Reenactors Revive 11 People From Clarinda's Past

Oct 12, 2017

This weekend citizens from a southwest Iowa community’s past will come back to life for the Nodaway Valley Historical Museum seventh annual cemetery walk.

Reenactors will revive 11 people buried in the Clarinda Cemetery. This isn’t a spooky event, but rather one that allows people from in and around Page County to learn about local history. 

Nodaway Valley Historical Museum curator Trish Okamoto says researching each of the departed takes about a year.

"The stories come from various places," she says. "Old obituaries, old records, to crumpled up pieces of newspaper that come in with other artifacts into the museum and there’s a story."

Okamoto will be portraying a country school teacher from the 19th Century named Phoebe Griffith who claims to have met a mermaid while touring Bermuda. A sea maiden may or may not make an appearance. 

This year’s cast of characters also includes three Civil War veterans who survived the Andersonville, Georgia prisoner-of-war camp where the Confederate Army held union soldiers. 

"They’re buried about two sections away from each other, the three gentlemen. So halfway in-between, there will be an old card table," she explains. "So the three gentlemen will be (sitting there) telling their story. And as the story progresses of course, the gentlemen pass through history. So that one will get up and walk away, and there will be one left."

The cost is $5 per person. Children are free.