Just after daybreak on Saturday, April 5, the troops will begin to assemble and Ronnie Goldman ? general for the day ? will give the officer’s call. Goldman, who is in his fourth year organizing the Civil War Reenactment at Campbellton Landing, is gearing up for a great skirmish in the clash between the blue and the gray. {mosimage}

“I’ve always been interested in the Civil War,” said Goldman, “from the time I was a little feller, I’ve always been fascinated.” He got into reenacting with some friends years ago and said it was only natural.

The rich heritage of Campbellton Landing makes it the perfect place to host the living history event. Legend has it that a real skirmish between Union and Confederate troops broke out at the site. And when work crews began construction on the amphitheatre, they uncovered trenches and fences that the soldiers used to fight behind during infantry battles. 

The reenactment will take place on land that actually saw fighting. “It’s on the site where Sherman crossed the river on a pontoon bridge, after he burned the arsenal in Fayetteville,” he recounted. “When the Confederates left Fayetteville, they crossed the Clarington Bridge, ? which is where the Person Street Bridge is now ? and they burned it when they left to slow the Union down as they came through.”

He said that for this particular skirmish, troops will be firing the 12-pound Napoleon cannons, which were the most widely used gun of the Civil War. “The mount houses we’ll have here were actually the easiest moved,” he explained. “You could pack one of them up and move anywhere really quick.”

Before the day-long event begins, Goldman will call together all the officers of the different units involved in the reenactment to discuss what the battle is going to look and feel like for the participants and the audience. He said: “You give them an idea of what you want it to look like, and everybody just goes from there.” The rest of the day is spent watching the battle unfold. There are no practice runs and nothing is scripted.

{mosimage}In addition to the reenactment, Campbellton Landing will host a mid-afternoon concert at 3 p.m., with the bluegrass sounds of the South River Boys and a night fire at 8 p.m. “Hopefully, it’ll be dark enough by then to look really good,” said Goldman. He’s still working on arrangements for a Ladies’ Fashion Show and a guest speaker to deliver a historical lesson on the role that African-American soldiers played on both sides of the war.

Festivities will begin at 10 a.m., at Campbellton Landing, which is located downtown off Person Street. Admission is free and parking is $5 for the entire day. Refreshments will be available at the Campbellton Landing Amphitheater concession booth throughout the day. 

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