General Orders
  The Official newsletter of the Southern Guard Living History Association
March 2004

From the President's Desk

Hey Pards,

Okay. I apologize. I realize my performance Saturday night in the smoky barracks at Point Lookout set a new low. I’m here all week…

Well, now that it is out of the way, I feel sufficiently cleansed and can freely admit I had a great time at PLO. What a fine event to start the season!

In addition to the fun I had participating at the event, I was even more pleased to see a wide array of the SG membership in attendance. From Nebraska, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts, Maryland and Virginia, members and friends came to help make the event a success. I enjoyed just standing in the doorway of the NCO’s room (When Scattergun Carter wasn’t blocking it, pleading his case to be left off a detail or trying to develop a scheme against a comrade) and watching and listening to all of the good-natured chatter and bustle in the barracks.

I also enjoyed listening to the cooks scream at each other when our food was dropped on the ground. That was comforting. I heard Joe McGreal’s name the most. I guess that’s what happens when you move a man beyond his skill level, which in Joe’s case was crushing coffee beans with a log.

Ha! In seriousness, Jay and all of the cooks did a great job in adding to the atmosphere and preparing good food. Congratulations! Congrats also to the organizers, officers and field music for your very successful efforts to make this event enjoyable and purposeful.

I would also like to take a moment and mention Scott Burgard’s fine work as a photographer. Scott has only been at this a relatively short time, but already his images reflect a level of quality and sophistication that I found pleasantly surprising. Scott, I hope we can get some scans of those images for the SG web site—they would be a fitting tribute to your work and the fine Point Lookout event of 2004.

See you around the campfire,
 -Dana Shoaf

New SGLHA Forum
By John Stillwagon

Courtesy of Paul Calloway and the AC Forums, the SGLHA now has our own private forum!

Accessing the forum is simple and we have complete control over who gets in and who doesn't. If you are already an Authentic-Campaigner member, simply go to and sign in as usual. Once you are in, click on "User CP." This will take you to your personal control panel. Once there, click on "Group Memberships" towards the bottom of the left-hand Nav. bar. There you will see a listing of the groups you can join. Click on "Southern Guard" and submit your application.

I will be approving members (and banishing the unwashed) on a daily basis. If you aren't an AC member, you'll just need to register first and then follow the above instructions. These forums aren't meant to replace the newsletter but will be a place for SGLHA members discuss upcoming events, discuss uniforms and guidelines, post interesting photos, etc...

All standard forum rules apply so no profanity, sign your posts, no trashing vendors, and be nice. In addition, I am applying SGLHA standards to the moderating of this forum. Just as we pride ourselves on being a cut above, these forums will be the same.

Anyway, this can be a really cool tool for us to share info, talk about upcoming events, etc... If you have any questions, email me at


Thank You letter from Point Lookout
By Dana Shoaf

Please click on the letter (right)  to read the nice thank you note we received last month for our donation to Point Lookout State Park.

Bob and the folks in the 20th Maine have really done a great job with that site and I think helping them out was the right thing to do.

Procurement Committee Alert !
Hardee Hat Procurement Deal for Manassas
Ryan Weddle



What’s pops into your mind when you hear it?    For some folks ‘Wisconsin’ is immediately conjured from the deep recesses of the cerebral cortex.   Others might recall ‘The Railroad Cut at Gettysburg’ or ‘Miller’s cornfield at Antietam’.    But for me it’s the Model 1858 U.S. Army Dress Hat, better known as the Jeff Davis or Hardee hat.   Given immortality by the Iron Brigade who wore them, these issue hats would become synonymous with that organization.   The brigade would even be nicknamed ‘The Blackhats’.  Heck, even Doug Smith knows that!


This August the SGLHA has a great opportunity to portray Co. I, 7th Wisconsin at the Brawner Farm, site of the Iron’s Brigade’s action at the battle of 2nd Bull Run.   The Procurement Committee is working to secure a bulk order of 25 hats from Tim Bender.   The pre-imminent maker of this unique style of headgear.  


These hats normally cost $99.   We have also been fortunate enough to secure funds from the SGLHA treasury to help subsidize the cost.  So you will only pay $75!   A great deal!

These hats will help in our overall portrayal of that company.   Their photo was taken in the field just weeks prior to the battle so we have a great reference for what uniforms and gear we need.    The one thing that shows in this photo is ‘new’ M1858 hats. 




Who is eligible:


  • Any full time member of the SGLHA who has paid his 2004 dues.

  • Those attending the August event will be given preference.

  • This offer does not apply to anyone else.

  •  If you have a rather new Hardee, then let someone else who needs one order.


  • $75 paid to Don Barnett by April 15th, 2004.   The SGLHA will subsidize $25 off the original price for the purchase of your hat, and secure shipping and issue of the hat to you at the event

Time Table:

  • This is the kicker.   We need hat sizes for those eligible ASAP!   The cutoff to get your hat size in to me ( is March 17th.  Tim Bender has many orders he is dealing with so get your sizes in fast, so we can make sure and secure this order.


If you believe you are eligible to take part in this Procurement Committee offering:

  1. Fill out and submit the order form below

  2. Send your $75 to Don Barnett by April 15, 2004.

  3. Watch for E-Mail Updates from the Procurement Committee

Offer ends March 17th

Hat Size

Spotsylvania Living History Update
By George Taggart
Dates: May 14-16, 2004

On Sunday, February eighth, Rob Hodge, Chuck Sprowls, and I, meant with Park Officials in Falmouth, Virginia.  Park Ranger and safety officer, Stacy Humpreys opened the meeting.  Stacy explained how new this kind of program will be for this site.  The safety of all who are attending will be their first priority.  Second will be the preservation of the site.  Sorry guys, no digging.  I might add this will be her first assignment as a safety official.  Next, Greg Mertz, Ranger in charge of Historical Interpretation provided research results as to when and if this kind of program has ever taken place before. 

Park records revealed that the discharge of a firearm and overnight camping have never been done at the Spotsylvania Battlefield site.  We will be the first to do both.  That's exciting!  It was mentioned that many other units have approached the Park with requests to be involved in this event.  I am happy to say, no other units are invited.  Stacy Humpreys commented, " We are looking at the Southern Guard to set the bar for this kind of interpretation."

Our next meeting is scheduled for Saturday, March thirteenth.  We will be walking the site at that time.  Look for the website to be posted soon with more details.  Pease feel free to ask Rob, Chuck, or myself any questions you may have.


Five Forks Arty Event
March 27-28, 2004

By Don Barnett
Link: Five Forks Event



We will be portraying Carpenter’s Alleghany Battery.  Demos are currently scheduled for the public on Saturday only however we will have an opportunity for some work on the guns on Sunday if weather is permitting.

For further info, please visit the webpage or contact Don Barnett


Full time members are asked to send in your dues to Don Barnett as soon as possible. They WERE due on February 15th so don't delay. You will not be eligible to get in on the Issue Shirt deal (see details below) until your dues are paid up. You can send him a check or money order or use paypal to update your membership. 


General Orders is the official newsletter of the Southern Guard Living History Association.

The deadline for the March Issue is March 20th, 2004. Submissions may be made e-mail to our Newsletter Editor: Christopher Daley

Index to Past On-Line Issues


Attn Newsletter Subscribers: You can now renew your subscription to General Orders online. To get your newsletter for the 2004 season, click the button below.


 Two cartoons

Below are two cartoons submitted by Ryan Weddle

Click to enlarge


If you are a newsletter subscriber or fulltime member and cannot log onto our Members Only section, please e-mail Chris Daley to get a login name and password at


We are trying to update our online roster and are requesting that all newsletter subscribers and full-time members send their address, phone number and e-mail addresses to John Stillwagon at

 A Note from Miller

I just wanted to drop you a line to thank you all for the very thoughtful and heartwarming thoughts you passed along to me and my family after my father's passing.

It meant a lot to the entire Miller family and I'm deeply touched by your sentiment. It makes me realize that this organization is like my extended family.

James T. Miller

  Picket Post Update
Fall Picket Post
Nov 13-14, 2004

Chris Daley
Link: Fall Picket Post

This November the WIG is planning on bringing a hand full of guys (dozen or less) to the picket post to fall in with us as Federals against Sweeney and the Critters. This would allow us all to work together as a single company and get to know each other a bit better in an intimate setting without the distraction of public demos we normally have at living histories.

Then in 2005, the WIG would put on a picket post in Tennessee that the SGLHA would attend as an opposition force.

This not only frees up our event contacts to only worry about picket posts every other year, but offers us one great road trip every Fall to support like minded folks.

In addition, Doug Cooper has enlisted several individuals from out west to come to our event to experience life as a Vermonter as interpreted by the SGLHA.

In any case, Pat, Doug and I are all excited about this and I hope you are too. Take a look at the website again and let me know if you have any ideas on how we can improve the event!


SGLHA Sewing Weekend at the Daley's
By Christopher Daley

March 20-21, 2004

Jenn and I would like to send an open invitation out to the SGLHA to come to our house March 20-21 for a sewing weekend. In the past, sewing weekends have been a chance for fellas to make repairs, start on projects (or finish them in Miller's case) or just hang out. 

Don't worry if you don't know how to sew as there will be plenty of 'experts' on hand to help out. If you plan to come, please send me an e-mail and the type of project you are working on so I can have supplies, patterns and thread on hand to help out. We hope to cut out the first batch of CS issue shirts that day so some of you may want to start on those (See details below).