Gettysburg battles are ‘commemoration’

GETTYSBURG, Pa. (AP) – Thousands of history buffs have taken a mile-long commemorative march across the Gettysburg field where the Confederate Army made its ill-fated Pickett’s Charge 150 years ago to end the pivotal battle of the Civil War. A National Park Service spokeswoman said it was the most ambitious program ever planned to remember the South’s failed assault, during which 12,000 men in nine brigades tried to break the Union lines. It ended the three-day Battle of Gettysburg July 1-3, 1863.

 

On Wednesday, visitors broke up into nine groups led by park rangers and re-enactors dressed in period uniforms. The march wasn’t a re-enactment with gunfire and bayonets. The Park Service says it was a respectful commemoration that ended with buglers playing “Taps.”

 

GETTYSBURG, Pa. (AP) – Civil War re-enactors love pulling on wool uniforms, drawing their period muskets and acting out authentic battle scenes. But eventually, someone’s going to have play dead. Enthusiasts say determining who dies, and when, is one of the toughest decisions. Some re-enactors who travel long ways would prefer not having to get shot early on in a re-enactment.

 

There are different ways to figure out who’s going to die. Some units will draw slips of paper with different scenarios. Some will insert black cartridges into soldiers’ ammunition boxes. A black cartridge means that soldier goes down. Other times, re-enacting units will write out scripts. Or, simply, tired re-enactors will just choose to get wounded and fall to the ground.

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