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147th Anniversary of

The Battle of Rowlesburg

Rowlesburg Community Park

April 30th - May 2nd 2010

   The West Virginia Reenactors Association invites you to the 147th Anniversary reenactment of the Battle of Rowlesburg. The Origional battle, fought on Sunday, April 26th 1863, between the Union forces of General Hill, under the command of Major Showalter, and the Confederate forces of General W.E. "Grumble" Jones. From the foot of Cheat Mountain, rebel troops were sent over Lantz Ridge to attack the Cheat River Railroad Bridge from the east and another detachment was sent along the river road and up over Hog Back to attack Rowlesburg and Tray Run Viaduct from the west. Union forces were outnumbered 1500 to 220, however, alert townspeople and valiant union soldiers defended the town and the bridge from behind barricades aided by a cannon positioned atop Cannon Hill. The vital railroad bridge was saved from certain destruction as was Tray Run Viaduct.
   The Town of Rowlesburg is located along the scenic Cheat River in Preston County and offers many historic as well as beautiful alpine sites for the visitor to enjoy.
This breakfast is FREE for reenactors!!!!
   Rowlesburg is located in Preston County just 12 miles south of Kingwood on Route 72. Rowlesburg is approximately 45 miles southeast of Morgantown and 25 miles east of Grafton. Campsites will be located in an open field along Cheat River beside the Community Park. Motels are available in Kingwood, Morgantown, and Grafton.
   A school of the Soldier is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday mornings. We invite all units to participate. This drill range from rasic manual of arms through company to battalion drill. The weekend will feature military drills, a reenactment of the Battle of Rowlesburg at 2PM on Saturday, tours via shuttles of the Rowlesburg battle sites from 11AM to 5PM on Saturday and Dr. Mike Workman, author of the Rowlesburg Historical Society's report on the battle as guest speaker at the dinner at 5PM on Saturday. On Saturday at 11AM the ladies of the town will serve tea to the ladies of the troops. On Saturday evening at 5PM the chef who owns the Preston County Inn will cater the dinner which will feature Southern cuisine. Cost for public is $16.00 for reenactors just $12.00 the town's cost. On Sunday morning a full Rowlesburg Breakfast will be offered in the VFW for Reenactors and the general public. Old fashioned buckwheat cakes, sausage, gravy, home fries and eggs will be featured along with other goodies. There will be a powder ration for all military reenactors. There will be firewood, straw & hay, bathroom facilities and water provided.
   Authentic Sutlers are welcome at Rowlesburg. Sutlers DO need to pre-register, register on site and sign the liability waiver, and pay the registration fee. You are welcome and encouraged to participate in any activity. Please describe your goods and the size of your tent on the pre-registration form. Sutlers are not permitted to sell flea market items, militaria from other periods, or souvenirs.
   Pre-registration fee is $5.00 each, military and civilian, age 13 and up. (Please list younger civilians attending as well.) Please pre-register by September 1 so that we can plan properly, and register only those who are definitely going to attend. Substitutions and a few additions from within your unit can be made at the event. If you have major changes in numbers, either up or down, please call and let us know as soon as possible. When you arrive, you must register and sign your liability waiver -- This includes civilians! If you arrive when registration is closed, please return and register when it reopens. Late registrations (those registrations recieved after September 1), or those who wait to pay their fee until they arrive, will be charged $10.00 and will not be given a powder issue. Because space is at a premium, registrations may be limited.
C/O Mark Tennant
RT. 6 Box 293
Fairmont, WV 26554
   Make all checks payable to: The West Virginia Reenactors Association or WVRA
Rules and Regulations
   Rowlesburg is an authenties only event. All participants are expected to maintain authentic standards of dress, equipment, and deportment when spectators are present.
   The discharge of firearms within the designated camp area is STRICTLY PROHIBITED. Guns cannot be discharged within 50 feet of any tents. Suprise raids on the camps are BANNED.
1. All spectators are expected to stay behind the rope barrier during the battle. Period civilians may sit just in front of the rope, and help keep other spectators from pushing forward. NO ONE, including photographers, should move down the bank onto or near the flat portion of the battlefield. Soldiers and horses come quite close to this bank and it can be dangerous. No noncombatants in the woods behind the battlefield without special permission, arranged beforehand.
2. All participants must register and sign a waiver form. Upon registration, a pass shall be issued as evidence of registration. This pass must be carried by the participant at all times. Failure to show the pass during inspection or when requested by event organizers shall constitute dismissal from the event.
3. Participants on the battlefield must be at least 13 years old and should have a role to portray. If you feel your child deserves an exception to this rule, please discuss it at the time of registration. Exemptions will be based on maturity, appearance, and the role the individual wishes to portray.
4. Soldiers must be 16 years of age to carry a weapon on the battlefield. Any minor who will participate in the battles must sign a liability waiver and have a parent or guardian signature.
5. All women portraying soldiers should make all possible efforts to disguise their real gender and to maintain their impression when spectators are present.
6. Nurses are asked not to run onto the battlefield during the battle. Nurses may do their impressions at the hospital area, away from the battlefield.
1. We are attempting an 1863 West(ern) Virginia impression at Rowlesburg. Know what impression is and please be as accurate as possible. Be careful to avoid 20th Century anachronisms such as: synthetic materials, sippers, velcro, elastic suspenders, leather hats, cowboy boots, modern style eyeglasses, wristwatches, modern jewelry, etc.
2. All equipment must be approved by the Army Commanders, both for safety and authenticity. No officers above the rank of Captain without advance approval. Officers should bring enough troops to support their impression.
3. All artillery should be approved in advance for authenticity and safety. Mortars will be placed in the woods.
4. Camps should be policed for anachronisms and trash when the public is in the camps. No tape players or radios in camp.
5. Attitude and atmosphere are subtle things but important to any good living history. Your behavior, habits, conversation express as uch as what you wear. Try to be aware of your language and 20th century slang and topics of conversation, and be discreet about inappropriate habits such as cigarette smoking. By the way we act and portray our 19th century forebears, we show respect for who they were and what they died for.
1. By signing the waiver to participate in this event, all participants voluntarily agree to be subject to all legitimate orders of their unit and army commanders. Signing of the waiver shall also mean that they agree to abide by all the rules and regulations of this event.
2. Alcoholic beverages and controlled substances are illegal on the grounds of the Droop Mountain Battlefield State Park. Army Commanders and event organizers have the authority to bar individuals from further participation at the event.
3. Weapons and cartridges will be inspected prior to the tactical and both battle scenarios. Please make sure your weapons are clean, safe and fully functional. No wax, staples, tape or other hazardous cartridges will be allowed. Cartridge papers should NOT be put into infantry rifles at any time. You must pass inspection to participate in the events.
4. All reenactors should have a working knowledge of period military drill and discipline and safety rules. All artillery crews should have all necessary safety training. If you are inexperienced, please ask your company NCO's for instruction - They will be glad to assist you.
5. Swords, bayonets, and ramrods should be pulled ONLY by order of the Army Commanders. NO hand-to-hand combat will take place except by prior arrangement involving ALL concerned and approved by BOTH army commanders. SHOWBOATING IS STRONGLY DISCOURAGED!
6. The cry of "MEDIC" and/or a hat raised high on a rifle or sword point are used to signal an actual medical injury or emergency. A raised hat will also indicate a dangerous situation of some other sort (i.e. -- an artillery mis-fire, etc.). Such signals will STOP all action: Please use them only in an actual emergency.
7. Please build fires only in designated areas. Do not build unnecessarily high fires and do not leave fires unattended at any time. Return sod and remove rocks from fire pits when you break camp. Please keep litter picked up and dispose of it properly.
8. All horses must pass Coggins Test and have documentation of this. All horses/animals must be uninjured and in good health to participate.
Click HERE to download/print the Rowlesburg Registration Form

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