The 150th anniversary of the Civil War moves into "prime time" in 2013 with major events scheduled throughout the year. Starting with the Emancipation Proclamation on the 1st day of the year, other events to be celebrated this year include the battle of Gettysburg, the battle of Chancellorsville, Stonewall Jackson’s death, the formation of the United States Colored Troops, the battle of Vicksburg, the battle of Chickamauga, the Gettysburg Address and the battle of Chattanooga. Those events all occurred in 1863.
The Sesquicentennial of the Battle of Chancellorsville is officially called the 150thChancellorsville Civil War Weekend and Reenactment will be held on May 3 -5 in Spotsylvania, Virginia. A symposium will also be held to discuss the battle scenario. The symposium will be held May 2 at the Lodge at Stevenson Ridge. Incorporated in both will be information surrounding the accidental shooting of General Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson on May 2, 1863, the amputation of his arm and his death from pneumonia on May 10.
The formation of the United States Colored Troops followed shortly after the Emancipation Proclamation. That law, General Order #143, established on May 22, 1863, the Bureau of Colored Troops. The short form of the law established an official government office allowing for the recruitment of black soldiers into regiments. Those regiments were number consecutively starting with the 1st USCT, 2nd USCT, etc. without changing the designation of troops already designated such as the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry.
The Sesquicentennial of the battle of Vicksburg will be officially commemorated this year as the Memorial Day Weekend Siege and Commemoration. It will be held May 23-27, 2013.
The battle of Gettysburg occurred on July 1, 2, and 3, 1863. This year, the reenactment promises to be the “Mother of all Civil War reenactments.” Over 5,000 reenactors had already registered for the Sesquicentennial events, to be staged on July 4 - 7, 2013. If you are planning to go to just one event, this would be the one.
Battle of Chickamauga took place on September 18 – 20, 1863. The Sesquicentennial events this year will occur on September 19 – 22 and will include a battle reenactment and living history.
Battle of Chattanooga Sesquicentennial events will take place on October 9 – 12, this year. The events, to be held at the Chattanooga Convention Center, will include exhibits, speakers, panels of experts, author book signings, musical performances, and battlefield tours.
The original dedication of the National Cemetery in Gettysburg (where President Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous Gettysburg Address) was November 19, 1863. The Sesquicentennial event will take place this year on November 19, 2013.
If you miss out on the Sesquicentennial events this year, you still will be able to attend major events scheduled in 2014 and 2015.
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