Civil War Heritage 2011 ~ Norskedalen

UPDATE 2012 DETAILS: Oct. 13-14, Civil War Immersion at Norskedalen near Coon Valley, Wis.  Grounds Open 9am to 5pm. Skirmishes Scheduled 2pm Saturday & 1pm Sunday. $7 per adult $4 per child (under 18) $18 family rate (2 adult plus children); Members Complimentary.

Saturday and Sunday,
October 8th and 9th, 2011

Norskedalen Nature and Heritage Center
Coon Valley, Wisconsin

Norskedalen and 2nd Wisconsin Company B Civil War Re-enactors present living history during Civil War Heritage Weekend.  Experience what life was like as a soldier in the War Between The States  (or as some still say in the southern part of our nation, “The War of Northern Aggression.”)  From loading and firing weapons, to visiting the surgeon’s tent, and watching the Rebel troops try to ford a stream without getting wet feet…

Both Saturday and Sunday feature drills, skirmishes, and a battle.  This year, they will reenact the Battle of Henry House Hill.

“The skirmishes on this atmospheric pioneer homestead in the coulees southeast of La Crosse, Wis., don’t have horses, but they feature living-history actors whose performances can leave onlookers nearly in tears.”

Saturday: 10:00AM-4:00PM, Battle at 2:00PM, Candlelight Tour at 6:00PM, Sunday: 10:00AM-3:00PM, Battle at 1:00PM.
$7 adult / $4 child / $18 family (2 adults plus kids). Members are free.

Norskedalen offers Civil War Heritage Weekend every year for the general public.  The scenario is to accurately portray a detachment of Wisconsin infantry and artillery camped at the homestead, close to Confederate lines, protecting it from rebel sharpshooters and artillery.

“Authentic right down to my socks.”

Second Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry  
Dedicated to the Military and Civilian History
of Wisconsin in the Civil War
And The Iron Brigade of the West

.  Take County P North from Hwy 14 in Coon Valley to County PI three miles to the entrance.  Directions are well marked with signs.

Friday is a special reserved event for schools
(see the field trip information below.)

Civil War Heritage Education Day Field Trip for Homeschoolers

Friday, October 7th, 2011

Norskedalen Nature and Heritage Center
Coon Valley, Wisconsin

Take your students back in time to witness living history.  They will smell the cannon smoke, listen to the muskets firing and talk with Rebels and Yanks.

Norskedalen and 2nd Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry Company B
Civil War Re-enactors present living history during Civil War Education Day.

This extraordinary day allows your students to experience this part of our state’s history as nothing else can.

Student groups move from station to station where they will experience what life was like — from loading and firing weapons, seeing what life was like on the home-front, what medical treatments were available to soldiers, and what ladies’ fashions were in the 1860′s; this is a learning experience not to be missed.

Cost:  $6 per student, $5.50 for adults

Ages:  Geared for middle school and high school level students; homeschoolers of all ages may attend!  The School Day event requires some walking and is sometimes graphic.

Reservations:  Space is limited.  This is a very popular program.

If you are interested in attending, please contact
driftlesshomeschool at gmail dot com

The Friday School Day focus is on the details and background information provided by the re-enactors.   Students get a chance to learn by being up-close and personal to the demonstrations.  This event brings home the gory details of wartime.

Here are a few examples:

Set up in the restored Scandinavian homestead, a young woman and her daughter show how they would have faced the hard-scrabble duties of life on the farmland while their men-folk are gone to the battlefield.  In heartbreaking detail, they tell of having to run the farm alone and fend for themselves – which in the 1860s was a little bit harder than dinner for two and making sure the doors are locked at night.

Fire!  If you’ve been to other reenactments, no doubt you will have seen and heard the fire of cannons and muskets.  During the School Day presentation, you will get a complete step-by-step explanation of the loading and firing processes of each in great detail including precautionary measures, safety hazards, and the need for speed.  And you’ll be close enough to feel and smell the thunder of the artillery!

You will find the surgical area covered in red-stain and the medic will show some of the tools that would be have been available as he gives a wonderfully graphic presentation of suturing on the battlefield and the pitfalls in the recovery process.  I was told that some kids have been known to “pass out” during the school day demonstration. My kids can’t wait!

(Thanks, Melissa for taking pictures!)


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