Thursday, November 19, 2009

Northeast Topographical Engineers

This blog is created for and devoted to the Northeast Topographical Engineers.   This is a Civil War Reenactment group specializing in the aspects of Mapping and Survey during the American Civil War.  In the days to come we will discuss the maps and plans of the NETE, as well as some of the ideas of the unit and some of the events and activities of the NETE.  This is the sixth year of this unit and the unit has reached at one time a total of twenty members.  The total at the present time is fifteen.  Both men and women can be a part of this reenactment unit.  Men coming in to the unit have the choice to be one of three portrayals:

--Officer in the "Topogs," beginning as a Second Lt. of Topographical Engineers;

--Enlisted Man beginning as a Corporal of Pioneers in an Infantry Unit;

--Civilian Engineer, under contract to the government.

A lady may join the unit as a contract worker for the government as any one of the following, artist, clerk, understudy to an engineer, map copier, etc.

The unit is a part of the Staff of the New England Federal Brigade, and also serves as the Staff for Lt. General U.S. Grant when he is in camp.

The Offices for the NETE are in Fort Trumbull, a pre-civil war coastal fortification guarding the entrance to the Thames River and the cities of New London and Groton, Connecticut.  The unit is currently engaged in restoration work in the fort and maintains a model and map display in the fort interior.

The unit hews to the two major tasks that we face in military reenactment:

1.  Tell the Commander where he was yesterday, where he is today, and where he will be tomorrow, and how he will get there;

2.  Build or destroy anything that the Commander wishes built or destroyed.

Our specialty, however, is sketch mapping of both the terrain on which the reenactment is being carried out, and providing copies / tracings of any historical maps of battles  / skirmishes that the reenactment activity is portraying.  We are also engaged in routine camp administration and the design of military engineering aspects such as bridges, corduroy roads, field fortifications field explosives, etc.


Ian McKay
Cdr. -- NETE 

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