Special Interests - Groups & Societies > The American Plainsmen Society

The American Plainsmen Society


Caleb Hobbs:
Back in the 1980s there was a letter to the editor in, I think, Muzzleloader Magazine, lamenting the fact that there were no organizations for people interested in the period after the fur trade, the 1840s, 1850s, and 1860s, when men carried revolvers and Hawken rifles, but before the rise of cowtowns or the coming of the plow. That letter sparked quite an image for me, and I hung onto that issue of the magazine for a long time. Fact is, I probably still have it, buried somewhere in the room where I keep my research material.

I didn't have to the means to do anything about it then, but when a post on the CASCity Historical Society board commented on "Why is this period so completely ignored," and there seemed to be quite a bit of interest in the issue, I thought now might be the time. The original question was posted on May 17, 2011. I waited until August to see if anyone else was going to step forward, then posted my own query, asking if there was enough interest to see this grow into a legitimate group. After receiving quite a few replies, I emailed Marshal Halloway and asked about a place of our own on CasCity. He responded in the affirmative, and made it happen.

The American Plainsmen Society, as I envision it, is a group not unlike other groups which promote an emphasis on recreating a specific time frame, in this case, 1840 to 1865. Early on we'll meet here and share ideas and research. By next spring, at the latest, I'd like to see regular Postal Matchs, and  I hope we can sponsor 1840-1865 shooting matches and encampments. This will take time, of course, but I've already had several offers of help, which will make things simplier and quicker to organize.

We'll have our own website in the not-too-distant future, and we will eventually have a committee of some kind to make the larger decisions. For the time being, those decisions will be made by the moderator, but I assure you it isn't a job he wants to hang onto forever, nor would it be good for the growth of the group if he did.

But in the meantime, as we firm up our own rules, and for people who are wondering where we envision this going and perhaps wondering if it would be something they might be interested in, I'd suggest checking out groups like the National Congress of Old West Shootists (especially their Level  One of Authenticity, at http://www.ncows.org/outfit1.html, or the Grand Army of the Frontier. While both of these organizations adhere to different time frames, their committment to accurately portraying their chosen period is what we are after here.

In the coming days and weeks, we'll be adding more information. Until we get these firmed up, I'd like to hear what others are thinking as far as firearms, clothing and equipment, the development of personas, types of shooting matches (no timers!).

I'll readily admit The American Plainsmen Society won't be for everyone, but I think with a little patience and hard work, we can put together a fine organization.


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