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Take a Virtual Tour

Before you visit, enjoy a preview of the various rooms in the Drum Barracks Civil War Museum.

Barracks Room



The barracks beds for enlisted men, which were called "cribs" were built by hand, using no nails, according to the 1860 Army Barracks Regulations. They were built and donated by Wayne Sherman. Each bed would have two mattresses on the top and two more on the bottom, filled with straw. They appear short to us today; the average Civil War soldier was somewhere between 5 feet 7 inches and 5 feet 7-1/2 inches high.

The reenactor uniforms and some of the equipment are from the estate of Robert Burke, a devoted Drum Barracks docent, and a valued member of the 116th Penn. Infantry, Co. D.

Display cases hold personal items, newspapers of the time and currency from both North and South.

The Barracks Room displays were designed and installed by Wayne Sherman, Earl Robinson and Toni Van Beveran.

Barracks Room Highlights

  • The beds are strong and sturdy, yet are made without nails.
  • At the beginning of the Civil War, you could use your own portrait on money and it was legal. By the end of the war, it was no longer legal.
  • The average soldier weighed about 140 pounds.
  • Sometimes the soldiers were ordered to sleep "head to foot" as doctors searched for ways that disease traveled from one person to another. Germs had not yet been discovered.