Five years ago, the Bucktails hosted a Living History event in Diamond Park over Labor Day weekend. This year, on September 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, 2017; we are once again transforming Diamond Park back into the 1860s. This event was the first of its kind in Meadville and will serve to commemorate the enlistment of our area “boys in blue” that took place at this location over 150 years ago. We have met with City Council as well as the Fire Chief, the Police Chief and Sheriff’s Department. Now, with their blessings, all permits have been approved and we are able to proceed with our event plans. It is the desire of City Council to eventually build upon this event and create an annual festival in Meadville, much like Applefest and Heritage Days in Franklin and Waterford.
During “Muster in the Park” the public will experience life as it was during the 1860’s. To a background of period music; uniformed soldiers, women and children dressed in period attire, will go about their daily lives. There will be cooking demonstrations, military drilling, period games and fashion shows. Cannons will be part of the event again this year. Additionally, fife and drum performances, our very own “Venango Brigade” and “Parlor Strings” will be spotlighted in the Gazebo. A medical demonstration, Civil War nurses and nuns, a sibley tent, artifacts, blacksmithing and period dancing will be taking place throughout the two day event. The life stories of prominent Meadville residents that were a major part of the war effort (including a recipient of the Medal of Honor) such as: the Huidekopers, the Baldwins, and the Reynolds will be part of the program. A mourning presentation along with quilting and sewing demonstrations are also planned. Wool carding and spinning (weather permitting), as well as presentations about our Regimental History will be taking place throughout the park. There will be a skirmish reenactment inside the Park with an invitation to the reenactors to burn as much powder as they desire. If you have any energy left, stroll through the General Mercantile for some homemade Civil War items and toys, then finish your day off with an ice cold rootbeer and a dill pickle in the 1860 Saloon. Don't forget to purchase your raffle tickets for a reproduction Civil War Officer's Desk and Chair, as well as tickets for the Chinese Auction table!
On Sunday morning, September 3rd, a public “religious revival” church service will be held in the park, the reenactors will be dressed in their period clothing as they join to worship with the community and to honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for their cause and country. The churches located along the Diamond will receive a special invitation to worship with us during this time. On Sunday afternoon, there will be a memorial bell ringing ceremony. It will be held to honor all of those from our area who served and gave “their last full measure of devotion”. A list of our Unit's Civil War Veterans will be read aloud as the bell tolls for the names. Those in attendance will then be invited to share in the ceremony by adding names from their own family’s ancestors.
Our proceeds from this event will be used to defer the cost of the preservation work of the Soldiers' Memorial Monument located in Diamond Park. This monument is one of several "cookie cutter" monuments that were created by the sculptor, Edward Pausch. It was erected in 1890 and was meant to portray the Flag Bearer for the 150th Bucktails. The statue has long stood as a proud memorial in honor of the bravery and valor shown by the men of this area and their service to our country. Through the years it has become corroded and it is in desperate need of being cleaned and re-coated; and the sandstone base needs to be re-pointed with new mortar. There will also be a fence erected around the monument to protect it for future generations. This will be the first step in the preservation process. The second phase of the restoration will be the creation of a walkway created with bricks that can be purchased by the public and embossed with a personal memorial. Part of this segment will include moving the cannon balls and refurbishing the existing cannons.
Through grants, fundraising and donations; it was our goal to have the money necessary to complete this project within five years. We were fortunate enough to complete the 1st phase of the preservation in 4!
A large re-enactor participation will ensure the success of this year’s event, as well as in years to come. The Goat Girl Saloon, Jimtown Forge, Weidrich's Battery for the Union cannons. Our Hometown Mercantile will be returning with all of her homemade and Civil War items again this year! A dressmaker's shop, recruitment tent and field hospital will also be among the attractions. We are currently waiting for commitments from other Civil War entities.
We would like to stress that this event is FREE and is for fun, fellowship and fundraising. There will be various raffles and items for sale during the weekend.
If you have any questions, comments, ideas or concerns please contact the webmaster; your message will be relayed to the appropriate person. With your help, we can make this a very large event, not only for our Unit, but also for our City. It is an opportunity for us to honor the 150th PVI Bucktails of the past and showcase our current roles as Living Historians for the future.
Thank you in advance for your prayers, dedication, time and continued support. Humbly,
If You Would Like To Donate To Our Statue Fund, Please Send Your Check Or Money Order To:
The 150th P.V.I. Bucktails
11125 Williamson Road
Meadville, PA 16335
Or you may use the link below for your donation