Montgomery County, TN – The Clarksville Montgomery County Civil War Sesquicentennial Commission is gearing up for numerous events and commemoration activities in the Clarksville-Montgomery County area.
Over the next three months, there will be a variety of offerings, for young and old alike, to reflect, relive and learn about Clarksville and Montgomery County’s role in the Civil War.
Upcoming Events Include
Local author, Carolyn Ferrell will have a book signing at Fort Defiance for her recently published book Occupied: The Story of Clarksville, Tennessee During The Civil War on Saturday, February 18th, 2012 from 10:00am to 3:00pm. Books will be available for purchase. Fort Defiance Civil War Park is located at 120 Duncan Street.
“Surrender of Clarksville.” Commemoration ceremony on Sunday, February 19th, 2012 at 2:00pm at Fort Defiance Civil War Park & Interpretive Center. The ceremony will include a 20-minute re-enactment of events pertaining to the surrender. The event is free and open to the public.
“General Grant’s Briefing” by Grant impersonator Dr. E.C. Fields will be presented on Monday, February 20th, 2012 at 11:00am in the theater of the Customs House Museum. A one-person, one-hour program on Grant’s role during the war in Tennessee. Free and open to the public. Limited seating.
The Roxy Regional Theatre presents “The Red Badge of Courage” from the novel by Stephen Crane. Adapted for the stage by John McDonald. March 30th, 31st and April 6th, 7th, 2012. 100 Franklin Street, Clarksville. Tickets are available at www.roxyregionaltheatre.org.
Author Tom McKenney will discuss and be available to sign his book, Jack Hinson’s One Man War at Fort Defiance on Tuesday, April 17th, 2012 from 5:00pm to 8:00pm. Books will be available for purchase at the event.
The Austin Peay Music Department and Dr. Jeffrey Wood will host a concert of Civil War music on Tuesday, April 17th, 2012 at 7:30pm in the Austin Peay Music/ Mass Communications Concert Hall. The concert will feature music by William Kittredge, George F. Root, Stephen Foster and Louis Moreau Gottschalk with performances by Sarah Jenkins Queen, Karen Crow, Rachel Hansbury, Lisa Conklin-Bishop, Thomas King, Emily Hanna Crane and Jeffrey Wood.
There will be more details to follow on all of these events. Information on these and much more can be found on the CW150 website, www.clarksvillecivilwar.com. If you have an event that you would like to have sanctioned by the Civil War 150 Commission, please contact the Commission through the website.
About the Clarksville’s Civil War Involvement
Clarksville, a communication and transportation center, was strategically significant because of the Cumberland River and the Memphis, Clarksville and Louisville Railroad. The area’s rich agricultural produce—grain, livestock, tobacco, and corn—and the products of its iron industry reached the nation and world via these transportation assets. Three forts, including Forts Donelson and Defiance on the Cumberland River, protected this pro-Confederate town and many of Clarksville’s residents rushed to join Southern military units.
After the surrender of Fort Donelson in February 1862, however, Union gunboats and troops from General Ulysses S. Grant’s army occupied Clarksville. Federal control proved tenuous. The Confederates briefly reclaimed the town in August 1862; it returned temporarily to Union control in September 1862. The Federals occupied Clarksville permanently in December 1862 when Col. Sanders Bruce’s brigade took charge of the town and Fort Defiance, which was renamed Fort Bruce.
Clarksville became a gathering place for white Unionists and escaped slaves who were housed in tobacco warehouses along the river and near Fort Bruce. Eventually more than 3,000 refugees converged on the town, outnumbering local residents.
In 1863, after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, the Federals began to recruit free blacks and former slaves for military service. Some 1,800 joined the Federal army and were inducted into the 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, and 101st U.S. Colored Troops in ceremonies on the Clarksville public square.
– Taken from “Clarksville in the Civil War,” Civil War Trails Marker