intended to carry them into the ditch, put them in place, then support them in the middle while attackers ran across them and climbed the parapet. In a close up, one of the sub-stars, who played an officer of Berdan's Sharpshooters, was to cross the bridge and fight hand-to-hand with a stunt man on the crest. I remember it well because I was one of four or five reenactors who were to follow him across the bridge. As soon as I can find it I'll post a publicity shot of the scene. None of us fell off, but I know that at least one Federal was wopped in the head with a musket butt and taken off in an ambulance. It proved to be a busy week for the ambulance.
View attachment 380823
Good stuff! thanks for sharing those photos
 

mofederal

Major
Joined
Jun 27, 2017
Location
Southeast Missouri
Some of those members of the Holmes Brigade look very familiar to me. I used to fall in with them for many reenactments. I knew Greg pretty well, and I ran into him while filming Gettysburg. I even met the real John Henry once a very long time ago. I haven't seen Greg since he was in the Jesse James The Last Rebel, or the Expedition Discovery episode about Jesse James.
 

James N.

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Annual Winner
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Joined
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Location
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North and South Book II 002.JPG

Here's the publicity photo I referred to. I'm the sergeant kneeling on the parapet while the actor playing the sharpshooter officer climbs up behind me. The Confederate with the kepi and dark coat is the stunt man who is intended to confront him (note the rubber musket). We started this scene on the other side of the ditch, crossed the engineer's "bridge" and climbed the parapet. A friend sent me this photo before the series aired; "Oh boy!" I thought, "I'm gonna be on film!" But it was not to be. Like many of us who have been extras, I ended up on the cutting room floor. Still, it's a pretty near picture and I treasure it.
View attachment 380842

Presumably that was Parker Stevenson, seen above with James Read and below with the reenactor who was cast as the drummer boy:

North and South Part IIA.JPG


Thanks for turning up these fantastic photos; you might want to also add them to my thread on N&S, Book II:

https://civilwartalk.com/threads/filming-north-and-south-book-ii-love-and-war.81456/
 
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