About Us


The Union Army of the West organization is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit group of Civil War Re-Enacting Units from Southern California. We are here to educate the children and adults about the war that divided, and nearly tore apart, our nation. To accomplish our goals, we set out multiple times a month to demonstrate how the soldiers of the Union Army lived and fought. Whether we are at a school in the San Diego Area, teaching students how to march and cook their own food, or on the fields of the Simi Valley, camping out and fighting back the Confederates, we strive to give the most period correct atmosphere we can possibly give.


But what lies at the core of our hobby? Is it a thirst for more knowledge? An idea of preserving history by showing it to people in living form? A sense of family pride, to honor ancestors who fought in the war? Or is it just to be close to friends and family in a way ten times more fun than any sport there is? For many of us, it is all of these reasons and more.


The Union Army of the West was initially formed in February of 2010, and was later incorporated in June of 2013. We formed to unite all of the individual re-enacting units into a cohesive group to facilitate communication, logistics, improve tactics and leadership, provide a period correct atmosphere in the camps, and to make the Union re-enactors proud of their army. The Army has grown from an original 7 units to its current membership of 20 units. We formed primarily for four reasons:

  1. The Union Army has at least six commanders since the year 2000. This caused many problems as the Union units struggled to adjust to multiple commanders. Additionally, there was little communication among the units prior to re-enactment battles, which resulted in chaotic logistical arrangements.
  2. With the formation of the army, all units meet at an Annual Meeting in January of each year in order to decide on commanders, officers, and a schedule as a unified group of units.
  3. The individual units of the Union Army of the West desired to form their own 501(c)(3) non-profit corporations in order to derive the benefits, such as grants, and to obtain liability insurance.
  4. The Union Army, as a whole, wanted to become more professional in its appearance, with all three branches, Cavalry, Infantry, and Artillery, into a well meshed tactical combination that the public could view and appreciate the performance of at any Civil War event that the Army attends.

To achieve our success, the army operates with two components of governance. The first is a military side, consisting of all units, along with its Commanding Officer, Brigadier General Shane Padden, and the Branch Commanders and Battalion and Squadron Commanders. The second is the business side of the army is run by its Corporate Officers, with Chip Duncan as the President, who report to its Board of Directors, made up of all Unit Commanders of the individual member units.

Save the Union!

The time has come!

Defend your homeland, fight for what is right, and bring liberty and justice to the south! It is time for you to join the Union Army! Recrutment stations are available at any of our calendar events. Join the Cavalry, Infantry, Artillery, Band or an Auxillary. Don't just sit there, join the fight now!

Follow Us on Facebook!

Check out our Facebook page by clicking here, and follow us for updates on upcoming events and new developments.

Find out More!

To find out more about each individual unit, visit the Contact Us page or our Officers page.

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© Union Army of the West © Mike Rogers,Logo 2009