06 September 2008 by Published in: General musings 9 comments

Susan and I live on the border between the City of Columbus, and its neighboring suburb of Reynoldsburg. Reynoldsburg touts itself as the “Birthplace of the Tomato”, although I’m not entirely sure why. Every year, the city hosts the Tomato Festival, a celebration of everything tomato.

For reasons that are completely lost to me, they’ve included a Civil War encampment this year. What reenactors and tomatoes have in common is really a mystery to me, but somebody has made that connection.

I learned about it at 9:30 tonight, when they started night firing artillery at their encampment, which is less than a mile away. It rattled the windows, scared the living daylights out of Nero and Aurora, who started barking like mad, and caused me and many of my neighbors to stumble outside to make sure that none of the neighborhood houses had blown sky high like that post office in my home town did one night my senior year in high school (which is a whole other story for another time).

Now, I like Civil War re-enactors as much as the next guy. They definitely play a role, and if what they do interests a single kid in the Civil War, then I’m all for them. However, what possible reason is there for firing their guns on a Saturday night in a suburban, densely populated neighborhood? I mean, please……

Scridb filter


  1. Sat 06th Sep 2008 at 11:39 pm

    Please indulge us with the story of the Post Office…Lol.

  2. Ken Noe
    Sun 07th Sep 2008 at 9:35 am

    Perhaps they were Buckeye fans celebrating their big comeback over the mighty Bobcats of Athens 😉

  3. Sun 07th Sep 2008 at 1:02 pm

    Well, as you know, the original recipe for spaghetti sauce failed to specify how the tomatoes should be mashed up, and so General Reynolds used local artillery to launch them into the pot. Needless to say, this method resulted in a fair amount of collateral damage, was therefore discarded shortly after the Civil War and is currently practiced only by circus performers and the kind of re-enactor that wears authentic wool underwear in the summer.

  4. Mon 08th Sep 2008 at 9:36 am

    Ken and Scott,

    Too funny. Good points, both of you.


    One night in February of March of 1979, the post office in my home town of Wyomissing, PA blew up. There was a gas leak in the building, and one of the sorting machines set off a spark. That spark triggered a gas explosion that caused the post office to blow sky high. Fortunately, there were no people in the building when it happened, so nobody was injured. My parents’ house was about 2.5 miles from the post office, but I heard the explosion and felt the concussion from it. My father was two blocks away, bowling, and he said the whole building rocked when it happened.

    What I remember best was seeing photographs of jets of flame coming up from the sidewalk in front of what was left of the post office.

    It took them two years to build a new post office.


  5. Todd Miller
    Mon 08th Sep 2008 at 6:44 pm

    I was a Civil War Reenactor for about ten years and I have to admit that some of the events we did bordered on the absurd. (Doing a living history interpretation at a major store at City Center Mall in Columbus comes to mind). Doing close order drill among the racks of pants and shirts was an obstacle Hardee’s Tactics failed to mention. We also did a encampment as part of Heritage weekend at Oberlin College – dressed, as you guessed it – Confederate.
    PS O-H (I enjoyed your earlier post – OSU Class of 90)

  6. dan
    Tue 09th Sep 2008 at 9:11 pm

    >Oberlin College
    Does Oberlin allow US military units on campus?
    This is surprising!

  7. dan
    Tue 09th Sep 2008 at 9:12 pm

    Oberlin allows Confederate units, apparently.

  8. Tue 16th Sep 2008 at 9:23 pm

    This post makes me smile, because like Todd, I was a CW reenactor as well and some of the events were, um, interesting. My brother just got back from a state fair and he told me he saw 2 Union and 2 Confederates (side by side) executing a 12 year old deserter while his mother was begging for mercy. Umm….what?

    I remember during events close to parking lots when the artillery pieces went off about 5 car alarms went off as well. I can’t bash it, though, they were good times and I did learn a lot from those guys.

  9. Soldiergirl
    Fri 26th Jun 2009 at 10:47 pm

    Hello, I’m a re-enactor myself who portrays a union spy. For the most part, I like re-enactors as well and the re-enactors whom I normally associate with are real re-enactors who are extremely
    knowledgable.. This is off topic but I just need to have my say. Recently, I joined what I thought was a ligitimate re-enactors forum called re-enactors Civil War discussion forum but it wasn’t. This
    forum is a haven for people who prentend to be
    re-enactors by posting pictures of themselves in soldiers’ costumes that can be bought at any sutler or in any costume shop.

    These same individuals who frequent this re-enactors’ forum give the impression that this forum is ligit.But they give themselves away as not being re-enactors by the historically inaccurate information the people in this forum make public in online posts.When caught in their inaccuracies these same people become defensive, insulting, derogatory, as well as creating unecessary drama on this forum.

    The moderators of this civil war re-enactors’ forum are just as bad.Many ligitimate re-enactors such as myself spend hours and hours researching their historical portrayal using credible, historically accurate, information taken from reliable source such as I have done for my portrayal of the spy that I have decided to portray at re-enactments. It is disgusting to be a serious re-enactor and go onto these bogus forums that pretend to be a forum for real, serious re-enactors like myself.

    As a re-enactor the thing that irritates me more than anything else is when someone pretends to be a re-enactor, gets caught in their obvious lies about their own skewed version of historical events that took place and tries to insist that their skewed version is true and or tries to sweep actual historical events under the carpet. Especially when these people have never done the research on the person or historical event that they are talking about.

    Thumbs down on Civil War Re-enactor’s forum, it obviously isn’t a real re-enactors forum but a forum for cyber bots who have no life and no respect for real re-enactors and history.

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