Hesse-Kassel Jäger Korps
Living History Information

The basis of each event you will attend, regardless if it has a battle re-enactment, will be a living history demonstration, which is illustrating daily life in the 18th century. Reenactors at these events participate in living history by setting up campsites, cooking, maintaining equipment and sitting around the campfire socializing just as any military unit did in the 1780's.

Most of the interaction with the public takes place in the campsite so it's just as important to have the right clothing and equipment in the campsite as on the battlefield. Visitors are curious about everything so don't be surprised if you're asked just as many questions about your tent or bed as about your weapons. For this reason many re-enactors enjoy living history more than re-enacting battles, it provides them with the opportunity to share their knowledge.

Unlike modern military units, wives and families of military personnel were included in the camps and moved along with the unit. For this reason most re-enactor units include and encourage family members to participate in the unit activities. With living history being the largest part of events, family members can get just as involved in the event as the military members, with answering visitor's questions and giving demonstrations. And for those ladies that are not part of a family but would like to come out and enjoy the activities, you are more than welcome to come out with the unit as a Necessary Woman or as a campfollower.

Living history is not an expensive hobby to get started in, especially during the 18th century, as you can make much of your own clothes and equipment. Clothing for the 1770's and 80's is simple to make and, as many people in this time period made their own clothing, doesn't have to look professional. Some items of equipment, such as tents and cooking utensils, can be purchased from sutlers while other items you can make yourself depending on you woodworking skills. Talk to members of the unit you wish to join to find out if they have special equipment requirements before you start buying.

Once you have found the type of unit you would like to join, find out what requirements the group has for people to join. Some groups have few requirements and are eager to help people get started in the hobby while other groups will require you to have all your equipment before joining. Most groups have websites where you can find out what is required to join and what equipment would be needed, along with information about the group. It would be best to look for a group that is open about helping newcomers, allowing them to dress out with the unit a few times or had loaner equipment for new members. If you are not sure about joining a group but would like to do some living history, check with a historical site in your area, many would welcome people to help out.

If you are interested in becoming a reenactor and would like to learn more about the Hessian Jägers, take a look at our recruiting page.

Questions on Joining the Jägers? recruiting@jaegerkorps.org

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