Grand Opening

Stafford Civil War Park in Stafford County, Virginia

(27 April 2013)


We were invited to participate in this event by  James “Jay” G. Harrison III, Tourism Consultant, Stafford County Department of Economic Development and Tourism.  They wanted our gun, caisson, and limbers with our horses.  We were able to support the event with some excellent logistical planning and support from many of our unit members.  This was an outstanding event for the unit members who attended 1SG Joe Slifer, SGT Stuart Brandt, SGT Kerry Hayer, SGT John Ruf, CPL Billy Horne and Privates Bobby Allen, Rex Kennedy and Dusty Summers.  We took our 4 horse team, plus Allen and Rebel for CPL Chris Moose the bugler and Captain David Stanley.  The Park Officials thought they would have around 200 visitors and had over 1000.  The interface with the public was outstanding and clearly they enjoyed seeing what our unit does to make it unique.  Here is a description of the event from Jay Harrison III, "I am involved with the coordination of the Grand Opening of the Stafford Civil War Park in Stafford County, Virginia on Saturday, April 27, 2013. This is the site of the 1863 winter encampment of the Union Army’s 11th Corp, 1st and 3rd Divisions, following the December 1862 Battle of Fredericksburg. It was also from here on April 28, 1863 (150 years ago) that the 11th Corp marched south for the pivotal engagement known as the Battle of Chancellorsville. You can read more about the Park’s history and resources online at The property features amazing, undisturbed artillery emplacements, fortifications and encampment sites. I was interested to see if your artillery living history/reenactment group might be interested in playing a role in the Park’s opening."  Obviously we said yes and we all had a wonderful time and got some good training time with both the horses, drivers and canoneers. As I watched the horses, many of them second generation to the ones that started the unit, I was reminded of something someone had said to me about some of our former members going away because they didn't like working with the horses.  We probably have lost a few for this reason, but seeing them perform this weekend as part of the Artillery Team comprised of Man, Horse and Gun renewed my believe in us continuing to do what we sat out to do over 15 years ago, horsedrawn artillery!  



Photos by Joe Slifer and the local Stafford County Newspaper











Updated on 12 May 2013.

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