Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park, in partnership with a variety of community groups, will offer a series of special National Park Service programs and events this September, which commemorate the 150th anniversary of the 1864 Shenandoah Valley Campaign.
“These events, lectures and battlefield tours will give visitors a chance to explore not only the battles of this pivotal campaign, but also learn of its larger impacts to both the Valley itself and the nation as a whole” said Eric Campbell, chief of interpretation at the park.
These presentations include “On This Day” Anniversary tours, the National Park Service Guest Lecture Series, History at Sunset programs and other special programs:
* September 3 “On This Day” Battle of Berryville 150th Anniversary Tour (4:00 pm) Park Ranger Eric Campbell will examine this critical, but often overlooked, engagement that set up the Battle of 3rd Winchester. Meet for this two-hour car caravan tour at the Clarke County Recreation Area, West Main Street, Berryville, VA 22611.
* September 5 Guest Lecture Series, The Aftermath of the Valley Campaign (7:00 pm) This lecture will explore the profound impacts of the campaign – both on and off the battlefield—and what that meant for the citizens of Virginia’s bread basket. Nicholas Redding, Executive Director, Long Branch Plantation (Location: Long Branch Plantation, 830 Long Branch Lane, Millwood, VA 22646)
* September 9 “War Comes to the Valley” (6:30 pm) Ranger Shannon Moeck explores the impact of the Civil War on the civilians of the Shenandoah Valley. Meeting room at the Bowman Library (871 Tasker Road, Stephens City, VA 22655). Sponsored by the Friends of the Handley Regional Library.
* September 11 Guest Lecture Series: The Portable Printing Press in the Civil War (7:00 pm) The portable tabletop printing presses used in the Civil War allowed for rapid communication and the production and wide distribution of urgent orders. Joan Boudreau, Curator, Smithsonian Institution (Location: Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation Headquarters, 9386 South Congress Street, New Market, VA 22844)
* September 13 Special Battle of Tom’s Brook programs (11:00, 1:00, 3:00) Ranger Jeff Driscoll will offer 30 minute programs on the battle. GermanFest, Shenandoah Germanic Heritage Museum, 11523 Back Road, Toms Brook, VA 22660. (Fee) For details, see: www.GermanFestVA.org
* September 16 Guest Lecture Series: Cedar Creek: Crossroads in the Fight for the Shenandoah Valley (7:00 pm) This program will focus on the Battle of Cedar Creek and its impact. In addition, several objects in Smithsonian collections related to Cedar Creek will be discussed. E. Warren Perry Jr., Writer, Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery (Location: Smithsonian Associates, S. Dillon Ripley Center, 1100 Jefferson Drive, SW, Washington, DC 20026) (Fee) For tickets: http://smithsonianassociates.org/ticketing/ (search “Cedar Creek” -use promo code: 206742 for a discount)
* September 19-21 Battle of 3rd Winchester 150th Anniversary–Ranger Programs As part of the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation’s commemorative events of the battle, a series of ranger programs will be offered. Programs include:
- September 19–Ranger Station Programs (12:00-4:00) A series of programs, presented by National Park Service Rangers, which will cover the battle chronologically. Meet at the east end of Berryville Canyon, on the north side of Berryville Pike (westbound VA Route 7), opposite the Frederick-Winchester Service Authority plant.
- September 20—a variety of ranger programs on the battle offered at the Huntsberry farm site.
- September 21 –special ranger programs on the role of Star Fort in the battle.
For details see: www.shenandoahatwar.org or www.nps.gov/cebe
* September 19 History at Sunset: A Tale of Two Cemeteries (5:00 pm) Park Ranger Jeff Driscoll will explore both Mt. Hebron Cemetery and the Winchester National Cemetery, where many of the soldiers killed at 3rd Winchester are now buried. Meet at the public parking area on West Street, located behind Mount Hebron Cemetery. (West Street can be accessed from either Woodstock Lane or National Avenue).
* September 25 Guest Lecture Series: “The Burning” in the Shenandoah Valley (7:00 pm) Late September and early October witnessed “The Burning.” This program will discuss its impacts, the reverberating ramifications on the course of the war and the overarching impact on the Shenandoah Valley Campaign. The courthouse will open at 6:00 pm to allow visitors a chance to explore the museum and Civil War graffiti inside. Phillip Greenwalt, Park Ranger, National Park Service (Location: Historic Shenandoah County Courthouse, 103 North Main Street, Woodstock, VA 22664)
* September 26 History at Sunset: George Custer at the Battle of Cedar Creek (5:00 pm) Join Ranger Kyle Rothemich for a special tour highlighting the “Boy General” at Cedar Creek. Custer’s aggressive and flamboyant traits were both exhibited during this stunning Union victory. This car-caravan tour will take visitors to parts of the park that are rarely seen. Meet at the Cedar Creek Battlefield Foundation Headquarters (8437 Valley Pike, Middletown, VA).
These programs in September are part of a larger series of anniversary presentations offered throughout the summer and fall. For further information, details or schedules call (540) 869-3051 or see: www.nps.gov/cebe.
Cedar Creek & Belle Grove National Historical Park offers a wide variety of ranger-conducted programs, which tell the park’s many stories related to the rich cultural history of the Shenandoah Valley and the American Civil War. These programs are offered regularly. Check the park website (www.nps.gov/cebe) or call (540) 869-3051 for a current schedule.