To some history is simply a bunch of boring dates and places stuffed into a set of dusty volumes to read and soon be forgotten. To the members of the American Longrifle Association, history is something to be relived. The American Longrifle Association (A.L.R.A.) is an organization designed for those people who want to do more than only read about the early years of our country's history. It is an organization that encourages its members to experience the lives of common colonial people.
In 1982 a group of men, with a common interest in the 'long hunter' era of 1750 until 1815, came together and formed an organization which promoted the spirit of adventure through historic re-enactment, research and fellowship. They created a set of by-laws that centered around three important points. First and foremost we encourage historic accuracy by requiring clothing, rifle and gear to duplicate those items that used in the American Frontier. Second, we stress safety and marksmanship with the rifle which was the preferred weapon of the pioneers, the flintlock rifle. Third, we promote self sufficiency by offering levels of honor bestowed on members who learn or develop certain skills of the past and participate in outdoor treks or canoe journeys.
It is the heart of the A.L.R.A. to emulate the lives of our forefathers. To do this we clothe ourselves in their fashion, arm ourselves with their flintlock longrifles and some learn and practice the skills and crafts of old.
Although we fit well into the category known as 'Living Historians,' we as an organization do more than only demonstrations at public events. Together we participate in adventurous treks that help us understand the difficulties of our country's wilderness.
To the members of the A.L.R.A., historic accuracy is the best way to truly get the feel of just how our forefathers lived. Some members are so serious about their research that they have their items custom made to copy pieces found in museums. Others, although keeping with historic accuracy, will purchase their gear from companies who offer good quality yet affordable reproductions.
New members begin by selecting a specific time period between 1750 and 1815, and they choose a specific colonial location and nationality background to represent. By choosing the when, where, and what you are representing, members can then concentrate their studies on subjects in the area which highly interests them. Our members represent a diverse group of people from wide range of places and occupations throughout the American Colonies. Hunting Scouts of the Ohio river valley, Settlers in the Carolina's, Militiamen in New England, a printer from Williamsburg and even sailors from the east coast are but a few of our member's choices.
As one's skills develop and their research increases, they can gain additional ranks of honor within the organization. After a new member completes their initial stage they become Patriots. As their skills increase and they complete various requirements, they will gain additonal levels of honor. Part of our joy as a living history organization is that we work and share together, we discover new information and experience many new and exciting things.
We invite you to join us and share in our fun as we explore and experience the lifestyles of our proud heritage. If you are one who loves our country's history, then let us help you experience their lifestyle.
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