Families.

Families - educating families, uplifting families, serving families, ministering to families - families are at the heart of all aspects of We Make History including the facet of WMH which involves historical reenacting.  Families are focal in our passion for serving through wholesome, creative, interactive education. Historical Reenacting is only one facet of the Vision of We Make History but it is an important facet directly or indirectly impacting thousands. Our historical reenacting groups are unashamedly Christian principled, thus following in the footsteps of so many whom have gone before. Each is family-focused, family-oriented and family-serving and embraces all ages in a quest to make good use of living history as together we learn, grow, give and serve.

Giving and Serving are not only basic Christian practices but basic Christian values as well. We are all expected to make the best use of the gifts and talents we have received to do some good while we are in this world. One way for us to serve and uplift is to support families, schools and communities with positive, inspirational education through historical reenacting.

We have members in Arizona, Colorado, Utah, Illinois, Tennessee, Ohio, New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Maryland, DC and Virginia - all of whom have been blessed through the experience of learning (receiving) and educating/serving (giving) which are the continual and natural process of being part of a We Make History historical reenacting group.

Please read the little articles below - and email to let us know if we may be of service to you in joining the We Make History Family in the wonderful adventure of family friendly historical reenacting in Arizona or Virginia.

We are preparing NOW for more special roles in reenactments and events related to the 150th Anniversary (Sesquicentennial) of the Civil War and are rapidly expanding our portrayal of the American Revolution as well.

Blessed to be a Servant to our We Make History Family ...

"Col. Scott"

Revolutionary War Reenacting

George Washington's Army

The Royal Welch Fusiliers

The 1st Virginia Infantry

The 1st Minnesota Infantry

The 2nd Virginia Infantry of the Stonewall Brigade

American Heritage Festival

American Liberty Festival

 

 

Regarding Historical Reenacting....
 
Did you know that historical reenacting can be family-focused and family-friendly?
We Make History utilizes historical reenacting as a tool not only for historical education and appreciation of those who have gone before us but also as a means for character-building, service and bringing families together in a wholesome, faith-strengthening and beneficial pursuit.
As soldiers and civilians we reenact both sides of the American Revolution, the War Between the States and other time periods as well.
Our 1st Virginia Infantry (1861-1865) has achieved national renown and is regularly invited to participate in the best East Coast events.
We have a very strong core in Arizona and the West but are rapidly adding more and more friends from Virginia and other states to our ranks both as soldiers and civilians. We do have our own stock of uniforms, weapons and accoutrements which allows us to train and involve a number of "new recruits" at any given time.
If you would have an interest in joining us please send a note to telling us about yourself and your interest. We'll get you in the communications loop and help you to become involved.

Q: Why the reenactment of battles and historic military life?

The answer to this is three-fold.

1. Honour

If done well, military reenacting gives us the opportunity to honour those who have gone before us, who sacrificed so much to bequeath to us the heritage we share and all the blessings which come through it.

2. Education

This is in itself two-fold. We have a focus and commitment to service, to sharing our knowledge and what we have learned with the public. The examples go on and on of persons of all ages who have become excited and interested in history through interacting with the We Make History family. Education is also a personal goal as we all continue to learn of those who have gone before us and then share the knowledge gained through our portrayals.

3. Inspiration

Learning of the faith, noble character, aspirations, motivations and actions of so many who went before us gives us a greater perspective for our own faith as well as encouragement, tools and respect to carry forward in our day to day lives. For men in particular, battle reenacting gives a sense of standing literally shoulder to shoulder in a common cause. The lessons of teamwork, leadership, loyalty and commitment which we find in history can be given a greater sense of poignancy, of reality when experienced on the "battlefield" which can translate well into real life in the real world. In our very individualistic society We Make History's military reenacting groups give men a rare opportunity to experience, ponder and put some of these lessons into effect in their own lives. Personal character development is the result. And on an even deeper level, as the Apostle Paul knew, the spiritual analogies, lessons and applications to be derived from a military framework are seemingly endless.

Q: What military oriented reenacting groups does We Make History offer?

Revolutionary War reenacting in Arizona? Yes! We created it! The history of Revolutionary War reenacting in Arizona began back in the late 20th century with a gentleman who portrays General George Washington and later with the founding of We Make History in 1999. By 2002 we were holding historic balls in Arizona set during the American Revolution and in 2003 we held our first annual American Heritage Festival in Queen Creek, Arizona. As part of the planning for that auspicious and visionary event we organized the first Revolutionary War reenacting group in Arizona history and held the very first Revolutionary War encampment and Revolutionary War battle reenactment in Arizona as well. In the years since we have grown, expanded and now boast the Royal Welch Fusiliers of the British Army, the Virginia Line of the "Continental Line" of the United States Army, Hessian Jaegers, United States Continental Marines, Patriot Militia, Loyalist Militia, riflemen, Native Americans and a number of specific historic personalities such as General George Washington. Our American Heritage Festival, Tucson Liberty Festival and American Liberty Festival continue to be THE events for Revolutionary War reenacting in Arizona and the West. We now field a very substantial number of soldiers and civilians representing and reenacting both the British and American sides of the era of the American Revolution and are expanding rapidly. Continued growth in numbers, quality and authenticity are all part of our bright future as we continue to develop Family Friendly Revolutionary War reenacting in Arizona and beyond. Our Revolutionary War reenacting team is in the midst of a rapid expansion with growing numbers and more facets in the works. We are learning, serving and growing together!

Our large Civil War team is in fact the largest in the Southwestern United States and is well known nationally for positive education and excellence in community service. These are the 1st Virginia Volunteer Infantry of the Army of Northern Virginia, the 1st Minnesota Infantry of the Union Army and the 2nd Virginia Infantry of the Stonewall Brigade. The 1st Virginia Volunteer Infantry recreates a "gentlemen's regiment" of the War Between the States and often travels as far as Virginia. As the 2nd Virginia Infantry we have participated as part of the "Stonewall Brigade" at the Battle of Manassas. We have also taken part in Jackson's Flank Attack at Chancellorsville and has been involved in numerous other East Coast actions such as Cedar Creek and New Market as well as both organizing and participating in Arizona's best and largest Civil War reenacting events such as the American Heritage Festival and Battle of Payson to name just two. From these experiences the 1st Virginia Infantry has won national recognition and an unprecedented award on the East Coast. We look forward to more exciting opportunities relative to the 150th Anniversary (Sesquicentennial) of the Civil War such as our recent participation in the 150th Anniversary Reenactment of the Battle of Manassas. The 1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry is the Union side of our in-house family-oriented reenacting group and recreates one of the North's most distinguished regiments. If interested in participating in any of these capacities please contact us with interest.

Q: Are there roles for civilians as well?

Certainly! When representing a time period such as the American Revolution or the War Between the States we enthusiastically welcome and include diverse civilian representation of men, women and children of all ages. Our civilians are not a sideshow. They are central to our educational mission!

Q: What ages may participate?
A) Men, women and children of all ages are welcome to participate as historic civilians. Possible roles include (but are not limited to) participation in historic fashion shows, boys serving the ladies and helping around the encampment, showcasing historic occupations, demonstrating crafts and activities, role playing as historic civilians, helping at our "Prairie School", demonstrating historic children's games, playing historic music and helping at the water booth or in other areas.
B) At age 12 and up gentlemen may be soldiers/musicians playing fife or drum with parental permission. (Acquiring historic musical instruments and committing to learn to play them is necessary.)
C) At age 13 a gentleman may be a standard bearer with parental permission and if tall enough/strong enough to handle a flag on a pole.
D) At age 14 - 17 a gentleman may be a regular soldier with parental permission
E) Gentlemen 18 and up may be regular soldiers.

Q: We have heard (or experienced) that some reenacting groups or events are either unsafe or not a wholesome environment for families. Is this true?

Unfortunately this is often true - particularly here in Arizona where certain "events" and groups have had notoriously low standards and bad reputations and continue to do so. That is why here in Arizona all We Make History activities are "in house" so we are able to determine and hold to high standards. In Virginia we only join in with a top notch organization with a proven honourable reputation and with events of the highest standards. When considering involvement in any "outside" event We Make History is very careful regarding what we participate in and who we participate with. We will NOT compromise the safety or values of the We Make History family, thus there are certain events and groups we choose not to be involved with. Period. This is our promise.

 

 

Family Friendly Reenacting - The Value for Men, Women & Children
 
Q: Why is We Make History of Arizona and Virginia making a huge investment of resources in historical military reenacting - not to mention the time factor involved - in organizing and training new recruits?
 
A: Our mission is to serve families through education which is creative, interactive, inspirational, faith-centered and character-building. Historic military reenacting serves as a valuable facet of our mission.
 
As with all facets of We Make History our historical reenacting group involves these directives on a number of levels. While learning about history and educating others we create and discover opportunities for service, character development and inspiration which carry over and serve us well in the modern world.
 
There are some unique inspirational, learning and character-developing experiences enjoyed by men reenacting as soldiers on the battlefield. It is a team effort, something of great value to us as men but something that for the most part we have no real opportunity for in the modern world. Learning the drill and and being shoulder to shoulder with other men in a line of battle is not only a real eye opener in understanding our heritage but is a sublime experience that gives one much pause for thought, a more fully developed sense of faith and responsibility that is difficult to put into words.
 
Any of our men in our 1st Virginia Infantry / 1st Minnesota Infantry / 2nd Virginia Infantry  of the Civil War or the Virginia Line / Royal Welch Fusiliers of the American Revolution will tell you that it has not only been great fun and an incredible learning experience but also a character-building journey that could not have been found elsewhere. Not only our young men will tell you this but our fathers and older men as well.
 
Since 2004 the 1st Virginia Infantry has won honours and accolades - particularly in the demanding arena of Civil War reenacting on the East Coast - of which we are justly proud. We have high standards - morally, historically and in terms of safety and behaviour. We consider participating only where these standards are met and only accept recruits willing to meet them. No exceptions. We always take the high road.
 
We are also unflinchingly family oriented. When men of all ages learn to think and behave as gentlemen - respectful and with a heart to serve, the ladies and children discover an environment in which they thrive, learn and grow as well. I know of no reenacting group anywhere in the country that has as high a level of participation from ladies and children. When we travel to East Coast events we are pleasantly overwhelming in service and respect to the locals and always receive compliments on the number, beauty and behaviour of our ladies and children. Our ladies and children are of incomparable value to us in our mission to use reenacting as an educational and inspirational tool. They have much to do and to share - and even the play of children often involves learning!
 
In 2008 the time had come for us to form a Union Regiment to join our Confederates of the 1st Virginia Volunteer Infantry as part of a team effort to learn, educate and inspire. Thus our 1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry, a recreation of one of the most courageous regiments in the Union Army has now joined the illustrious 1st Virginia / 2nd Virginia as part of our unified family friendly reenacting team. Together they are two parts of one whole. We are not separate groups but rather one unified team with any or all of us prepared to portray either Union or Confederate roles at any time. Thus, new recruits using our uniforms and equipment may very well have opportunity to serve in one, the other or both capacities. Remember - serving others through creative, historical education is at the heart of what we are about.

Our presentation of the American Revolution is also a unified team as we portray the Virginia Line and Patriot Militia (USA), the Royal Welch Fusiliers, Hessian Jaegers and Loyalist Militia (Great Britain) and reenact other facets of the Revolutionary War as well. We are the originators of Revolutionary War reenacting in Arizona and take pride in that fact even as we expand both numerically and geographically across the United States!

 
Your servant
in the noble cause
of bringing history to life
for families...
 
Col. Scott

Revolutionary War Reenacting

George Washington's Army

Royal Welch Fusiliers

1st Virginia Volunteer Infantry

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry

2nd Virginia Infantry

American Heritage Festival

American Liberty Festival

 

 

Family Friendly Historical Reenacting? Is it really Possible?

Encouragement for those - out there anywhere - who have given up on the idea.

Some who have looked into or even actually tried reenacting have seen, heard and experienced enough that has been negative that they might legitimately ask "Family friendly reenacting? Is such a thing possible?"

The answer is "Yes!" And if somewhere out there - the reader of this little article needs encouragement in this area - then read on...

I can certainly understand why some may be skeptical. Their experiences have not been positive. In some parts of the country reenacting is much healthier with much higher standards than in others. If you have been in an "unhealthy" area then some of what I and others have collectively experienced and observed might sound familiar. For instance - events which tolerate purposefully unsafe behavior such as dangerous misuse of artillery, malicious and life-threatening pranks or protests such as secretly hiding and setting off explosives, threats and planned sabotage by those who refuse to follow scripted scenarios -  and yet in these types of situations such events will not "back up" concerned leaders or enforce standards for fear that the reenactors involved in bad behavior won't return. (Some events believe that "any body is a good body" because the hope of having a few more bodies around is more important to them than safety, security or standards of behavior. We STRONGLY DISAGREE with this dangerous and irresponsible philosophy.)

Or perhaps you have been around reenacting groups where filthy language, pornography, dirty jokes, excessive drinking, threats, slander, vicious gossip, hate, women being verbally abused or "hit on" or married men chasing other women were all part of camp life (or "internet camp life") whether often or from time to time. I've seen these things and have heard the same and similar things from others, so it is no wonder that some may be concerned as to whether reenacting can actually be family friendly.

Personally, it didn't take long to come to the point that I was not comfortable with my family coming to certain events or being around certain groups or people. And once I became the leader of a reenacting group I could not in good conscience bring the families of others whom I love, care about and feel responsible for into situations where I would not want to bring my own family.

As we were (and are) family-oriented reenactors in a family-oriented group that left no other choice but to be completely free of people, places or associations that could put us in a position of danger or compromise - being "unequally yoked". I say this for the encouragement  of others for whom some of what has been related here may ring familiar - The decision to completely "prune off" unacceptable, irresponsible (and even dangerous) events and associations has meant an immense burden lifted and has ushered in a season of profound multi-dimensional growth in our group as we have created and pursued new events, new activities, opportunities for community service and followed the heart of our mission - to make use of living history as a tool to educate, bless, serve and inspire others. Through investments of diligence, devotion, dollars, hard work and faithfulness we have had no shortage of immensely rewarding events and activities, have dramatically increased our scope of educational service and have seen our family-friendly reenacting groups grow at an exponential rate.

Yes, family friendly reenacting is possible and in fact it is being done. There is hope. But high standards must be in place and firm lines must be drawn.

I have a standing promise that I will not lead families involved with We Make History historical reenacting into situations where their safety could be compromised, where dangerous/irresponsible people are involved or bad behavior tolerated (whether publicly or behind the scenes), where their families could be negatively affected or where their time and efforts would be wasted. Our standards are purposefully high and no exceptions are made.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One day after chapel services at Washington College, a lady noticed the grave and serious expression on General Lee's face and inquired as to the cause of his concern. His reply... "I was thinking, madam, of my responsibility to God for all of these young men."

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Valuable Links

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Classic Hymn "Stand Up, Stand Up For Jesus" dates to 1858 and was popular during the Civil War.

 

 

 

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