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Eckley's Living History Weekend makes Civil War come alive

Published August 01. 2011 05:02PM

Civil War history comes alive at Eckley Miners' Village at Living History Weekend: Civil War History, Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 20 and 21, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (rain or shine).

Civil War re-enactors make the momentous 1861-1865 era a near-reality. Visitors will step back 150 years and experience first hand the life of the Civil War soldier through battles and skirmishes, living history scenarios, camp life displays, period craftsmen, infantry and artillery firing and drilling demonstrations and home front displays. And there will also be plenty of great food to enjoy.

Visitors will get to enjoy it all up close and personal, since re-enactors enjoy meeting with spectators and consider it a part of their mission to inform the public about a broad range of topics from the politics of the time to military strategy and the culture, customs and music of the 1860s.

A wide range of re-enactor units will be on hand, including the 17th PVC Co. E Mounted Calvary, the 1st Pa. Reserves Co. B, 1st TX and Hucksteps Flu. Artillery, the 1st Maryland Battalion CSA, the Union Patriot League, Patriot Daughters of Lancaster, Pallas Athena Ladies Aid Society and Wrigley's Engineers.

Complementing the re-enactors will be artists and performers including Dan Matsinko's old-time Appalachian folk music, with mountain dulcimer, old time banjo, guitar and tin whistle. Marc Benedict will demonstrate hand shoe-making techniques of the mid-19th century and Dr. Kelly's Old Time Medicine Show will perform a 15-minute show based on a 19th century medicine show. The Paranormal Society will be represented as will the Greater Hazleton Astronomical Society.

A variety of vendors and artisians will make the era come alive. Native American Indian and historical artifacts will be on sale along with the organic pet treats and natural pet soap and spray of Marlene's Bow Wowz and Meowz. Spanglers' Mercantile will offer period Confederacy and Union items while D Holda Designs will feature jewelry, gemstones, minerals, walking sticks, canes and antique gem trees. European Treasures will be offering Polish pottery and handcrafted bath and body items.

A wagon shuttle will take visitors throughout the Village. The Company Store will be open and the Eckley Stitchers will display their outstanding handiwork while the Wilkes University Polish Room will host an exhibit on Polish immigrant life during the Civil War.

Eckley Miners' Village is a living history museum focusing on the daily life of the anthracite coal miner and his family. Settled in 1854, the village is one of hundreds of company mining towns or "patches" built in the anthracite region during the 19th century. The site preserves a way of life which dominated the anthracite coal region for more than 150 years.

Hours of operation are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. The Village is open year-round. It is closed for all holidays except Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day.

Eckley is located on Highland Road, near Freelend, three miles off Route 940 in Luzerne County, 10 miles east of downtown Hazleton. Please use "Eckley, PA" for online mapping or GPS technologies.

For additional information, call the Village at (570) 636-2070 or visit . Eckley Miners' Village is administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission with active support from the Eckley Miners' Village Associates.

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