Cold Spring Village, Cape May New Jersey
September 8-10, 2023
Cold Spring Village is a small reconstructed 19th century country town in Cape May New Jersey which has become a favorite of the 69th Pa over the years. This year it became a event marked by a collection of small reenactor camps of two to three tents and soldiers from a variety of New Jersey units facing a large gathering of Confederate troops.
On Friday night while 69th Treasurer Lew Nugent served sandwiches and beverages for the arriving 69th members the feeling regarding the Saturday battle was gloomy…. We were about to be overwhelmed by rebs. As assembly time arrived on Saturday veteran soldiers from a mixed variety of NJ units arrived mixed with new young recruits. By the time the battle had begun 1st Sergeant Austin L’Heureux shaped up the line and 2nd Lieutenant Dave O’Daniel commanded the union force. Captain Mike Ernsberger opted to be a corporal to relive his experience on the musket firing line.
Skirmishers were sent forward and instructions were given for “street fighting” formation. In front of hundreds of visitors the Union forces advanced using “street fighting” tactics to the delight of the crowd. The end came as Confederate forces overwhelmed the forces in blue. Much was learned by newcomers.
Evening saw a dinner of crabs and corn on the cob with beverages from the village brewery and then came the rain…. A thundering deluge which soaked the camps and it’s inhabitants. Soon small scattered lakes formed in every direction and the days military achievements were discussed lasting into the evening hours. Needless to say, the Sunday schedule was cancelled with new rain.