In March 2007 , 15 members of Company E,18th Missouri took part in the 145th Re-enactment of the Battle of Shiloh, Tennessee. The battle of Pittsburg Landing (as we prefer to call it ) was the first major action that the 18th Missouri took part in, and their baptism of fire came at a location later to be known as The Hornets' Nest. The 18th fought a famous holding action which gave time for General Ulysses S. Grant to bolster his forces for the succesful counter attack the next day. These brave men held the position from 9.00 am to 5.30 pm, when they had no choice but to surrender to the numerically superior Confederate force.
We of the modern day 18th look upon Shiloh as "our" battle, and when the opportunity arose to take part in a major U.S re-enactment event and be able to visit the actual battlefield we jumped at the chance.
We were hosted at this 3 day event by a U.S re-enactment unit , the 9th Kentucky Volunteer Infantry, who not only arranged our registration with the organisers but supplied us with tentage and black powder rounds - neither of which could we transport by air to the USA.
New friends were made and we now keep in close contact.
The battles were hard and fast, the warmth extended to us as vistors to the USA was amazing. To take part in such a large event was a dream come true for us and to then visit the Shiloh National Battlefield Park with the hallowed ground of the Hornets' Nest was just so special.
At the Hornet's Nest we held a small service of remembrance, flew our State colours, then lowered them in salute whilst our company bugler played taps. A very moving experience, but in this small way we paid homage to the brave men of April 1862 who fought and were wounded or died there.
Our hosts commented on the skill & authenticity in our performances both on the drill and battlefields - confirming to us that the way we choose to re-enact our chosen part of the American civil war is worthwhile.