Fall Days Set the Stage for Reenactments
By Emma Herrle
Fall days in Greene County set the stage for Civil War reenactment as the 140th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry and the 31st Virginia Infantry Company H file onto the battlefield and commence warfare.
Cannon shots signaled the initial sounds of war as union soldiers marched to the beat of the drum across the White Covered Bridge at the Washington & Greene Counties’ Covered Bridge Festival in Waynesburg during the 3rd weekend of September. The kick-off for fall festival season will be followed by more community events featuring the Civil War reenactors.
If you have an affinity for history or just find the thrill of canons and gunfire enthralling, be sure to touch base with the infantry soldiers this fall. You can anticipate another performance during the 50th annual Harvest Festival at the Greene County Historical Society on Saturday, October 8 and Sunday, October 9, 2022. There will be plenty of activities for all to enjoy, including live entertainment, music, food, vendors, and more.
The Civil War reenactors hope to honor the legacy of the 140th Pennsylvania Volunteer Company that recruited in Washington, Beaver, Greene, and Mercer counties in the early 1860s. In 1994, a group of Waynesburg University students revived the 140th Pennsylvania Volunteer Company that has been refighting the battle of Gettysburg since. They set up camp and stage battles at the Harvest Festival and White Covered Bridge festival every year.
This year, the green fields surrounding the White Covered Bridge were studded with about 20 to 30 men. With them were replica cannons, rifles, and uniforms that brought the historical event to life almost 160 years later.
The story was not just confined to the battlefield. The infantry’s camps were complete with canvas tents, antique kettles cooking over the fire, and men and women enjoying the each other’s company while dressed in the era’s attire.
A blacksmith stood by, smelting and welding metal into various shapes and objects as festival visitors gathered around to spectate. Women sewed uniforms, children sat and played in the grass, and men readied their weaponry for battle. It truly is an experience that will take you back in time.
For more information on Greene County Historical Society’s upcoming Harvest Festival that will showcase the soldiers, visit www.greenecountyhistory.org/events.