History buffs, collectors and sellers camped out at the Landers Center on Saturday for the 55th Mid-South Military History & Civil War Show.
Tables and tables filled with pewter types, muskets, cannonballs, arrowheads, newspapers, uniforms, posters, photographs, bullets, sabers and war medals, all centered on the American Civil War of 1861-1865, were on display at the show.
Andy Lamanna and his 10-year-old son, John Corbitt, of Memphis, saw the advertised show at the Landers Center freeway marquee on Saturday morning and decided to stop by.
John Corbitt has said he is a fan of Civil War history and hopes to one day be a war re-enactor.
“We wanted to see all the military equipment,” Andy said. “My son is an aficionado.”
John Corbitt said he had his own collection at home and was looking to expand it.
“I have World War II stuff but I want to branch out into other wars,” John Corbitt said. “That’s kind of what I’m trying to do. I like muskets and battlefields. It’s my favorite weapon from that (Civil War) period.”
Art Edinger, traveled from his home outside of Louisville, Kentucky, to Southaven to display and sell his collection of pewter types and photographs he had collected since childhood.
“I’ve probably been collecting for almost 40 years,” Edinger said. “Photographs are one of my main focuses. That and letters from soldiers. As a child, I always had an interest in the Civil War. I remember visiting an aunt who had a sword standing in around the corner or to a relative who rode with (Nathan Bedford) Forrest. I remember ordering my first Civil War bullet in the mail in the 1960s. I picked up an item here and there. Next thing you know , is that I am a collector.
Edinger said his wife and mother-in-law are from Memphis and can visit family while he is at the show.
“I bought a few things and sold a few things, I really like seeing all the other collectors,” Edinger said.
Other vendors in attendance showcased a different side of Civil War life, such as Cody C. Engdahl. The author and violinist was installed at the event to promote his book series and play music for attendees.
“I’m originally from Detroit, worked in TV reporting and decided to continue my book series in historical fiction. The audience is already there, for Civil War history, I centered my work around a Michigan regiment.”
Engdahl, who lives in Nashville, self-published her series and plays the violin, which added a festive atmosphere to the event.
A series of conferences was also organized and presented by Red Oak Capital Management.
Judge John Fogleman spoke about the Sultana Riverboat disaster and efforts to create a museum. Other speakers included Shelby Harriel-Hildebaugh who spoke about her book, “Behind the Rifle, Women Soldiers in Civil War Mississippi,” and Mark Vogl who spoke about “Dixie’s Greatest Secret, An Introductory History of the Confederate Navy.”