Museum of Culture and Natural History teaches children about Civil War

Mock Civil War uniforms hang in a line at the back of the one-room school house Tuesday morning, waiting for 'soldiers' as part of a Civil War exhibit currently at the Museum of Cultural and Natural History. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

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Offering a day of fun and American history, Central Michigan University's College of Humanities and Social and Behavioral Sciences partnered with CMU’s Museum of Culture and Natural History to teach children about the Civil War.

Children from kindergarten to the eighth grade got the chance to dress in Civil War uniforms, received training on how to use a musket and learned the basics of old-school military marching.

The event was held at the Gerald R. Poor Museum, located at the corner of Preston Street and West Campus Drive.

All photos and captions by Taryn Wattles, Central Michigan Life staff photographer. Visit to view more of her work and other photo essays by other CM Life photographers.


"Do you know anyone who went to a one-room schoolhouse?" asks Sheree Hall, Event Coordinator for the Museum of Cultural and Natural History, to the kids and parents of the Civil War activity inside the Bohannon One-Room Schoolhouse. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

Katie Schroeder, an anthropology major, travels back in time to the Civil War era Tuesday morning becoming Lt. McCoy for a Civil War activity put on by the Museum of Natural History and the College of Humanities and Social and Behavioral Sciences. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

Isaac Finch, 8, of Mt. Pleasant, signs his name on a mock Civil War enlistment form during the Civil War activity at the Bohannon One-Room Schoolhouse put on by the Museum of Cultural and Natural History Tuesday morning. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

Alyssa Dunn, of Mt. Pleasant, places a piece of paper with the number '16' in her shoe during the Civil War kids activities Tuesday morning. Because you had to be of age to join the army, and honesty is the best policy, recruits back then wrote "16" on a piece of paper and placed it in their shoes, making them "over 16" and eligible to sign up for the Civil War. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

"What do the stars represent?" asks Katie Schroeder, a.k.a Lt. McCoy, as she holds up an American Flag from the Civil War era. Along with different activities, volunteers also imparted facts about the war and Michigan's part in it.(Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

Isaac Finch, 5, of Mt. Pleasant, examines a Mini? ball, or a Civil War era bullet during one of the activities Tuesday morning during the Civil War exhibit. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

Federal reserve notes equaling their respective amounts of silver, postcards, and steel gun pellets were just some of the items in a war 'knapsack' that kids participating in the Civil War activity were able to pick up and examine. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

"How long do you think you can hold it?" asks "Captain" Daniel Hills as WIlliam Dunn, 7, of Mt. Pleasant struggles to hold up a 10 pound replica musket as part of the activities surrounding the Civil War exhibit Tuesday morning inside the Bohannon One-Room Schoolhouse. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

Hardtack crackers, a cousin of sorts to the common saltine, were crackers made before, during and after the Civil War era. They fed soldiers on the front line and kept well in the days before preservatives. Sheree Hall, Event Coordinator for the Museum of Cultural and Natural History, gave out pieces of the cracker for the kids to taste. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

"Captain" Daniel Hills and Katie Schroeder, also known as "Lt. McCoy" teach children how to properly march around the Bohannon One-Room Schoolhouse during a Civil War activity Tuesday morning. Kids participated in different activities, beginning with "signing" up for the war, trying out mock civil war uniforms and tasting hardtack, a cracker that many soldiers ate during the war. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)

A Civil War era flag on display next to a mock Civil War uniform. The flag has Michigan cities Shiloh and Metamora inscribed on the stripes. (Taryn Wattles | Staff Photographer)


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