Arts and Entertainment

I think we know how this one ends

Washington state Civil War Association sets up camp for its fourth annual North Kitsap reenactment June 20-22.

In the fall of 1861, the Union Army was on the verge of capturing the Confederate town of Harpers Ferry, W. V., an uber-strategic location for both sides of the Civil War.

General Robert E. Lee’s troops were just about exhausted after heavy fighting for control of the bottleneck at the northern end of the highly coveted Shenandoah Valley.

Washington state Civil War Association vice chair and organizer of the annual Battle of Port Gamble Howard Struve narrates:

“A portion of (Major General Stonewall) Jackson’s army had been sent down to help Lee out, and they got there just as the day was almost over and the Union Army was just putting on the final run,” Struve said. “Then about 3,000 guys showed up that were able to turn the tide. The Confederacy surrounded (the valley) on the heights and started lobbing artillery shells into the town.”

Out of options, the Union army surrendered, and the Confederates moved on to regroup in the town of Sharpsburg, Md. That served as a precursor to the single bloodiest day in American military history, the first battle of the Civil War fought on Northern soil — The Battle of Antietam, Sept. 17, 1862.

This year as the WCWA comes to North Kitsap, for its fourth annual Battle of Port Gamble Civil War reenactment, Struve said they’ll be focusing on those early years 1861-1862.

The reenacted Union and Confederate armies will be setting up camp June 21 and 22 in the quiet, quaint little town of Port Gamble, offering calvary, artillery and hospital demonstrations in addition to battle reenactments and more for festival-goers. Camps will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday with a battle in the streets kicking things off at 7:30 p.m. Friday.

Entry fee (collected as a parking fee) is $7 per person for adults, $5 for kids 7-18, free for kids under six, $20 for a family of three or more.

Info: Visit the Washington Civil War Association web site at or call (360) 874-8548.

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