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‘School of the Soldier’ this weekend in Ste. Genevieve

History buffs and those interested in local culture will want to get to Ste. Genevieve this weekend for the annual “Ecole du Soldat,” or “School of the Soldier.”

The event will take place at both the Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center and Moses Austin Park on Saturday and Sunday, with presentations, lectures and reenactments of French Colonial life in the Mississippi River Valley and the region at large.

The event will get underway at 9 a.m. Saturday, with multiple presentations made throughout the day, including “French Culture on the Frontier,” “Braddock’s Defeat and the Fate of the French Empire in North America” and “The Dyes That Bind: Trade with Indigenous Allies.”

David Preston, author of “Braddock’s Defeat: The Battle of the Monongahela and the Road to Revolution,” will also be present and signing books.

The presentations will take place at the welcome center, while demonstrations on natural dyeing and resurfacing musket barrels will take place at the campsite in Moses Austin Park.

In the afternoon, attendees can meet with reenactors at the campsite for demonstrations on French Colonial and militia life. At 2 p.m., a public heritage auction will be held, featuring “desirables,” including memorabilia, collectibles, accoutrements, utensils and “watch-a-may-call-its.”

A roundtable discussion will take place Sunday before the camp breaks down.

The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Sunday. The event is free to attend, but registration is requested to plan seating. To RSVP, call the Ste. Genevieve Welcome Center at 573-883-7097.

This weekend's

This weekend’s “Ecole du Soldat” or “School of the Soldier” will consist of appearances by the local French militia reenactors and historical presentations on French Colonial life.

Jacob Scott is a reporter with the Daily Journal. He can be reached at 573-518-3616 or at

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