Basic Authenticity Guidelines


Just as military members are required to meet authenticity standards, so too are the civilian members required to maintain an authentic appearance.  Because there are so many variables in appearance and dress, we would rather not list absolutes, but instead give a general guide.  Civilians should present a "period" appearance, free of 21st century anachronisms.  Their clothing and accessories should meet the acceptable documented styles of the 1860 - 1865 time period.  If you have any question about what is acceptable, please speak with your Civilian Coordinator or the MG Civilian Coordinator or MG Assistant Civilian Coordinator.  They will be happy to help you.

While compliance with authenticity standards is a requirement of membership, we would hope that all members would continue to strive to improve the authenticity of their presentation as more information regarding 1860's life becomes available.


Examples of Unacceptable Anachronisms:

  • Modern eyeglasses or sunglasses, wrist watches or modern jewelry (other than a simple engagement ring or wedding band)

  • Any nail polish, heavy makeup, modern hairstyles or hair ornaments

  • Sneakers, ballet slippers, sandals, "Chinese" slippers

  • Un-natural hair colors

  • Piercings beyond the normal pierced ears

  • Tattoos should be covered from public view


Mifflin Guard Civilian Camping

The Mifflin Guard is a family oriented organization, however, at the same time we strive for that "true camp experience".  Therefore, our civilian members camp only in the area designated for Mifflin Guard Civilians.  At most events this camping area is in very close proximity to the military, but not close enough to interfere with the authentic military camp set up.  As with Civilian dress, there are also some guidelines to keep in mind while camping.

First and foremost - FIRE SAFETY:

We ask all civilians in our camp not to use straw around the tents or fire pits.  There used to be a widespread practice of insulating the tent by surrounding it with straw.   Unfortunately, at the Neshaminy event in 1998 (I think it was 1998) there was a fire in which six civilian tents and all of their contents were lost.  Thankfully, there were no injuries, however the potential was there.  This fire may have been caused by children playing with straw near a fire pit and dropping it, causing fire to travel right up to the tents.  For this reason, we have decided not to use straw around the tents or fire pits in the MG Civilian camp. 

Now, on with the guidelines...

  • Furnish with wooden furniture (non-period folding chairs or tables are not acceptable)

  • Period lighting for after dark.  Wooden candle lanterns and candles are available through period sutlers.   Oil lamps are also acceptable.  Please no battery operated lights or modern lanterns

  • Period cooking and eating utensils, i.e. cast iron cookware (preferably plain with no brand names on top), silverware or wooden/bone handled eating utensils and dishes (no paper plates or plastic utensils), fabric napkins, etc.

  • Conceal non-period coolers, food containers and snack packages with some sort of period-looking cover

  • Trash bags and containers are necessary but must also be covered (and elevated if possible - we are usually where there could be animals!)

  • If your tent will be open at times during an event, all non-period items must be concealed from the public inside as well as outside of the tent.  If you cannot conceal, please keep your tent closed from public viewing



Propriety in Camp

There are a few guidelines that we do keep during events.  These are for the benefit of all in camp and should be adhered to at all possible times.

  • All civilians should be dressed in appropriate period attire by 9:00 am (unless the event opens earlier or event rules dictate 24/7 dress)

  • All civilians are to remain in period attire until they retire for the night

  • Appropriate period dress is required - covering all underpinnings

  • Hair should be appropriately dressed or confined

  • Avoid modern slang terms and modern conversation in the presence of the public (i.e. computer discussions and email)

  • Civilians should not enter the Military camp without an escort and a specific purpose

  • Children are most welcome in the Civilian Camp but should be limited to the Civilian Camp and should not be visiting Military camp

  • Children are the responsibility of their parents unless prior agreeable arrangements have been made

  • Children should have period style toys and games to occupy them (instead of plastic modern ones).  If this is an issue, the Civilian Coordinator does have some period toys to loan.  (Arrangements must be made in advance as we do not carry them to all events.)


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