Beauvoir’s 35th annual Fall Muster draws big crowd in Biloxi
BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - If you noticed a barrage of booms Saturday, it was just a little friendly fire. Beauvoir is hosting its 35th Fall Muster this weekend and, while it may be a reenactment, the lessons are real.
There’s nothing like a little cannon fire and a lot of point-blank, face-to-muzzle interaction to get the heart pounding but, for Terry Bailey, that’s not the only joy he gets from the annual Fall Muster.
“The most fun I have to interact with the visitors and just try to show them our hospitality and how much fun we have out here doing this,” he said.
Bailey is the provost marshal for this year’s muster and takes great pride in the role.
“I’ve been telling people that actually ‘provost’ is a Latin word that means ‘cat herder,’” he said with a laugh. “Because I’ve got 200 people out here that I’ve got to make sure that they get to where they belong when they belong. And, hopefully everything will work out all right.”
Re-enactors travel each year from all over the region to take part in the living history event. Nearly as many people came out just to watch the reenactment and enjoy learning about the history.
Michael Redmond, who represents the USS Hartford, uses this opportunity each year to teach about the naval involvement in the Civil War.
“You go to a reenactment and you expect to see infantry and cavalry and artillery,” he said. “You don’t expect to see Navy and Marines and that draws people’s attention, and that allows us to then tell the story of the Navy’s role.”
And he defends their combat skills.
“You put a sailor on land and he can hit anything,” he said.
Beyond the battlefield, re-enactors go through as much of the soldier’s experience as possible. While the experience is a fun one for those who take part each year, honoring the fallen and not forgetting the past is why they continue the tradition.
“I’m standing on some very hallowed ground,” Bailey said. “On this place, over 1,500 Confederate veterans and their wives walked on this ground, and that’s one of the most sacred things I can think of to be able to place my feet on the ground like this.”
The public can pay an entrance fee and visit the camps Sunday starting at 9 a.m. with another battle re-enactment scheduled to take place at 2 p.m.
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