Saturday, December 01, 2012


My son says that it's been sew-sew. lately, getting ready for an encampment.  He is a reenactor of 18th century life in Louisiana.  The French had an outpost at Natchitoches, the end of the supply chain, and it was manned by French Marines.  Nothing else French extended to the west.  Posted there to stop Spanish encroachment,the French Marines faced the Spanish fort to the west, Los Adaes, was also at the end of the that supply chain.  Separated by a scant 20 miles, each of them several thousands of miles from their headquarters and several hundreds of miles from the nearest reinforcements, the two forts learned that trade was mutually beneficial.

They also had families.  Soldiers bring their families with them, or they court the local settlers and before long you've got a thriving little community. That's truly how America was built.  When the clothes wore out, or the season changed, the settlers did what they had to do, trading with the local Caddo Indians, making their own clothing, being self-sufficient was not only a way of life, it was the best way to stay alive.

I took the long way around to show you a project my son has completed for the encampment next weekend.  A whole bunch of reenactors will man Fort St. Jean Baptiste in Natchitoches during the weekend of December 7-9th as part of the annual Christmas Festival.  The boy-o needed suitable clothing to become a re-enactor and part of the living history celebration, so like the French Marines who populated the place, my son made the boy-o a Capote. You can make them fancy, and you can make them plain, but there's a lot to like in a well-made, sturdy Capote.  You can even spend $500.00 on one.  I much prefer the home-made versions.

I think it looks great, don't you?  Heavy wool is probably the very best coat material and I'm convinced the boy-o will be fine at the encampment next weekend.

I wonder if they need to borrow a propane heater?

1 comment:

Old NFO said...

Very nice, and I'd put the heater on standby :-)