This is the end.....
..... but only of the re-enactment season 2021! :-) Cedar Creek traditionally is the last battle we engage in before closing out the year with the Remembrance Day Parade in Gettysburg in November. This year, the Cedar Creek battle is held 10/16-10/17 2021!
It is also one of the unit's favorite events! For many reasons: - Location/beauty of the battle field at Belle Grove Mansion in the Shenandoah Valley - Participation in large numbers on both sides - Spectators have, unlike at other events, a great view over the entirety of the battlefield - Organizers are doing a great job! But before we dive into these many great reasons, let us have a look at the historical context/significance of the battle during the war: It was the battle between two great commanders:
In the fall of 1864, in the Shenandoah Valley, Maj. Gen. Jubal A. Early had been unsuccessful in slowing Maj. Gen. Phil Sheridan since the recent Union victories at Third Winchester, Fisher's Hill and Tom's Brook. By mid-October, Early was determined to strike Sheridan’s army in their camps along the east bank of Cedar Creek. Early executed a surprise attack early on October 19 and drove three Union corps from the field. As Early paused to reorganize, Sheridan arrived after a dramatic ride from Winchester in time to rally his troops and launch a crushing counterattack, from which Early’s forces could not recover. Sheridan’s victory at Cedar Creek extinguished any hope of further Confederate offensives in the Valley, and was one of the Union victories in late 1864 that helped ensure President Abraham Lincoln's reelection that November.
(source: https://www.battlefields.org/learn/civil-war/battles/cedar-creek ) Looking at the numbers you can see hat this was indeed a large scale battle and an intense one, with almost 9000 casualties on both sides. A very good overview over the events at Cedar Creek is presented by the American Battlefield Trust:
As I mentioned, the battle is extremely popular among re-enactors on both sides and the spectators alike! Not only because the beauty of the location and the size of the event, but also due to the fact that the Cedar Creek Battlefield Foundation does an outstanding job in organizing the event! To stir your "appetite" for a piece of true living history, I also wanted to share some impressions from past years, to enthuse you. This is what you will experience, when you come visit us at the battle:
For all info and tickets, please visit the website of the Cedar Creek Battlefield Foundation And last but not least: if you come to the battle, stop by at our camp, we welcome you and are looking forward to seeing you! Have to go get my equipment ready now! :-) Sincerely, Pvt Jack