Lufkin boy brings Civil War to school

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - One Brandon Elementary fifth grader had the chance to show off his weekend hobby to his school Monday. Oliver Nickle spent the day re-enacting the Civil War with his father and the third Texas cavalry during the school's exploratory learning day.

The 11-year-old has been re-enacting the Civil War across the U.S. all of his life. It's a joy for him to learn his nation's history with his father Dyson Nickle who has been a Civil War re-enactor for the past thirty years.

"Our hobby is living history. We do mostly nineteenth century cavalry, the American Civil War, and we go to events all over the United States portraying Texas cavalry men or union cavalry men during the war to put on historical reenactments for educational purposes," Dyson Nickle said.

Monday, the father and son duo showed Brandon Elementary students how weapons were used during the Civil War and how a soldier would have lived during the nineteenth century.

"It's pretty cool for my friends to get to see what I do and everything," Oliver Nickle said.

The fifth grader gets the chance to travel several times a year dressing up as a cavalry man. His performance at Brandon was the first time he had the chance to show his classmates why he loves doing this.

" I like being able to reenact, sleep outside, and camp," Oliver Nickle said.

Students learned what it was like sleeping on the battlefield and had the chance to listen to music that soldiers heard at different campsites during the war.

The Nickles both play Civil War third Texas calvary characters. They said they have the opportunity throughout the year to teach and reach students by showing them history first-hand.

"They're physically out here looking at it, seeing it and hopefully that's going to again bring it to life," Dyson Nickle said.

In April, the Nickles will horseback to Pleasant Hill, Louisiana for the annual re-enactment of the largest Civil War engagement that occurred west of the Mississippi.

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