The Genesee Country Village & Museum (GCV&M) will host a Civil War Living History Weekend on Saturday, May 20th, and Sunday, May 21st, featuring historical experts as well as historians and guest speakers from around the country about life in the Genesee Valley Region of NY State during America’s greatest conflict.
The Museum’s costumed historic interpreters, tradespeople, and special guests experts and scholars present engaging experiences steeped in the details of history relevant to New York State in the 1860s – and the impacts that continue to reverberate in modern life. Attendees will be able to see the relationship between President Lincoln and Frederick Douglass play out in real time, examine every detail of the garments Union soldiers wore into battle, smell coffee and bacon cooking over open fires, learn about women who disguised themselves as men to enlist, watch firing demonstrations and musket loading drills, fall in line with either the “Mumford ranks” or the “Caledonia ranks,” and so much more.
Women took active roles in the Civil War, both on the home front maintaining households, trades, and tending farms, as well as on the battlefield – sometimes disguising themselves as men to join the fray. During this year’s Civil War Living History Weekend, guests can attend a panel discussion with guests Dr. Audrey Scanlan-Teller and Tracey McIntire focused on women in the Civil War who disguised themselves as men and took up arms to protect the Union. This panel will be moderated by V Spehar, host of Under the Desk News.
While no battles took place in New York, more than 400,000 New Yorkers fought in the war and the state played a key role in the Abolitionist movement. Throughout the weekend, Museum interpreters, expert guest speakers, and performers will share stories of how the war impacted all residents of New York. Visitors can join Doug Oakes and Terri Olszowy from the Friends of the Elmira Civil War Prison Camp for a fascinating talk about how the Elmira Prison Camp pivoted from a training facility for Union soldiers to holding for captured Confederates.
Special guests President Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass (portrayed by Fritz Klein and David Shakes) will be on-site throughout the weekend to greet visitors, pose for “likenesses,” and discuss their historical collaboration to recruit and enlist People of Color.
Tickets are free for Museum Members, $23 for adults, $20 for seniors (62+), $20 for students (13 – 18), $17 for youths (3 – 12), and free for kids 3 and under. For more information or to purchase tickets, click here.
Photo of Civil War Living History Weekend at GCV&M provided.
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