On this date. In this place. At this time. | Richmond Explores Civil War History
The major battles fought around Richmond 100 years ago this spring and early summer involved 200,000 soldiers and shaped the outcome of the Civil War. Beginning May 9, 2012 and continuing through July 11, the Richmond region will observe a period of special commemoration of these events. Local battlefields, museums and historic sites already offer some of the richest interactive experiences available to Civil War history enthusiasts. During this period, however, the access will be unprecedented, including special tours and sites that are not always open to the public.
Three unique battlefield “landscapes” will be open that are not usually accessible to visitors: Malvern Hill, Gaines’ Mill and Glendale. Rangers will be on hand to offer interpretation about the events at these sites, and special tours highlighting pivotal moments in the battles as well as the emancipation efforts will be offered.
There will be a kickoff celebration held May 9 – 12 including the State’s Sesquicentennial HistoryMobile, a 19th Century Dance Demonstration, living history scanning events, re-enactments and weapons demonstrations. The 150th anniversary of the Battle of Drewry’s Bluff will be observed May 12 – 15. This naval battle is considered by historians to be a benchmark in the progress of the Civil War in Virginia. Five US warships were sent up the James River with the instructions to shell Richmond into submission. The first US Marine Medal of Honor recipient fought bravely in this battle, yet the Confederate forces at Fort Drewry defeated the Union offensive, neutralizing the US Naval forces and forcing all future actions against Richmond to occur on land.
These events are just the beginning of the season-long observation of one of the most critical periods of Richmond’s 400-year history. If you are a lover of history or student of the Civil War, you can’t miss this unique opportunity to explore the city from this unique perspective. Make reservations at your favorite Historic Richmond Inn today, and plan to dive into the Sesquicentennial activities while enjoying premium accommodations and southern hospitality!