First Nebraska Infantry stands guard at National Guard Museum


The First Nebraska Volunteer Infantry Regiment Company A spent the night on July 3 to spend the following day speaking with guests outside of the Nebraska National Guard Museum in Seward.

The infantry is a group of civil war reenactors dedicated to providing accurate information and learning the history of this moment in America.

Having spent the night before, the reenactors shared how they loved the museum and that it’s one of their favorites.

“It doesn’t come alive like the movies tell you,” said Paul Lahowetz, captain of the infantry. “We’ve spent many nights in this museum and it’s always a treat.”

Lahowetz said this is a way he and many others show their respect and dedication to America. 

“The most important thing to me is it’s a way for me to show my patriotism,” Lahowetz said. “I was unable to join the military, so this is how I serve.”

The National Guard Museum is not their only stop along the way. Lahowetz and the rest of the reenactors said they have traveled far and wide across the continental United States in rain, sun and even snow. Last year, the group went to a reenactment in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

With varying weather conditions this Fourth of July, Lahowetz said no weather condition is perfect for wearing thick wool. However, the solution to overheating comes by wearing a linen shirt under the wool jackets so when a breeze comes by, you get a sense of relief.

“When you’re in formation and a wind comes down, you know it’s coming because you hear the sighs coming down the line,” Lahowetz said.

Even when the rain began in the morning, Lahowetz and the rest of the infantry huddled under their tent.

“There’s nothing like wet wool,” Lahowetz said. 

Putting aside the hot or wet outfits, Lahowetz said one of his favorite parts about days like the Fourth of July is getting to talk to people interested in knowing more.

“We’re here to help teach people about the history – little things you wouldn’t even think about,” Lahowetz said. “Since we pretty much live it and learn it the hard way, it’s fun to pass along those little trinkets.”

The group is always looking for new members. Regardless of age or gender, anyone can suit up and reenact alongside them, according to Lahowetz.