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American Civil War Diorama Ideas?


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I recently picked up a book by Ken Burns that accompanied a series about the American Civil War and was inspired to make a diorama, any ideas? 

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Can’t help with diorama ideas, but ICM and Masterbox make some good looking figure sets in 1/35.

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Cottage Industry Models used to have a lot of relevant kits, including quite a few ironclads and cannons. The old site is gone, but you might be able to find some of their kits online.

Perhaps try https://www.agesofsail.com/, but I don't know anything more than what Google showed me.

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I posted a clip called God's and Generals in Classic Clips on the last page where a Union and Confederate meet up to exchange baccy and coffee,if you're willing to have a go at water i reckon it'd be worth a go...

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There are Civil War figures in lots of wargame scales.

 

Kallistra.co.uk make 12mm figures and accessories (around 1/144) if you wanted to make a battle scene.

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Be sure to include Elisha Hunt Rhodes or Sam Watkins ;) 

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Shelby Foote is probably the most accurate writer of Civil War history, and was quoted often in Ken Burns’ series. 
 

Don’t forget the urban areas, which had also seen a lot of action. 
Lots of chances to use brick dwellings, barns, log structures etc. 

Not to mention wooded wilderness and rocky outcrops. 

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22 hours ago, Longbow said:

... 

Not to mention wooded wilderness and rocky outcrops. 

Maybe even The Wilderness? Seems to me there was a great variety of battlefields over there - fields of cotton, a stone bridge, trench systems at Petersburg VA...  

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  • 2 weeks later...

I live in an area where there were numerous civil war battles.  One thing I think would be a cool diorama is one or two cannon crews behind either primitive earthworks or a stone wall.  As Longbow mentioned, there are lots of opportunities for barns, small cabins, brick houses, etc.  There were also various styles of wooden fences that would be cool details in a diorama.  Many of the battles were in wooded areas or on small farms.  There was a small primitive church at the Shiloh battlefield that would be interesting in a model.  Many of the big battlefields are preserved with good information on the national park service website www.nps.gov

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The National Park Service and American Battlefield Trust post some excellent videos on YouTube.

As does the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum if you want lectures and inspiration.

Dr Mark de Pue is a cracking historian.

A fascinating subject.

Try Historex Agents and FeR Miniatures for 54mm scale figures.

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It depends on what you want to model. There were certainly stand up fights between lines of soldiers, but as the war progressed, hastily or less than hastily prepared defenses became common, so a typical battle scene would have one side charging the other hiding behind walls/in trenches. There's a lot of good references on defensive engineering of the time, and following those you can make something a little more enlightening and a little less Hollywood.

 

I strongly recommend picking a particular engagement because it will focus your work. For example, if you want to model buildings, then I would look up the Battle of Franklin, a very late war attack by the Confederates against a Union occupied town where buildings and walls between them formed the fortifications. It can be a very dynamic image of people trying to go over and through the structures and it could work at any scale/scope.

 

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