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Prince William County Historic Preservation Division offers summer learning and fun in 2017

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At the end of the Prince William County school year, the Historic Preservation Division is gearing up for Summer Camps at Brentsville.

In addition to the popular Civil War Camp, Civil War Advanced Camp, and the Civil War Home Front Camp, We ae offering Camps for older participants this year. All historic Camps can be found in Summer 2017  Leisure Magazine and registration can be completed online by going to or by calling 703-792-8320.

The 2017 season starts with the ever popular Civil War Basic Camp. This Camp will be held at Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre from July 17th through the 21st and is conducted from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. for children aged 8 to 12. Campers participate in activities designed to develop a better understanding of soldier life during the American Civil War. Activities include enlisting in Virginia’s Army, life in camp, infantry drill, “Did Civil War Soldiers really eat that stuff,” Civil War Medicine, and a field trip to Manassas Battlefield Park. The cost is $130 per person.

“On the Home Front” is to be held at Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre from July 24th to the 28th from 9 a.m. to noon. From 1861 to 1865 our nation was at war with itself. Many of the men were away fighting while civilian populations tried to maintain as much a sense of normalcy as possible.

The purpose of this camp is to give both girls and boys aged 8 to 13 a unique opportunity to participate in many of the activities that civilians would have done on a day to day basis. Activities include 19th Century fishing, early games, Games and other pass times, needlework, a day on the farm to include live animals and tending the garden, making ice cream, cooking biscuits and making butter, fashions, a Friday picnic on the grounds. The cost is $150 per person.

A new camp for the 2017 season is the Civil War Explorer Camp. This is an all day, camp 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., for participants between the ages of 13 and 16. Our base of operation will be Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre.

This camp was designed to give participants who are too old to participate in the Civil War Basic and Advanced Camps. This camp will incorporate service projects and field trips to sites of historic significance in the area and give participants an opportunity to gain a greater understanding of how these sites are remembered and commemorated for future generations. We plan to visit Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park and Arlington National Cemetery. We also plan to conduct a service project at Bristoe Station Battlefield Heritage Park. The cost is $200 per person for this all day camp.

Civil War Advanced Camp held at Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre from August
14-18 from 9 a.m. to noon picks up where the Basic Camp ends. Children will participate in activities built on the fundamentals learned during the Basic Camp.

Participants will drill their peers, learn artillery drill, explore officer and noncommissioned officer responsibilities, spend time with officers and civilians of the Civil War, and take a field trip to Manassas National Battlefield Park. Participants who wish to take this camp should strongly consider taking the Civil War Basic Camp first.

The camp is opened to participants aged 8 to 13. The cost per camper is $150.

History Explorer Camp will be held at Ben Lomond Historic Site on August 15 through 19 for children aged 8 to 12. This is an all day camp from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Participants will travel to a different county historic site each day and learn of county history through a series of hands-on activities. Monday is Rippon Lodge, Tuesday Barnes House and Lucasville School, Wednesday, Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre, Thursday, The American Civil War, and Friday, Bristoe Station Battlefield Heritage Park.

For details about this camp, contact Paige Gibbons Backus either online @ or by phone at 703-367-7872. The cost per person for this day-long camp is $300. Campers will need to pack two snacks and lunch daily.

“So You Want to be A Civil War Soldier Camp” is designed to give participants an opportunity to use the skill learned during the Civil War Basic and Advanced Camp. This is an overnight camp for young folks aged 13 to 16 and a parent.

The camp is to be held August 19th and 20 at Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre. Participants will enlist, learn how to set a camp, drill, set pickets, prepare meals using issued rations, go through camp inspections and operate camp like a soldier of 1861-1865 would have.

Campers will report for enlistment at 9 a.m. on Saturday, August 19th and will be released at 12:00 noon on Sunday, August 20th. The cost of this camp is $250 per parent and child. Additional children will be charged $100 extra.

Brentsville Courthouse Historic Centre is located at 12229 Bristow Road, Bristow, Virginia 20136 and Ben Lomond Historic Site is located at 10321 Sudley Manor Drive, Manassas, Virginia 20109. For additional information on the Camps contact David M. Born, Historic Programs Coordinator at 703.792.5618 or online at .

All camps require registration and can be achieved by calling 703.792.8320, or online at

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