April Meeting – Carolina Beach Then and Now

Presented by Elaine B. Henson

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, April 17, 7:30 p.m. at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

Elaine’s presentation will look at buildings, businesses and places at Carolina Beach from the past and what is in that same location now.  In some cases, we also see what was there in between.

This trip down memory lane begins just before coming over the Snow’s Cut Bridge and continues along Lake Park Boulevard to the Carolina Beach Lake.

 

 

March Meeting – Medal of Honor Recipients of the Lower Cape Fear

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, March 20, 7:30 p.m. at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

This month John Moseley will present his talk “Medal of Honor Recipients of the Lower Cape Fear.”

By the summer of 1861, the US Congress created the only award to recognize the acts of bravery by Union enlisted Navy, Marine Corps, and Army personnel during the Civil War. By war’s end, this award would be issued to 1,523 members of the Federal Army and Navy.

Between June 1864 and January 1865, seventy-two sailors, soldiers and Marines awarded the Medal of Honor for their actions at Fort Fisher. During the Civil War the US Marine Corps were awarded 17 Medals of Honor.

The struggle on the beach in front of Fort Fisher witnessed 6 of those Marine Medals of Honor. In addition, 35% of the recipients of the Medal of Honor for actions at Fort Fisher were foreign nationals.

Today, the Medal of Honor is the highest distinction that can be awarded by the President, in the name of the Congress, to members of the Armed Forces who have distinguished themselves conspicuously by gallantry and courage at the risk of their lives above and beyond the call of duty. In its history, 19 North Carolinians have been recognized for their actions with the Medal of Honor. New Hanover County recognizes four citizens of our Nation’s highest award.

John Moseley is the Assistant Site Manager at Fort Fisher State Historic Site. He received his undergraduate degree in History from The Citadel in Charleston, SC, in 1989. He then spent the next decade and a half working in the for-profit and non-profit business world. During the 1990s, he spent large amounts of time researching North Carolina’s role in the American Revolution and 18th century medical and dental history.

He began working at Fort Fisher in 2011 and is currently in charge of the educational programming for the State Historic Site.

Since the summer of  2012, John has been the historian with “Tasting History” where he leads a walking tour of Carolina Beach focusing on the history of Federal Point and sampling local restaurants.

Currently, he continues working on Fort Fisher’s Medal of Honor recipients and the role of Fort Fisher during World War 2.

 

February Meeting – Cape Fear Riverwatch

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, February 20, 7:30 p.m. at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

Our speaker this month will be Kemp Burdette, the Cape Fear Riverkeeper and Executive Director of Cape Fear River Watch, where he works to protect and improve the water quality of the Lower Cape Fear River.

Kemp’s academic background is in geology and history, graduating from UNCW magna cum laude with honors, and he holds a master of public administration (MPA), also from UNCW. He holds a certificate in nonprofit management from Duke University, as well.

Kemp spends most of his free time with his two daughters, Olivia and Caroline, working in his garden, or tinkering in his workshop, or exploring the waterways and swamps of the Lower Cape Fear Region. He has been the Executive Director and Riverkeeper for Cape Fear River Watch since 2010.

Cape Fear Riverwatch organizes monthly environmental seminars that cover topics and issues affecting the Lower Cape Fear River Basin. They encourage working internships for students. At Greenfield Lake, they offer Environmental Education classes and provide Eco-Tours and Bird Watching Tours.

CFRW offers water-quality education programs to groups including schools, civic groups, developers, homeowner associations and others. They provide storm water management training for local government staff.

 

The Ladies’ Memorial Association and the Civil War

By Nancy Gadzuk

Travis John Gilbert, manager of the Lower Cape Fear Historical Society’s Latimer House, spoke at the November 21, 2016 meeting of the Federal Point Historic Preservation Society. Travis talked about the Ladies’ Memorial Association and the role of women during and after the Civil War.

The notion of a so-called “good death” vanished with the realities of the Civil War and that change translated into women’s roles, particularly Southern women’s roles, changing dramatically as well.

While Southern women were supposed to be protected and taken care of, the war presented a new reality.

The unprecedented casualty rate of the Civil War meant that almost everyone was mourning loved ones who died alone and far from home rather than in the comfort of their families’ arms, in an honorable or good death.

In 1865, nearly every family plot in Wilmington’s Oakdale Cemetery had a fresh grave. War beckoned the ladies from their homes and they tried to mitigate the overwhelming death and destruction of war by leading the city’s mourning process.

The Ladies’ Memorial Association formed to take good care of Confederate graves. They held benefits and the 19th century equivalent of bake sales to make money for their efforts. May 8, 1868, marked Wilmington’s first Confederate Memorial Day, held outside Oakdale Cemetery with “graceful flowering offerings.”

By 1872, the Ladies’ Memorial Association had constructed the Confederate Soldiers Mound in Oakdale Cemetery as they shaped Wilmington’s post-war rebirth.

This plaque dedicated to the Confederate dead lies at the base of the mound:

THIS MONUMENT WAS DEDICATED MAY 10, 1872 / TO PERPETUATE DEEDS OF THE BRAVE AND IN GRATEFUL / TRIBUTE TO THE MEMORY OF 550 HONORED UNKNOWN / CONFEDERATE DEAD AT THE BATTLE OF FORT FISHER / WHO LIE BURIED HERE / SPONSORED BY THE LADIES MEMORIAL ASSOCIATION LATER MERGED WITH DAUGHTERS OF THE CONFEDERACY / SELF DENIAL – WORK – PRAYERS – TEARS – HEARTS BLOOD / ENTERED INTO ITS BUILDING

Under the auspices of flowers and community healing, the women of the confederacy became agents of local politics and power. Eventually this new gender strength and consciousness would find its way into the women’s suffrage movement, where these same elements would be crucial.

Self denial. Work. Prayers. Tears. Hearts blood.

 

 

 

January Meeting – World War I Commemoration

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, January 16, 7:30 p.m. at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

This month’s speaker will be Jan Davidson, historian at the Cape Fear Museum of History and Science.  She will discuss World War I and New Hanover County’s role in the fight.

We will hear about men and women who served their country, the folks they left at home, and the ways that the community memorialized the men who died in World War I.

Jan has worked at the Cape Fear Museum for 11 years, doing a wide range of research projects.  She curates exhibits (including Reflections in Black and White on display through February 20, 2017), writes the Museum’s “This Month in History” each month, and gives public programs on a wide range of historical subjects.

Lately she has been working on the history of World War I due to the upcoming anniversary, as well as a more long-term project exploring the census and slavery in the 19th century.

She has a PhD and has previously worked at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History before coming to Wilmington.

 

HELP US Commemorate WWI!

April 6, 1917 – Spring 2017

World War I, “The War to End all Wars,” is often overshadowed by WWII. However, there are many historical lessons to be learned from this period of history.

This Spring the Federal Point History Center will mount an exhibit commemorating the 100th anniversary of the US involvement in World War 1.

We are looking for artifacts, uniforms, papers, letters, and personal items from that period to BORROW for the length of the exhibit. If you have an item that you would consider lending to us, please call Rebecca at 910-458-0502.

 

December Meeting – Holiday Potluck

Monday, December 12, 2016christmas

One week early due to Christmas, one hour early, too!

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, December 12, 6:30 p.m. at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its annual holiday potluck on Monday, December 12 at 6:30 pm.  This year we will be back at the History Center as it’s a lot easier for the hospitality committee. Please join us for food, fun and festivities.

Joining the festivities will be John Golden and his magic guitar as well as Jay and Deborah Hockenbury. Please feel free to bring family and friends to this cozy community get-together.

 

Events Calendar – Winter-Spring 2017

Monday, April 17, 2017: 7:30-9:00 pm.
Program:  Have you ever seen an old picture or post card of a Carolina Beach building and wondered where it was located or what is there today?

Elaine Henson will show businesses and buildings from long ago and what is there now, and in some cases, what was there in between.

 

 

 

 

 

 

chris-and-andre

Saturday, April 22, 2017 – Rescheduled
Original date: March 18, 2017 – Canceled because of rain.

Historian Chris Fonvielle will lead his annual walk along the remnants of the Sugar Loaf Line of Defense.  Pre-registration is required. Call 910-458-0502. A donation of $10.00 is requested.

 

Chris Fonvielle: Local history buffs hope to rediscover Rock Spring (StarNews Online, March 18, 2017) Members of the Public Archaeology Corps hope to excavate the site of the Rock Spring, underneath the soon-to-be-demolished Water Street parking deck.

 

 

 

 

chefs-of-the-coastMonday, May 15, 2017:  7:30-9:00.
Program: John Batchelor, author of the cookbook Chefs of the Coast will talk to us about his research in compiling the book and how North Carolina’s coastal cuisine is unique.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Located adjacent to Carolina Beach Municipal Complex

Monday, June 19, 2017: 6:30–8:30 pm.
Potluck Picnic
: The perfect time to bring  friends and prospective members.

 

 

 

 

ALL PROGRAMS ARE FREE AND OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC.

They are held at the Federal Point History Center,  1121-A North Lake Park Blvd. (Just south of the Carolina Beach Town Hall.)

Or visit the History Center, open Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays 10-4.

For more information call: 910-458-0502.

 

November Meeting – Travis Gilbert on the Ladies Memorial Association

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, November 21, 7:30 p.m. at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

This month our program will be presented by Travis Gilbert. He will talk on the Ladies Memorial Association, which, just confederate-monument-wilmingtonafter the Civil War, made it their mission to inter or re-inter the bodies of  Confederate soldiers and to raise monuments in their honor.

The first Ladies’ Memorial Association sprang up immediately after the end of the Civil War in Winchester, Virginia, which had suffered significantly during the war. Mary Dunbar Williams of Winchester organized a group of women to give proper burial to Confederate dead whose bodies were found in the countryside, and to decorate those graves annually.

Within a year seventy such organizations had been founded throughout the South. The Wilmington Ladies’ Memorial Association was founded in the summer of 1866 to provide an honorable burial for the hundreds of Confederate soldiers buried in unmarked, often unidentified, graves across Southeastern North Carolina.

confederate-soldiers-moundFounded by women such as Elizabeth Parsley, Catherine DeRosset Meares, and Julia Oakley, the Wilmington Ladies’ Memorial Association organized bazaars, hosted entertainments, and lobbied their male counterparts to establish the Confederate Soldiers Mound in Oakdale Cemetery.

Confederate Mound Plaque:  This monument was dedicated May 10, 1872. / To perpetuate deeds of the brave and in grateful tribute to the memory of 550 honored unknown / Confederate dead at the Battle of Fort Fisher / who live buried here.

By the spring of 1868, the association facilitated Wilmington’s first Confederate Memorial Day, and in 1872, dedicated a monument above the Confederate Mound. The ladies’ endeavors were an unprecedented expansion of the traditional southern women’s gender sphere and would lay the foundations for Wilmington’s chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, the city’s Confederate relic room, and New Hanover County’s three Confederate monuments.

confederate-memorial-alabamaTravis Gilbert received his Bachelors of Arts in history from Hood College in Frederick, Maryland, where he completed original research on the Barbara Fritchie Memorial Association and Maryland secessionist, Enoch Louis Lowe. In addition, Gilbert worked at public history sites such as Monocracy National Battlefield and the Barbara Fritchie House Museum.

Gilbert is a docent at the Lower Cape Fear Historical Society and a volunteer at the Battleship North Carolina Memorial. Currently, he is completing a manuscript narrating women’s contributions to the rise of the Lost Cause in Wilmington, North Carolina, from 1865 until 1924. Please visit portcityredux.blogspot.com for updates on the manuscript’s progress or follow Gilbert on twitter @_travisjgilbert or Instagram @travisjgilbert