Re-living History of Civil War

By: Elizabeth Donatelli
By: Elizabeth Donatelli

October 2, 2005

Part of the Civil War was fought just outside Charlottesville 141 years ago. Today reenactors took a step back in time to show the area what the battle looked like.

About 500 men and women dressed in uniforms and the fashion of the day to reenact the Battle of Stanardsville, the most significant battle in Greene County.

General Custer lead the North towards Charlottesville on February 28, 1864, sparking the Battle of Rio Hill. It continued the following day in Greene County to be the battle of Stanardsville.

"The objective was perhaps to capture Charlottesville or burn some much needed mills and supplies that the Confederacy had in this area and destroy some bridges," said Harry Daniel Civil War Reenactor.

Both sides gained and lost. The North did burn mills and destroy supplies, but they did not capture Charlottesville and were harassed by troops in their retreat.

"There was some fighting and charging and counter-charging back and forth. A very minor skirmish in an overall war, but the only actions, really, in Albemarle County and Greene County and certainly any supply lost would have a devastating effect on the confederate effort in this area," Daniel.

The reenactment bring history to life.

"I consider myself a reenactor, but I actually consider myself more of a living historian because for me the real joy is interacting with people that don't know much or want to know more about the war between the states," Tim Fredrikson Civil War Reenactor said.

Organizers estimated several thousand people turned out at the two-day battle--everyone from Civil War Buffs to first-timers.

"This country is so wonderful because it has freedom and you have the ability to learn new stuff when you go to school and when you go to things like this, like reenactments of wars and everything," said student Kayla Chonoles who attended the reenactment.

People came from all over the country to reenact this battle. There were also some local groups who participated, and you can find out more information about joining one local group at: The event was organized by the Greene County Economic Development Authority.

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