ROCKFORD — Civil War living history enthusiasts will once again stage re-enactments at Rockford this Saturday and Sunday. Spokeswoman Carolyn Carter of the Rockford General Store said local groups and others from Virginia and Yadkin County will stage the historic encampment which will re-create the Bond School Shoot Out, on the 150th anniversary of the event.
Carter said that organizers of the annual event prefer to call it a living history project because no battles were fought in Rockford. She said the incident at Bond School occurred when a group of Confederate militia found out some deserters were hiding in the school. The battle occurred as the militia sought to capture the deserters.
“The living history project came about because some local re-enactors approached us here at the Rockford General Store and told us how wonderful the place is here to re-create battles,” explained Carter. She said that local history enthusiast Mike Kyle also helped in the initial stages of the living history project and that in 2005 a revolutionary war battle was enacted.
“They thought it’d be a nice place to come,” said Carter. “It’s grown with more spectators asking about it every year. Every day we’re open at the general store people ask about it. It’s a lot of fun.” Encampments will be open to the public from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday but are closed to public during battle demonstrations.
The first battle enactment is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. on Saturday and the second demonstration will be at 2 p.m. A historic church service also is slated to be held in the Rockford Amphitheatre on Sunday beginning at 10:30 a.m. and the last battle of the living history event is set for 2 p.m. that afternoon. All battle re-enactments will include elements of Calvary and infantry.
A blacksmith also is scheduled to be demonstrating his craft at the encampment on Saturday, and local author Tom Perry will be on hand. Carter said local re-enactor James Mills will portray a medical surgeon from the Civil War era.
“There’s always something going on,” added Carter. “We will have a variety of foods including a traditional chicken stew as well as pinto beans and cornbread. We’ll also have homemade ham biscuits and fried apple pies. You will not go away hungry. Kids love this, and it is educational as well as entertaining. We have tons of families come every year.”
Carter said it is gratifying the general store has been able to be a center for the area through events like the living history encampment and keep the tradition of community involvement alive.
“General stores were at the heart and soul of every community,” said Carter, laughing. “That’s where you went to gather and catch up on all the gossip.”
Admission to the event is free and participants are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs. Carter said additional parking will be available at the Rockford Baptist Church. A shuttle bus will be available to transport participants to and from the re-enactment if additional parking is required.
Reach David Broyles at firstname.lastname@example.org or 719-1952.