The Village is transformed into a military camp focusing on what life was like during the War for Independence. Camped in the fields and pastures from the Common to Freeman Farm, hundreds of Revolution-era troops will be drilling and marching, fifing and drumming, cooking and camping in 18th-century fashion, along with civilian tagalongs—including doctors, wives, and children.The O.S.V. website promises updates on what reenactor units will attend. In addition, Hitchcock Academy in nearby Brimfield is hosting a U.S. Civil War reenactment on the same weekend, and visitors to either event can receive a discount on visiting the other.
Kids will be invited to learn to march, cannons and muskets will be booming, and there’ll even be a military “fashion show” to enjoy.
On Saturday evening (August 2) from 5 to 9 p.m., join the troops and their families for a Twilight Encampment and gain insight into camp life beyond the daytime focus on military activities. Free for Village members and the day’s front gate visitors, the evening encampment is also open to walk-ins for a late-day admission fee.
Of course, a Revolutionary-era event in Old Sturbridge is an anachronism. The village is a recreation of a New England town from the 1830s, and displays buildings (the bank) and technology (the carding mill) that didn’t exist in New England during the Revolution. But it’s also a lovely landscape with excellent collections, so we just have to think hard enough not to lump all historical periods together as “yore.”