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Wild Rover
05-15-2006, 03:16 PM
Pards,

Silas said this-

Are folks at the bottom end of the reenacting spectrum entitled to do the samo-samo at every event they attend without making any effort to conform to minimal event standards at better events?


Kinda like -Do folks who want to just play softball and drink beer allowed to play at Yankee Stadium? NOPE. They know better, and should.

Perhaps in the next stage of reenacting we will find this direction refreshing.

Pards,

flattop32355
05-15-2006, 11:48 PM
Silas said this-
Are folks at the bottom end of the reenacting spectrum entitled to do the samo-samo at every event they attend without making any effort to conform to minimal event standards at better events?
Kinda like -Do folks who want to just play softball and drink beer allowed to play at Yankee Stadium? NOPE. They know better, and should.

Perhaps in the next stage of reenacting we will find this direction refreshing.


All reenactors are required to meet, or exceed, the minimum listed standards for a given event in order to attend the event.

They should also refrain from criticizing other reenactors who meet the event's standards, but not their own, while at said event.

Both situations call for nothing more than common courtesy and playing by the rules from all involved.

PvtHinds
05-16-2006, 10:58 PM
Do folks who want to just play softball and drink beer allowed to play at Yankee Stadium?
If they pay George Steinbrenner enough money to rent the place, they can play any game they choose. And drink Buckhorn, too.

Bigby H

Wild Rover
05-17-2006, 10:20 AM
Then it seems it is up to the different organizers to set the standards that will raise the tide for all boats.

I guess then they have to decide if their event is going to be good or poor, based upon the regulations they create.

That being said, what responsiblity do you see unit commanders having in all of this?

And what do you say to event organizers who fail to move beyond 1992?


Thoughts?

MStuart
05-17-2006, 10:45 AM
My sainted mother was fond of saying "Why are you worried about what the other guy is doing?"

Mark

Wild Rover
05-17-2006, 01:30 PM
Because those same spoiled children will show up at you house, rampage around and say-

"Other events don't make us/or allow us to do XYZ"

" We are members of XXXX and as such don't have to abide by your rules"

"Other events don't enforce their regs, why are you"

It is all connected you see.

If one home allows drunk children to pee all over the floor, then they assume all houses will, and will fight back if told it is not acceptable and rage against proper etiquette.

Pards,

MStuart
05-17-2006, 02:16 PM
Entirely true. But I've never gone to my neighbors' house and told him how to run it. I've just never visited again. Same should be with events. Vote with attendance is the simplest way to avoid heartburn and conflict.

In a bad baseball analogy, if you don't like what the goofs are doing in the bleachers, you get box seats along the dugout. You're happy, the bleacher creatures are happy, and everyone has a good time in their own way.

Mark

Wild Rover
05-17-2006, 03:27 PM
Re-read my message...I no longer go to my neighbors house, as watching them deficate on the couch is not fun, but sometimes their kids come over to mine, and demand to act the same at my house.

That is why each event organizer is responsible to another.

If one lets something "slide" then the participants expect all organizers to do so.

Stop making excuses for low expectations....it justifys poor quality and gives non achievers comfort.

It is not about making folks feel good about poor impressions and/or events. It is about history, and working to reach the highest level possible, not making folks feel good about being a farb.

Yes it must be fun, or else why do it? But fun and history are not exclusive to each other. But farb and history is.

Pards,

MStuart
05-17-2006, 08:07 PM
Please reread my post. We're not on opposite sides. I'm stating that it doesn't bother me in the same way it does you. I take care of controlling what I can, and don't worry about what the other guy is doing. I'll do my darndest to make lemonade out of a lemon event. If I'm satisfied with my "performance", then that's good enough for me. I don't go, or go back to, events I know I'm not going to have a good experience at. That's the good thing about choices. I've decided to quit worrying about what makes other reenactors tick, and do the best job I know how at the events I go to.

Your vision to enhance events is a good one and you've gone the extra mile and organized some. Some attend and some don't, but I don't give much thought on why or why not. None of my business, really. I'd bet my passion for this hobby is no less than yours. I just decide to be concerned with what I can control and do for and by myself and my unit. As an event organizer, you have control over who goes where and how. As a grunt, I don't. This is where the vast majority of us vote with our feet and $$.


Mark - Preachin' to the choir

dustyswb
05-17-2006, 09:44 PM
Mark, I'm not asking you in particular, but your quote; "I'll do my darndest to make lemonade out of a lemon event" raises a question in my mind.

In my opinion, it is the event organizers' job to fulfill the needs of the participants, both logistically and with regard to what the participant is looking to get out of the event. If this isn't done, the event has failed and one should be wary of attending another event being put on by that organizer(s).

I've heard many people say similar things to your quote and I wonder if one drinks too much lemonade, wouldn't it leave a bad taste in one's mouth?

MStuart
05-18-2006, 08:02 AM
Dusty:

It does, indeed. There are times when the lemons are so sour, there isn't enough sugar in the world to make it paletable for me. I then stay out of that particular orchard. These are great metaphors!

Mark

Fatback and Beans
05-18-2006, 03:02 PM
One must remember that there are varying qualities of lemonade, as well. While some of the higher rung Mainstream events may still have a few sour lemons, at least they're lemons. There are other events that serve up a big helping of that synthetic tasting, powdered instant, artificial lemon flavored drink, and only if you're lucky, it's already mixed with water.

Some folks will continue to go to a Cedar Creek and drink powdered lemonade, there are others who would rather attend a Payne's Farm and drink switchel.

Joseph Hodges

Wild Rover
05-18-2006, 03:49 PM
I think this thread has gone off base...it is becoming more of a "participant" aimed thread than intended.

I personally prefer to see it directed at event organizers, and their responsiblity to the participants, our collective history and other organizers.

Pards,

dustyswb
05-18-2006, 04:00 PM
I'm bored at the end of the day, so let's stir this up again. BTW, this has all been said before, but for those new to the program......

I think it comes down to numbers and others' willingness to "play with others".

The more people you have, the greater chance you will have folks trying to circumvent the rules. This isn't only in the CW hobby, it is in life. People don't generally like to follow rules. How many of us go faster than the speed limit on a daily basis? Or not come to a complete stop at a red light prior to turning right on red? Or not signal when changing lanes?

My point is, if everyone followed the rules, there would be no need for enforcement of said rules. At PF, we had the same rules you see at every event. Still, with only 300 folks on site, we had a woman in the ranks, beer at the event, folks leaving camp to sleep in the parking lot, etc. Now, of the 300 participants, I would guess that the "bad guys" made up about 3 percent, but if you apply this percentage to a large, what I call "mega-event" like 140 Manassas, that number can be an entire battalion on each side.

Until an organizer is willing to "take the heat" and kick people out of their event, things will not change. PERIOD!!!!

So, if you want to attend an event that has the least trouble with "rule breakers" I would suggest you attend a smaller event (300 - 500 participants) as the odds are better that someone who wants to theme-camp hasn't snuck in.

When I say "playing with others", I mean having folks accept their role in a given event, be it logistics as a modern civilian or as a private in a group that you are usually an officer in when your numbers don't warrant your group having said rank.

After planning PF, I am convinced that the only way to assign leaders at an event is to do so after the registrations have arrived. That way, guys have to push their guys to register if they want a leadership role. And leadership doesn't necessarily mean an officer. A 1st sergeant, at brigade or company level is more important, in my opinion, than most officers.

Even this doesn't work, like at PF, but it was closer than some of the large events I've attended.

While I'm at it, why do folks insist on portraying larger bodies of troops than the number of reenactors who attend warrant? I think I know the answer, but I'd be interested in hearing others' views.

Thanks for reading.

MStuart
05-18-2006, 05:53 PM
<I personally prefer to see it directed at event organizers, and their responsiblity to the participants, our collective history and other organizers.>

Other than yourself and a couple of guys who've organized some EBUFU events, I'd venture to say we have none (or, very, very few) of them here. Are those that post on this board a cross-section of the everyday CW event organizer? Hardly.

"Military" guys who lead battalions? Sure, we've got 'em. But the folks who actually "own" (and we know which way I mean) the events probably don't frequent our little world here, if they even know it exists.

Actually posting here would be somewhat of a risk, I'd think. Who, other than those on the "approved orgainizers" list, would be dumb enough to put that target on their chest? Think about it. Once that blood hits the water, you're gonna need a really BIG boat............

Don't need a crystal ball for that one

Dusty's right, we did do this about 3 weeks ago, and 4 weeks before that, and...............................

Mark

bob 125th nysvi
05-18-2006, 09:54 PM
Mr. Anders you can rent stadiums and do what you want in them. I've played a couple of flag football championship games in Giant's Stadium.

I suppose for the right price ole George would let you play softball at Yankee Stadium. But maybe not he's a billionaire after all.

I think maybe YOU are missing the very point you raised.

If organizes were unhappy with an event or what happens at it they would change the rules, enforce 'em or cancel sponsoring the event.

So the organizers who allow the activities you find objectionable obviously don't.

I think it is incumbent on each reenactor to find a level he is comfortable with and enjoy himself. If you don't enjoy an event don't go. If you want higher standards for your units/activities get together with like minded individuals and go to town.

But don't try to force your image of reenacting down anybody else's throats.

You wouldn't want them to do it to you.

Bob Sandusky
Co C 125th NYSVI
Esperance, NY

MStuart
05-18-2006, 10:04 PM
Amen

Mark

Wild Rover
05-19-2006, 09:17 AM
---If organizes were unhappy with an event or what happens at it they would change the rules, enforce 'em or cancel sponsoring the event.---


Because they are chasing the almighty dollar in most cases, and they are getting their goals met. Prostituting our history for the sake of a buck.


We have gone around a million times on this, and you all are right- most organizers will continue down the same raod till the participants vote with their feet and elect not to support sub par events.

I am not talking about purely campaign events, but events that enforce good solid and fair rules. Events based on history, and built to replicate that.

I for one do not want to see the moneychangers in the temple again come the 150ths. They are for the most part broke now, thank God, and are not putting events on, because of their constant drive for $$, and yet they fail to build a proper business plan to keep them in the black.

I guess int he end, the point is, if we want 150ths worth attending, or perhaps even 150ths at all, we as participants must take ownership and not let it up to "organizers"...like we did in the 125ths.

A consumer based approach is what fed us the debacle that was the 140ths.

That my friends, is the biggest danger to the hobby.

Pards,

RJSamp
05-19-2006, 09:40 AM
Chris:
"I guess int he end, the point is, if we want 150ths worth attending, or perhaps even 150ths at all, we as participants must take ownership and not let it up to "organizers"...like we did in the 125ths.

A consumer based approach is what fed us the debacle that was the 140ths."

Bingo!

The NSA seems to be getting back on track, in the right direction.....

bill watson
05-19-2006, 10:10 AM
Just to refine this further: The very best events are the ones in which organizers set expectations and participants arrive fully intending to help the event meet the expectations. Meeting the requirements is just the beginning for participants. To amplify further on Chris's last statement: Participants need to see themselves not as consumers, but as investors. It's a going concern expected to deliver a certain result, with organizers contributing structure and participants contributing time. The difference in mindset this produces is profound and goes right back to the key ingredient for it to happen, a shared vision of what the event is to be.

This investor approach is the biggest reason why most history-heavy events try to get out the word early and clearly about their proposal, so the vision is clear. It's why registration lists are posted online and updated frequently -- so other potential investors can see who is already buying into the concept. And registrations are often limited in numbers, so organizers can manage the concept adequately and not be overwhelmed by logistics that seem to go up by orders of magnitude as events grow. Details are laid out early so everyone can give the thing a good sniff. Registration deadlines are early so organizers can order rations and anything else laid on for the particular event, with a good handle on numbers.

All those things are critical elements to success. A good event can succeed without them, but with them success is pretty much guaranteed because you have attracted to the event people who know exactly what the event is about and want to participate. They are there not to be consumers, but to help make things happen.

This investment of time to participate is a much more serious thing these days than the actual cost in dollars. Anyone can get more money. Nobody can buy more time.

And all that kind of incorporates what both Mark and Dusty said, only instead of lemonade folks get to help make champagne.

dustyswb
05-19-2006, 10:27 AM
As others have eluded to in this thread, there is a difference between folks who see registration fees as payment for services versus helping to fund the event and preservation without profit.

Folks who pay $20 at one event expect to get water, close parking, unlimited firewood, access to food, campsite, toilets, etc.

Others pay $20, knowing at least 1/2 of that goes directly to preserving the land they are recreating history on. They get rations, water, wood and a chance to live like the soldiers we are portraying for a slice of time.

Most times, you get what you pay for at both type events...........

tompritchett
05-19-2006, 01:33 PM
The NSA seems to be getting back on track, in the right direction.....
Unfortunately, there does not appear to be a similar effort here in the East for the Mainstreamer side of the hobby. Last year USV and ANV went in together to organize a tactical. This year I know that they are involved to a point with the 145th First Manassas but I am not sure how deeply their involvement is with the actual organization of the event. My biggest fear is that the profit-mongers will come out of hiding for the 145's or, if we reenactors allow the vacuum to persist, definitely for the 150's.

TeamsterPhil
05-19-2006, 01:52 PM
My biggest fear is that the profit-mongers will come out of hiding for the 145's or, if we reenactors allow the vacuum to persist, definitely for the 150's.

The way to prevent this is to support the upgraded mainstream events that have begun to gain some momentum in the east. I hope you didn't miss the registration deadline for Shenendoah62. That one has some promise to be a cut above the typical mainstream event. Any of the events that Chris Anders has organized in recent years are several steps in the right direction for the masses of soldiers in the East. McDowell has set the bar for any Easterner wanting to create a history-based event that can be comfortably attended by the vast majority of our hobby. Support the folks that are making progress. Don't let the emperor show you his "new clothes" for the 145s & 150s.

Phil Campbell

bob 125th nysvi
05-19-2006, 08:05 PM
dynamics are being missed here.

There are those who decry the almighty dollar that drives the vast majority of the mainstream events and the people who participate but it is exactly those dollars that make the hobby viable.

Let us just suppose for a moment that the 'progressive' element in the hobby is uniform in their wants/desires and number 20% of the total numbers of reneactors (and there is no way to tell how many there are). And let us just say they are willing to spend 50% more to enjoy their version of the hobby.

They are still only generating 30% of the total dollars spent on the hobby.

Try to imagine how dead the hobby would be with a spending level that is only 30% of the spending that is currently done.

Make the hobby unpalatable to the people spending 70% of the dollars and you'll be sitting around a campfire by yourself wondering where the good times went to.

So the events, which need to be self funding since the local politicos aren't handing out millions for reenacting events, are going to go for that much larger pool of dollars in order to survive.

If you read the boards you'll see, every year, people commenting on how much better each event gets. So even in the mainstream there will be a gradual evolution toward you version of a more realistic event.

But there will be no hobby if you scare away fresh fish.

And fresh fish for the most part are not willing to lay out the dollars or have the knowledge necessary to be 'progressive'.

Maybe you need to step back, take a deep breath and realize that the mainstream events you are unhappy with are training grounds for people who become 'progressive' and generate the vast amount of the dollars that make this hobby viable.

Bob Sandusky
Co C 125th NYSVI
Esperance, NY

dustyswb
05-19-2006, 08:45 PM
Bob,

Why does the hobby need to be viable? Why do events need to "make money"? I ran an event. Small in scale (300 total participants). The expenses for the event were $1,561.40. We provided insurance, water, rations, wood and toilets. The income was $11,622.00. Registration was $20 and folks raised money for the "cause".

From all accounts, folks enjoyed the event. It was FREEZING at night both nights, but very few, if any left the event. It was physically challenging, but few left. There was no activity tent, no ball, no food vendors, and no ice vendors. The men ate like the soldiers; the men stood guard and picket duty; the men marched more than a "mile" to the battle; the men fought on an actual battlefield; the men took hits based on actual casualty figures; the battle flowed like the original did; everyone was beat at the end, but everyone was smiling at the end.

Amount donated to CWPT; $10,060.60

Amount I took home that weekend? ZERO

It can be done. The participants "bought" into the event when they registered and got out of it what they put into it. The event went very well, so most went home happy. Check it out http://www.stonewallbrigade.com/paynesfarm.html

History 1, circus 0

And can we please stop perpetuating the myth that authentic reenacting is more expensive than mainstream reenacting? Just isn't so.

ley74
05-19-2006, 10:33 PM
What Bob is after is not what I am after. Been there, done that.

The "Greatest Threat to the Hobby" thread has ad nauseum discussions, based on the hand-wringing of the 70% side of the hobby. Dusty and his merry band of crazies will get along just fine. My missionary days are over.

Please do not get me started on how much it costs to be a "progressive". Since this board was destroyed, you may have to go over to the AC to use the search function on this one. I suggest you do.

Where the heck do you get your information on "Fresh Fish"? I find most that come out with us are very bitter at being encouraged to buy junk from the 70% side.

Fresh fish need not be afraid. The closer they are able to get to the soldier, the more they will want to learn. I NEVER learned anything from six trips to Cedar Creek. That kind of stuff will not keep the fresh fish coming back, for sure.

Dusty's little walk in the woods was, in my experience, so far beyond anything on the 70% side, it is difficult to describe. He is quick to point out how many folks, including the ATTITUDE of the participants, contributed to the very high marks it received. And, as Kevin O'Beirne put it, if you were not there to experience it, it is impossible to describe.

Finally, (aren't you gald) my wife can never know the total amount of money involved that weekend in Orange County, Virginia. All of the participants raised funds and gave from their hearts. It was an honor.

RJSamp
05-20-2006, 10:22 PM
Bob,

And can we please stop perpetuating the myth that authentic reenacting is more expensive than mainstream reenacting? Just isn't so.

OK Mike, I give up. A $350 Sekela Frock Coat is not more expensive than a $85 sutler frock coat for what reason?

Having 5 uniforms, 3 hats/caps, 2 canteens, 2 blankets, 2 rifles to meet the standards for various EBUFU is less expensive than 1 sack coat, sky blue trowser, 1 canteen, etc. ?? Somehow this new math is leaving me confused.

And please don't short change the sew it yourself approach....time is money....and sewing up a sack coat is not necessarily free/less expensive than buying it outright.

Please stop asserting that that authentic reenacting is equal to or less expensive than mainstream reenacting. Just isn't so.

RJ Samp

bill watson
05-20-2006, 11:35 PM
I think the only point being made is that buying the wrong stuff and then buying the right stuff after you find out there is such a thing is more expensive than just buying the right stuff.

Luke MacGillie
05-21-2006, 09:42 AM
I think this thread has gone off base...it is becoming more of a "participant" aimed thread than intended.

I personally prefer to see it directed at event organizers, and their responsiblity to the participants, our collective history and other organizers.

Pards,

OK I will bite.

By way of a bit of history, Iím a child of the Bicentennial, Iíve been everything from a buckskinner to reenactor to a museum professional. I took the 1992-2005 seasons off from ACW re-enacting. I post all of that simply to give some perspective to what Iím about to say.

1st off you have to look at the reason for the event, is it designed to fit into the overall interpretive plan of the site? Is it just to get visitor numbers up? Is it an event only hosted by a site that reenactors have sold(pushed down the throat) of the site? Is it a reenactor professional development seminar that the public is not invited to attend?


ACW event organizers have totally changed the dynamic by making folks pay to play. You are no longer a volunteer interpreter, you are in a grey area somewhere between volunteer and member of the paying for entrance general public. You the reenactor are paying hard currency out of pocket, not for your uniforms, equipment and gas for travel, but now also for the privilege of attracting increased revenue and visitor numbers for the museum/site/battlefield. This is something totally new to me and is not done in other periods that I am involved in. I have no problem paying for my own personal good time, when that good time involves putting dead animal parts on my head and singing 39 verses of Rocky top, I have no problem paying to play at a historic site for a EFUBU event. I look at such events as professional development, it will make my interpretation in the future all that much better, and make me more marketable as a volunteer interpreter. Also the site is expending resources for the reenactors and getting nothing in return. At such events I donít expect to have to do any interpretation. I have serious heartburn about having to pay a fee to spend a weekend as a volunteer interpreter.

So to recap:

Pay to attend private Buckskinner Rendezvous/Shooting Comp: Good
Pay to attend professional development Seminar/EFUBU: Good
Pay to attend reenactment that the site is using my attendance to boost visitor numbers and revenue, and expecting me to pay: VERY BAD!

joe_korber
05-21-2006, 07:33 PM
OK I will bite.


Pay to attend private Buckskinner Rendezvous/Shooting Comp: Good
Pay to attend professional development Seminar/EFUBU: Good
Pay to attend reenactment that the site is using my attendance to boost visitor numbers and revenue, and expecting me to pay: VERY BAD!



amen brother!

last time I checked, Bruce Springsteens ain't buying a ticket to get into his own concert.

joekorber

dustyswb
05-21-2006, 09:58 PM
RJ et al,

Below is a list of common gear/uniforms of CS troops, both Mainstream and Authentic, advertised as new on vendor sites. When you see the list, you'll find holes in it, but it is just a sampling of things that guys from both levels of the hobby carry. The big things to remember here are most of the equipment made by "authentic" vendors is supported by period patterns, techniques and materials. The mainstream sutlers I got the information below from don't provide any information about where their goods are copied from.

The mainstream prices came from two vendors where you can "one stop shop" while the authentic prices came from the A/C's approved vendors list, most vendors specializing in different aspects of gear.

The A/C forum is also filled with "used" quality gear and uniform pieces at lower prices. Bill had a point about buying mainstream gear and having to "upgrade" if one wants to progress.

The mainstream Enfield is out of the box Armisport from Italy and the Authentic Enfield is a "defarbed" rifle from a reputable vendor.

Is $350 that big a difference in the name of having historically accurate gear to teach others about the war?

Mainstream Authentic Difference

Shell Jacket $80 $215 -$135
Trousers $55 $160 -$105
Shirt $35 $50 -$15
Drawers $24 $55 -$31
Hat $55 $90 -$35
Brogans $95 $130 -$35
Socks $8 $20 -$13
Suspenders $15 $40 -$25
Shelter Half $0 $95 -$95
Tent $155 $0 $155
Cartridge Box $40 $129 -$89
Cap Box $17 $60 -$43
Scabbard $25 $79 -$54
Belt $33 $42 -$9
Canteen $50 $45 $5
Haversack $27 $60 -$33
Blanket $39 $125 -$86
Gum Blanket $45 $65 -$20
Bayonet $30 $41 -$11
Enfield $445 $565 -$120
Tent pegs $20 $0 $20
Wallet $25 $0 $25
Poncho $45 $0 $45
Camp Stool $13 $0 $13
Camp Chair $23 $0 $23
Water Bucket $15 $0 $15
Plate $6 $0 $6
Cup $8 $0 $8
Skillet $20 $0 $20
Dishpan $26 $0 $26
Lantern $28 $0 $28
Great Coat $209 $0 $209

Total $1,711 $2,066 -$356

toptimlrd
05-22-2006, 01:30 PM
OK I will bite.

By way of a bit of history, Iím a child of the Bicentennial, Iíve been everything from a buckskinner to reenactor to a museum professional. I took the 1992-2005 seasons off from ACW re-enacting. I post all of that simply to give some perspective to what Iím about to say.

1st off you have to look at the reason for the event, is it designed to fit into the overall interpretive plan of the site? Is it just to get visitor numbers up? Is it an event only hosted by a site that reenactors have sold(pushed down the throat) of the site? Is it a reenactor professional development seminar that the public is not invited to attend?


ACW event organizers have totally changed the dynamic by making folks pay to play. You are no longer a volunteer interpreter, you are in a grey area somewhere between volunteer and member of the paying for entrance general public. You the reenactor are paying hard currency out of pocket, not for your uniforms, equipment and gas for travel, but now also for the privilege of attracting increased revenue and visitor numbers for the museum/site/battlefield. This is something totally new to me and is not done in other periods that I am involved in. I have no problem paying for my own personal good time, when that good time involves putting dead animal parts on my head and singing 39 verses of Rocky top, I have no problem paying to play at a historic site for a EFUBU event. I look at such events as professional development, it will make my interpretation in the future all that much better, and make me more marketable as a volunteer interpreter. Also the site is expending resources for the reenactors and getting nothing in return. At such events I donít expect to have to do any interpretation. I have serious heartburn about having to pay a fee to spend a weekend as a volunteer interpreter.

So to recap:

Pay to attend private Buckskinner Rendezvous/Shooting Comp: Good
Pay to attend professional development Seminar/EFUBU: Good
Pay to attend reenactment that the site is using my attendance to boost visitor numbers and revenue, and expecting me to pay: VERY BAD!

Although a streamer event and regardless of a few complaints in the CCG, I enjoy and am proud to be involved in the Olustee event each year. For those of you who do not attend, it is held on the actual battlefield which happens to be a state park, costs reenactors zer, zip, zilch, nada to participate and they are covered by the state insurance as they are considered "park volunteers" they just have a little bit of paperwork to fill out at registration to ensure they are covered, and hard work goes into making it a good event for everyone involved from the CPH, to the streamer, to the spectator. Of course if you can't stand to be in the same event with one of "those reenactors" (whoever those are from your perspective [CPH from the streamer, streamer from the CPH, etc]) it may not be for you, but all are welcome.

toptimlrd
05-22-2006, 02:01 PM
RJ et al,

Below is a list of common gear/uniforms of CS troops, both Mainstream and Authentic, advertised as new on vendor sites. When you see the list, you'll find holes in it, but it is just a sampling of things that guys from both levels of the hobby carry. The big things to remember here are most of the equipment made by "authentic" vendors is supported by period patterns, techniques and materials. The mainstream sutlers I got the information below from don't provide any information about where their goods are copied from.

The mainstream prices came from two vendors where you can "one stop shop" while the authentic prices came from the A/C's approved vendors list, most vendors specializing in different aspects of gear.

The A/C forum is also filled with "used" quality gear and uniform pieces at lower prices. Bill had a point about buying mainstream gear and having to "upgrade" if one wants to progress.

The mainstream Enfield is out of the box Armisport from Italy and the Authentic Enfield is a "defarbed" rifle from a reputable vendor.

Is $350 that big a difference in the name of having historically accurate gear to teach others about the war?



Mainstream Authentic Difference

Shell Jacket $80 $215 -$135
Trousers $55 $160 -$105
Shirt $35 $50 -$15
Drawers $24 $55 -$31
Hat $55 $90 -$35
Brogans $95 $130 -$35
Socks $8 $20 -$13
Suspenders $15 $40 -$25
Shelter Half $0 $95 -$95
Tent $155 $0 $155
Cartridge Box $40 $129 -$89
Cap Box $17 $60 -$43
Scabbard $25 $79 -$54
Belt $33 $42 -$9
Canteen $50 $45 $5
Haversack $27 $60 -$33
Blanket $39 $125 -$86
Gum Blanket $45 $65 -$20
Bayonet $30 $41 -$11
Enfield $445 $565 -$120
Tent pegs $20 $0 $20
Wallet $25 $0 $25
Poncho $45 $0 $45
Camp Stool $13 $0 $13
Camp Chair $23 $0 $23
Water Bucket $15 $0 $15
Plate $6 $0 $6
Cup $8 $0 $8
Skillet $20 $0 $20
Dishpan $26 $0 $26
Lantern $28 $0 $28
Great Coat $209 $0 $209

Total $1,711 $2,066 -$356

Dusty,

Overall I agree with you that the cost difference isn't that great, but I think by listing a lot of optional equipment that does not make up the basic kit even for a streamer diminishes the equipment list. Using the prices you posted, I looked at the very basic kit requirements. Also, not sure why you listed gum blanket and poncho as even most streamer I know carry one or the other. :


Mainstream Authentic Difference

Shell Jacket $80 $215 -$135
Trousers $55 $160 -$105
Shirt $35 $50 -$15
Hat $55 $90 -$35
Brogans $95 $130 -$35
Socks $8 $20 -$13
Suspenders $15 $40 -$25
Shelter Half $0 $95 -$95
Tent $155 $0 $155
Cartridge Box $40 $129 -$89
Cap Box $17 $60 -$43
Scabbard $25 $79 -$54
Belt $33 $42 -$9
Canteen $50 $45 $5
Haversack $27 $60 -$33
Blanket $39 $125 -$86
Gum Blanket $45 $65 -$20
Bayonet $30 $41 -$11
Enfield $445 $565 -$120
Tent pegs $20 $0 $20
Plate $6 $0 $6
Cup $8 $0 $8

Totals $1283 $2011 $728

So still not a huge difference, but this would only be for one impression, if one was to do different theatres or time periods, it would require a larger assortment of uniform pieces; i.e. Columbus Depot for western, Commutation jacket or battleshirt for early war, RD I, II, and /or III for eastern, slouch hat, kepi, etc dependent upon unit represented, etc. Of course even a streamer should try to have a proper period and theatre kit, but it would likely not be as authentic as one from the AC approved vendors. The bottom line is that yes it is a bit more expensive to be authentic, but not so much so that it should not be strived for by everyone so please do not read this as a flame, but I already knew what was going to be thought by many streamers and farbs when they read your list...... "I don't have a bucket, or a camp stool, or or or or. I hope you don't mind me really boiling the list down to what most consider absolute essentials.

RJSamp
05-23-2006, 12:57 PM
Your list is nowhere near what I purchased when I first got into the hobby....and your assumptions are incorrect as well.

The only reason your list is only $350 apart is because you assumed that the mainstreamer bought his own A tent (most do not), a great coat (most do not), bought two chairs (nope), didn't bring anything modern from home to substitute for plates, cups, combs, handkerchiefs, etc..... don't assume drawers for example....(many mainstreamers wear fruit of the loom)

only one pair of socks for the authentic @$20? Who's zoomin' whom? Is this hand knit for both pairs from Karin or Nancy?

My shelter TENT (that's two halves and two end thingies for one big guy) cost about the same as your authentic half.....no A frame purchase. And you can sleep two in pinch....even your $155 cite can sleep more than one mainstreamer...with the cots and the coolers.

Missing lots of neat authentic things that cost more that is cited as necessary on the A/C....match safe for example

Only one rifle? OUCH. Most A/C'ers that I know have 3+ ....and they still don't own a Lorenz (or a Frock Coat) for the Iron Brigade impression.

my authentic domet flannel issue shirt was way more expensive than your $50 cited, btw....
AND
you miss the multiple impressions necessary for an authentic impression... early war, late war, eastern, western.....definitely need a Hat and a Cap for a Federal Impression for example.... A Bender and my old Smithy will put you back about $180. TWO canteens (bullseye and smooth) and two straps (leather, canvas)....

and you miss the TRAVEL mileage and time.....after all, if you are still going to the wrong events you aren't authentic.....it cost more at $2.88 a gallon car pooling to TENN or VA instead of mainstreaming it at the local Wooly Worm festival.

If you'd like to debate this seperately I'm all for it.....but your lists are too incomplete and full of assumptions that are not born out of reality....

Most of our fresh fish use borrowed/loaner gear.....cost to them is zero.....certainly wouldn't allow them to get onto the battlefield at Payne's Farm (sorry, no maker's marks on the JT Martin sack coat).....

Again, being authentic is WAY more expensive than going mainstream...and I don't know anyone personally bringing their son's into the hobby and forking out $1,400+ for a 15 year old to play mainstreamer.

RJ Samp

AZReenactor
05-23-2006, 04:26 PM
So better quality gear and better quality impressions cost more than lower quality gear and lower quality impressions. I don't see why such a thing should cause a debate. The adage, you get what you pay for applies to most things in life.

It is possible in both ends of the hobby to find items that don't match the prices on any hypothetical list. I have been gradually improving my authenticity and accuracy since I first started in the hobby 15 years ago. After suffering a fire some time back I have found it necessary to replace most all my gear and agree that while many higher quality items cost more (some considerably more) the cost isn't prohibitive to developing a quality impression. I may not buy as much stuff or buy items as soon or as often as I always would like to but even high quality items are within reach.

With all those specialty items needed for specific scenarios it make a fair amount of slightly used items readily available at reduced prices. Good research and careful shopping can help one's dollars go much farther. I have been learning to sew, and while time is money, I find that there are moments I can recapture and make more productive, such as sewing while watching TV or on my lunch break at work. When you hand sew a SA sack coat or a dommet flannel shirt you begin to appreciate the time and energy that goes into such items and understand why they cost more to buy.

For years I reenacted with mainstream gear but after becoming familiar with the better quality, more authentic gear available out there it would be very hard to go back to wearing farby Barney purple sack coats and Pakistani leathers and still feel like I was portraying a Civil War soldier the best way that I can.

Now with all that being said, I do think there is an over emphasis on gear in the "hardcore" side of the spectrum. I would rather spend a weekend campaigning with fellows who wear less than authentic gear but are hardcore in the methods they use to approach reenacting. I can live with purplish jackets, non-defarbed muskets, and cheaply made muslin shirts. It is single occupant wedge tents, coolers, cast iron cookware, cots, women and families in camp, late night beer fests, discussions of ones favorite war movies or the latest politics, donuts and waffles for breakfast, picnic tables, camp chairs, straw bales, flat flies, Coleman lanterns, cars, atvs, cell phones, flashlights, recorded music, PA systems, and any of a thousand other anachronisms that I find truly intrudes upon my enjoyment of the hobby and developing greater insight into life during the Civil War.

Unfortunately it is rather difficult to tell how serious a fellow is about his reenacting until your in the midst of an event and discover the guy next door is the farb from ********************. There may be some validity to the idea that authenticity requirements as relates to gear might translate into authenticity of behavior. There was a time that a fellows gear gave a bit of insight into the level of research and attitude a fellow might have as relates to reenacting. Gear can show one aspect of the level of investment a person has put into the hobby.

Of course, it may also indicate that the fellow is merely an "off-the-rack hardcore" who has more money than brains. Standards of gear are one thing, but standards of behavior and authentic actions are what I think are truly important.

dustyswb
05-23-2006, 04:44 PM
Your list is nowhere near what I purchased when I first got into the hobby....and your assumptions are incorrect as well.

Let's see who is assuming more, shall we? The list is to get started, not for someone who is a couple of years into it.


The only reason your list is only $350 apart is because you assumed that the mainstreamer bought his own A tent (most do not), a great coat (most do not)

Who is buying the tents? Enlighten me. Most of the guys I know own their tents.


bought two chairs (nope), didn't bring anything modern from home to substitute for plates, cups, combs, handkerchiefs, etc..... don't assume drawers for example....(many mainstreamers wear fruit of the loom)

The chairs come from somewhere. And styrofoam is ok with you?????


only one pair of socks for the authentic @$20? Who's zoomin' whom? Is this hand knit for both pairs from Karin or Nancy?

That's what I pay for hand knit socks.


Missing lots of neat authentic things that cost more that is cited as necessary on the A/C....match safe for example

You don't need a match safe to be authentic. That's ridiculous


Only one rifle? OUCH. Most A/C'ers that I know have 3+ ....and they still don't own a Lorenz (or a Frock Coat) for the Iron Brigade impression.

I only have one rifle. Never had a problem attending an event. Also, the list is CS. What does Iron Brigade have to do with it?????


my authentic domet flannel issue shirt was way more expensive than your $50 cited, btw....
AND
you miss the multiple impressions necessary for an authentic impression... early war, late war, eastern, western.....definitely need a Hat and a Cap for a Federal Impression for example.... A Bender and my old Smithy will put you back about $180. TWO canteens (bullseye and smooth) and two straps (leather, canvas)....

Again, you miss the point. This is a "starter kit" as it were. And CS again for my example. Pay attention...........


and you miss the TRAVEL mileage and time.....after all, if you are still going to the wrong events you aren't authentic.....it cost more at $2.88 a gallon car pooling to TENN or VA instead of mainstreaming it at the local Wooly Worm festival.

We all drive to events. Gas prices don't decide what events I attend.

If you'd like to debate this seperately I'm all for it.....but your lists are too incomplete and full of assumptions that are not born out of reality....


Most of our fresh fish use borrowed/loaner gear.....cost to them is zero.....certainly wouldn't allow them to get onto the battlefield at Payne's Farm (sorry, no maker's marks on the JT Martin sack coat).....

Again, being authentic is WAY more expensive than going mainstream...and I don't know anyone personally bringing their son's into the hobby and forking out $1,400+ for a 15 year old to play mainstreamer.

Again, you missed the point and scope of my post. Of course folks have expensive things and multiple jackets/rifles/accoutrements. But if you buy two non accurate canteens, you are wasting money, IMO.

Troy, well said:

Now with all that being said, I do think there is an over emphasis on gear in the "hardcore" side of the spectrum. I would rather spend a weekend campaigning with fellows who wear less than authentic gear but are hardcore in the methods they use to approach reenacting. I can live with purplish jackets, non-defarbed muskets, and cheaply made muslin shirts. It is single occupant wedge tents, coolers, cast iron cookware, cots, women and families in camp, late night beer fests, discussions of ones favorite war movies or the latest politics, donuts and waffles for breakfast, picnic tables, camp chairs, straw bales, flat flies, Coleman lanterns, cars, atvs, cell phones, flashlights, recorded music, PA systems, and any of a thousand other anachronisms that I find truly intrudes upon my enjoyment of the hobby and developing greater insight into life during the Civil War.