Civilian Authenticity Guidelines

Civilian Impressions

Abraham's Lady
25 Steinweir Avenue   Ph:  (717) 338-1798  
Gettysburg, PA. 17325 Fax: (856) 853-6038 
Gettysburg Emporium
421 Baltimore Street Ph: (717) 338-0000
Gettysburg, PA. 17325 E-Mail:
Needle and Thread
2215 Fairfield Road   Ph:  (717) 334-4011
Gettysburg, PA 17325 Fax:  (717) 334-1819
Timely Tresses Ph:  (919) 235-8221
Three Sisters Millinery Kathey Kelley Hunt
J. R. Robinson Mercantile
206 Bedford Street Ph:  (508) 947-5582
Lakeville, MA 02347 Email:
Judith Robinson, Proprietor
Originals by Kay
721 East Wayne Street Email:  KGnagey@aol
Fort Wayne, IN 46802  Kay Gnagey
The Octagon Ladies' Repository
10095 Wadsworth Rd. Ph:  (330) 855-4251  
Marshallville, OH  44645 E-Mail
Lynne Bury and Elizabeth Rock, Proprietors

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The following books, videos, DVD’s, websites and periodicals can assist you greatly in your civil war impression:

Who Wore What” by Juanita Leisch (ladies). 

“The Civil War” by Ken Burns (video/DVD and book by the same title), with a related website as well: (

A Separate Battle by Ina Chang.

“The Citizens’ Companion” (periodical) available via subscription and back issues available. 

Lots of current advertisers and websites.  Happy surfing!


“Civil War News” periodical,


This is Fanny and Vera’s site. Excellent information, dry wit. 

(great website by Fred Jordan for the 40th Pennsylvania – comprehensive!)    

One of our favorite shoppes in  Gettysburg


Some VERY basic information:

We can also highly recommend the website for the Atlantic Guard Soldiers’ Aid Society


Some pattern companies we can recommend are Truly Victorian, Harper House, and look for the historically accurate lines available through Simplicity and McCall’s. 

Be very, VERY careful of what is available on EBay.  Some of it is excellent.  Some of it is NOT.  You don’t want a closet full of unusable Civil War clothing.


You can most likely borrow something for your first time out, if you have not acquired anything appropriate to wear.  After that, please provide your own Civil War Era garb, circa 1862.


Civil War Re-enactors have a lot of public contact.  We are often role models for people interested in the Era or in Living History. At any event, consider yourself an  ambassador of the time period and this organization.  Dress, language and behavior need to be befitting a lady or gentleman of the 19th century.  Remember that the public is not only watching but listening.  Please welcome them and invite them to share whatever you may have brought for them in the way of refreshments.  Invite them to ask questions about whatever period-related activity in which you may be engaged.  Stop talking about present-day affairs.  If an object is off-limits to the public, place it outside of public view.

Site Maintenance

The site at our Living Histories must have anything past 1865 hidden from site.  No Dunkin’ Donuts, Styrofoam or plastic coffee cups, no modern magazines etc.  If in doubt, please consult us.  Period-correct furniture is highly suggested.  Look at paintings and CDV’s (cartes des visites) and look in history books. 


Things for the ladies or civilian gentlemen to do at a re-enactment: hand crafts, sing (period appropriate music) roll bandages, scrape lint, represent the U.S. Christian Commission or Sanitary Commission,  have tea or lemonade together, cook (period-appropriate)**,  make ice cream in an old-fashioned hand-crank ice-cream maker, write letters for a soldier, (with appropriate stationery, pens/pencils, envelopes, etc) enact scenarios, talk to The Public, depending upon what your role may be.

**In the absence of our company cook.

If you decide you would like to continue re-enacting with us and the 14th after trying it out, you are required to join the Unit, upon approval by its Executive Board, as an Associate Member at the very least,  for insurance and support purposes. One of the primary distinctions between the 14th and other Living History or re-enactment groups is that we support, and are active in, Battlefield Preservation and other historic preservation, so your money goes to a good cause.  

Guidelines for Civilian Attire