An old-fash­ioned wed­ding

An­nual Civil War re-en­act­ment week­end ends with a wed­ding

Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE - By JANE BELLMYER

jbellmyer@ce­cil­whig.com

— Af­ter the can­non fire had qui­eted and most of the vis­i­tors had gone, the Civil War en­camp­ment in Vet­er­ans Me­mo­rial Park be­came a wed­ding venue for two of the re-en­ac­tors.

On Satur­day af­ter­noon,

RIS­ING SUN

Rita and Richard Rhine re­newed their vows. The re-en­ac­tors from Bal­ti­more marked 10 years of mar­riage in May but waited for the Ris­ing Sun week­end for this spe­cial cer­e­mony.

“I wanted my old­est reen­ac­tor friends here,” Rita said.

This was the 22nd year that Ris­ing Sun has hosted the liv­ing his­tory event, which brings Civil War reen­ac­tors to town from Fri­day through Sun­day.

Al­though both Rita and Richard par­tic­i­pated in the skir­mish ear­lier in the day — Rita be­ing one of two women in the bat­tle — for the wed­ding she changed into the pe­riod dress of the era, com­plete with hoop skirts and a snood.

Brother David Coe from the Or­der of St. John in Em­mits­burg, of­fi­ci­ated the cer­e­mony, which con­cluded with the happy cou­ple walk­ing un­der an arch of swords held aloft by sol­diers in blue and grey. As Rita passed the fi­nal sol­dier, the sword swooped low and swat­ted the bride on the be­hind, elic­it­ing laugh­ter in the ranks.

The wed­ding was just one part of the free event that shows vis­i­tors how sol­diers lived as they moved from one bat­tle to the next, of­ten with fam­ily in tow. The en­camp­ment also fea­tured a hos­pi­tal tent, a pho­tog­ra­phy tent and lots of op­por­tu­ni­ties to ask ques­tions, which the re-en­ac­tors stayed in char­ac­ter to an­swer.

That in­cluded Gre­gory New­son, an African-Amer­i­can in a Con­fed­er­ate uni­form with “Does this Un­cle Tom have a prob­lem with his­tory?” em­broi­dered on the back. New­son, an au­thor and pub­lisher of Civil War lit­er­a­ture, took every op­por­tu­nity to ex- plain why more than 65,000 south­ern slaves fought in the Con­fed­er­ate Army and that many blacks were early mem­bers of the Ku Klux Klan.

“There was a black divi­sion of the KKK un­der Nathan Bed­ford For­rest,” New­son ex­plained.

With help from the town, Civil War Week­end is hosted by the Ris­ing Sun His­tor­i­cal Preser­va­tion Com­mis­sion.

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY JANE BELLMYER

Brother David Coe of­fi­ci­ated the re­newal of vows for Richard and Rita Rhine. The Bal­ti­more cou­ple, both Civil War re-en­ac­tors, wanted to have the cer­e­mony with re-en­ac­tor friends wit­ness­ing.

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY JANE BELLMYER

Two Con­fed­er­ate re-en­ac­tors travel through the forested area of Vet­er­ans Me­mo­rial Park in Ris­ing Sun dur­ing the Satur­day skir­mish.

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY JANE BELLMYER

John Milleker, a pro­fes­sional pho­tog­ra­pher and also a Civil War re-en­ac­tor, shows TimMcGee and Nate Wessin how his au­then­tic wooden box cam­era works.

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY JANE BELLMYER

Richard and Rita Rhine walk through a line of Union and Con­fed­er­ate sol­diers af­ter re­new­ing their vows Satur­day dur­ing the Civil War Week­end in Vet­er­ans Me­mo­rial Park in Ris­ing Sun.

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