The public is invited to attend the third annual Elgin Civil War Experience, taking place on Saturday, June 8 and Sunday, June 9 on the property adjacent to 600 S. State Street in Elgin. Saturday event hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 6:45-10 p.m. and Sunday event hours are from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The City of Elgin is proud to offer a unique educational event providing an immersive look at a turbulent time in American history. The Elgin Civil War Experience will feature live battles, offer spectators the chance to experience living history, see accurate portrayals of soldier encampments and so much more.
This year the 9th Virginia Cavalry Co. B will lead over 300 Civil War Reenactors in a series of “Living History” events and activities. For this event, there will be two featured battles. On Saturday, June 8th, The Battle of Atlanta will be reenacted at 3 pm. On Sunday, June 9th, The Battle of Ezra Church will be reenacted at 3 pm. The battles will feature live simulated combat with artillery, calvary and infantry soldiers providing the audience an up-close look at how battles were fought during the Civil War Era.
With the two battles being the main attraction, history enthusiast and guests of all ages will have an opportunity to explore various activities and learn about this historic period. The famous and historic generals, General Ulysses S. Grant and Stonewall Jackson to name a few, will provide an in-depth lesson of their role during the Civil War. Harriet Tubman and Jefferson Davis will also be featured. Perhaps the most famous and popular historic figure, President Abraham Lincoln will be available for guests of all ages to engage and take photos with. Guests are invited to walk and tour the military camps to discover and engage with the all the historic figures and soldiers.
This year will feature a “Fashion Show” highlighting the unique costumes and dress attire during this period. Guests will also learn how medicine was administered through a Surgery Demonstration and how medicine was prescribed by an “Apothecary.” There will be an ongoing food demonstration throughout the day. A game of “Rounders,” which is the Civil War’s version of baseball, will be played on Saturday June 8th. Guests are invited to visit the Civilian camps to learn more.
Before the end of Saturday night, guests are invited to a “Candlelight Tour” through the military and civilian camps. The tour will shed some light on some historical facts and showcase how life was during the period. At the end of the tour, guests will have an opportunity to watch a period musical and dance performance by several Civilian reenactors. The tour preludes the closing activity of the “Night Fire” at around 9:30 pm. The skies will be lit up with the firing of cannons. This is a spectacle and a perfect close for an eventful first day of this year’s Civil War Experience.
Another unique feature for this year is the opportunity to eat “period food.” Fresh “Johnny Cakes” will be available for purchase. There will be various food vendors serving a diverse menu of food ranging from BBQ pulled pork sandwiches, tacos and veggie egg rolls.
Tickets can be purchased online for $5 at cityofelgin.org/civilwartickets. Tickets can also be purchased at the gate for $5 each day. With proper identification, no entrance fee will be charged for veterans, active military, and currently enrolled Elgin Community College students. In addition, children under the age of 5 will not be charged.
Parking will be available on site. More information, including a site map and schedule of events can be found at cityofelgin.org/civilwar. Dial 311 (847-931-6001 if outside of Elgin) during regular business hours with any questions.