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Interesting attitude for a guy code-named 2nd Inf Div---I thought the original 2nd Infantry division was formed in 1917 with a Marine brigade and and an Army Brigade ...talk about a nice lineage...

s/f

Al

 

QED :thumbsup:

 

post-8022-1336500851.jpg

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....ah, lineage....at least the Army has, well, Army on their Leave and Earnings Statements. !

Me? I dress out in HBTs or P42s as the events dictate, or German, but insofar as doing an impression of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere...well, too much the gaijin, and just too tall.

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Just as an FYI, some of US on this side of the pond portray YOU as well. I am a private (have been for 20 years-ready for Chelsea!) in His Majesty's Independent Company of South Carolina. The French and Indian (Seven Years) War is one of those eras that gets little attention here so I echo your original argument and agree.

I portray a Signal Corps photographer (have Speed Graphic, will travel) otherwise.

Fielding

 

Love those red coats..."Redcoats" even! Which one is you?

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jonheyworth
I'm a regular show-goer here in the UK. In fact, I've just returned from "Fortress Wales 2012", a very pleasant, multi-period living history event set against the spectacular backdrop of Caldicot Castle. (I'll post some pics when I've edited them) American subjects were very well represented ranging from The Wild West > Civil War > WW2 > Vietnam War. The various campsites were very well set out...plenty of attention to detail etc...but here comes my plea. Why can't WW2 re-enactors see beyond the 101st Airborne?! Seems that virtually every show I attend is over-populated with wannabe paratroopers ranging in age from 10 > 70!! Are we still in the grips of "Band of Brothers" fever?! Is it down to the convenient "off the shelf" availability of almost everything you need to dress up as a D-Day paratrooper? I looked closely at the various "Screamin' Eagles" and can confidently say that probably 90% of their gear is repro...everything from their jumpsuits to their M1s. Looks ok from a distance but won't stand close inspection.

 

I felt/feel like saying "There was more to the US Army in WW2 than paratroopers!" Where are the armored troops...the regular infantry...medic detachments...artillerymen...signals etc. I could go on, but you catch my drift? I don't know about the reenacting scene in the US, but I daresay the airborne is probably at risk of becoming over-represented there too? So, come on guys...a little more originality...please? Thank you! :thumbsup:

 

I don't often write but I will on this one, firstly I will say I am a) not having a go at anyone or B) being big-headed or arrogant as I do.

 

I write as this show is only 25 miles from me. I did not attend either as a re-enactor or as a member of the public. I had no wish to do so as either.

 

My re-enactments can be seen as www.2ndarmoredineurope.co.uk

 

I only do armored events or march events in Europe. I do nothing in the U.K. I have 2 x M8 armored cars, an M5 Stuart and a radio jeep and a mortar jeep I could have taken to that show but to do so and round up the crews for my vehicles would have been as much effort as to take them on a 10 day event in Europe and for what ? To sit static in a field for 3 days, bored witless, thinking what I could do with my family over a bank holiday, having to talk to members of the public whom I have no wish to talk to ?

 

I've been there, bought T shirt and had it so long I've donated it to charity. The raeson you get the mass of E/506 reenactors is because they only know how to do these sort of shows, see and know nothing beyond these shows, want to pose in front of the public and because they are often relatively new to the hobby.

 

It's simple re-enacting ergonomics nothing more, nothing less.

 

I would also say to anyone who thinks there should be better and more varied displays at a public show, " Try doing a better one yourself " being a critic is easy

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Quote: "....having to talk to members of the public whom I have no wish to talk to ?"

 

That's a bit harsh isn't it? These events, wherever they are, are open to the paying public. Surely they have a right to expect some kind of interaction with the exhibitors they've paid to see? On the other side of the coin, from an exhibitor's point of view, surely the whole point of doing a show is to educate and entertain the public...and to strut your proverbial stuff...that's it's raison d'etre! I've attended countless such shows over the years both as an exhibitor (not a reenactor) and as a day visitor. I've yet to meet an exhibitor who wasn't pleased to engage me in conversation about their display, their uniform, the history of their unit etc.

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jonheyworth

No Sabrejet - and I don't mean anything nasty by it - I have NO wish to answer daft questions from members of the public at a public show, which is why I don't do them:

 

answering stupid questions : " are you in the army ", "are those guns real", "have you killed anyone ", "What's WW2 " ?, from barely interested people is not how I wish to spend my valuable, rare free time, let alone spend huge amounts of personal cash for the privilage. For every one person with a semi knowledge of WW2 you get 500 who don't know, don't care and just want to make your guns go "CLICK"

 

The cost and effort of doing a huge public display in the U.K. is not a pro-rata reward scenario for myself, which is why I don't do it and is, in my humble opinion, why you get poor, same-same displays at donkey derbys with 3 man units consisting of 1 x E506 PIR Lt, 1 x E506 SSgt and 1x E/506 Sgt.

 

What else do you honestly expect to see ? Unless you paid all my expenses and £ 300 per day in addition, there is no way I would have taken my armour even this short distance

 

www.2ndarmoredineurope.co.uk

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willysmb44
Is that so Fielding? I like the individual "niche" impressions such as your Signal Corps photographer, or War Correspondents, Chaplains and MPs etc., all important cogs in the big machine! Not everyone was armed to the teeth! :thumbsup:
Naturally I have a vested interest in War Correspondents so I’ll agree with this. That said, it’s very odd to me when the public asks if I was ever a real news person. Just like I wrote earlier that the public seems to understand my interest in re-enacting more when I tell them I served for real, they understand my interest in correspondents better when I tell them I have worked for newspapers and magazines off and on over the years and majored in that in college. Correspondent is like any other impression, people tent to lean to an incorrect stereotype of the impression and try to bring things you’d never see in a period photo. Field desks is a great example of this. You will NOT find a photo of a correspondent using a field desk issued to them in WW2. Correspondents hardly ever had vehicles at their disposal so they travelled very light. This photo illustrates the real ‘office’ of a correspondent in WW2 (Murlin Spencer, 1944):

MurlinSpencerAP.jpg

So when I set up a display, I usually set it up to show several people in one area and even then, much better equipped than in real life.

Oly2010Airshow012.jpg

(Please forgive the postwar field tables, I've looked for years to find a correct square-legged one and I’ve never been able to find one at any price)

…the louder the vet, the less they may have done. There is one guy here in the South who never completed Jump school, but refuses to do any other impression..."hey man, I only do airborne". Or the guys who went to jump school whilst in ROTC and never had the opportunity to heave inside of a Herc doing NOE. Lotsa guys who have been nowhere and done nothing. I have been to the cool schools in the Army, but never felt the whisper of a round passing me in anger. Always in a different place when the others left, and anyone who has served but lost pals in a fight that they did not attend will agree that they wish they had been there.
Amen! I never went to combat myself and was in a REMF job. Still, I had my fair share of interesting experiences (some good, like drag-racing a Bradley v/s an Abrams in my motor pool, some VERY bad like losing a few people to accidents and having to deal with the immediate consequences, notifying young ladies that their husbands were never coming home). I’m proud of my time in but it’s nothing that would make for an interesting book.
I've yet to meet an exhibitor who wasn't pleased to engage me in conversation about their display, their uniform, the history of their unit etc.
I sure have, plenty of times. I’ve seen many re-enactors over the years who go to shows for social interaction with their friends and often totally disregard the public at all. I started a thread on that subject here.
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Not every show is going to be on the same mammoth scale as "War & Peace", as illustrated in the pics I've posted above...major logistic operations which require a lot of time, planning, effort....and money! However, the smaller "fringe" events are equally valid, IMHO, because they keep the hobby alive and in the public domain. The groups who did participate at the weekend deserve a lot of credit. Just look at the tented ACW camp below. That required a good deal of logistical planning to transport and erect (plus field pieces) I wandered around and spoke to many of the reenactors all of whom were really friendly and answered my questions courteously. I firmly believe that that kind of interaction with the public is what, to them, makes it worthwhile. Yes...I know folks,especially kids, will ask "Is your gun real" a hundred times over, but that kind of goes with the territory....doesn't it?

 

post-8022-1336504383.jpg

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jonheyworth
Not every show is going to be on the same mammoth scale as "War & Peace", as illustrated in the pics I've posted above...major logistic operations which require a lot of time, planning, effort....and money! However, the smaller "fringe" events are equally valid, IMHO, because they keep the hobby alive and in the public domain. The groups who did participate at the weekend deserve a lot of credit. Just look at the tented ACW camp below. That required a good deal of logistical planning to transport and erect (plus field pieces) I wandered around and spoke to many of the reenactors all of whom were really friendly and answered my questions courteously. I firmly believe that that kind of interaction with the public is what, to them, makes it worthwhile. Yes...I know folks,especially kids, will ask "Is your gun real" a hundred times over, but that kind of goes with the territory....doesn't it?

 

post-8022-1336504383.jpg

 

 

I'm sure it does for them Sabrejet, but as I said, in response to your question - which attracted my notice as this show was so close to me - You get 3 man E/506 displays x 27 because they can fit their display in the back of a car, because it's new to them and because they like to pose,

 

why would I want to sit by my tank answering daft questions for 3 days when for not much more effort and expense I can crash cross country through mud, trees and rain in the Czech Republic for 10 days in the company of 200 other authentic re-enactors with 20 other armored vehicles where your tank gets submerged in young blonde Czech nymphomaniacs in every town you stop in ?

 

That's the real answer in my opinion to your question, Beltring, bigger and better displays because people try to out do thier peers, something I'm not interested in either, I'd rather co-operate together than conflict seperately

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Naturally I have a vested interest in War Correspondents so I’ll agree with this. That said, it’s very odd to me when the public asks if I was ever a real news person. Just like I wrote earlier that the public seems to understand my interest in re-enacting more when I tell them I served for real, they understand my interest in correspondents better when I tell them I have worked for newspapers and magazines off and on over the years and majored in that in college. Correspondent is like any other impression, people tent to lean to an incorrect stereotype of the impression and try to bring things you’d never see in a period photo. Field desks is a great example of this. You will NOT find a photo of a correspondent using a field desk issued to them in WW2. Correspondents hardly ever had vehicles at their disposal so they travelled very light. This photo illustrates the real ‘office’ of a correspondent in WW2 (Murlin Spencer, 1944):

MurlinSpencerAP.jpg

So when I set up a display, I usually set it up to show several people in one area and even then, much better equipped than in real life.

Oly2010Airshow012.jpg

(Please forgive the postwar field tables, I've looked for years to find a correct square-legged one and I’ve never been able to find one at any price)

Amen! I never went to combat myself and was in a REMF job. Still, I had my fair share of interesting experiences (some good, like drag-racing a Bradley v/s an Abrams in my motor pool, some VERY bad like losing a few people to accidents and having to deal with the immediate consequences, notifying young ladies that their husbands were never coming home). I’m proud of my time in but it’s nothing that would make for an interesting book. I sure have, plenty of times. I’ve seen many re-enactors over the years who go to shows for social interaction with their friends and often totally disregard the public at all. I started a thread on that subject here.

 

 

I'd forgotten about that thread...and I contributed to it at the time! Yup...all of reenactor life is there! :thumbsup:

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I’ve seen many re-enactors over the years who go to shows for social interaction with their friends and often totally disregard the public at all. I started a thread on that subject here.

 

For several years, we would attend (as spectators) the CW re-enactments/encampments near my home and for the most part, these people were the real deal...seeking to share their passion for this history with the public. I'm sure there were some of these guys there, but I didn't encounter them. Many times, I was being recruited to participate and gave it considerable thought as I decided that it was only one more thing that I'd have to find a way to budget time and finances for. Besides, I'd want to pursue the USN angle rather than portray cannon-fodder. ;)

 

Regardless, we're going to encounter some level of less-than-authentic portrayals and some folks who are a-holish, knowitalls along with the posers. It comes with the territory and is nowhere near unique to this pastime.

 

I am a cyclist (by health necessity) and I am old school...riding a vintage (1980s) bicycle that has been modernized with high-end current components. Because of the way I train and ride, I am always overtaking the riders with big wallets. They're riding bikes - frames that are on par with automobile investments - that are incredibly expensive. When they catch up with me at a stop light, I see the jaws drop as the can't believe that a bike that outweighs theirs by almost 3:1. As knowledge and education is to the military-history world, training and effort is to cycling.

 

Tangential diatribe concluded. :lol:

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Yours truly..having fun in a Jeep!

 

post-8022-1336344351.jpg

 

Love the Hat Ian pretty cool B) nice one USMF :thumbsup:

 

Thanks for sharing the photos with us also they look great,

looks like you a great day out in Wales ;)

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Love the Hat Ian pretty cool B) nice one USMF :thumbsup:

 

Thanks for sharing the photos with us also they look great,

looks like you a great day out in Wales ;)

 

Thanks Tomas....and yes, it was a pleasant way to spend the Bank Holiday! :thumbsup:

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Not strictly military...but very definitely American! Part of the "Wild West" camp.

 

post-8022-1336512992.jpg

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2ndInf.Div.
Interesting attitude for a guy code-named 2nd Inf Div---I thought the original 2nd Infantry division was formed in 1917 with a Marine brigade and and an Army Brigade ...talk about a nice lineage...

s/f

Al

 

You have a good point there, but the 2nd ID was under the command of the Army in Korea (what I reenact). It's just me personally, but I will NOT where a uniform with an EGA or USMC on it, past or present, unless if I actually served with the USMC. I know some people are the same way. Lineage? Indeed...

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Jack's Son
Hi Kat. Yes...massive! In fact, Europe's biggest event..."War & Peace...........

Ian,

These are last years pictures!! :rolleyes:

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Ian,

These are last years pictures!! :rolleyes:

 

Can't add this year's pictures because they don't exist yet JS....not until July at least! ;)

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Jack's Son
Can't add this year's pictures because they don't exist yet JS....not until July at least! ;)

Wait-a-minute......I thought this thread was called.......Show some imagination.....please!

SO, where's your imagination?? :lol:

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willysmb44
I will NOT where a uniform with an EGA or USMC on it, past or present, unless if I actually served with the USMC. I know some people are the same way.
I'm one of them, I too would never wear a USMC uniform. I guess it's split between I was in the Army in real life (2nd ID so I too have a real attraction to that unit) and people I've seen dressed as Marines often get a lot of grief for never having been Marines for real. If I ever did a PTO event, I'd be Army, because I'm frankly sick of people not only thinking the 101st won the war in Europe alone, but that the Marines were the only people in the Pacific, when the Army had plenty more people there!
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Ok...let's toss something else into the mix. Re-enacting US military has never been easier...why? Because of the ready availability of almost every uniform item from one of the many repro companies which have sprung up in the past ten years or so. So now, anyone with the cash can go on-line and several clicks of a mouse later be the proud owner of a jump-suit, boots, helmet and all of the basic web-gear etc. Is this a good thing?

 

When I got first got involved in this hobby back in the 80s (as a collector...never a reenactor) anyone who wanted to reenact had to acquire genuine items because there were no repros back then! (Yes, imagine that...a world without repros. Bliss!) So, potential reenactors not only had to find the uniforms of their chosen impression, they also had to find ones which fit! Today, everything from XS to XXL can be bought off the rack! Then there was the equipment. Admittedly, back then US WW2 web-gear was plentiful and cheap (even in the UK) I remember spending hours picking through tangled piles of webbing to find the all parts needed to assemble a full set. Sadly, those days are gone. But now, pretty much every basic item of equipment is available as a repro. Even M1 rifles and carbines!!

 

So, now it's possible for a group of reenactors to do an airborne impression without using a single original item! Same applies to regular infantrymen or marines. Is this increased accessibility and availability a good thing...or has it just led to a general lowering of standards?

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jumpwings
Ok...let's toss something else into the mix. Re-enacting US military has never been easier...why? Because of the ready availability of almost every uniform item from one of the many repro companies which have sprung up in the past ten years or so. So now, anyone with the cash can go on-line and several clicks of a mouse later be the proud owner of a jump-suit, boots, helmet and all of the basic web-gear etc. Is this a good thing?

 

When I got first got involved in this hobby back in the 80s (as a collector...never a reenactor) anyone who wanted to reenact had to acquire genuine items because there were no repros back then! (Yes, imagine that...a world without repros. Bliss!) So, potential reenactors not only had to find the uniforms of their chosen impression, they also had to find ones which fit! Today, everything from XS to XXL can be bought off the rack! Then there was the equipment. Admittedly, back then US WW2 web-gear was plentiful and cheap (even in the UK) I remember spending hours picking through tangled piles of webbing to find the all parts needed to assemble a full set. Sadly, those days are gone. But now, pretty much every basic item of equipment is available as a repro. Even M1 rifles and carbines!!

 

So, now it's possible for a group of reenactors to do an airborne impression without using a single original item! Same applies to regular infantrymen or marines. Is this increased accessibility and availability a good thing...or has it just led to a general lowering of standards?

 

Remember the kit was made by the lowest bidder, and remember years ago reading a veterans account of how crap the equipment was back then, personally, i don't bother wi webbing, though I do have only original, but just don't bother wearing any, I used to, in private battles/tacticals, they just got in the way, and from looking at films and photos of the unit I do, some didn't also, everything fits into pockets, and when those garand pouches get wet, forget it....

 

Anyway, running around a little field in engerland, or Scotland for that matter and trashing original gear is a bit naughty, but give you one example, I've already trashed one original pair of US Army mountain pants and they ain't cheap, imagine the horror (and expense, never mind the trashing of original kit) of a jumpsuit? Naaah, at this time in the game, 70 odd years later, original belongs in museums, not getting trashed on a jolly playing at soldiers...

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Remember the kit was made by the lowest bidder, and remember years ago reading a veterans account of how crap the equipment was back then, personally, i don't bother wi webbing, though I do have only original, but just don't bother wearing any, I used to, in private battles/tacticals, they just got in the way, and from looking at films and photos of the unit I do, some didn't also, everything fits into pockets, and when those garand pouches get wet, forget it....

 

Anyway, running around a little field in engerland, or Scotland for that matter and trashing original gear is a bit naughty, but give you one example, I've already trashed one original pair of US Army mountain pants and they ain't cheap, imagine the horror (and expense, never mind the trashing of original kit) of a jumpsuit? Naaah, at this time in the game, 70 odd years later, original belongs in museums, not getting trashed on a jolly playing at soldiers...

 

 

Fair comment. I've seen original pants split...likewise the soles of original boots! :pinch: I can understand the advantage of wearing repro clothing in a choreographed firefight which might involve charging around a muddy field etc. However, it's not such an issue for static displays.

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jumpwings
Fair comment. I've seen original pants split...likewise the soles of original boots! :pinch: I can understand the advantage of wearing repro clothing in a choreographed firefight which might involve charging around a muddy field etc. However, it's not such an issue for static displays.

 

That too is a fair comment, however, just pitching a pup tent, or any tent, where the grass is wet, or digging a toy foxhole, cooking in a field kitchen where grease can get spattered on yer uniforms, or in a mechanics impression wi engine grease and oil, there's also hot sweaty days and after a while ye'd smell like a dogs arse on a good day and ergo yer kit needs a cleaning... :blink:

 

So I can understand folks only wearing repro... Myself, I think the only repro item I have had is repro mountain pants, and they're sold, I try now to just wear an old pair of OD wools I bought on ebay several years ago for £8, or HBT coveralls, and can understand the band of blubbers who are so large they can't find original kit to fit them, each to our own though... But I take point in the guys who go to SOF for example and have a big fat chequebook and get off the peg what they feel they need, everything in an Osprey contrived inllustration...

 

Me? I'm lucky, I'm of the average size/height for the times and the kit I get was made in the millions so it's cheap (er) though i have to say I feel it's time this baby elephant I've been pregnant wi for the past few years is finally due, and can get back into those several pairs of original mountain pants I now own :w00t:

 

I should say, if I ever do a tactical again (NEVER again a public * cough * battle), or get into airsoft, it'll more than likely be repro mountain pants (if at all), I've already got tatty M43s, shirts and all in sundry, and webbing, just stuff my pockets wi clips, or wear my repro bandoliers... Actually, there's a thing, airsofters... ;)

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