Basic Event Guidelines
REGISTRATION: The registration fee is
$10.00. Missouri Civil War Reenactors
Association (MCWRA) members are exempt from the fee. All
participants must pre-register. No walk-ons
Federal (Home Guard): Charles Hoskins, 636-239-2644, email@example.com
Confederate (Missouri State Guard):
Mitch Critel, firstname.lastname@example.org,
Civilian: Silvana Siddali, email@example.com,
Sutlers: Vivian Murphy, firstname.lastname@example.org,
Registration forms and fees must be received before the event. Check in at the Store Pavilion upon arrival. The registration table will be open until midnight
on Friday. All late arrivals shall check in at
their respective headquarters. The
registration fee is exclusively for the event insurance, provided by the Missouri Civil
War Reenactors Association.
This event is specifically designed for the serious, authentic living
historian. All participants must operate under
the organizational structure established by the event sponsors. An officers meeting will be held at 8:00 a.m.
on Saturday and Sunday morning at the Store Pavilion.
Attendance at the officers meeting
is mandatory for all unit commanders to cover scenarios and safety. At this meeting safety rules will be provided to
each unit commander. Unit commanders are
responsible for ensuring that every participant in their unit is familiar with the safety
rules. To protect the participants and
spectators, violators of ANY safety rules may be removed immediately from the Athens State
PRESERVATION: There are a
number of period buildings in the park in need of stabilization and restoration. There will be a free will collection for
preservation at the event.
participants are expected to follow the below listed authenticity guidelines for their
respective impression. It should go without
saying that modern eyeglasses, wristwatches, penny-roll cartridges, Zouave rifles, modern
or graniteware cooking gear, modern jewelry and other such anachronisms are strictly
prohibited. Contact lenses and modern
medication shall be kept out of sight in period appropriate containers.
ARTILLERY: Due to historical considerations, artillery is limited to
two full-scale six-pounder guns, representing Kneisleys Black Battery in Missouri
State Guard service. Those interested in
providing or serving on one of the guns should contact the MSG coordinator for
availability of positions.
AMENITIES: Authentic, raw
foodstuffs will be provided for all meals from Saturday breakfast through Sunday lunch. Local civic groups will also sell concessions at
the shelter. In addition, straw, firewood,
water and sanitary facilities will be provided.
WEATHER AND INSECTS: Missouri in August is hot and humid. Expect 90+ degrees during the day and 70-80 degrees
at night. Drink water at every opportunity and
carry a canteen.
CAMPING: ALL camping will
be in authentic Union, Confederate or civilian camps.
Although there are modern camping areas within the park that one may
utilize, it will not be allowed within the confines of the event. See park website for more information.
PARKING: There is ample
parking near the event area. No cars allowed
The Battle of Athens at the Athens State Historic Site is an
invitation only event. Groups and individuals
requesting and accepting an invitation are stating that they will follow the guidelines
for their respective impression. Please note
that certain items are listed as prohibited or unacceptable.
Anyone with any these items will be asked to replace them or they will not
be allowed to participate in the event. The
goal is not to exclude individuals or organizations, but rather to insure that all
participants are willing to cooperate in delivering a high-quality interpretive event for
the public, park and participants.
Every choice the event participant will make should be made with the
occupation, social class and age of the person they want to portray for the event. Period
hair and facial hair styles are optional but strongly encouraged. Look to identified
period photographs for examples. In all of the
following categories attention to details of original documented articles and equipment is
needed. An authenticity and weapons inspection will be held in each camp on Saturday
morning by the events Authenticity Board. The Authenticity Board will have the final
say on impressions and weapons. The inspection is not intended to prevent anyone from
participating in the event; rather, it is to ensure that all participants
impressions and gear follow the guidelines so that the event is as authentic as possible
for both spectators and the living historians. If
any problem items are identified by the Board, the first course of action will be to
request that the item be removed or replaced. Only
in the event that such a request by the Board is refused will the participant be given the
opportunity to become a spectator for the weekend rather than a participant by the
Missouri Department of Natural Resources staff. Pictures
have been attached to this set of guidelines in order to help participants further their
impressions specifically for Athens. If at anytime you have a question about a specific
item or just need impression guidance, please do not hesitate to contact your respective
(Home Guard) Guidelines
All Federal troops will portray companies of David Moores 1st
Northeast Missouri Regiment of Home Guards. These
volunteers were the epitome of citizen soldiers, arming and equipping
themselves from home, until receiving arms and accouterments from the government in late
Slouch hat, including bee
hives and pork pies
Other: Period appropriate, but uncommon in this region
Mexican War wheel hat
Other Civil War military hats, i.e., kepis, forage caps, dress hats.
Shirts & Underclothes: Civilian
Trousers: Civilian style
Civilian pattern, single or double-breasted
paletot, or tailcoat, single or double-breasted in wool broadcloth, jean or linen.
Civilian sack coat in wool,
jean or linen.
Overshirt in wool flannel,
linsey-woolsey, cotton or linen.
Footwear: Civilian boots or shoes preferred, but military
Long-Arms: Model 1842 or earlier conversion, 1855 or 1861 Springfield
or civilian weapon (i.e., shotguns, rifles). UNACCEPTABLE:
Enfields, repeating arms, i.e., Henry, Spencer (although period appropriate, these arms
would be extremely rare among the farmers of Northeast Missouri).
Bayonet for military
Side knives, Bowie,
hunting or otherwise.
Swords (officers and mounted troops)
NOTE: Edged weapons shall not be drawn on the field
except for officers, mounted troops and the scripted bayonet charge by the Home Guard.
Pistols: Muzzle-loading percussion or flintlock, civilian or
military models. Pre-1860 revolvers (No
Walkers, Pattersons or other obscure models).
Artillery: None, the Home
Guard did not have cannon at Athens.
Accouterments: Standard M1855/61 or earlier federal issue; leather
shot bags and powder horns, pre-1850s military accouterments (NOTE: Powder
horns may only be carried for display without live powder. Only rolled cartridge are to be used in the battle
scenarios and firing demonstrations).
Personal and Camp Equipage
Haversack: White cotton or linen, if carried at all.
Preferred: tin drum, wood drum, bottle, or gourd.
Acceptable: Pattern 1858 U.S.
Blankets: Civilian blanket, coverlet or period pattern quilt.
None. Canvas flies or wagon tarps, oilcloths, and painted
ground cloths only.
Rubberized gum blankets and ponchos are to be used only as an item of last resort
in the event of severe rain.
Cookware and Utensils: Any period civilian styles. Tin, copper, cast iron, ironstone, etc
Mounted Units: Cos. B, C, and D of the 1st NE Mo.
Home Guard were mounted infantry. They acted
as a mounted picket before the battle, fought dismounted during it, and pursued the enemy
after. Coggins papers and USDA travel papers
(out of state horses only) will be inspected by uniformed agents of the Missouri
Department of Agriculture.
(Missouri State Guard) Authenticity Guidelines
1st Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Division, Missouri State
Commanding Officer: Mitch Critel; email@example.com; 308-379-3135
Adjutant: Jay Stevens
Lewis County Company
Our goal will be to accurately portray the
actions between the 1st Northeast Home Guard under Colonel David Moore, and the
1st Cavalry Regiment 2nd Division, Missouri State Guard under
Colonel Martin Green in the summer of 1861. The
guidelines presented herein are the product of numerous historians and many years of
research. All have been consulted and checked against other histories and are presented as
the best possible choice. In all of the
following categories attention to details of original documented articles and equipment is
The men who made up the Missouri State Guard in the northeastern counties of Missouri
were predominantly farmers and small townsmen. All were capable of riding a horse. Nearly
all carried a weapon of sorts, refer to weapons section for further details. The men would
have all been dressed in typical civilian clothing representative of their social class,
occupation and age. Keeping in mind most men
were farmers, accounts of the state guard point to the abundance of walnut dyed cloth in
the ranks throughout the years of service. The
companies these men formed were individual militias from the county or community they
lived in. They would have lived, worked and socialized with their comrades in arms.
Military protocol was lax at best in the
ranks of these militias. Although other regiments in the Missouri State Guard were well
versed in the drill manuals of the military, the 2nd division was more of a
social club than it was a militia for defense. This
is not to say that the regiment was a rambling hoard of men. They would still march or
ride in groups, turn in line and fight in long lines using cover when they could.
The men of the 1st Cavalry were a
mounted unit. However for the battle at Athens they dismounted and left their horses in
the rear. For our purposes we will move as a dismounted group. It is encouraged that you
research period horses and horse equipment to give you a better understanding of what
these men went through on a daily basis. Likewise, any gear a horseman would take with him
off his horse will be carried into battle.
If at anytime you have a question about a specific item or just need
impression guidance, please do not hesitate to contact Mitch Critel; firstname.lastname@example.org, 308-379-3135.
Top hats, Mechanics Caps, and other documented hat styles.
Coats: Sack Coats
Overshirts: Typical colors include: red, grey, brown, green, and
subdued plaid. Material should be of wool flannel, heavy linen or cotton
pattern trousers only.
Shirt & Under Garments:
Shirts: Period Prints, Stripes, and Solids
Under Garments: Period undergarments are
Vests: Optional, Single and Double Breasted Civilian Styles
points to the prevalence of boots among farmers in Missouri at this time. However due to
the large financial investment of a good quality pair of boots, brogans, bootees, and
other documented civilian shoe styles will be accepted in the ranks.
Accouterments: Shot pouches, powder horns and flasks, belts, hunting
or carpet bags and other equipment must all be of documented construction and materials. Powder flasks and shot pouches will NOT be FILLED.
Blank paper cartridge ammunition will be the only means of loading and firing weapons.
Various accounts of the Guard illustrate the lack of proper cartridge boxes, quoting the
use of vest and trouser pockets and cloth bags to carry ammunition in. All military
equipment must be of a dated pattern BEFORE 1860.
Canteens: Due to safety
concerns, a canteen or water source must be carried by each man in the ranks. While
documentation shows the men at Athens carried very few canteens, we will be departing
history on this point. Possible options include; wooden canteens, tin drum canteens gourds
made into canteens, bottles with slings, and anything that can hold water and also be
carried on the move.
Blankets: Civilian panel, coverlets, quilts, scraps of carpet
are all documented items carried, however need to be of a documented pattern, construction
and material. Painted floor cloths are
encouraged and acceptable if of period pattern and construction.
Eating Equipage: Civilian china, earth ware, and other period eating
equipment will be accepted.
appropriate weapon can be acquired please notify your company commander to have one
assigned to you for the weekend.
Squirrel and deer rifles
Shotguns and fowling pieces
Pre-1842 pattern Military Weapon
M1842 Musket; ONLY IF NO OTHER WEAPON CAN BE HAD!
Both flintlock or percussion weapons will be accepted, however if you choose to bring a
flintlock weapon, notify your company commander or the officer in charge during
Revolvers-steel back strap (Keep in mind
that M1860 Army Colts would presumably have not been widely in use at the Battle of
Athens, and M1851 Navy and Dragoon models would have been a relatively expensive luxury
for a Missouri farmer in 1861)
Derringer or single barrel
Documentation points to pistols often being carried in
the belt line of the trousers.
However for safety purposes NO LOADED PISTOLS may be carried in this fashion.
Note: With the exception of officers and
NCOs sabers, no knives will be drawn from a sheath or scabbard during the battle
reenactments. These are for show only and for
use in camp. Folding pocket knives used for
repair purposes in the field are obviously OK.
Spurs are encouraged but must
be period correct.
Personal items are encouraged
part to your impression for maximum benefit in interacting with and educating spectators.
Items such as pocket watches, dominoes, cards, dice, journals, books, bottles and other
things the average male of the period would have carried with them would be acceptable so
long as they are documented to 1861 and were available in rural parts of Missouri.
Axes, shovels, horse tack and
rope are also requested camp items.
This section is provided to give a taste of
period observations and modern scholarship about the Missouri State Guard during the
summer months of 1861. For further reading please consult the works cited after each
A flag raised over the court house by
Colonel Martin Green at Macon was remembered as consisting of three stripes with fifteen
stars without further description.
Prices Lieutenants p. 304
The Missouri State Guard
have sufficient time or the necessary funding to manufacture the standard uniforms
prescribed by statute
Prices Lieutenants p. 306
Brown Jeans with a red calico stripe
one-inch wide on the outside seam, in reference to the uniform of the Bolivar
Prices Lieutenants p. 307
[Private Richard] Hubbell took a
silver mounted Mississippi rifle which had been presented to his uncle for heroism in the
Mexican War. He also borrowed a flintlock pistol
Having no holster, he simply tucked
the pistol into the waistband of his pants.
Prices Lieutenants p. 309
A motley crew of men and boys, armed
with shotguns, old flintlock rifles, smoothbore muskets
Prices Lieutenants p. 309
Private Richard Hubbell carried
bullets in one vest pocket, powder in another, and percussion caps in a third. One State
Guardsman said his company was given a cloth bag filled with buckshot, and told to pour
in a handful before firing.
Prices Lieutenants p. 310
The guard was described by a federal
solider at Carthage as having no uniforms, being entirely clad in the homespun
butternut jeans worn by every Missouri farmer in those days.
Prices Lieutenants p. 311
I.M. Walters was under Martin Green during
the battle of Athens and recalls the following; "A
more motley aggregation of white men and boys than accompanied General Green on that
occasion was probably never collected together on this earth. They ranged in age
probably from twelve to seventy-five or eighty years old. The mixture of apparel and
appearance was something wonderful to behold. Some were barefoot, many in their
shirt sleeves only, and a few without headgear of any kind. Nearly all had horses,
but many had no saddles, and some did not even have bridles, but guided their horses with
plain rope halters." horses with plain
Weekly Gate City, March 29, 1900
From private collection Bird dog
is not required part of kit at Athens 2008
Detail of pervious image. From private
images on this page are from documented local photographers. From private collection.
All civilians are asked to represent citizens of the town of Athens
and the surrounding area. Most of these were farmers and their families. There was a
smattering of other occupations: professionals, blacksmiths, storeowners, mill workers and
others. This is a rural area, far removed from any fashion centers. Dress appropriately
for 'your' socioeconomic level in practical, everyday clothing. All civilian clothing must
be made of period pattern and construction techniques.
(or corded corset, depending on your impression)
Crinoline - Modest crinoline, depending on your body type. Most hoops should not
exceed 120-125" and for most women a 90" to 100" crinoline will be
sufficient. One way to figure this out is by multiplying your height times a percentage
between 40%-60% times 3.14. For example: I'm 5'5" so this is what I would do to
figure out my hoop skirt circumference: 65" x 45% x 3.14 = 92" circumference
(You also have to take your weight into account. If you are confused, I'd be happy to help
you figure out the correct size for your figure.)
- You will want at least one petticoat to go over your crinoline. These were usually made
out of white cotton. A small under petticoat can also be useful.
cotton stockings (these are best if they are long enough to go above the knee)
(The little elastic tubes are not correct. You will get more service from garters that
have a buckle on the side. Reproductions are usually made with cotton elastic and
adjustable buckles. Period garters were also made of silk covered elastic.)
-You can take a look at some originals here that will give you an idea of appropriate
footwear. ( http://www.thegracefullady.com/civilwargowns/originals_accessories.htm)
The best reproductions available today are sold by Robert Land ( http://www.robertlandhistoricshoes.com ) and you
can purchase these online.
Dress details: Piping should be very narrow (about 1/16") and should run along
neck, waist, and armscyes (armholes). Please don't pipe the back seams, and don't make the
piping of a contrasting color. Skirt lengths should be short enough to permit walking
(this is usually a few inches off the ground when worn over a crinoline). Skirts should be
pleated or gauged to the bodice at the waist. Ideally the dress would be a gathered-front
bodice (if in cotton) with bishop or coat sleeves. Or dresses can be made of silk or wool
and in this case the bodice could either be darted or gathered/pleated at the waist. You
might consider wearing a dress made of a very light or sheer fabric for this event. It
will probably be very hot and muggy at this time of the year. If you plan to wear a cotton dress, pagoda sleeves are not appropriate. Please, no
modern trimmings (such as modern gros grain ribbons, for example) and no synthetic fibers
anywhere. Synthetic fibers are not only incorrect, they're dangerous near open fires (plus
it will act as an oven and you'll find your body suffocating in the heat). There is no
evidence that Missouri women wore a separate blouse-and-skirt combination. Please be sure
that if you are wearing a printed cotton dress, that it is
of a documented print. If you have questions about appropriate fabric, please be sure to
ask us. We're always happy to help! :)
Accessories: White cotton or linen neck kerchiefs or collars; white cotton or linen
cuffs or undersleeves. Please, only period appropriate jewelry if worn.
All women must bring a silk bonnet, or period reproduction straw bonnet, slat or corded
sunbonnet. Older ladies might wear a plain white linen cap (of the correct century) but
please, no nylon lace-style dressy caps and no straw hats.
And please, NO snoods or headgear from other centuries. Accurate reproduction hairnets
made of fine thread and decorated with ribbon are welcome. You will need an apron or two,
in documented colors and fabrics, as well as large handkerchiefs.
Hair: All women must wear a period-appropriate hair style: center parted,
dressed flat to the head, no bangs, no curls. A small additional bun or braid is
acceptable. Please, no makeup. For information on how to do your hair, please take a look
at these online tutorials:
and Child Guidelines
1. As noted for adults with modifications appropriate to age. Children should wear clothing in documented colors,
styles, and fabrics. For example: boat
necklines, short sleeves, and calf length skirts are appropriate for girls; short trousers
and shirtsleeves for pre-teen boys. Dresses
are correct for toddlers. Childrens
footwear may be purchased laced boots, if speed laces are removed.
2. Because this is a conservative farming area, in general all boys beyond toddler age
should wear adult-type clothing.
3. Keep modern infant accessories (i.e. diapers, baby bottles) kept out of sight. No
Men: See military guidelines above
Civilians will be in a period style campsite. Since there are a limited number of town buildings
for civilians to inhabit, we will make due with period tents near the town site. A tents or wall-tents are acceptable. However, no modern camping equipment may be in
sight (coolers, air mattresses, food wrappers, soda cans, modern lanterns, etc.). This is for
the entire weekend, not just while camps are open to spectators.
Civilian Activities: Civilian activities will be set around stations
established at buildings at different parts of the event site. These buildings are unfurnished. Participants are encouraged to bring furniture
items and household goods to use on their "stage."
All civilian participants should be willing to engage in some period
activity - period food preparation (cooking, butter churning, etc.), handcrafts (sewing,
weaving, etc.), trades (blacksmithing, woodworking, printing, etc.), period music,
first-person impressions (discussing 1861 current events, telling spectators your story). Make sure any persona or scenario you present to
the public is appropriate to the time, place, and mood of the event.
Battle of Athens
Leslie Anders, "Farthest North: The Historian and the Battle of Athens"
(Missouri Historical Review, Vol. 65, No. 2, January 1975)
Leslie Anders, "The Twenty-First Missouri: From Home Guard to Union Regiment" (Greenwood
Press, Westport Conn. 1975)
Ben F. Dixon, "The Battle of Athens: Fourteen Contemporary
Reports," (n.d.), " Martin Green's Boomerang" (1966), and "Farthest
North: 1861" (1969)
Kenneth Doud and Alcene Henn, "The Good Old Days: Early History
of Northeast Clark County, Missouri" (n.p., 1963)
Goodspeed's "History of Lewis, Clark, Know and Scotland
Counties" (St. Louis, 1887)
Hon. George W. McCrary, "The Battle of Athens," in Military
Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States, Missouri Commandery, War Papers and
Personal Reminiscences (St. Louis, 1892), I, 171.