35th Regiment of Foot
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"The Ladies Roundtable"

Role of Women, Children and various other camp followers

Members of the 35th Regiment of Foot are not limited to the soldiers and officers of the unit.  As the saying goes, behind every successful man there is a capable woman! 

The "ladies" of the 35th as well as those who serve as non-combatants in the role of Regimental Surgeon, Surgeon's Mates, Seamstress and Laundresses, etc. all serve a very vital and important role in providing a well-rounded interpretation of life during the French & Indian War.

Especially in camp, our unit serves as a historical educational tool for visitors.  It is imperative that we portray our time period and unit effectively and authentically.  To this end, strict adherence to authenticity and period appearances are upheld to every extent possible.

Our living history unit thrives on the diversity of its membership as well as the commaraderie that comes from everyone sharing in camp duties and responsbilities. 

With this in mind, we offer a complete guidebook for camp followers/distaff that outlines appropriate clothing, hairstyles, shoes, jewelry, etc. for the period.  It also provides excellent ideas for interpretation of skills, activities and camp chores that would have been done.  We also provide members with an extensive list of resource web sites and bibilographies for further study.  Our more seasoned camp followers serve as mentors and work with new members to teach them period skills, sewing techniques, crafts and trades.

Just for the ladies we host informal:
        Sewing workshops to make specific projects that can enhance your wardrobe
        Offer sessions on learning how to cook and bake period recipies over the open fire
        Host ladies socials to discuss 18th Century topics of interest to distaff
        Organize periodic "field trips" to historic sites,  fabric shops, etc. during off season

Once again new members in the camp follower category are requested to NOT go ahead and purchase what they feel are appropriate garments, fabrics for sewing, etc. until they review this orientation manual with the distaff coordinator.  Most times it is preferable to take a senior member along to go shopping for "your kit or appropriate period fabrics" at an event.  This saves you time and money!

In general, the following is a "Basic Kit" for women joining the unit.  Again-- if you are new to the hobby a member will assist you in procuring the right items.  Please do not assume since a sutler is selling something that it is correct for our time period or regiment.  It's something we have all been guilty of and hope to avoid perpetuating!

THE BASIC "KIT" for Women
Camp stool
Period Wool Blanket or cloak (w-ties/no pewter clasps)
Period eating utensils, bowl, plate and cup
Linen Shift (2)
Linen and/or wool petticoat (2)
Linen neck scarf (plain or small checks)
Stays or jumps
Pair of pockets worn under petticoat
Fitted jacket (wool or linen)
Apron (linen or wool)
Stockings (wool or repro cotton style)
hat & period linen cap
Period style shoes
Day gown (linen)

Est. cost of basic kit if purchased off rack:  (we give instructions for make-yourself to save you lots of $$)
$400-$800
*Note:  the unit and some members may have items that can be "loaned" to new members for a few events in the beginning during their get aquainted time to reduce costs of getting started.

CLICK HERE to access our pages dedicated to "The Soldiers"

To discuss more about what camp life is like in the 35th Regiment please contact our Distaff Coordinator
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