Step into the Civil War era in S. Nevada

A Southern Nevada organization is teaching area residents to relive the history of the battlefield during the Civil War era.

Members of the Nevada Civil War History Association Inc. put on a monthly event at the Spring Mountain Ranch State Park — teaching attendees of all ages about weaponry of the Civil War period, how to march into battle and participating in a battle.

“We don’t consider ourselves re-enactors, as much as we do living history,” said Jim Edwards, senior infantry tactics instructor for the group.

The group came out to its normal meeting time in February, the last Saturday of each month, where a dozen participants came out. Edwards said they packed it in early that day, as the temperature was low, and the wind had picked up quite a bit.

Gatherings can sometimes attract hundreds, he said. The group has enough uniforms for 600 participants — plus those training the attendees.

Edwards said he tries to be authentic in the training methods used in the period.

“We do it two ways. We do training the way they would have done it back East — what they call the Army of Northern Virginia or the Army of the Potomac Standards,” he said.

Following training, attendees are split up into two groups: Confederate and Union soldiers, and a small battle is fought.

Edwards, and the rest of the group from the Nevada Civil War History Association, teaches participants about the 4th California Infantry Regiment, which does have a history in Nevada during the Civil War period.

One company of the 4th California Infantry was stationed at Fort Mohave late in the war, said Mark Hall-Patton, Clark County museums administrator.

Fort Mohave is located at the extreme southern end of the state, in the area where the Avi Resort &Casino sits today, Hall-Patton said.

The group has been teaching people of all generations in the Southern Nevada region since 2010.

The monthly event is free, though it’s $10 to enter Spring Mountain Ranch, which sits on Highway 159, just a few miles north of Blue Diamond Road in Las Vegas.

The event is normally scheduled from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the last Saturday of each month. For more information, or to see if an event has been canceled, head to the Nevada Civil War History Association’s Facebook page.

Contact reporter Jeffrey Meehan at

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