"Civil War Re-enactment" equivalents elsewhere?

Arising from a conversation at the dinner table this evening…

In the US, there are groups of people who re-enact the US Civil War (1861-1865): they dress in period costume, put themselves through plausible material hardships of diet, lodging, etc. and fight mock battles. By reputation (I don’t know any re-enactors personally), they take their hobby very seriously and try for authenticity.

My question: is this an American phenomenon only? Or are there equivalents elsewhere? Any English groups re-enacting the English Civil War or the Battle of Hastings? Any French re-enacting the French revolution? Does anyone re-enact the Crusades? And so on…

The Sealed Knot is the only one whose name I know but I’m pretty sure there are others.

Napoleonic rather than revolutionary - I’ve seen small groups marching in local parades in France once or twice but not sure how much actual re-enactment goes on.

don’t know how these compare to the Civil War crowd. I hear some of them starve themselves to get the proper emaciated look.

There are these Italians that re-enact ancient gladiatorial combat: Ars Dimicandi (plays video).

There was a reenactment of the Battle of Waterloo on the 190th anniversary in 2005, with 3,000 participants. I seriously wanted to go there and be a part of it, as I have cousins who live about 30 km from Waterloo.

I believe there has been at least one Battle Of The Boyne reenactment.

There are large groups that do the English Civil War here. There is also a sizeable number that do the American Civil War.

According to IMDb trivia, the movie Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story used The Sealed Knot for it’s “battle scenes.”

Cowboy Action Shooting is pretty close, as are the hardcore Society for Creative Anachronism crowd.

Re-enactment is surprisingly common- there are also heaps of World War I and World War II Re-Enactors the world over, and I believe they re-enacted Rorke’s Drift and/or Isandhlwana on location reasonably recently, too.

the Medieval Siege Society is the largest re-enactment group in the UK, they have lots of subgroups and chapters.


The largest UK event is at Herstmonceux castle late August

Ha ha! :smiley:

I have a couple friends who do WW2 reenactments … they do the german side. They also get grumpy when I refer to them as the Ersatzgruppen :smiley:

My time is far too valuable to my employer to spend time searching for actual links, but I am sure there are multiple re-enacted Roman Legions (not full strength) in Europe.

This is not true of the majority. A handful of them are as you describe, but most of them have the beer gut working and stay at the Holiday Inn on these excursions.

At least they’re not the Gesta-faux.

Wait … there are *British *groups who re-enact the *American *Civil War? Surely that requires more explanation, doesn’t it?

In Peru we have yearly re-enactments of the Battles of Junin and Ayacucho, although it’s mostly for tourism purposes rather than a full-time hobby

We host several re-enactments a year at this 19th-20th century British-built fort; the theme is kept to general connections with Canadian and local military history.

We get a good range, from the Royal Engineers of the 1860s, the Royal Marine Artillery of the 1890s, a couple of cute WW2 Canadian Womens’ Army Corps CWACs, and even a Spanish Civil War Canadian from the MacKenzie-Papineau Battalion. ¡No Pasarán!

(I was able to find a 1936 Canadian Communist Party leaflet about Spain, and had it copied for the re-enactors to give out to the public. Good times.)

We have our re-enactment events the third week of May, the first week of August and the third week of September, which is our neat lantern tour of the fort in the dark. The Bren Gun is particularly spectacular at night!

the Battle of Pearl Harbo(u)r.

Actually, like Elvis impersonators, there are US Civil War re-enactors pretty much everywhere. And it seems most like to portray the South.