THOMASVILLE — Staff report
Re-enacting is fun and helps to bring history back to life.When Sheila and Bruce Tucker re-enact they do it for even more reasons.
They re-enact for the dignity, respect and remembrance that can be shown to honor their ancestors who helped to mold this great nation. The Tuckers have been re-enacting for several years. Matter of fact that was how they met.
This is the 150th year for remembering the Battle of Olustee. It was fought Feb. 20, 1864, when the Confederate and Union troops clashed in the only major War Between the States fought on Florida soil.
This re-enactment pays homage to the 2,807 troops from both sides that laid on the battlefield either dead or wounded following five hours of gunfire, cannon shots and strategic troop movements.
A total of 1,861 Union troops were injured or killed in the battle-203 killed,1,152 wounded and 506 missing. The Union lost five cannons,1,600 rifles, 400 sets of accouterments, and 130,00 rounds of ammunition.The ratio of Union casualties to the number of troops involved made this the third bloodiest battle of the War for the Union.
Confederate losses were 93 killed, 847 wounded and six missing, totaling 946.
The battle, a Confederate victory, signaled the end of Union efforts to restore Florida to the Union.
The Olustee Battle Re-enactment has been held for 38 years.
The Tuckers believe it is important to commemorate the 150th Battle of Olustee, as well as other battles; because, if we do not commemorate it, then it will be forgotten.We do not want to forget; because, it is part of our heritage.