The North Carolina
150th Anniversary Battle of Fort Fisher Weekend – January 2015
Fort Fisher State Historic Site and Battlefield and the Friends of Fort Fisher host the commemoration of the Battle of Fort Fisher on January 17 and 18, 2015. The two-day observance leads North Carolina’s official 2015 commemoration of the momentous events that brought the Civil War to an end 150 years ago. Fort Fisher’s program will focus on the struggle to capture and defend the Confederacy’s largest fortification and “Gibraltar of the South” during the attack on January 15, 1865. After the world’s largest 3-day naval bombardment and army-navy-marine assault, the fall of Fort Fisher and the capture of Wilmington’s port and rail hub assured the end of the Civil War within 90 days.
The Observance weekend features recreations of the January 1865 Union attacks on Fort Fisher. Hundreds of re-enactors, representing Union and Confederate soldiers, sailors and marines, will encamp on the Historic Site property. Infantry units will be on hand to talk with visitors about camp life, garrison duty and conduct drills, marching and firing demonstrations. Artillery units will conduct drills and firing demonstrations consisting of Fort Fisher’s Rifled and Banded 32 pounder cannon and the Site’s bronze 12 pounder Napoleon cannon. At various times during the day, Confederate and Union Troops will conduct the soldier’s Manual of Arms for the audience. In addition, members of the modern US military will be on hand. The United States Marine Corps Historical Company will set up displays of muskets and Marine Corps history. Members of the Army National Guard will be representing the United States armed forces displaying equipment and exhibits. One of Saturday’s highlight is a special Commemoration Service featuring nationally known historian Ed Bearss, NC Governor Pat McCrory (invited), NC Secretary of Cultural Resources Susan Kluttz and other state dignitaries, music and the massing of the re-enactor troops.
There will be other activities on Saturday, as well. Inside the museum new temporary exhibits will be unveiled. Descendants of hero and Medal of Honor recipient Bruce Anderson will be present for the opening of a new exhibit featuring Anderson’s Medal of Honor and his image. Bruce Anderson was a member of Co. K., 142 NYVI and was the only African American to be awarded the MOH for valor at Fort Fisher. Also, recently acquired personal heirlooms belonging to Fort Fisher’s Confederate commander Col William Lamb and his wife Sarah (Daisy) Lamb will be featured in a new exhibit. Lamb family members will join us for opening this new exhibit. One of Fort Fisher’s famous original British made Whitworth breechloading cannon will also go on exhibit, a generous loan from the US Navy. Outside the museum, the Site will dedicate 16 new historical interpretive markers around the historic fort’s walking trail. Renowned period musicians The Huckleberry Brothers will be playing period music and talking about the important role of music in the Civil War. Tickets will be sold for the special “Above the Scenes” Tours where visitors can hear the story of the Fort from expert historians while walking to the top of the fort’s massive traverses. There will also be activities for children and adults to learn about many Civil War topics through hands-on activities and exhibits and demonstrations by the United States Marine Corps Historical Company. Six US Marines in action at Fort Fisher in 1865 were awarded the Medal of Honor for valor. Saturday evening, Fort Fisher State Historic Site will host lantern tours of the Fort featuring the story of the battle in the words of those who fought at the Fort. The tour will be capped off with the night firing of the big 32 pdr. rifled cannon in Shepherd’s Battery, site of the Federal army’s breakthrough. Admission to the weekend Anniversary Observance is free and plenty of off-site parking and shuttle service will be provided.
The Friends of Fort Fisher is also planning a two day Descendants Reunion for those who had ancestors, either Union or Confederate, that took part in the Fort Fisher and Wilmington Campaign that will precede the weekend program events on Thursday, Jan 15 and Friday, Jan 16. This event is by invitation to descendants to control the large interest that is being generated in attending. Any Fort Fisher and Wilmington Campaign veteran descendant should go to www.friendsoffortfisher.com to electronically submit their ancestor’s information and to receive Reunion information. Panels of experts will facilitate discussions of many aspects of the Fort Fisher Campaign and Reunion attendees will share their own ancestor’s stories and memorabilia. Numerous Civil War authors will be on hand for the Reunion and the weekend Anniversary Observance and will present their research and sign copies of their books.
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
FORT FISHER STATE HISTORIC SITE
1610 FORT FISHER BLVD, SOUTH
KURE BEACH, NC 28449
OPEN: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
CLOSED: SUNDAY & MONDAY
THE SITE IS CLOSED MOST HOLIDAYS
SATURDAY - DECEMBER 6, 2014
“WE KEPT OUR COURAGE UP”
FORT FISHER’S DECEMBER PROGRAM SETS THE STAGE FOR THE 150TH COMMEMORATION
This one day program will focus on commemorating the first Federal attack on Fort Fisher in December 1864. Civil War re-enactors will set up displays of camp life and talk with visitors about the life of the soldiers, sailors and Marines from both sides of the December 1864 campaign.
The site’s 32-pound Seacoast Rifled and Banded cannon will be fired at 10 am, 12 pm, 2 pm and 4 pm. Costumed interpreters will be on hand to interpret the drill and equipment of the massive rifled cannon that would have been found at Fort Fisher.
A Confederate Infantry Unit will conduct the manual of arms and firing demonstrations. These demonstrations will be held at
TUESDAY- DECEMBER 9TH, 2014
FORT FISHER HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE
10 am – 4pm
Enjoy seasonal refreshments, decorations, good cheer and live entertainment throughout the day, with performances by the Murray Middle School Jazz Band, John Golden as Blockade Runner Captain Roberts, and Dr. John Bennett and Masonboro Parlor presenting period music and dance. Enjoy a 25% discount in the Museum Shop and join us for our 2014 Musket Raffle Drawing.
SPONSORED BY THE FRIENDS OF FORT FISHER AND FORT FISHER CAPTER 2325, UDC
JANUARY 17TH – 18TH, 2O15
THE 150TH COMMEMORATION OF THE FALL OF FORT FISHER
The program will focus on the struggle to capture and defend the Confederacy’s largest fortification and “Gibraltar of the South” during the attack on January 13 – 15, 1865. The program will include:
· Two Battle Reenactments (400 Re-enactors).
· Live fire of the Fort Fisher’s Rifled and Banded 32 pounder cannon and the bronze 12 pounder Napoleon cannon.
· Special night firing of the 32 pounder from Shepherd’s Battery.
· An original British made Whitworth breech loading cannon used at Fort Fisher will go exhibit (on loan from the US Navy).
· Union and Confederate re-enactors will conduct the drills found in the soldier’s Manual of Arms.
· Special exhibit on the only African American Medal of Honor winner for valor at Fort Fisher: Bruce Anderson, Co. K, 142 NYVI.
· Introducing a new exhibit on Colonel Lamb and his family.
· Special Commemoration Service featuring nationally known historian Ed Bearss, NC Secretary of Cultural Resources Susan Kluttz and other state dignitaries.
· Dedication of 16 new historical interpretive markers.
· Entertainment by the musicians The Huckleberry Brothers.
· Tours conducted by expert historians.
· Many activities for adults and children.
· Evening Lantern Tours.
· United States Marine Corps Historical Company will set up displays for muskets and Marine Corps history.
· The Army National Guard will display equipment and exhibits.
· Friends of Fort Fisher will sponsor a two day Descendants Reunion for those who ancestors, either Union or Confederate that took part in the Fort Fisher and Wilmington Campaign.
Contact web site: www.friendoffortfisher.com for further information.
The admission to the weekend Anniversary Commemoration is free and plenty of off-site parking and shuttle service.