Special Features:
Speakers & Unique Period Impressions


This list will be updated as additional individuals join our event .

We are still sending out invitations and receiving confirmations for 2014, so check back closer to Labor Day weekend for our final list.

We offer this list of living historians (below) who have participated in Civil War Days over the years so you get a feel for the type of talented living historians who typically grace our event.

Lamoni’s Civil War Days is fortunate to present to the public extremely talented and accomplished individuals who specialize in various aspects of 19th Century American life. These “Living Historians” portray impressions that include ministers, musicians, artisans & trades people, educators, subject-matter experts & speakers, and actors & producers & directors. Each of them brings a special depth of knowledge, talent, and expertise that will entertain and enlighten you, and allows Civil War Days to present as complete a picture as possible of our ancestors’ lives. They are who brings history alive.
Civil War Days is proud to say that many of these living historians return to Lamoni year after year.

Living Historians & Subject Matter Experts


    1. Joe Billy, Rain Woman, and Windy Star Hides the Moon, American Indians & Living Historians
      American Indian Family Camp – all weekend at the Encampment


      These living historians participate in Civil War Days year after year, and they present an American Indian impression that is both true to traditional values and that honors and maintains those traditional values. Look for their magnificent teepee lakeside just outside of the Town Square at the encampment.


      This Indian family – Joe Billy is mixed blood white & Ioway, Rain Woman is full-blooded Blackfoot & Inuit, and their lovely daughter, Windy Star Hides the Moon – resides in Mount Pleasant, Iowa.


    1. Jean Warren, Speaker, Greedy War Profiteer, Force of Nature
      “Historic Quilts of the 19th Century”– Saturday afternoon in the Community Center

(Previously presented “Historically Correct Cottons of the 1800s”)

      This presentation uses a mix of original quilt tops, original quilt blocks, and photographs of period quilts. It includes quilts from 1840 through 1900, but can be tailored to any specific period. This presentation will be one hour long but it can be from one to two hours in length, or it can be an interactive worship of two to four hours. In this presentation, I normally discuss the following: • Why study period quilts? • How quilting can be used in Living History • Pre-Civil War Quilts • Civil War Period Quilts – North and South • Soldier Comforts / Sanitary Commission Quilts • Post-Civil War Quilts • Crazy Quilts – 1890s Victorian.


      I have presented this program numerous times, including to groups at the St. Louis Arch National Site, the Lexington Battlefield, MO State Historic Site, and the Mine Creek Battlefield Site (Kansas Historical Society.)


       Jean Warren and her husband, Del, own James Country Mercantile in downtown Liberty, Missouri. It is one of the largest sutleries in existence, offering a full line of historically accurate goods, custom sewing, research, consultation, and associated services.


      For more information, see their listing under “Sutlers” on this site and go to

James Country Mercantile

       in Liberty, Missouri.

Jean’s previous presentation “Historically Correct Cottons of the 1800s”:

      Using photographs, reference works, and numerous samples of reproduction fabrics, historian, Jean Warren, will educate us on the evolution of prints, designs, and colors appropriate to the 19th century and specifically to the era of the Civil War.


      This one-hour program is designed to be hands-on and interactive. Discussion is encouraged and attendees are welcome to closely examine the numerous samples available. Jean will show how textiles changed from the beginning of the century through the Civil War and will also use reproduction feed-sack material of the 1930’s to show what is not historically accurate for the 1800’s.


      This program has been presented to reenactors, museum groups and historical societies, including Friends of the Anderson House (Lexington State Historic Site, Missouri) and Genesee Country Village and Museum annual reenactment (Mumford, New York).


    1. Lucky Butler, Irish Lady Sutler
      Greedy War Profiteer, Antique Dealer, Seamstress – all weekend at the Encampment


      (NOTE: this person brings some very rare, special items.)


      Specializing in Antique period items, with lots of period glasses, military items, eating utensels, medical items, and womens things. Plus lots of pipes and Irish items! Just a small sutler working hard to help reenactors create the best impression that they can have. Hand made items like corsetts, purses, peticoats, chamises, and bloomers…and period drawers. I like to pay attention to the details, like buttons and the hand sewing on drawers. Also specialize in restoration of period parasols. If you don’t see it, ask and I will find it for you.


      Email Lucky (if that’s her real name) at


    1. George W. and Diane Bernheimer, Reenactors & Living Historians
      US Sanitary Commission and Newspaper Correspondent – all weekend at the Encampment


      George W and Diane Bernheimer have been involved in Civil War reenacting and living history presentations since 1995 and in Kansas Territorial living history presentations since 2004. George’s Civil War portrayals include George Templeton Strong, New York lawyer and Treasurer of the United States Sanitary Commission during the Civil War. Diane’s portrayals include Mrs Catherine Dix, wife of General James A Dix, of the Women’s Central Association of Relief. Together they portray Field Relief volunteers with the US Sanitary Commission. Their Territorial Kansas impressions include the portrayal of Reverend Thomas Johnson, founder of the Shawnee Indian Mission School and his wife, Sarah, and the combined portrayals of emigrants with the New England Emigrant Aid Society arriving in Kansas Territory with the spring party of 1855.


      They are members of the 8th Kansas Volunteer Infantry (Civil War) The Lecompton Reenactors (Territorial Kansas) and are listed with the Civil War Preservation Trust as Classroom Visitors. Their “first person” portrayals of the people of our history are presented individually and as part of the larger groups to schools, civic groups, Church groups, historical interest groups, and as part of living history programs at historical sites and other living history venues. Their web site is


      , their email is


      , and their blog is found at




    1. Madison Butler, Fiddler & Singer
      Music & Songs with Mark Ballantyne – Saturday afternoon in Central Park


      Madison is a student from Indianola, Iowa who plays the fiddle and sings. Madison has been an avid history buff for all of her young life but first become interested in the Civil War era after attending Civil War Days a few years ago.


      In her 21st Century life this talented young lady is active in orchestra, show choir, and chorus at her school.


      Madison’s performances at Civil War Days enjoy the accompaniment of her grandfather, Mark Ballantyne, a Lamoni resident.


    1. Roy McClure, Period Tradesperson
      Gourd Banjo Making – all weekend at the Encampment


      Roy McClure from Independence Mo. born and raised in Western Kentucky, has been playing Banjo for more years then he can remember, loves the Old Timey songs and plays banjo in the Clawhammer style. Has been making gourd Banjos for two years, the body’s are made from Canteen Gourds, with goat skin heads, hand made necks from hardwoods, Walnut ,Cherry, Mahogany , they are a fretless instrument, with Nygut strings, pattern after the early Banjos played during the War Between the States. Spoons are made from any type wood that looks interesting, finished with beeswax, that brings out the grain and color the of the wood. and are safe to use around food. Canteens are made from small gourds, that are cleaned and sealed inside with Beeswax, the gourd encircled by Cotton a strap, and held in place by a leather thong. Canteens of this type were used in the war, mostly by the Southern Forces.


      Old Kentuckian Banjos, plant a seed, pick a banjo.


    1. Deborah Kepple-Mamros, Historian & Educator
      Baked Goods – all weekend at the Encampment


      Deborah Kepple-Mamros is Assistant Professor of History at Graceland University, Lamoni, IA. She earned her BA in History and Political Science at Washington & Jefferson College, Washington, PA. She later received an MA in Later Medieval Studies at Royal Holloway, University of London, UK and is currently completing her Ph.D dissertation in Early Modern Religious History also at Royal Holloway, University of London. She has previously taught at Millersville University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Washington & Jefferson College.


    1. Mark Dorr, Period Tradesperson
      Blacksmithing – all weekend at the Encampment


      Mark Dorr is an experienced and accomplished living historian. He portrays a Blacksmith who has been blacksmithing for over 20 years. Mark and his family live in Leon, Iowa.


      Mark first became interested in the trade through his interest in history, where he met a Blacksmith at a reenactment. He learned the trade and blacksmithed as a hobby for the next several years. His love for blacksmithing has taken him and his family all over the United States for demonstrations and trainings, and also allowed him to live and work in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.


      Mark had the privilege of working in the Blacksmith Shop at Living History Farms in West Des Moines, Iowa for several years before starting his own business. Mark continues blacksmithing as a hobby as he pursues other business ventures, and currently lives in Leon with his wife, Tonia and children, Chris and Chloe. Mark was born and raised in North Central Iowa where he enjoys going back to demonstrate for special events, such as the Antique Power and Tractor Show in his hometown, Belmond, Iowa.


    1. Betty Houf, Period Tradesperson
      Period Crochet & Embroidery – Saturday morning in Central Park, at the Encampment Saturday & Sunday


      Popular in America since the 1800’s, crochet has resulted in the production of many decorative items such as edgings, bedspreads, tablecloths, afghans, doilies, and articles of apparel. Godey’s

Lady Book

       printed many crochet designs. The earliest work was done with fine cotton and silk thread, and through the years, wool and heavy yarns were used.


      Betty Houf has been crocheting for over 50 years, and was introduced to historical reenactments about 10 years ago by attending a folklife festival in Missouri. She makes snoods, fingerless gloves, shawls, reticules, collars, and many other items. She has developed many original designs and does custom work as well.


    1. Linda Graves, Period Spinner
      Spinning – all weekend at the Encampment


      Linda & Chuck Graves live and farm just outside of Osceola, Iowa. She is 1st generation American from Germany on her mother’s side, 2nd on her father’s.


      “I became interested in spinning 7 years ago as it is a big part of my family history. My maternal grandmother spun her own dowry of linen textiles and that side of the family was woodworkers, particularly noted for their spinning wheels. My motivation was to continue the craft of spinning in my family. I have a collection of antique wheels.”


      Linda will spin wool at the reenactment and she will demonstrate the process from raw wool to the finished garment. She will also display antique linen fabric and some articles of clothing along with the tools necessary to create them. Her display will include flax, both in plant form and in the ready-to-spin state. Along with cotton and silk, she will display silk cocoons similar to those that pioneer women grew in the mid to late 1800’s.


      Linda is a state employee in the Clarke County Clerk of Court’s office. She and Chuck have 2 children and 2 grandsons.


    1. John & Anna Knapp, Period Musicians
      Fiddle & Baritone Uke – Saturday morning-afternoon in Central Park


      John and Anna Knapp grew up in Appanoose County. They met in Centerville high school and were married in June of 1946 shortly after John’s discharge from the Navy. They moved to Ames and attended Iowa State University where John studied horticulture. John worked for Henry Field Seed and Nursery Co. for 18 years before establishing his own greenhouse business. After selling their greenhouse business, they purchased a pasture farm in Decatur Co. and moved their 100 head of Angus cattle on it.


      John became interested in country music and returned to playing his fiddle. Anna learned a few chords on the baritone uke to accompany John’s fiddling. They enjoy playing for senior groups and nursing homes.


    1. Jeff & Betty Goris, Period Tradespeople
      Tinsmithing & Rag Weaving – all weekend at the Encampment


      This husband and wife team have been demonstrating at reenactments for years. Jeff uses period tools and techniques to work metal, and his tinware and copperware are available for purchase at the Encampment. Betty, in a seperate display, will demonstrate the art of rag weaving.


    1. Virginia Wadsley, Period Tradesperson
      Braided Rag Rugs – all weekend at the Encampment


      Virginia Wadsley of Des Moines, will demonstrate rug braiding, weaving, and knotting techniques. Virginia learned rug braiding as a volunteer at the 1900 Farm at Living History Farms. Rag rugs were a popular form of home decoration during the Colonial and Settlement periods of American history. They not only had the practicality of recycling old clothes and blankets and creating home furnishings, but also were a creative outlet for the people who made them.


    1. Bill Soetaert, Period Tradesperson
      Broom Making – all weekend at the Encampment


      Bill Soetaert is a broom maker that will demonstrate the making of period brooms. He has been making brooms since 1997 at different museums and festival all around the Kansas City Area. Dressed in period clothing, and standing next to his hand made push cart, he’s one of the most photographed characters at most festivals. He does demonstrations from the 1500″s to the 1900’s, with correct period clothing and tools. Come by and set a spell and watch hime work his magic.


    1. Toni Soetaert, Period Tradesperson
      Bobbin Lace Making & Childrens’ Corner – all weekend at the Encampment


      Toni graciously presents two activities: lacemaking and a Childrens’ Corner. In the very popular, hands-on Children’s Corner, young folks sit and make little birds out of calico that they can take home (for a mere 50 cents) and are perfect for a Christmas tree ornament. Toni Soetaert is also a lacemaker. Lacemaking is weaving in minature with threads wound around sticks called bobbins. Toni can demonstrate several types of lace making other than bobbin lace. She has been weaving lace since the spring of 2000 and has been teaching the art since 2001. Every period dress she wears showcases lace that she has made. Come on by and toss a few bobbins with her. Perhaps she can get you bitten with the lacing bug!


    1. Darrel Draper, storyteller, actor, living historian
      Reminiscences by George Drouillard, a Lewis & Clark Expedition member – in Central Park Saturday afternoon


      Darrel Draper is the most requested performer on the Nebraska Humanities Council’s Speakers Bureau. Darrel, a fifth generation Nebraskan, retired Navy Officer, and graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha, uses his talents as a storyteller and actor to educate and entertain. He has performed for national and state government agencies, museums, schools, youth groups, festivals, and is a popular banquet and luncheon speaker. Darrel specializes in costumed portrayals of historical figures that played major roles in the events that shaped our state and nation. Having personally retraced thousands of miles of the Lewis and Clark Trail by canoe and on foot, Darrel is considered an expert on the history of the expedition. His George Drouillard reenactment has received standing ovations from coast to coast. Audience members themselves are invited onto the stage during the presentation to dramatize various episodes of the Lewis and Clark expedition.


      Darrel’s connection to the Civil War? “My great-great-uncles fought in the Civil War in the 34th Iowa Infantry Regiment. They were discharged in St. Louis after the war and walked back to southeastern Nebraska. Both of them died in less than one year after the war.”


      He and his wife, JoAnne, live in Omaha. Darrel can be reached at (402) 553-8117 or




      Darrel Draper comes to us in part through a grant from the

Humanities Iowa Speakers’ Bureau.

George Drouillard: Hunter, Interpreter, and Sign Talker for Lewis and Clark  – Portrayed by Darrel Draper

      Half-French and half-Shawnee Indian, he was the most valuable member of the Lewis & Clark Expedition. When the two Captains needed someone who could shoot straight, talk to Indians who had never seen white men before, provide the 400 pounds of game needed each day, bring back a deserter, or stand his ground in the face of a wounded and raging grizzly bear, they almost always chose this amazing frontiersman. Adapted from the James Alexander Thom novel,


      , this 45 minutes presentation, in full costume and French accent gives the audience a taste of Shawnee culture and spiritualism as you join Drouillard in the excitement of the Lewis & Clark Expedition.


    1. Helen Boertje, Tradesperson
      Hertiage Rug Braiding – all weekend at the Encampment


      Returning to Civil War Days this year, Helen Boertje, from Pella, Iowa, will demonstrate heritage rug braiding. Helen taught herself this New England style of rug braiding at age 15. She teaches classes and estimates that she has made at least 300 rugs, including many room size rugs. The craft of rug braiding was practiced by people of many nationalities. It helped to warm the floor and brighten the rooms of settlers as they moved west. The craft came to Iowa with the earliest settlers.


Subject Matter Experts from Previous Years

    1. Esther Everett, Period Tradesperson
      Corn Husk Chair Seats – all weekend at the Encampment


      Esther Everett, from Oskaloosa, Iowa, was one of our favorite people and, we are most proud to say, was an enthusiastic supporter of Civil War Days. She demonstrated how early pioneers used cornhusks to make chair seats: before settlers had access to rush, they twisted corn husks into a rope-like material to create chair seats, and Esther showed us how they did it. Ester demonstrated her unusually engaging and educational craft at Living History Farms for 35+ years. You had to see this to believe it! We will always miss her and keep her in our hearts.


    1. Robert A. Hamel, Educator, Thespian & Preacher, and Expert Crafter of Buildings that Burn
      Period Church Service
       – 9:30 AM Sunday at the Battlefield


      (NOTE: Bob has moved to California.)


      Robert A. Hamel, formerly Assistant Professor of Theatre, Technical Director, and Shaw Center Director for

Graceland University

      , is a descendant of at least one Civil War Veteran. He has grown up surrounded by community memories of the Civil War. His hometown is Carrollton, Illinois, boyhood home of Elijah Lovejoy, the abolitionist newspaper publisher who was killed by mob violence in Alton, Illinois where he published his influential newspaper. Always an avid history buff, Bob taught technical theatre at Graceland, where to no one’s surprise, he delighted in historical period theatre, sets and props.


      Bob contributed to Civil War Days in many different ways over the years. Bob portrayed one of the Talking Dead in our Cemetery Tour, contributed to the production of an authentic Civil War era reader’s theatre, and lead the Sunday morning period church service for two years. He surpassed himself in 2009 when he crafted & constructed an ill-fated, highly-flammable southern farmhouse. We extend a special thanks to Bob for his creativity & leadership & contribution. You are missed.


    1. Rebecca M. Foster, Educator & Thespian
      Period Reader’s Theatre


      (NOTE: Becky moved to the West Coast.)


      Becky contributed to Civil War Days in various ways over the years. She performed as a Talking Dead in our cemetery tours, orated ceaselessly on the virtues of something-or-other and then railed against the vices of something else, helped produce and then performed in an authentic Civil War era reader’s theatre, and consulted on & constructed period attire. She is missed.


      Rebecca M. Foster earned her BA in Theatre at Brigham Young University and an MFA in Directing from the University of Oregon. She joined the faculty of

Graceland University

       in Lamoni, IA as Assistant Professor of Acting & Directing in Fall 2004 and left in 2009. Favorite roles include Dot/Marie in Sunday in the Park with George, Mrs. Alving in Ghosts and the Nurse in Romeo and Juliet. Favorite directing experiences include West Side Story, Little Women and The Secret Garden. In addition to extensive work with Shakespeare and Theatre for Young Audiences, Professor Foster has worked in several professional costume shops and is an SAFD-certified Actor Combatant.


    1. Robert Szabo, Period Photographer
      Period Photography including tintypes, ambrotypes, photographs from collodion glass negatives – all weekend at the Encampment


      (NOTE: Bob has apparently returned to the Kansas City area from the East Coast)


      “I am an authentic Civil War Period photographer. I do Ferrotypes (tintypes), ambrotypes and glass plate negatives using the 19th century collodion wet plate process. Ive been doing this for going on 11 years and have had one of my images on the cover of National Geographic in 2005. I will have a large skylight tent setup to do studio-type portraits of reenactors. I have an authentic setup and, therefore, I do not provide clothing for spectators to dress in.

I only take images of reenactors.

       I do charge for this and prices will be on display and vary with the size of the image. The reenactors will be able to take the images home with them. I process them on the spot just as they did back then. It would be best for any reenactor wanting an image to come see me as early as possible and get their name on my schedule. I can get pretty busy at some events. My web site is




    1. Ben Ramirez, Preacher & Reenactor
      Sunday Morning Church Service – 9:30 AM Sunday at the Encampment Town Square


      Ben Ramirez has been a living historian since 2000. He is a member of the 15th Iowa Volunteer Infantry reenacting unit and regularly volunteers at the Iowa State Historical Society in Des Moines. He actively assists in the promotion of the Iowa Battle Flags Project, which is a years-long effort to conserve numerous Iowa Civil War battle flags. A traveling display of this project can be seen in the Lamoni Public Library before, during, and after the Labor Day weekend.


      Much of Ben’s original research & personal journey has been to follow the route of Iowa units during the Civil War and to make the modern public aware of what battles they fought in and what their final destinies were.


      In modern life, Ben is Senior Master Sergeant Ben Ramirez and a member of the Iowa Air National Guard where he performs duties as a Training Superintendent. Ben is currently completing his licensing program as a lay-minister and serves protestant churches throughout central Iowa. Ben Ramirez will retire from the National Guard in 2011 and looks forward to pursuing his ministry fulltime.


    1. Trio of Ph.Ds, Subject Matter Experts, Educators
      “Civil War: The Missing Peace” – 1:00-2:30 PM Saturday in the Community Center


      All participants are Ph.D Historians who have taught university courses on the Civil War. The Moderator, Dr. William Juhnke, is a retired professor of history from Graceland University. The keynote speaker¸ Dr. James Juhnke, has published a half dozen books on various aspects of American History, including the text,

The Missing Peace, The Search for Nonviolent Alternatives in American History

      , which informs this particular session. The responder, Dr. Tom Morain, is former Director of Living History Farms as well as former Director of the Iowa State Historical Society. He is currentl;y Director of Government Relations at Graceland University. The session, which will include an open discussion component, promises to be interesting and provocative as it pursues the idea of a possible alternative Civil War history. Please check your guns at the door.


    1. William Morris, Speaker
      African-Americans in the 19th Century – 12:00-1:00 Saturday, August 30, 2008 in the Lamoni Community Center located in Central Park


      William Morris is an active historian and, along with his brother, is the 3rd generation to practice law in the Morris & Morris Law Firm in Des Moines. His historical writings have been published individually (“In Defense of the Nation: Black Iowans at War, 1863-1991”), in anthologies (the “Military History” portion of

Outside In: African American History in Iowa

      ) published by the Iowa State Historical Society, and in articles in the Wall Street Journal and the Des Moines Register. He has lectured on Black History at the grout Museum and served as an Adjunct Professor in Iowa and in Florida teaching African-American History and National Terrorism Preparedness, respectively.


      Mister Morris is a past Director and VP of the Fort Des Moines Black Officers Memorial and an Associate Member of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. He attended the University of Iowa as both an undergraduate student (B.A. Political Science

cum laude

      , History minor) and a graduate student (College of Law, J.D).


    1. Mark Lyle & Company, Curers of Disease, Charlatans, Living Historians
      Professor I.M. Savage’s Medicine Show – in Central Park Saturday afternoon & in The Encampment Saturday evening


      Joining Professor I.M. Savage in his Medicine Show is a rousing musical performer and the most Renowned Professor Gibson, Phrenologist.


      Professor I. M. Savage will provide entertainment and a cure for almost any disease with his “Swamp Root Tonic.” The Medicine Show will also feature a musical soloist and phrenology readings by renowned Professor Gibson. (Phrenology is the science of “reading” the brain based on the shape of a person’s head, a popular practice in the 19th Century). The good professor and his associates can be seen at The Living History Farm in Des Moines on an occasional basis and when not fleeing from the authorities.


    1. Mike Mumm & Pat Walke, Period Musicians, with Joe Nobiling, Fiddler & Caller
      Period Dance & Musical Entertainment

Pat Walke & Mike Mumm are listed on the Performing Arts Touring Roster of the Iowa Arts Council and are primarily funded by a grant from the Iowa Arts Council, a Division of the Department of Cultural Affairs, which was procured through the auspices of the City of Lamoni.

      Pat & Mike make Iowa’s history come alive by playing the authentic old-time music that was played in Iowa during the 1800s. Their music is a collection of fiddle tunes from the barn dances, house parties and minstrel shows of Iowa’s early settlement, as well as the songs and hymns sung in the homes of Iowa. Their music is American and Midwestern, with the main influences being from Northern Europe immigrants and from the music that came to Iowa with the settlers from the East and the South.


      To add to their authenticity, Pat & Mike dress in period clothing. Mike’s shirt is styled after those worn by the keelboat men on the Mississippi River from the early 1800s. His trousers are from a pattern that was used by the Union in the Civil War. Pat’s dress is from an 1860s farmdress pattern, very common among the rural population of Iowa.


      Pat & Mike sing, play autoharp, jaw harp, lumberjacks, mountain dulcimer and wash tub bass. They learned their music from their families and by researching Iowa’s musical past.


      Pat & Mike also offer Pioneer Folk Music for children in grades K-6 or for family entertainment where authentic music of the pioneers is desired.


    1. Skywalker Payne, Writer, Poet, Performer
      “Bury My Bones, But Keep My Words” First-person Stories of the Underground Railroad in Iowa

Skywalker Payne, B.A. in Storytelling from Metropolitan State College of Denver, is a member of the Humanities Iowa Speakers Bureau and is partially funded by a grant from the Humanities Iowa and The National Endowment for the Humanities which was procured through the auspices of the Lamoni Public Library.

      Skywalker Payne is a professional storyteller, reseacher, and writer. She and her husband, Brian, a comic artist and native of Iowa, have lived in Des Moines for six years. As Skywalker Storyteller, she has performed in Denver, Chicago, and throughout the state of Iowa at colleges, schools, community events, and for historical societies. She also performed at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.


      “Bury My Bones, But Remember My Words” is a dramatic telling, performance, and reading of stories, narratives, and events of the Underground Railroad which she researched and wrote. This performance presents the experience of slavery and the political, social, and economic foundations of that “ignoble institution.” She tells stories of black abolitionists and slaves escaping to freedom, as well as shedding light on Iowa’s significant participation in the Underground Railroad.


      Ms. Payne can be contacted at




    1. Connie Koch and Kaytlin Vansteenburgh, Period Tradespeople
      Hand Crochet and Basket Weaving – all weekend at the Encampment


      Returning again to our event, Connie and Kaytlin are natives of Sedalia, Missouri…a Gramma’ and Grandling’ team who delight in demonstrating the art of crocheting tea-box drawstring purses and weaving small trinket treasure baskets. Connie learned to crochet from her mother, June, when she was 10 years old and is passing that skill onto her 11-year-old granddaughter, Kaytlin. Connie is the Director of the Whiteman Air Force Base Community Center in Mid-Missouri where she shares these interests with Air Force friends and families.


    1. Chigger Bit Mess, Missouri Confederate Infantry Fighting East of the Mississippi
      Campaigner Impression – lurking about all weekend at the Encampment


      This group of “campaigners” has attended Civil War Days year after year conducting living history activities at the Encampment. They portray Missouri Confederate soldiers who were sent to fight east of the Mississippi. They carry no specific unit designation because their impression is intended to represent many units that served.


      What makes this group of living historians unique is the depth of research and detail displayed in their Confederate impressions. Their goal is to provide us today with an experience that includes sight, sound, feel, taste, and manners of the Civil War era, thereby enhancing our knowledge of our ancestors’ experience. This experience enriches what we know about our American heritage.


      Their bivouac, or camp, will look like a confederate infantry “mess” on a military campaign. A ”campaign” meant either actively pursuing or being pursued by enemy troops. It also meant impending hostile engagements with that enemy. Campaigners were tough men. Not only would they march 15-25 miles per day but they did this while carrying all their worldly possessions on their backs. These soldiers quickly became very self-sufficient and carried only what they needed to survive, discarding anything non-essential.


      Starting with the initial material selection, all clothing, footwear, and equipment is extensively researched and specially reproduced to strict period standards – right down to the clothing fibers, buttons, buckles, thread, patterns and hand-stitching. When compared side by side, this clothing is intended to look and feel precisely the same as the original garments and equipment.


      The group is drawn predominantly from the Kansas City area. Various members appear at local battlefields and historic sites, do volunteer work for the National Park Service Battlefield Parks, and conduct educational programs for school children. Many are regular performers in several historical movies. Their impression is so authentic that you are well-advised to guard your wallets, your daughters, and your chickens.


    1. Bob Boots, Tradesperson
      Rope Making and Wood Carving – all weekend at the Encampment


      Bob Boots from Atlantic, Iowa, will demonstrate period rope making and wood carving. There is evidence that traces rope making as for back as 17,000 B.C.E. Bob often demonstrates his skills at the Living History Farms in West Des Moines, Iowa.


    1. Hearts Touched With Fire
      Period Reader’s Theatre


      A presentation of Graceland University’s Theatre department. Through story and song, this reader’s theatre presentation explores the experiences and emotions of the men who enlisted to fight in the Civil War and the women they left behind.


      Approximately 30 minutes in length.


    1. John Page, Fiddler
      Period Fiddle Music Throughout the Weekend (Regrettably John moved to the Pacific Northwest after the 2006 Event)


      John Page switched from classical violinist to old-time fiddler in 2000 when he became the fiddler for the Butternut Boys, a central Kansas Confederate reenactors string band. He carries on the Butternut Boys’ traditions of accurate period music and authentic style with tunes that were common on the Oregon Trail and the Kansas-Missouri border during the Civil War.


      When not doing Civil War music, he has also been a backup fiddler and session musician for a variety of rock, Celtic, blues, jazz and folk groups in Kansas, Missouri, Florida, Nevada and Oregon. He is also available to play almost anything for weddings and other social occasions, and can be reached at




    1. Chad Elliott, Musician and Singer
      Singing & Playing – Saturday morning-afternoon in Central Park and late afternoon at the Encampment


      Chad Elliott is going to play banjo and sing in Central Park on Saturday after 10:30 AM. He may also play music with Lamoni’s Mark Ballantyne. After the battle, listen for Chad in the Town Square in the Encampment on the Battlefield.


      Chad has grandparents, aunt, uncle, cousin and son who live in Lamoni. Chad lives about 4 hours north of Lamoni in Spencer, Iowa.


      An award-winning songwriter, Chad Elliott has performed for folk music audiences in the U.S. and Canada, and shared the stage with such great artists as Tom Paxton, Loudon Wainwright III, Odetta, Dan Zanes, R.L. Burnside, The Nadas and Storyhill. Elliott’s original songs stand out and have earned him accolades in the folk world over the past few years. Recently he was the winner of FolkAlley.com’s Open Mic Finals. Also, one of his songs was chosen (out of 300,000 entries) as an award nominee for Top 20 New Folk Songs on Just Plain Folks.


    1. Pam Anderson, Milliner & Seamstress
      Hat Making & Period Clothing – all weekend at the Encampment


      Pam Anderson is an experienced seamstress who has been successfully selling products for over 25 years. Her home based business has continually evolved with trends and sales opportunities. So when she moved to Nauvoo, Illinois two and a half years ago began producing a product line of clothing and head wear from the mid 1800’s.


    1. Tom Schalue, Tradesperson
      Papermaking – all weekend at the Encampment


    Tom Schalue lives in Johnson County, Missouri, where he learned the art of paper making from a member of his guild, Nancy Beam. Due to Nancy’s untimely death, Tom continues to teach others the lost arts. He has found that there is a wide variety of fibers – such as cattails, a mixture of grasses, and straw – that can be used to make paper. Homemade paper makes unique cards, picture matting, and invitations. Depending on the need, it can also be made in many different sizes. Tom hails from Holden, Mo. and makes hand made paper the way it was done for centuries before modern times. He travels among reenactments and living history festivals and demonstrates his trade from his period 15′ x 15′ tent. He will have his fancy papers available for sale to the public.