The Museum of the Confederacy and Appomattox Court House National Historic Park present the Sesquicentennial Civil War Conversation Series of monthly lunchtime talks upstairs at Baine's Books and Coffee in Appomattox, VA. The topics and speakers are October 12, 2011 Jim Godburn, Hospital Systems, November 9, 2011 Linda Lipscomb, Letters and Diaries, December 14, 2011 Candace Hart, Christmas Traditions.
On November 5, 2011 from 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM at the Central Virginia Community College's Appomattox Center will host three sessions on music, medicine and emancipation. On music David Wooldridge and Corbin Hayslett from the Appomattox Court House National Historical Park will cover Appomattox’s own Sweeney brothers and Teresa Roane of the Museum of the Confederacy will show copies of sheet music and other materials from the Museum’s archives. On medicine Dr. Peter Houck will lecture on the military hospital system and Jim Godburn of the Appomattox Court House National Historical Park will focus on the civilian side of medicine. On emancipation: Reverend Thomas Tillerson will lecture on the different forms of emancipation throughout the war, from Ft. Monroe early on to Appomattox at the end. Pre-registration is required; tickets are $25 per person and $40 per couple. Admission ticket includes a continental breakfast and a boxed lunch.
The $7.5 milliom Museum of the Confederacy project in Appomattox broke ground a year ago on September 23. Upon raising $6 million toward the $7.5 million project, construction began in that autumn and is expected to end by spring 2012. The 11,700-square-foot museum is near the intersection of Virginia 24 and U.S. 460 and will house Civil War artifacts and exhibits. “There’s nowhere better to do it than Appomattox,” said S. Waite Rawls III, CEO and president of the Museum of the Confederacy. “The very word ‘Appomattox’ carries so much meaning in history.”
In 2010, Rawls said the museum’s exhibits would encompass three major areas: the events before the Civil War ended, the surrender at the McLean House and the reunification of the country. Williamsburg-based architect Carlton Abbott has designed the building Rawls has said it will evoke reverence so that visitors “are fully aware they’re on an important spot.”
Members of local governing bodies hope the new museum serves as an economic boost both to the Town of Appomattox and Appomattox County. “What I’m hoping will happen is more hotels and restaurants,” said Gary Tanner, chairman of the Appomattox County Board of Supervisors. “It’s not a big city, it’s relaxed — but it’s definitely where the Civil War ended and people should visit here.” Appomattox Mayor Paul Harvey said the museum would complement the Appomattox Court House National Historic Park, located about a mile from the museum site. “It’s a great connection with the (national) park and we see it as an increase in tourism and the number of people that visit Appomattox each year.”
Members of the museum’s board of trustees personally donated about $2.5 million to the project. “We have put our money where out mouth is,” Rawls said. Another $2.8 million came from the Virginia Tobacco Commission. The Appomattox museum is part of planned multi-site museum system, with three more museums proposed for Fredericksburg, Fort Monroe and Spotsylvania. Though the museum in Appomattox won’t be completed until 2012, Rawls said, museum officials plan to schedule Civil War lectures at libraries and schools in the area as a way to reach out to the community.
“The door may not be open, but we’re here,” he said. “This is all systems go.”
For more information: Museum of the Confederacy or contact Linda Lipscomb at 855-649-1861 x23 or firstname.lastname@example.org.