Meeting of January 8, 2004

Lance Belcher is a young man who does Civil War re-enactments and also portrays Civil War soldiers to groups like Pastfinders. He entertained us as a Confederate Civil War surgeon several years ago. This time Lance was a Confederate Infantry Man from the 7th Alabama.

He had an 1842 Springfield smooth bore muscat that fired a .69 caliber ball. It was a Union weapon that was "acquired" from an arsenal or from a dead soldier.

His hat was his own personal hat. His shirt was issued and was made of a blend of wool and cotton and was of course texture. It was more brown than gray but he said there was always a problem getting the proper dyes. His shirt had all wooden buttons except for one original brass button.

His canteen was a Union canteen. It was shiny brass but he said at one time it had a wool cover that could be wet to keep the contents cool but it had since rotted away. He had a tin cup to drink from.

Over his shoulder and across his chest he wore a bed roll tightly wrapped around all of the posessions that he had. Perhaps they included underwear and socks. His was made of period materials by his aunt. It was all he had to protect himself from the elements; they didn't have tents. He did say that some had "shelter halves" which could put together and set up between two muscats stuck in the ground, each half carried by a separate soldier. There was hardly room for both men in the tiny tent that they constructed.