I Blog as Often as George III’s forces in America Trooped Their Colours on Campaign

Well, if I really blogged as often as England’s forces trooped their colours on campaign, you’d never see a post. That’s beside the point.

As my readers may notice, I’m notorious for taking long leaves of absences in between events or projects. I swear, stuff is going to happen but just to give a small taste of what’s been up:

1. There’s gonna be some (dare I say) nifty posts on Bands of Music. This will probably be a series of posts covering the years leading up to the American War for Independence and the war itself. Expect some parties, fireworks, and funerals. Not in that order.

Pennsylvania Evening Post, published as The Pennsylvania Evening Post (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) • 02-02-1775 • Page 19

The Pennsylvania Evening Post. (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.) 02-02-1775. Page 19.

2. A new coat has been sewn! This one didn’t take a year and a half to finish like the blue suit; only a month. I’ve dubbed it the Les Misérables coat (For reasons to be discussed) and it’s been kept a secret except for a few individuals that helped the project come to life. Not that the coat is anything amazing, I just wanted to do a post that showed the process from start to finish and I promised myself no progress posts this time.


One front panel ready to rock and roll

3. To continue with the theme of music, a two-part posting on drummers and fifers through desertion and recruitment ads is planned.

[THE] Freeman's Journal, OR New-Hampshire Gazette. (Portsmouth, New Hampshire) • 09-07-1776 • Page [4]

The Freeman’s Journal, OR New-Hampshire Gazette. (Portsmouth, New Hampshire.) 09-07-1776. Page 4.

4. To top it all off, I’ll be venturing up to Fort Ticonderoga for their opening weekend where the Les Misérables coat will make its grand premiere at “Carry on the Works in the Northern Army.” Expect a post on the bad-arsery of this event and the amazement as I see the place for the 1st time.

Stuff will get done, just not until school ends. With the end of the semester approaching, a paper on causes of the Russo-Japanese War and a critical book review of the Memoirs of Elisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun take precedent over sewing and yes, blog posts. Definitely expect #2 in the first half of April before things get too crazy.

Until then kids, I am Your Humble & Obedient Servant,

Mr. Hiwell


Boston Massacre 2016, or, The Biggest History Hard On. Ever.

With my voice finally on the mends from Saturday and some deep thinking complete, I can finally write about my Massacre experience.

The night and the early hours of the morning before, I found myself making a brown waistcoat out of an old garment. I took the sleeves off my Stamp Act 2014 coat and it made a lovely late 60s/early 70s waistcoat.

Waking up was painful at 8:00 AM after finishing the garment and other prep around 2:00 AM but I put on my big boy breeches, had a coffee, and got ready to go with Miss Miggins and Low Spark.

The day began in Rogues Island, attempting to give Low Spark some sort of hair. Alas, my efforts failed as my wig just wouldn’t behave and his hat was too small. Miss Miggins frantically tried to sew a new gown to get rid of the bedgown but alas, time was not on our side.


The Tool(s) of the Trade

We arrived in Boston on time and with little stress. (Besides my panicking as navigator in the car.) Rehearsal was at 1:00 and it was comforting to arrive on sight and see other funny dressed people. Besides Trenton, this was my “coming out” to Boston Society, the elite of the elites. The Original Gangsters, if you will.


See? We can get along!!

Rehearsal was quick and painless and only left my voice slightly raspy. We then moved on to what reenactors do best: eat and drink. Lunch was at the Union Oyster House where we drank to the health of the “Glorious 92” and John Wilkes.


Photo Credit to Tim Abbot

We then made our way to the Granary Burying Ground to pay our respects to those who died in the Boston Massacre. With tobacco left on their stone, it was time to recreate the Rope Walker Brawls which started on March 2nd. First thing we were told was not to take the hats of the redcoats. We never took them but it seems they all fell off once we started beating on them. (You can view part of it here. WARNING: Not safe for work language thanks to some drunken people watching)

After that, we had time for one more drink at a Boston institution. When I think of bars any self respecting Bostonian would go to, it was this one. That’s right reader, you bet your bottom dollar we went to Cheers! And not even the original but the cheesy one in Faneuil Hall. It was the only place we could get a spot in and kill some time before we had to report back to the Old State House. (Here on out the Towne House.)


Photo credit to Tim Abbot

We got to the Towne House and got a little talk about thanking us for coming and all the usual things. In the mean time, we got to look at John Hancock’s very lovely velvet suit and explore the museum which I had been dying to see for awhile now.

As night fell, the feeling began to change. A large crowd had gathered outside about an hour and a half before 7:00. Night also gave us an added challenge: Why am I outside? I came up with an excuse that my master kept me out late running an errand for him and I was on my way home. Women had a harder time, which ultimately lead to me escorting two women on my arms at once across the square and another one back over. I was getting some major street cred in Boston. There was also some time for some public interaction. Thanks to some book suggestions from a very nice hat maker, I was armed with some knowledge on sea captain’s apprentices did.

7:00 came around and the show got rolling. The begging starts off a little corny. The context had to be established for the audience, I get it. But public debates at night and on the street just doesn’t make sense to me. But when it came time to beat up our dear friend and honourary Rhode Island Contingent member, who lacks a nickname but shall be known in this post as Lobstah, stuff got real.

Words cannot describe what happened or what I felt in the 10 minutes or so that I was a part of this. There was a hell of a lot of screaming and pushing. When the muskets went off, I felt scared. But when I dropped and began to let out my screams, things felt real. The terror on the faces around me felt real. I actually thought for a split second that I had been hit judging by the look of the people standing over me. I’m going to let the next two videos show what I went through, if only part of it, since words are lacking. Maybe you’ll feel the same emotions I felt.



Photo Credit to Stowe Minutemen


Photo credit to Tommy Trignale


Photo credit to Greg Theberge

I may say this a lot but this IS the finest collection of reenactors ever assembled. Period.