May 12, 2010

After Action by Leon Brooks

Neshaminy Re-enactment Report

On May 1st, four members of the 6th USCT participated in the Neshaminy re-enactment.First Sgt Fred Minus, Cpl Leon Brooks, Private Kyle Allen, musician Darien Williams, and one cadet, James. Upon arrival we set up camp with the 3rd USCT. Since we were only attending one day, we didn't bring our own tents or cooking equipment. First Sgt stayed in camp and detailed Cpl Brooks to take the unit to the field. Cpl Brooks issued powder, firing caps, three rifles and two bayonets. One bayonet's had scabbard failed. James was assigned to serve as a runner for the battalion field officers. Since our numbers were small we were combined with the Garibaldi Guard to form 2nd company. Cpl Larry Harris and Pvt. Antoine Watts from the 3rd USCT joined us in the field. The 22nd USCT was also at the event but fielded with the 2nd New Jersey.

About 800 re-enactors participated on Saturday and the event was well attended by spectators. There were exhibits demonstrating period crafts and sutlers selling goods for reenactors and the public. A band entertained listeners with period selections. The public was treated to an artillery demonstration. Out of site of the public, re-enactors conducted a tactical in which our battalion was deployed to engage rebel forces already in position in the woods. The action started fast with us fighting on the run to take on the smaller but mobile Confederate force. We came to a halt cover when we encountered a rebel barricade above our position. With them having the high ground it was going to be difficult to take this position. Before the officers could proceed the tactical was stopped, reportedly due to an injury on the field. This provided a welcome chance to stop for water. It was very hot, and according to a park ranger, more re-enactors dropped out this year because of the heat than in the previous year. The tactical was discontinued and we marched to the site of the main event where the Battle of Sailors Creek was being reenacted. Toward the end of the battle Corporal Brooks was called from the ranks to see our cadet, who needed to be taken to the field hospital because the heat and smoke had affected him. After cooling down in the shade of the tent with some ice cold Gatorade, he was fine. After the battle the regiment reported back to First Sgt. in camp. Weapons and remaining cartridges were collected in preparation for departure. All items were accounted for and the regiment returned safely to Trenton.

Submitted by
Cpl. Leon Brooks, 6th Regiment Infantry USCT.

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