CHALMETTE, LA (WVUE) - For the first time in 200 years, British and American troops are about to do battle on a field in Chalmette. The Louisiana Living History Foundation has organized this first-ever battle reenactment.
We have American troops drilling and we have the camp of the British soldiers. The area in Chalmette - a newly created battlefield - is beginning to take on the feel of military camps from 200 years ago.
Both the British and American reenactors are in full uniform and character as they prepare for a series of large-scale battles. At the original battle of New Orleans, the British troops were commanded by Gen. Edward Pakenham. Today, several of his descendants are visiting with the troops.
"A lot of times, the person that's considered that lost the war, lost the battle, may not have been at a certain level or did something wrong," said Sean Pakenham, first cousin fifth removed of the general. "But in New Orleans, that's celebrated - the fact that he came and he fought is celebrated. Both sides are celebrating, it's not one or the other. And to me that's incredible. I don't know if that would actually happen everywhere else."
About 1,500 reenactors are involved in the events in Chalmette. They'll be staging their first battle Friday (Jan. 9) at 7 p.m., and it's fair to say that these troops will be celebrating the 200th anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans with quite a bang.