Union and Confederate soldiers begin firing shots at each other during the third annual Civil War re-enactment, The Battle of Snoqualmie, held on Saturday, Sept. 16, at Meadowbrook Farm. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

‘Battle of Snoqualmie’ Civil War reenactment brings history to life

People from all around the state gathered in Snoqualmie to participate in the Washington Civil War Association’s third annual Battle of Snoqualmie re-enactment at Meadowbrook Farm on Sept. 16 and 17.

At 11 a.m. on Saturday, the first cannon was fired, marking the beginning of the fictional battle. WCWA members, dressed in period accurate uniforms, began their staged fight between the Union and Confederate camps. Soldiers ran through the hills to get to their battalions where each side stood in line to fire on each other. Others dressed as medics, ran to take wounded soldiers in to treat their wounds, while cavalrymen patrolled the battlefield.

Dan Rike, WCWA member from Stanwood, gave commentary throughout the battle for the audience, explaining the methods of engagement during the Civil War, the conditions the soldiers fought in and the context for skirmishes similar to this event.

“I was letting people know that there were unrecorded battles, skirmish engagements, two battalions would cross paths on the way to a bigger event and they would have these kinds of skirmishes,” Rike said. “I was expressing what was happening on the field as it happened, understanding the flanking maneuvers, trying to end the bloodshed as fast as you can so you can preserve your own army and put the other army in check. To dismantle the other side so they cannot engage in war any more.”

Rike, who has been a part of the WCWA since 1997, said he finds a lot of value in helping bring history to life through these events as well as other activities like giving presentations in classrooms.

“The club takes a lot of pride in its educational part,” he said. “There are things you are going to learn here that you are not going to learn in the classroom. It makes history come to life.”

Union soldiers fire off a cannon at their opponents. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Two cavalrymen ride through the smoke caused by cannon fire. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

A group of Confederate soldiers line up to fire. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Dan Rike, Sergeant Major for the Union staff, gives play by play commentary for the audience watching the battle. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

A “wounded” soldier is taken off of the battlefield by medics. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

The battle stops as four women bring a wreath onto the field for a brief memorial for all the soldiers who died in the Civil War. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Two buglers stand behind the union soldiers to help guide the action with their short signals. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

After a Civil War battle reenactment Saturday, Union soldiers head back to camp for a meal. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Emily B, 9, meets one of the horses after the battle. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Cap Caputo, gives a presentation to the crowd about how new soldiers were recruited to fight in the civil war. Daniel Kolke, 11, volunteered to help Caputo’s presentation. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Gabe Scarborough, 8, tries to pick up Cap Caputo’s gun, but finds it too heavy. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Sarah Silvia takes Trinity and Shelby to pet the horses. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

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