On July 3, join the militia of old Welsh Run as they gather at the Davis homestead in preparation for War. All are welcome to join the muster! Learn all the skills of a soldier: How to march, how to fight, what to eat and how to have fun amidst it all.
This program will allow visitors to experience a rural militia muster, civilians following the army, and aspects of a rural Pennsylvania community. Centered around the Tavern at the CI, but also making use of the full extent of the 30-acre property, such as the oven, woodland paths, homestead, and more. In addition to scheduled programs and vignettes, programming will be ongoing through the day such as cooking, local commerce, itinerant trades, signing oaths of allegiance, etc.
Scheduled Programming is as follows:
10 a.m. – Election of an Officer: Militias in Revolutionary America were a fickle thing. As a new idea of equality spreads it means a new way of leading. If every man is equal then why follow orders at all? As two local gentlemen vie for the position of the commanding officer, witness their merits and add your voice to the final vote.
11 a.m. – Inspection and Company Drill: The Militia of Old Welsh Run will have their arms and accoutrements inspected at the beginning of the muster. An important task when each man is bringing an individual firelock (of dubious quality). Following which the militia will begin to drill. With a mix of veteran soldiers, awkward rookies, and hopeless farmers, will they be able to march in a straight line, let alone stand against the British Redcoats discipline? The drill will end in a full company musket firing!
12 p.m. – Marching on their Stomachs: Learn what really kept soldiers going in hard times by looking at their rations and mealtime preparations. Help the war effort by baking some hard bread that will last for a long campaign.
1 p.m. – Volunteer Company Drill with Public: Having seen how the militia handles themselves, it’s time to try it yourself. Our sergeants will guide you through the paces of Marching, Facings, and Maneuvers that will make the difference between a militia and a mob. Do you have what it takes to outflank the British at the next great battle?
2 p.m. – A reading of the Declaration of Independence followed by a celebratory Artillery Firing: Join with pride at a reading of the Declaration of Independence. These important words that were held in every Patriot’s heart, would echo in every rustic field to the great halls of European Nobility and change the World! The Declaration will be celebrated with a firing of CI’s Swivel Gun “Spitfire” just as today celebrations occur with fireworks.
3 p.m. – Company Drill: A full day of training has made the militia mesh together better but practice makes perfect. More marching, more wheels, and more difficult maneuvers will be practiced before setting off for war. Company musketry will include different forms of firing that were utilized during the Revolutionary War.
4 p.m. – Diversions from Duty: Militia Musters helped bring the militia together, but were also a chance to relax, have fun and show off. Officers would often encourage soldiers to compete in footraces, boxing, and sports with cash rewards. Join the militia in unwinding in a group cricket match or a race around the green with prizes going to the best competitors.
The Conococheague Book Club – Thursday, July 15th at 1 PM at the Welsh Barrens Visitor Center
All are welcome to join our book club regulars every month on the third Thursday at 1pm. For July the discussion will be on two women’s narratives of capture during the 18th century. “A Narrative of the Life of Mrs. Mary Jemison” by James E. Seaver and “A Journal of the Captivity of Jean Lowry and her Children”
The discussion will be lead by Lois Steichen and the Jean Lowry journal is currently on sale in the CI gift shop.
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