For the Civil War Re-enactor, it is rare and getting rarer, to actually recreate history by portraying a Civil War Battle on the actual battlefield. But at the Battle of Athens State Historic Site it’s still possible.
This past weekend re-enactors invaded the site to once again recreate history and the events of August 5, 1861 when Col. David Moore who occupied the town with his approximate 500 Home Guards (Union) against Col. Martin Green’s approximately 2,000 State Guards (Confederate). On August 2&3 re-enactors once again brought cannon fire to the tiny town as brave men from both sides “saw the elephant” (a slang term from that time period meaning that they had seen war and had been in combat as well as seeing death) for the first time at Athens. According to Roger Boyd Site Administrator around 150 re-enactors worked their hardest at recreating that history.
Boyd added, “We were very pleased with the turn out, as it was a very hot weekend and there were other things going on in the area. And aside from the battle, which we had on both days, we also had many vendors including a blacksmith, two old time photographers, root beer, Kahoka Lions Club Ice Cream, and a loom. There were also several displays including displays from the Missouri Department of Conservation, The Illiniwek Archeological Chapter, and Joe and Ann Edlen had marbles from the 19th century, which were very interesting. The Revere Fire Department had the concessions in the sites new shelter/ general store.”
It was also announced at the event that this would be Site Administrator Roger Boyd’s last re-enactment as a state employee as he announced his retirement, which will be effective in October. Boyd added, “However, I do plan on coming back in three years for the next large re-enactment, but this time I will be in the ranks as a Civil War re-enactor.”