Photos

Cabell retiree runs re-enactment group for students

Herald-Dispatch photo by Lori Wolfe  Retired teacher Mike Sheets is the founder of the Western Western Virginia Military Academy, an American Civil War exploratory club, and the Lizzie Cabell Finishing School for Young Ladies.
Herald-Dispatch photo by Lori Wolfe
Retired teacher Mike Sheets is the founder of the Western Western Virginia Military Academy, an American Civil War exploratory club, and the Lizzie Cabell Finishing School for Young Ladies.

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — When Mike Sheets started the Western Virginia Military Academy in 2008, he had very little to work with besides a few interested boys and a vision.

Since then, this American Civil War exploratory club has grown to more than 60 boys and girls from elementary, middle and high schools.

Now a retired teacher from Huntington Middle School, Sheets, 65, of Huntington, said he had participated in re-enactments from 1975 until about 2005.

As a social studies teacher, his passion for other time periods was known by many students and parents who had often approached him to start a re-enactment group for middle school students.

Sheets said when it came to re-enactment, students had to be at least 16 to participate and carry a rifle, therefore groups that cater to the younger crowd were few and far between.

“When we first got started we had nothing but movies, some books and my uniform,” he said.

While they started with very little, the group grew quickly…

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