The 20th Maine Volunteer Infantry Company B will be joined by their Southern counterparts, the 15th Alabama Company G, camping in Camden’s Harbor Park the weekend of Aug. 19, 20, and 21. The companies will erect an authentic campground with tents and a fire pit, and will offer vintage activities. The two companies are living history groups dedicated to preserving the memory of Civil War volunteers. The historical Company G and Company B actually met in combat at Gettysburg in July of 1863.

The groups will set up camp on Friday evening and begin hosting visitors on Saturday morning.

“Our hours on Saturday will be opening camp at 9:00 and closing camp at 5:00 — that said, we welcome the public to come and visit after hours and to sit by the fire and talk, sing ’60s songs (1860s!) or just chew the fat as long as they wish,” said Lt. Paul D. Dudley, 20th Maine Vol. Inf. Co. B., Third Brigade, First Division, Fifth Corps, Army of the Potomac. “We don’t have a set full day schedule for Saturday — it’s usually flexible, and we have a couple of surprises to offer this summer. And we have a field artillery piece we are eager to fire from the top of Harbor Hill!

“Here is a rough schedule of what we expect to be doing on Saturday: 9:00 – camp opens; 9:15 — roll call; 9:30 — post colors; 9:30-10:00 — weapons safety check — manual of arms — stack arms; 10:00-11:00 — Living History — displays, music, mini-lectures by various re-enactors; 11:00-12:00 — Child recruitment — Join the Union Army!; 12:00-1:00 — dinner; 1:00-2:00 — Manual of Arms — Stacking of Arms — firing drill and firing speed competition; 2:00-3:00 — Child recruitment; 3:00-5:00 — Living History; 5:00 — supper — camp will remain open to the public into the evening. No set schedule. Sunset — furl the colors.”

The original Company B was mustered into the 20th Regiment, Maine Volunteer Infantry, in August 1862, in time to march to Antietam with the Fifth Corps, Army of the Potomac. The re-enactors of Company B will present demonstrations, drills, and living history. The historical Company B, commanded by Walter G. Morrill, had been recruited in Piscataquis County, among the farmers of Dover, Milo, and Sebec. At Gettysburg, Company B was sent out as skirmishers by Colonel Chamberlain to protect the 44×400 regiment’s exposed left flank. Posted behind a stone wall, the Company was too far away to participate in the initial fight, but was instrumental in routing the fleeing Confederates, its sudden appearance adding to the Rebel confusion. Company B was with the 20th in all its battles, from the Wilderness to Petersburg to Appomattox. Its Captain, Captain Walter Morrill, became the Regiment’s last commander in March, 1865.

The Fifteenth Alabama infantry was organized at Fort Mitchell in 1861 and served in Virginia in the brigade commanded by Gen. Isaac R. Trimble. It was in Stonewall Jackson’s army and fought with distinction at Front Royal, in May, 1862. It also fought and lost heavily at Second Manassas. It was in the battle at Gettysburg, July 1 to 3, 1863, and on July 2 engaged 20th Maine at Little Round Top.

Returning to Virginia this regiment upheld its reputation and won further distinction, as shown by its long roll of honor at Fort Harrison. It was engaged at the Wilderness, Spottsylvania, Hanover Court House, and Second Cold Harbor, in 1864. It was also engaged before Petersburg and Richmond. At Deep Bottom, one-third of that portion of the regiment engaged were killed.

Chris Nulle Surgeon/President of the 15th Alabama Co. G. , says, “We, like the 20th Maine, are a non-profit organization that portrays the 15th Alabama Company G, known as the Henry County Pioneers. We have 25 members consisting of men, women, young girls, and boys. We also portray personas of the original period and the 15th Alabama. I plan to set up my surgeon’s tenting and equipment as a Battlefield Aid Station, rather than a Field Hospital, but it will have most of the equipment and supplies associated with that period of medicine. I also have portrayed a Federal Surgeon, Major William Buck of the 6th Maine, when doing school /University presentations along with Confederate Surgeon Major William McPheeters. Thus, I can easily speak to both sides of the war and the medicine being practiced.

“Our history with the 20th Maine is that we engaged them at Gettysburg on July 2, 1863 at Little Round Top. I guess you might say that we made Chamberlain famous that day!”

The present-day 20th Maine re-enactment group is made up of men and women from eastern, central, and southern Maine, even Canada, and as far north as Aroostook county. “We are people from various walks of life. We have school teachers, an aircraft pilot, a lawyer, and self-employed contractors. We all share a fascination in the Civil War, and a great interest in ‘learning by doing’. While we strive to be as ‘authentic’ as possible in our Civil War impressions, our main goal is to provide our members and the public with activities that are enjoyable, educational, and above all, safe. Our base of operations is Fort Knox, a Civil War-era fort in Prospect. We hold annual encampments there the last weekends of July and August.”