Reenactment at Resaca

     Yesterday I went to Resaca for the reenactment.  It took place at Chitwood Farms, which is actually on the original battlefield.  Even with the rain it was a great time.  I was also able to visit the new State Park, which encompasses a large part of the battlefield that parallels I-75, and includes Camp Creek Valley.  Most of the Confederate positions were destroyed when the interstate was constructed.  The Federal positions are still there and are mostly untouched.  I was not able to hike any of the trails in the park, but I think some may lead to some earthworks.  The terrain here was beautiful.  The park is not actually open yet, but they allowed people to enter this weekend due to the reenactment nearby.  I can not wait for it to open later this year.  The park is mostly complete, but the DOT is doing construction at the exit off of I-75 and this has the entrance to the park blocked.  The are also building and new bridge over Camp Creek next to the entrance.  I arrived here at 7:00am and made a few images at the entrance, but the gate was closed.  I came back around 3:45pm, after I left the reenactment and spent an hour looking around and making images.
      I arrived at the reenactment at 8:00am.  I was there in time to see the presentation of colors. After that I watched as the soldiers drilled and practiced their movements for the battle in the afternoon.  This was a great time to make images, since we were allowed to walk through the battlefield while they were practicing.  I also wandered around the encampments.  They were separated by Union and Confederate camps and the Artillery units had their own camps as well as the Cavalry units.  Everyone was very friendly and love to talk about what they were doing and why they did it.  They were quick to offer a cup of coffee and I even had an offer of breakfast.  I walked the “Sutlers” area and looked through their tents.  I even bought a Haversack.  It worked out good to carry some of my gear when it started raining.  I also bought some homemade root beer.  It was probably the best root beer I have ever had. 
     While walking through the Confederate Infantry camp I asked around for the 42 Ga.  This was the unit that I had four relatives in and one of them, Milton Brownlee, was wounded here at the Battle of Resaca.  I found them and introduced myself to them and told them about my relatives.  A few of them knew who Milton was and they all became very reverend when discussing my ancestors and told me it was an honor to meet a descendant.  They said they were honored to represent the unit and and my ancestors and hoped they made me proud.  They did make me proud.  Who knows, when this project is over I may even join up with them. 
     I wandered through some more of the camps and more Sutlers tents and then found the Photographers tent.  As it was raining fairly hard he invited me to take shelter under the tent with several others.  I was the only spectator in the tent, the rest in the tent were in “character”.  We all talked for awhile and discussed photography, history and my War Was Here project.  They were all greatly interested in my project.  I wish I had meet a lot of these folks before my kickstarter campaign.  I got contact information for them and later while walking around, one of them stopped me to introduce me to someone else who is doing a lot of preservation work and thought we may be able to help each other.  Did not realize I was going to be networking here, but it worked out pretty good.
     I claimed my spot on the hill to watch the battle.  I had a great spot.  Front row and “50 yard line” so to speak.  I was able to catch almost all the action.  Good thing I rented the 500mm lens.  Anything less would not have been good enough.  My gear drew a lot of attention from the spectators around me and they were all asking questions before the battle started.  I explained what I was doing and they were all excited.  They were soon jotting down my web address.  Hope some of you are reading this now.  The battle began with cannon fire and a cavalry battle, followed by infantry fighting and continued cannon fire.  There were charges and retreats and the lines changes hands back and forth.  Men lay on the field acting dead or wounded and the cavalry clashed with sabers drawn and held high.  After an hour of raging battle, the pace slowed down and came to a stop, where all on the field bowed their heads and a pair of buglers played “Taps”.  The spectators erupted with a thunderous roar and applause and thanked the soldiers for show.  I know the soldiers had good time, because they were all smiles.  Afterwards, some Union Cavalry came over to the spectator area to talk to the crowd and answer questions.  They were representing the U.S. 2nd Cavalry and had driven in from out of state to participate in the event.  I had a great time at the reenactment and I will certainly be going back next year.  I think I will take the boys with me, they would love it.
     My time was running short so I headed out shortly after the battle and made my way back over to the state park.  I made my images and spent an hour there.  I finally made it home 12 hours after I left.  I had spent 9.5 hours making images during the day and rest of the time was drive time.  I filled up few 16 gig memory cards and had about 2500 images for the day.  Not to bad I guess, now I just have to edit and edit and edit.

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Author: Clint Brownlee

My name is Clint Brownlee and I am a Photographer in Woodstock, Georgia with over 20 years of photographic experience in many different aspects of photography. I have photographed everything from weddings, special events and portraits to published materials, but my passion has always been Fine Art and Nature Photography. I have had a several shows at the Mason Murer Fine Art Gallery in Atlanta, Georgia and The Roswell Visual Arts Center in Roswell, Georgia. I now sell through my website: www.clintbrownleephotography.com

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