To commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War and the July battles at Gettysburg, Tim Neff, from Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall in Oakland, brought over a soldier’s trunk full of Civil war artifacts from that museum. He also brought a rifle manufactured in 1863 that was one a Civil War soldier would have carried. The hefty rifle, and a pack including tent, mess kit and other supplies made for a heavy load for a foot soldier.
Library visitors had a hands-on exploration of the artifacts and got to try on a replica Union uniform and CSA kepi. The cloth items were the only reproductions, since the museum’s original cloth items are too fragile to handle.
If you want to learn more about the life of a Civil War soldier, or about military history and the men and women (and service animals) who served in United States wars, visit the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall and Museum, Fifth Avenue, here in Oakland.
You can also visit the Children’s Department to find books about that 1860s conflict. You might start with Jennifer L. Weber’s Summer’s Bloodiest Days: The Battle of Gettysburg as Told from All Sides , The Cemetery Keepers of Gettysburg by Linda Oatman High, or The Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincoln, illustrated by Michael McCurdy.