One hundred and fifty years after the battle of Gettysburg and the impassioned speech by President Lincoln, Jean and Cynthia Buchen drove their Ford F-150 Lariat to the historic battlefield in Pennsylvania. Jean and Cynthia are Civil War reenactors. Their mission, Jean explained, is to “preserve the memory of the gallant men whose contribution, loyalty, integrity and sacrifice made us the nation we are today.”
Representing the 4th Maryland Light Artillery unit, the Buchens, of Pittsville, Maryland, participate in reenactments and events throughout Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia. They are dedicated to the preservation of history and to educating people about this war.
Their journey began in 1993 when they went to their first Civil War reenactment. They found the experience humbling: to smell the smoke fired from the cannons, witness the casualties lying on the ground. Cynthia noted, “Jean and I were overwhelmed with the losses, the sacrifices of men. We cried.” Afterward, they felt obligated to share this history and pay tribute to the soldiers. By re-creating battles, they hoped to bring the history to people firsthand.
Jean and Cynthia became cannoneers. What did this mean? They needed a truck able to haul a cannon weighing about 2,000 pounds, plus a 1,000-pound carriage with an ammunition chest containing shells, powder and supplies. They needed a vehicle they could count on. There was no doubt it would be a Ford.
In 2010, they bought an F-150 Lariat 4×4 in Royal Red Metallic with Pueblo Gold Metallic trim. They factory-ordered the truck to be equipped with a heavy-duty towing package.
For Jean and Cynthia, Ford is history, family history. “I was raised on a family farm,” Cynthia said. “My parents always owned Ford vehicles. Even at the age of 90, my father owns a 1996 F-150 and a 2013 F-150.”
Why choose a Ford today? Jean says it simply: “The Ford name. The reputation. Dependability. The safety it offers. The workload. The look. The comfort. The ride. The interior features. The way it sounds when you start the engine.”