“Sixth Connecticut Continental Regiment to Stage Encampment at Mansfield House”
A modern-day re-enactment of the 6th Connecticut Regiment
Saturday, August 12 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
with an 11:00 am discussion by Prof. Richard Buel
Mansfield House backyard
151 Main Street, Middletown, CT 06457
When the alarm went out from Lexington on April 19, 1775 after the first skirmish with British troops at the start of the Revolutionary War, the men of Middletown answered the call. Captain Return Jonathan Meigs led 55 men and Lieutenant Amos Hosford led 16 men on a march to aid their fellow colonists. Captain Comfort Sage headed a troop of horse from Middletown that included a chaplain, other officers and 43 privates.
Soon, more permanent regiments were formed to wage the war, with the 6th Connecticut Regiment, Continental Line, being formed in New Haven and Middletown in January 1777 with Meigs and William Douglas of Northford as its colonels. The regiment included many Middletown men including some of African descent. On Saturday, August 12 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, modern-day re-enactors of the 6th Connecticut Regiment will stage an encampment in the Mansfield House backyard. They portray soldiers and camp followers and will demonstrate musket firing and the manual of arms as written by Baron von Steuben. A camp follower will discuss medicines of the era and the soldiers will engage visitors in discussions about the war. The “Kiddie Drill” will allow youngsters to learn the manual of arms using wooden muskets.
At 11:00 am Professor Richard Buel will explore both Middletown’s contribution to the revolutionary movement and the way the town was changed by its experience of those years. Buel was educated at Amherst College and Harvard University before teaching American History at Wesleyan University for forty years. He is the author of six books dealing with the Revolutiony era, including Dear Liberty: Connecticut’s Mobilization for the Revolutionary War, parts of which touch directly on Middletown’s experience in the Revolution.
The Mansfield House, located at 151 Main Street, is the headquarters of the Middlesex County Historical Society. The Society’s current award-winning exhibit, A Vanished Port: Middletown & the Caribbean, 1750-1824 will also be available for viewing. Admission for this event is $5.00 with children 12 and under free. The Mansfield House is handicap accessible and further information is available by calling 860-346-0746.