When folks hear that you are a Civil War Re-enactor, they often ask, Do you go and do
those big battles? Yes is the answer, we do. However, reenacting today reaches far
beyond those big battles.
The 6th NHVI is first of all, a historical association, chartered under the laws of the state
of New Hampshire and compliant with the Internal Revenue Service of the Federal
government, as a non-profit, tax-exempt organization. We have taken on the identity of an
actual Civil War Regiment, the 6th Regiment of volunteers, who were recruited from the
Monadnock Region of New Hampshire. They trained at the Fair Grounds in Keene, New
Hampshire, and then fought extensively throughout the war. (Click-on history of the 6th)
The Associations mission is to study, teach, preserve and reenact the life and times of the
War Between the States.
To accomplish that mission, we adhere to one underlying theme authenticity. We
carefully avoid any portrayal that creates a Theme park image of history. In keeping with
that spirit, and after demonstrating the military skills and an accurate portrayal of a Civil
War Regiment during a yearlong probation period, we were admitted as members of the
National Regiment in 1995. This organization is a coalition of regiments from all over
the northern United States and sets the standards for accuracy and authenticity for
historical reenacting. Member regiments are often called upon by movie and
documentary producers to provide re-enactors for their films.
We accomplish the first part of the mission, to study the War and its times, through
reading, discussion groups, photo searches, document searches, battlefield visits,
lectures, and by attendance at courses.
We then want to teach others. Lectures, programs in schools, and Living History
encampments for the public are held throughout the year.
Preservation efforts include financial donations to preservation groups for fund raising
activities. Preservation also includes working with historical societies, town archivists
and individuals to help identify historically valuable material and to promote the proper
use of such artifacts for the future.
Finally, of course, we do reenact, sometimes in smaller events such as ceremonies and
parades, and other times, in major events involving more than 15,000 re-enactors! These
mega-events are carefully researched battle scenes, which are then scripted,
choreographed, and presented before thousands of spectators. Such events take more than
a year to produce.
In addition to infantrymen, our unit has room for more musicians, young and older. We
have some instruments and a music director very knowledgeable in music of the period.
For those who want to portray civilians of the era (do an impression), there are many
possibilities. Through our auxiliary, there is also the opportunity for girls and women to
become citizens of another time in history.
A final word, in our present culture of virtual experiences and hyped history, there is
increasing desire for authentic experience. Time and again, re-enactors give voice to this
feeling. In addition to the regimental mission, these re-enactors have a personal mission.
They want to experience history, in so far as that is possible, by bringing alive the daily
life of someone who lived in times passed. Using diaries, first-hand accounts and other
primary sources, they seek to create an impression as faithful to the real as they can,
thereby gaining insight into history in a new way.
Website created by Sgt Tarbox 2011