To supplement the meager armed forces, most early 19th-century farmers and craftsmen were required by law to serve in local militia units – the forerunner of today’s National Guard. Fall militia musters often saw the various militia companies of several towns coming together for a regimental muster. These would have been grand spectacles with townspeople coming out to view visiting militia companies in their dashing uniforms. Come and join us for our fall muster day and cheer on your favorite militia company!
- Talk to members of two uniformed volunteer militia companies.
- Listen to early 19th-century martial music.
- Watch musket and cannon firing demonstrations
- See a “Sham Fight” as rival militia companies square off against each other in the field.
- Our young visitors will get the chance to learn early 19th-century drill and marching with the militia officer’s instruction and a toy gun.
- See the “striped pig” and learn how it was used to skirt the early 19th-century liquor laws.
- Join a group of ladies for “Ardent Spirits” as they discuss their concerns about temperance, how alcohol affects them and their families, and if starting a Ladies Temperance Society in Sturbridge is a good idea.