ECW Weekender: A Weekend at Home?

Howdy, ECW Family—

It’s my turn to write a weekender, and I’ve been pondering what site to share all week. I have a few “history places” that I’m looking forward to writing about, but at the same time, I’m not really feeling like traveling at the moment. :/ We’re seeing notices of canceled events, delayed or canceled CWRT meetings, and postponement of many activities. My own trip to North Carolina this weekend got canceled since the university libraries aren’t open for researchers, and now I’m trying to make a second plan and stay positive.

So, if you’re like me and thinking about spending the next few weekends at home, let’s make it a historical experience. We can explore history at home, right? Here are a few ideas I’ve been considering:

  • Read through that waiting stack of books. Obviously.
  • Watch a Civil War series or movie (some I’ve been meaning to see for years) or catch up on C-SPAN’s history lectures.
  • Make a historic recipe. Yep, dig out those reprint cookbooks. More than likely, you already have the ingredients at home. (Hardtack lasts a long time.)
  • Have a Civil War encampment…in the living room. This one might be more fun (or more work) with kids, but throw those bedrolls on the ground. Light some candles and see if history becomes a little more interactive and fun.
  • Plan your next Civil War roadtrip. You’ll be able to go later in the year. I’m thinking I might learn more about North Carolina’s Civil War history and find some other places I want to visit when I get to make that research trek.
  • If you participate in reenacting or living history, start on the mending pile. I know I’ve got torn hems that need attention…
  • Transcribe letters! Either the ones you’ve got photographed in your personal digital archives or look online. Several libraries usually have online transcribing projects available and this might be a fun project and a way to make new friends while staying in.
  • Set aside a couple hours and treat yourself to falling down a research “rabbit hole.” I’m gonna do this on Newspapers.com either this weekend or next, and I’m sure some blog posts will be the result of the discoveries.
  • Start writing. Either that historical project you’ve been putting off, or just jot a journal. We’re living in historic times, and just as we wonder about the “common people” during the Civil War, someday someone is going to wonder what “common people” did and thought in March 2020.

Whatever your plans for this weekend or the next, I hope you’ll stay safe and healthy. And I promise to write about historic sites to visit for the upcoming Weekenders. I know thinking through some fun, history-related things I can do at home has helped me refocus after the cancelled research trip and I hope it will give you some “positive vibes” this weekend too.

So…what’s on your list for a weekend at home with a history focus? Share some fun and unique ideas!

About Sarah Kay Bierle

I’m Sarah Kay Bierle, historian, editor, and historical fiction writer. When sharing history, I try to keep the facts interesting and understandable. History is about real people, real actions, real effects and it should inspire us today.
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4 Responses to ECW Weekender: A Weekend at Home?

  1. 65th NY Guy says:

    Good thoughts.

  2. Charles Stanley Martin says:

    Order a Civil war board game and see if you can change the outcome. My favorite tactical games were done by Avalon Hill. There are newer ones and strategic games, but there’s something about “Gettysburg” that keeps me returning to see if the Confederates can win on the first day before Meade brings his entire army on the board by the second day

  3. Matthew J. Watros says:

    Civil War version Stratego! If there even is such a thing…not sure.

  4. I’m diving into learning more about the Overland Campaign and working on some blog posts, but mostly looking forward to planned trips for later this year. But now I’m intrigued by this idea of transcribing letters. Might have to look into that. Great post!

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