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Civil War Sesquicentennial calendar of events - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

Civil War Sesquicentennial calendar of events

ABOUT THE SESQUICENTENNIAL OBSERVANCE (1860 to 1865) – (2010 to 2015)

2010 to 2015 marks the Sesquicentennial of a historic series of events in our nation's history which altogether encompasses what we know as The Civil War. There is no joy to be found in a war that caused the deaths of over 620,000 Americans from the North and the South – who lived, fought and died for what they believed. However, there is much we can learn from them and from that extraordinary conflict, as the lessons of history are meant to be examined, understood, and applied. It is important to know that the Sesquicentennial is not a celebration but an observance of an event that changed the course of our nation's history. 

CENTERPIECE EVENTS

 

From Unity to Divided Nation: Fort Sumter Light Display. Symbolizing the division of our nation that began with a single cannon shot in Charleston Harbor, a dramatic light display at Fort Sumter will set the tone of the Sesquicentennial Observance, creating a stunning visual effect. Beginning at dusk April 9, the Fort will be bathed in a wash of light with a single beam of light emanating from the Fort, up to the sky. At 4:30am on April 12, coinciding with the exact moment of the first shot fired in the Lowcountry 150 years ago, the beam of light will split into 2 beams, signifying the division of the nation. At 6:45am, a star shell will be fired over the harbor. The lights will go out. The lights will again shine on the Fort April 12 from dusk til dawn on April 13. April 9-13, visible dusk to dawn daily. Produced by Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819. 

"Voices From the Civil War" Featuring Jay Ungar, Molly Mason and The Family Band with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, CSO Spiritual Chorale & Mt. Zion AME Spiritual Ensemble; Sean Newhouse, guest conductor; Mayor Joseph P. Riley, Jr., concert host. Program includes film score selections by Jay Ungar featured in the PBS Documentary, The Civil War, directed by Ken Burns; Aaron Copland's Lincoln Portrait for Orchestra, narrated by Charleston's visionary Mayor Joseph P. Riley, Jr.; a selection of Spirituals and a variety of music popular during the American Civil War period including Bonnie Blue Flag, Dixie, Battle Hymn of the Republic, and ending with Lift Every Voice and Sing. Renowned historians Edward L. Ayers and Barbara Jeanne Fields will give brief remarks. Mon. April 11 from 9-10:30pm; White Point Garden (The Battery), Murray Blvd. at East Bay St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs (843) 724-7305.  Sponsored by The Brand Foundation, Ms. Margaret O'Brien, Comcast, and All That's Good.  PLEASE NOTE: For special information regarding parking, transportation and street closures associated with the April 11 concert at White Point Garden, please visit www.SCCivilWar.org. 

Sunrise Concert: When Jesus Wept.  In observance of the moment the first shots of the Civil War were fired. 25-minute program features music for Brass Ensemble & Military Drum including a hymn by Colonial American composer William Billings and others. Tues. April 12 from 4:30-5am; White Point Garden Bandstand (The Battery), South Battery at Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs (843) 724-7305. 

Why They Fought: Reflections on the 150th Anniversary of the American Civil War. This lecture series presents commentary on a variety of topics associated with the causes leading up to the Civil War and the aftermath left behind. Guest lecturers include: Walter Edgar; Bernard E. Powers, Jr.; Barbara Bellows; Barbara Jeanne Fields; Gavin Wright; Catherine Clinton; Stephen Berry; Tony Horwitz; Vernon Burton; Edward L. Ayers; Emory M. Thomas; and James M. McPherson. (See lectures section for details on each program). April 8-12 at various times & venues. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819. 

United States Postal Service First Day Issue Ceremony. Join us for a once in a lifetime opportunity to witness the issuance of the official Fort Sumter National Monument and Manassas National Battlefield Sesquicentennial postal stamp in a special ceremony at Liberty Square. Tues. April 12 from 12:30-1pm; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St. Admission: Free. Produced by the United States Postal Service in association with the National Park Service (843) 883-3123 x 20.

 

CONCERTS

The Sound of Charleston. Experience the sounds that define Charleston and its unique Southern charm- jazz, gospel, Gershwin, spirituals, Civil War songs. March 31, April 8, 14, 28, May 5, 12, 20, 26 from 7-8:15pm, April 1 from 11am-12:15pm, April 21 from 1-2:15pm; May 28, June 4, 11 from 3-4:15pm; Circular Congregational Church, 150 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $28/Adults; $24 Student/Seniors (62+); Box Office at Charleston Visitor Center, 375 Meeting St. Produced by Charleston Musical Heritage Productions (843) 270-4903.

Prologue and Politics: The Civil War Vol. 1. This musical exploration of the historic conflict features a wide range of Charleston artists, musicians, and community members coming together to "re-present" history through musical sound, pictorial slides and spoken word. Prologue and Politics is set for string trio, traditional choir and narrators. Primary resources and period documents provide a contextual framework for the composition. Wed. April 6 at 7pm; Charleston Library Society, 164 King St. Admission: $20. Produced by Charleston Library Society (843) 723-9912

The Eighth Regiment Band. Based in Rome, Georgia, this band performs as the 8th Georgia Regiment in Confederate uniforms, the 8th New York Regiment in Union uniforms, American Town Band and as a combination of all three. Music from both sides of the conflict is offered in four performances. Sat. April 9 from 10am-12pm (during the Charleston Farmers Market in Marion Square), King at Calhoun Sts., Downtown Charleston; Sat. April 9 from 4-5pm (at Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park), Harry M. Hallman Jr. Blvd., Mount Pleasant; Sun. April 10 from 1-2pm (at the Sand Dunes Club), Sullivan's Island; Sun. April 10 from 4-5pm (at White Point Garden Bandstand at The Battery), South Battery at Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

Concert: Music of the Civil War. Features a music performance by The South Carolina Broadcasters. Wed. April 13 at 5:15pm; Unitarian Church, 4 Archdale St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $25. Produced by Historic Charleston Foundation as part of the 64th Annual Festival of Houses and Gardens (843) 723-1623.

 

CONFERENCES & SYMPOSIUMS

 

The Causes and Consequences of Civil Wars. The National Council for History Education chooses a conference site which parallels the anniversary of a significant event in American and World history. The national conference is a place where everyone who loves to teach and learn history can come together and share. March 31-April 2 from 7am-6pm; Charleston Marriott, 170 Lockwood Blvd., Downtown Charleston. Registration: $20-$195. Produced by The National Council for History Education (440) 835-1776.

 

South Carolina Masonic Research Society 2011 Banquet & Symposium. Masonic author Michael Halleran, well known as editor of "Brother Brother's Journal" as published by the Scottish Rite Journal and author of The Better Angels of Our Nature; Freemasonry in the American Civil War, serves as keynote speaker at this first annual event. Fri. April 22 at 7pm; Omar Shrine Temple, 176 Patriots Point Rd., Mount Pleasant. Admission: $25. Produced by the South Carolina Masonic Research Society (843) 599-5219.

 

"Jews, Slavery and The Civil War" Conference. The conference will cover themes including Jewish attitudes toward slavery and abolition, Jewish soldiering and wartime service, anti-semitism in the North and South, and more. May 25-26 at various times; Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies Center, 96 Wentworth St., Downtown Charleston. Registration: $0-25.Produced by the Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies Center at the College of Charleston and the Jewish Historical Society of South Carolina (843) 953-5682.

FILMS

Movies At The Library: "Glory." A public screening of the 1989 film "Glory" starring Matthew Broderick and Denzel Washington. This American war drama film based on the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry is portrayed from the point of view of Colonel Robert Gould Shaw. Sat. April 9 from 3:30-5:30pm; Charleston County Public Main Library, 68 Calhoun St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Charleston County Public Library in cooperation with the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs and the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 805-6930.

 

Community Film Screenings of Ken Burns' "The Civil War: Episode One—The Cause (1861)."  DOWNTOWN CHARLESTON: Sat. April 9 from 1-3pm, Charleston County Public Main Library, 68 Calhoun St.; NORTH CHARLESTON: Sat., April 9 from 7-8:40pm, The Olde North Charleston Picture House, Park Circle, 4920 Jenkins Ave.; SULLIVAN'S ISLAND: Sun., April 10 from 2-4pm, Sand Dunes Club, 1735 Atlantic Ave.; JAMES ISLAND: Sun., April 10 from 4-6:30pm, Fort Johnson Marine Center-Marine Resources Research Institute Auditorium, 205 Fort Johnson Rd. (with Vernon Burton). Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

Movies At The Library: "Gone With The Wind." A public screening of the classic film "Gone With The Wind" starring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh based on the novel by Margaret Mitchell. Mon. April 11 from 12-4pm; Charleston County Public Main Library, 68 Calhoun St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Charleston County Public Library in cooperation with the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs and the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 805-6930. 

LECTURES

The Civil War and the Jews of Europe. Features a lecture by Saskia Coenen Snyder (University of South Carolina) as part of the Food For Thought Lecture Series; talk is preceded by dessert and coffee. Mon. April 4 at 7pm; Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies Center, 96 Wentworth St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies Center at the College of Charleston (843) 953-5682.

Dr. Columbus DaVega: Out of the Shadows of History. MUSC President Dr. Ray Greenberg speaks about Dr. DaVega who designed a hospital attached to a floating battery built to attack Fort Sumter from the water. Tues. April 5 at 5:30pm; Basic Sciences Auditorium at MUSC, 173 Ashley Ave., reception follows at Wickliffe House, 178 Ashley Ave., Downtown Charleston; Admission: Free. Produced by MUSC (843) 792-2288.

Before The Storm: South Carolina and Charleston on the Eve of War. Includes lectures by Walter Edgar on South Carolina and the Nation, 1850-1860; Bernard E. Powers, Jr. speaks about Black Carolinians, Racial Anxiety and Secession in the Palmetto State; and Barbara Bellows describes Charleston in 1860: The Great Secession Winter. Fri. April 8 at 7pm; The Charleston Museum, 360 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

The Cause & Crisis Over Fort Sumter. Includes a lecture by Vernon Burton on Historians & The Civil War and screening of Ken Burns' documentary "The Civil War: Episode One-The Cause (1861)." Sun. April 10 from 4-6:30pm; Fort Johnson Marine Center-Marine Resources Research Institute Auditorium, 205 Fort Johnson Rd., James Island. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

The Road to War: Slavery, Economics and States Rights. Includes lectures by Barbara Jeanne Fields on Who Cared About States' Rights? and Gavin Wright speaks about Economic Interpretations of the Civil War; Amanda Mushal, moderator. Sat. April 9 at 10am; St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, 67 Anson St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

Taverns and Public Houses in Charleston on the eve of the Civil War. Mike Coker lectures on the importance of these establishments during this time period. Sat. April 9 at 1pm & 3pm; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

The Road to War: Gender, Honor and Emotions. Includes lectures by Catherine Clinton on Female "Rebel Spitfires" and Soldiers with "Sizz": Gender Dynamics on the Eve of Secession and Stephen Berry speaks about Disunited We Stand: Secession as an Emotional Experience. Sat. April 9 at 2pm; St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, 67 Anson St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

Photographer and Historian Perspectives on "Post Civil War Charleston – 1865: A Photographic Retrospective." Photographer Rick Rhodes and historian Robert Rosen give a combined lecture on the 1865 photographs that were restored by Mr. Rhodes which reflect a war torn Charleston in the immediate aftermath of the war. Sat. April 9 from 12-2pm. City Gallery at Waterfront Park, 34 Prioleau St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs (843) 958-6484.

 

"To Purge This Land With Blood?": The Question of John Brown's Raid. Tony Horwitz, Pulitzer prize-winning journalist, speaks about Midnight Rising: Reflections on John Brown, Harpers Ferry, and the coming of the Civil War; Daniel C. Littlefield, moderator. Sun. April 10 at 2pm; Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim, 90 Hasell St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

Artist Perspectives on "Civil/Uncivil: The Art of Leo Twiggs." Dr. Leo Twiggs gives a lecture on his artwork on view in the City Gallery at Waterfront Park. The works represent aspects of the South's legacy as it relates to both the Civil War and the Civil Rights Movement. Sun. April 10 from 5-6:30pm; City Gallery at Waterfront Park, 34 Prioleau St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs (843) 958-6484.

 

War and Wardrobe. Mary Hatcher and Jean Hutchinson present a multimedia program examining the decline of women's clothing throughout the Civil War. The program focuses on the women of Charleston and includes photographs, illustrations, artwork and documents from the period and models will display reproductions of dresses from the war period. Sun. April 10 from 5-6pm; Sand Dunes Club, Sullivan's Island. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

"Charleston's Militia Units 1860-1861" A Place In Picture Near The Flashing of The Guns. Ron Field, the leading authority on the history of pre-Civil War SC Militia units, provides a program on the history of the units from the Charleston area that served during the events leading up to and through the April 12-13, 1861 bombardment of Fort Sumter. Sun. April 10 from 7:30-9pm; Sand Dunes Club, Sullivan's Island. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

Plantation Life & The African-American Experience. Features a lecture by Joseph McGill (National Trust for Historic Preservation) who has spent the past year reliving the plantation experience in extant slave cabins throughout the state. Mon. April 11 from 11:30am-1:30pm; Captain James Missroon House, 40 East Bay St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $45 reservations required. Produced by Historic Charleston Foundation for the 64th Annual Festival of Houses & Gardens (843) 723-1623.

 

A Troubled House: American Leaders and the Issues of 1861. Features lectures by Edward L. Ayers speaking about The Logic of Secession and Emory M. Thomas on The Dogs of War; Robert H. Dallek, moderator. Mon. April 11 from 6:30-8:15pm; First (Scots)Presbyterian Church, 53 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

Who is True Israel? Yankees, Confederates, Jews and African-Americans. Features a lecture by Leonard Rogoff (Jewish Heritage Foundation of North Carolina) as part of the Food For Thought Lecture Series; talk is preceded by dessert and coffee. Mon. April 11 at 7pm; Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies Center, 96 Wentworth St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies Center at the College of Charleston (843) 953-5682.

 

Postal Service in Charleston. Rain, shine or war - no matter what, the mail never stops running. Join Robert Karrer and Rick Calhoun to learn about the postal system as it was in Charleston in 1861. See examples of letters and stamps from the time period. Tues. April 12 from 1-2pm & 3-4pm; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

Inheriting the Wind: American Youth at the Onset of Battle. Features a lecture by James M. McPherson, Pulitzer prize-winning author, speaking on Volunteers in Blue and Gray: Why They Fought; introduced by Vernon Burton; Marcus Cox, moderator. Tues. April 12 at 7pm; Gibbes Museum of Art, 135 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust (843) 720-3819.

 

African-American Life in Antebellum Charleston. Dr. Bernard Powers speaks about Free African Americans in Antebellum Charleston at 1pm; Joe McGill speaks about dwellings of enslaved people at 3pm. Wed. April 13; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

The Sounds of Charleston During The Civil War. Dr. Nic Butler discusses war-themed popular songs and military marches to minstrels shows and African American spirituals and how the people of Charleston heard and performed a wide variety of musical styles during the early 1860s. Thurs. April 14 at 1pm; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

Winslow Homer and the Civil War. Architect and art historian Kenyon (Tim) C. Bolton III will provide insight into Homer's development at the beginning of his career when he spent time on the front lines creating sketches of soldiers as a special correspondent for Harper's Weekly. Thurs. April 14 at 6pm; Gibbes Museum of Art, 135 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free/Gibbes Members; $10/Non-Members. Produced by the Gibbes Museum of Art (843) 722-2706 ext. 22.

 

The Confederacy Is On Her Way Up The Spout: Letters to South Carolina, 1861-1864. Features a lecture by J. Roderick Heller, III, author of Democracy's Lawyer: Felix Grundy of the Old Southwest and the co-editor of The Confederacy Is on Her Way up the Spout: Letters to South Carolina, 1861-1864. Thurs. April 14 at 7pm; Charleston Library Society, 164 King St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Charleston Library Society (843) 723-9912.

 

The Real Truth of Civil War Medicine: Diseases, Surgery, and Dentistry – "Military Medicine." Dr. Scott Evans lectures on the practice of medicine in America during the mid 1800s which was vastly different from what is considered the modern medicine of today. Sun. April 17 at 1pm; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

The Real Truth of Civil War Medicine: Diseases, Surgery, and Dentistry – "Dentistry." David Smoot lectures. Napoleon once said that an army travels on its stomach. It won't get very far with bad teeth though, so a trip to the dentist is just what the general ordered. Sun. April 17 at 3pm; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

"...Deathly Blasts By The Thousands." Advancements in Small Arms Technology, 1860-1865. Features a lecture by Grahame Long, curator of the Charleston Museum about mid-19th century advancements in weaponry. Wed. April 27 at 6:30pm; Charleston Museum, 360 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $10/Adults; $5/Children. Produced by the Charleston Museum (843) 722-2996.

 LIVING HISTORY PROGRAMS & REENACTMENTS

 

Living History Demonstrations at Fort Sumter. Patrons visiting Fort Sumter on Spiritline Cruises boats will see Union soldier musket drill and firing along with heavy artillery drill all day April 9-13 and Confederate soldier musket drill and firing along with heavy artillery drill for the 4pm and 5:15pm cruises on April 14 and all day April 15-17. Patrons visiting Fort Sumter April 14 from 9:30am-2:30pm will see a ceremony signifying the surrender of Fort Sumter. Admission: Free with paid boat tour ticket. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

Living History Demonstrations at Fort Moultrie. April 9-10, 16-17: Fort Moultrie and campsites open 9am; Children's Musket Drill, Parade Ground at 10am, 1pm & 3pm; Musket Drill/Firing, Parade Ground at 10:30am, 1:30pm & 3:30pm; Heavy Artillery Drill, Inside Fort Moultrie at 11am, 2pm, 4pm & 5pm; Musket Drill/Firing, Outer Firing Range at 11:30am, 2:30pm, 4:30pm; Fort Moultrie closes at 7pm (On April 17, the last demonstration is at 3:30pm and Fort Moultrie closes at 5pm). April 11-15: Fort Moultrie and campsites open at 9am; Heavy Artillery Drill, Inside Fort Moultrie at 10am, 11am, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm & 5pm; Musket Drill/Firing, Outer Firing Range at 10:30am, 11:30am, 1:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm & 4:30pm; Fort Moultrie closes at 7pm; Fort Moultrie National Monument, 1214 Middle St., Sullivan's Island. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

Civil War Sesquicentennial Events at Patriots Point. Over 300 Civil War reenactors will be camped at Patriots Point in an artillery camp overlooking Charleston Harbor with 24 artillery pieces to fire upon Fort Sumter. Living history presentations including artillery, cavalry, infantry, medicine and home life demonstrations will take place daily. April 9-14 from 9am-6:30pm; Patriots Point, 40 Patriots Point Rd., Mount Pleasant. Admission $10/Adults; $5/Youth ages 6-11; Free/ages 5 and under; Parking: $5. Produced by Patriots Point (866) 831-1720.

 

Charleston Congregations. Discuss with congregational representatives about the history of the congregations that were in Charleston during the start of the Civil War. Sun. April 10 from 1-5pm (displays only); Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

Civil War Food: Battlefield and Homefront. Visitors will explore Civil War food ways through interpretive demonstrations and short lectures about battlefield and homefront cuisine. Mon. April 11 from 1-5pm; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

The Commemoration of The First Shot. The ceremony begins with the firing of an authentic 1840 10-inch seacoast mortar, a match to the gun that fired the first shot. As in 1861, a star burst shell will fire over the harbor. The keynote address will be offered by the Honorable Glenn F. McConnell, President Pro Tempore, South Carolina Senate. Tues. April 12: ceremony from 6:45-7:45am; public tours from 9am-5pm at Fort Johnson, James Island. Admission: advance reservations required by April 1 for ceremony; public tours are Free. Produced by the Town of James Island & SC Dept. of Natural Resources (843) 225-0180.

 

Civil War Dance Program. Come try your hand at learning the popular dances from the time of the Civil War. Thurs. April 14 at 3pm; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

Women's Work: Survival Skills for the Mid-19th Century. Demonstrations include laundry, spinning, candle making, butter churning, needle work, home remedies, sweet grass baskets, rice processing, indigo dying, toys & quilting. Fri. April 15 from 1-5pm. Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

THEATRE

"Civil War Voices" On Tour.  Written by James R. Harris and directed by Susanne Boulle, featuring music from the period with original arrangements by Mark Hayes. Stirring and passionate, this play reveals the true stories of the North and South through the words of the people and the traditional music of the period. This piece gives a spiritual and emotional perspective on the Civil War that is not contained in any history books. April 8-9 & 12 at 7:30pm, April 9 & 12 at 2pm, and April 10-11 at 3pm; Memminger Auditorium, 56 Beaufain St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $32. Produced and performed by Barter

Theatre, the State Theatre of Virginia; Box Office (276) 628-3991; tickets available for purchase on-site beginning April 8.

 

Mary Chesnut's Road to Fort Sumter; a one-act play based on A Diary from Dixie by Mary Chesnut; starring and adapted by Chris Weatherhead. The enigmatic daughter of a SC governor and US senator, Mary Chesnut was a brilliant observer of humanity, a philosopher, and a humorist. She is remembered today for her riveting and poignant personal journal chronicling the rise and fall of the Confederate States of America. Sat. April 9 at 7pm; Sun. April 10 at 2pm & 7pm; Footlight Players Theatre, 20 Queen St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $25 show only; $50 Saturday evening show & champagne and chocolates reception. Produced by the South Carolina Historical Society in association with the Actors' Theatre of South Carolina (843) 723-3225.

TOURS 

 

Fort Sumter Harbor Cruise and Tour. Fort Sumter is the Island Fort where the Civil War began. Experience a narrated cruise through Charleston's historic harbor out to Fort Sumter. Listen to historians as they talk about the fort's pivotal role in the War Between the States. Visit the museum and gift shop during your trip, then enjoy a one hour harbor tour before returning to shore. Ongoing, tours depart at various times daily from Liberty Square at Aquarium Wharf, 360 Concord St., Downtown Charleston and Patriots Point, 40 Patriots Point Rd., Mount Pleasant. Admission: $16/Adults; $14.50/Seniors; $10/Child (6-11); Free/Child (Under 6). Produced by SpiritLine Cruises (800) 789-3678.

 

Secessionists, Soldiers and Slaves: The Alston Family's Civil War. A witness to history, the Edmondston-Alston served as the site General Beauregard used to watch the Bombardment of Fort Sumter and was a refuge for General Robert E. Lee during the Great Fire of 1861. The permanent collections include rare documents. On view through December 31, 2015, guided tours Tues.-Sat. 10am-4pm, Sun. 1:30-4:30pm, Mon. 10am-4:30pm; Edmondston-Alston House, 21 East Battery, Downtown Charleston. Admission: $10. Produced by Middleton Place Foundation (843) 722-7171.

 

Secessionists, Soldiers and Slaves: The Middleton Family's Civil War. Includes changing exhibits exploring rice culture during the war, the building of Charleston's defenses, investing in experimental "seegar boats", the use of slaves for war projects and runaway slaves fleeing the plantations for Union bases in Beaufort and Port Royal. On view through December 31, 2015, open daily 9am-5pm; Middleton Place, 4300 Ashley River Rd., West Ashley. Admission: $25/Adults; $15/Students (14+ with student ID); $10/Child (6-13); Free/Child (Under 5). Produced by Middleton Place Foundation (843) 566-6020.

 

French Quarter Tour: Festival of Houses and Gardens. Settled as part of colonial Charles Towne's original "Grand Modell," this area was first referred to as the French Quarter in 1873, as many buildings damaged in the Civil War were restored. The name reflects the large population of French merchants who lived and worked here. April 1 & 4 from 2-5pm; French Quarter Neighborhood, various homes and gardens, Downtown Charleston. Admission: $45. Produced by Historic Charleston Foundation (843) 723-1623.

 

Curator-Led Tours of "Threads of War: Clothing and Textiles of the Civil War" Exhibit. (See visual arts section for exhibit details). April 7, May 5, June 2 at 10:30am; Charleston Museum, 360 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $10/ Adults; $5/Children. Produced by Charleston Museum (843) 722-2996.

 

Houses & Sites of the Civil War: Festival of Houses and Gardens. Tour features houses, gardens and historic sites associated with the Civil War. April 9 & 12 from 2-5pm; Various homes and sites, Downtown Charleston. Admission: $45. Produced by Historic Charleston Foundation (843) 723-1623.

 

From Where They Stood – Sesquicentennial Dinner Cruise to Fort Sumter. Experience a living history program at the fort which will be occupied by reenactors. Then enjoy a three-course Southern style meal aboard the boat while listening to period music being performed and a fascinating lecture by a well-known local military historian, speaking about Fort Sumter's role in the start of the Civil War. April 9, 12 & 14; boarding at 5:15pm, cruising from 5:30-9pm; Fort Sumter Visitors Center at Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $65. Produced by SpiritLine Cruises (800) 789-3678.

 

Special Civil War Sesquicentennial Harbor Cruises to Fort Sumter. Go back in time to April 1861 and visit Fort Sumter this April for the 150th Anniversary of the start of the Civil War as reenactors occupy the fort. Tours departing from Liberty Square at Aquarium Wharf, 360 Concord St., Downtown Charleston: April 9-17 at 9:30am, 12pm, 2:30pm; April 10-11, 13, 15-17 at 5:15pm; Tours departing from Patriots Point, 40 Patriots Point Rd., Mount Pleasant: April 9-17 at 10:45am, 1:30pm, 4pm). Admission: $16/Adults; $14.50/Seniors; $10/Child (6-11); Free/Child (Under 6). Produced by SpiritLine Cruises (800) 789-3678.

 

Curator-Led Tours of Battery Pringle. Curator of history, Grahame Long, will lead walking tours of Battery Pringle, one of four Confederate fortifications located at the Museum's Dill Sanctuary on James Island. Located on the Stono River, this battery was the cornerstone of General P.G.T. Beauregard's "New Lines" constructed in 1863. Saturday tours will also include a stop at Battery Tynes. Sat. April 9 at 11am & Fri. April 29 at 1:30pm; The Dill Sanctuary, 1153 Riverland Dr., James Island. Admission: $7-$15. Produced by Charleston Museum (843) 722-2996.

 

South Battery Tour: Festival of Houses and Gardens. Although South Battery was heavily bombarded during the Civil War, new construction of the postbellum era included fine Victorian houses as well as early 20th century waterfront mansions. The creation of Murray Boulevard in 1911 further enhanced this development. April 13 & 16 from 2-5pm; South Battery, various homes and gardens, Downtown Charleston. Admission: $45. Produced by Historic Charleston Foundation (843) 723-1623.

CHILDREN'S PROGRAMS

 

Mystery Mondays: Morse Code. Crack the code and get a prize! This fun activity is suitable for all ages. Mon. April 4, 11, 18 & 25 from 9am-8pm; Charleston County Public Main Library, 68 Calhoun St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Charleston County Public Library (843) 805-6930.

 

Meet Addy: An American Girl. Travel back in time to the Civil War, and meet nine-year-old Addy Walker. We will read from the book, play games and make a craft! This fun activity is suitable for children ages 5-11. Thurs. April 7 at 4pm; Charleston County Public Main Library, 68 Calhoun St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the Charleston County Public Library (843) 805-6930.

 

Military Enlistment Program. An opportunity for children to experience what it was like to be a soldier during the Civil War. April 9-15 at 8:45am & 11am, April 16 on demand; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

Junior Ranger Day: Civil War Games. Centers include graces, races, bean bag games, lawn hoops, duck-duck-goose, croquet, yo-yos, jacks, tops, marbles, hopscotch, chess, checkers, quoits, checkered game of life, and much more. Sat. April 16 from 10am-3pm; Liberty Square, 340 Concord St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by National Park Service (843) 883-3123.

 

The Civil War on the Web. Did you know it's the 150th anniversary of the beginning of the American Civil War? Come time-travel with us as we explore some fascinating sites about the war. We'll view image galleries, soldiers' records, online journals and much more! Mon. April 18 from 10–11:30am; Charleston County Public Main Library, 68 Calhoun St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free.

Produced by the Charleston County Public Library (843) 805-6930.

 

Home School Workshop: The Civil War. The year 2011 marks the 150 anniversary of the Civil War. Older home school students and their families are invited to participate in a workshop series focusing on the Civil War. Tues. April 26 from 10-11:30am; Charleston Museum, 360 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $10/Adults; $5/Children. Produced by Charleston Museum (843) 722-2996. 

VISUAL ARTS EXHIBITS

 

Threads of War: Clothing and Textiles of the Civil War. Women's, men's and children's clothing, uniforms and accessories, flags, quilts and coverlets, along with period magazines, newspapers, daguerreotypes and diaries provide vivid images of 1860s Charleston and a lifestyle torn apart by war. On view through September 5, open Mon.-Sat. 9am-5pm, Sun. 1-5pm; Charleston Museum, 360 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $10/Adults; $5/Children. Produced by the Charleston Museum (843) 722-2996.

 

"The Beginning of the Civil War" Manuscripts. The exhibit consists of more than two dozen items on Secession and the beginning of the American Civil War. Its presence is designed to correspond with the series of important conferences in the first year of the Commemoration of the Sesquicentennial of the great conflict of 1861-1865. On view through April 27, open Tues.-Fri. 11am-4pm; Karpeles Manuscript Museum, 68 Spring St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by Karpeles Manuscript Museum (843) 853-4651.

 

From Civil War To Civil Rights, South Carolina Perspectives On The War That Changed America. The City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs presents two exhibitions on view in the City Gallery at Waterfront Park. Post Civil War Charleston – 1865: A Photographic Retrospective will be on the first level of the gallery. Civil/Uncivil: Works by Leo Twiggs will be on the second level of the gallery. Fully restored by Rick Rhodes Photography & Imaging, Post Civil War Charleston – 1865: A Photographic Retrospective offers audiences the opportunity to view the City of Charleston over 144 years ago. Some photographs were originally taken with large glass plates, while others were taken with twin lens stereoscopic cameras, in order to create a stereo view. Civil/Uncivil: Works by Leo Twiggs documents the path from the Civil War to the Civil Rights Movement and features the artwork of Leo Twiggs, an Orangeburg native, who is widely seen as the country's main pioneer of batik as a modern art form. On view April 8-May 8, open Tues.-Fri. 10am-6pm; Sat.-Sun. 12-5pm; Opening Reception April 8 from 6-8pm; City Gallery at Waterfront Park, 34 Prioleau St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs (843) 958-6484.

 

Stephen Marc – Passage On The Underground Railroad. Exhibit organized by the University at Buffalo Art Galleries, Buffalo, New York, features Marc's fascinating photographs and digital montages that explore the history of freedom-seekers on the Underground Railroad. April 8-July 10, open Tues.-Sat. 10am-5pm, Sun. 1-5pm; Gibbes Museum of Art, 135 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $9/Adults; $7/Seniors, Students, Military; $5/Children (6-12); Free/Members & Children under 6. Produced by Gibbes Museum of Art (843) 722-2706 ext. 22.

 

A Soldier's View of Civil War Charleston. Features over 30 paintings depicting the batteries and forts around Charleston Harbor as painted by Conrad Wise Chapman (1842–1910) during the Civil War. The exhibition includes multiple paintings of Fort Sumter and Fort Moultrie and a depiction of the H.L. Hunley, the first submarine ever to sink an enemy ship. April 8-July 10, open Tues.-Sat. 10am-5pm, Sun. 1-5pm; Gibbes Museum of Art, 135 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $9/Adults;  $7/Seniors, Students, Military; $5/Children (6-12); Free/Members & Children under 6. Produced by Gibbes Museum of Art (843) 722-2706 ext. 22.

ONGOING

City Under Siege: Charleston In The Civil War. This permanent exhibition provides a rich overview of events in and around Charleston from secession to 1865 and includes uniforms, artillery shells, firearms, "gunboat china," the watch of a fallen South Carolina soldier, and the recently-acquired prosthesis of Colonel Peter Gaillard, who lost his hand in action against Union forces on Morris Island. Ongoing exhibit, open Mon.-Sat. 9am-5pm, Sun. 1-5pm; Charleston Museum, 360 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $10/Adults; $5/Children. Produced by the Charleston Museum (843) 722-2996.

 

Confederate Museum. The Museum features artifacts from the War Between the States. Ongoing operations; open Tuesday-Saturday from 11am-3:30pm; special hours April 12 from 10am-4pm; closed Sunday-Monday; Confederate Museum, 188 Meeting St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: $5/Adults & Teens; $3/Children 6 and up; Free/Children under 6. Produced by the Charleston Chapter #4 of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (843) 723-1541.

 

The Old Slave Mart Museum. The museum recounts the story of Charleston's role in this inter-state slave trade by focusing on the history of this particular building and site and the slave sales that occurred here. The museum is possibly the only known building used as a slave auction gallery in South Carolina still in existence. Ongoing exhibit, open Mon.-Sat. 9am-5pm; The Old Slave Mart Museum, 6 Chalmers St., Downtown Charleston. Admission: Free. Produced by The Old Slave Mart Museum (843) 958-6467.

 

The Hunley. On the night of February 17, 1864, the H.L. Hunley embarked on a dangerous mission that would forever mark her place in history. Eight men, led by Lt. George Dixon, entered an experimental vessel that was to become the first successful submarine in world history, with a mission to sink an enemy ship, the USS Housatonic. That night, the Hunley rammed her spar torpedo into the hull of the Housatonic. She then surfaced long enough for her crew to signal their comrades on the shore of Sullivan's Island with a blue magnesium light, (or lantern) indicating a successful mission. The shore crew stoked their signal fires and anxiously awaited the Hunley's safe return. But minutes after her historic achievement, the Hunley and all hands onboard vanished into the sea without a trace. Ongoing operations; tours Sat. 10am-5pm, Sun. 12-5pm; Warren Lasch Conservation Center, 1250 Supply St. (former Charleston Naval Base), North Charleston. Admission: $12/Adults; $10/Seniors, Military, and Members; Free/Children under 5; Friends of The Hunley (843) 743-4865.

 

On April 11 and April 12, the following events commemorating the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War will take place at White Point Garden.

VOICES FROM THE CIVIL WAR 
Featuring Jay Ungar, Molly Mason and The Family Band with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, Sean Newhouse, guest conductor;  CSO Spiritual Ensemble & Mt. Zion AME Spiritual Singers

Monday, April 11, 2011 from 9-10:30pm 
White Point Garden: Murray Blvd., East. Bay St., South Battery & King St.
Admission:  FREE

 SUNRISE CONCERT:  WHEN JESUS WEPT
(In remembrance of the moment the first shots of the Civil War were fired)
Music for Brass Ensemble & Military Drums;  a short candlelight concert featuring hymns by Colonial American composers including William Billings and others 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011 from 4:30-5am 
White Point Garden:  Murray Blvd., East Bay St., South Battery & King St.
Admission:  FREE

The following information should be helpful to those planning to attend the events on Monday, April 11 at 9:00 PM and Tuesday, April 12 at 4:30 AM

The following streets will be closed beginning on April 11 at 8:30 AM and closure will last until midday on April 12:

 

  • East Battery and Murray Boulevard from South Battery to King Street.

Residents or guests with valid identification will be allowed to travel to their residence.

Traffic Direction/Concerts White Point Garden

  • Traffic driving east on Murray Boulevard will be redirected north onto King Street
  • then west on South Battery
  • Traffic driving south on King Street will be redirected west onto South Battery
  • Traffic driving south on Meeting Street will be redirected east or west onto South Battery. Then continue west on South Battery or will be redirected north on East Battery.
  • Traffic driving south on Church Street will be redirected east onto South Battery. Then redirected north on East Battery.
  • Traffic driving east on Atlantic Street will be redirected north onto East Battery.
  • Traffic driving south on East Battery will be redirected west on Water Street then either north or south on Church Street and/or Meeting Street

Parking Restrictions for Concerts at White Point Garden

The following streets will have NO PARKING beginning at 12:00 noon on Sunday, April 10 – April 12 midday.

The following are "No Parking Zones" that will be required for both concerts.

  •  South Battery between King and East Battery Streets on the south side
  •  East Battery between South Battery and Murray Boulevard on both the east and west side
  •  Murray Boulevard between King and East Battery Streets on both the north and south sides
  • King Street between South Battery and Murray Boulevard on both the east and west side

PARKING FOR PARTICIPANTS:

Parking the evening of April 11 for the 9:00 performance at White Point Gardens:

  • Park for $3.00 (pay upon entrance) at either the 93 Queen Street Garage (garage is west of King Street); or the 25 Prioleau Street Garage (East Bay/Prioleau).
  • Park for $2.00 at the VRTC garage at Mary and Ann Streets,  take the free shuttle to the stop on Broad Street at East Bay.

For the morning of April 12 for the 4:30 a.m. performance at White Point Gardens:

  • Park free at either of the above two garages, provided car exits the garage prior to 8:00 a.m.  Any vehicle leaving after 8:00 a.m. will be required to pay the parking fee for the total length of time parked in the garage.

CARTA

The Free Trolley runs a downtown loop (go to CARTA DASH Schedule for specific information on the three free routes) from 7:15AM (Spring Street) to 8:28 PM (Broad Street). 

The evening of April 11, in order to facilitate the large number of people anticipated to attend the 9:00 concert at White Point Garden, The Free Trolley will have extended hours. Participants may park at the VRTC garage at Mary and Ann Streets (the event parking rate at the Visitor Center Garage on Mary Street will be $2.00 per vehicle), take the free shuttle to the stop on Broad Street, then walk to White Point Garden.  The last pick-up on Broad Street will be at approximately 12:06 p.m. and will route back to the Visitor Center Garage between Mary and Ann Streets.  The Free Trolley will also make normal stops along the route both before and after the event.

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