From the American Revolution in Elizabethton to the Civil War in Blountville, this weekend has a history happening to your taste. Here is the latest off the telegraph lines.
On Sunday, September 22, this being the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Blountville, the Lt. Robert D. Powell Camp 1817 of the Sons of Confederate Veterans will hold a memorial service at the battle marker located in front of the Old Sullivan County Courthouse in Blountville, at 2:00 p.m. to remember those Confederate soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice in the battle. The featured speaker will be Dr. Phillip Blevins, President of Graham Bible College. The public is invited to attend.
Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday, Sept 21,22 and 25, Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area will be alive with activity and also welcome some very special guests during the annual Overmountain Victory Trail Celebration. The event takes place from 10 am – 4 pm on Saturday and from 10 am – 3 pm on Sunday. Activities will be taking place in and around Fort Watauga and inside of the park Visitor Center.
Special guests for this year’s event include the Tennessee Society Sons of the American Revolution who will present “The Gathering at Sycamore Shoals” at 10 am on Saturday in Fort Watauga. Their ceremony honors the patriots who gathered at Sycamore Shoals before their march to Kings Mountain, South Carolina in 1780, ending in the defeat of Major Patrick Ferguson during the War for American Independence.
Later on Saturday afternoon, we will be welcoming New York Times bestselling author Sharyn McCrumb at 3 pm in the park Visitor Center. She will be joining us to speak about her newest book, “King’s Mountain,” and autograph copies as well! McCrumb is an award-winning Southern writer, best known for her Appalachian Ballad novels, including The Ballad of Tom Dooley, The Devil Amongst the Lawyers, and The Ballad of Frankie Silver.
Now, with her latest book, KING’S MOUNTAIN, McCrumb has written her first Ballad novel about the American Revolution, focusing on the Overmountain militia men and the Battle of King’s Mountain, considered by many to have been the turning point of the war. McCrumb paints a vivid and compelling portrait of colonial America and fills her story with fascinating historical characters including one of her own real-life ancestors who fought in the battle. Expertly researched and written with an extraordinary sense of time and place, KING’S MOUNTAIN is filled with unforgettable characters and rich historical detail.
MCCRUMB’s books have been named Notable Books of the Year by The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times. She was named a “Virginia Woman of History” for Achievement in Literature and won the Appalachian Writer of the Year Award. Copies of "King's Mountain" will be available for sale in the Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area Bookstore and Gift Shop.
American Frontier Artist, Richard Luce, will spend Saturday, the 21st at Sycamore Shoals, unveiling his latest painting, “The Patriot Victory at Kings Mountain October 7, 1780.” The first viewing of Richard’s original 3 ft x 6 ft work will take place during the event on Saturday, September 21st. He will return again with the painting on Wednesday, September 25th during the re-enactment of the crossing of the Watauga River by the Overmountain Men.
“The Patriot Victory at Kings Mountain October 7, 1780” is the 4th in a series of paintings which depict the events and contributions associated with the Overmountain Men. The 3rd in this series, “The Crossing,” is reproduced as the new entrance mural for the Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area’s Interpretive Exhibits. Prints of “The Crossing” are available in the park gift shop. At this event you have the opportunity to order a LIMITED EDITION giclee print of “The Patriot Victory at Kings Mountain October 7, 1780.” Only 50 prints will be reproduced and each 24 x 48 giclee will be Signed and Numbered.
Richard is also a re-enactor and has participated in the Overmountain Victory Trail march five times. This year will mark his sixth year of journeying from Sycamore Shoals to Kings Mountain sharing the story of this important event in our nation’s history. A professional artist since 1979, Mr. Luce is known for his exceptional detail and realism, specializing in American frontier art.
Wednesday, September 25, will be The Overmountain Victory Trail Crossing. On September 25, 1780, the Overmountain Men gathered at Sycamore Shoals on their march to victory at King’s Mountain. Members of the Overmountain Victory Trail Association have recreated this historic journey since 1975, following the same route and timetable as their legendary forebears. Marchers will cross the Watauga River at the Sycamore Shoals, as the frontiersmen would have done 233 years ago. Approximate time of crossing the river is 2:00 pm. Sponsored by the Washington County Regiment of North Carolina Militia and the Friends of Sycamore Shoals
State Historic Area.
MILITIA MUSTER SCHEDULE: SEPTEMBER 21 – 22, 2013
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 21st
10:00 – “The Gathering at Sycamore Shoals” – Join the TN Society Sons of the American Revolution for a ceremony honoring the patriots who gathered at Sycamore Shoals before marching to Kings Mtn. SC and defeating Major Patrick Ferguson in that pivotal battle in the War for American Independence.
12:00 – Trail Talk – Join historic interpreter Chad Bogart for a guided walk along the park trail as he recounts the story of the Overmountain Men and their historic gathering at Sycamore Shoals.
1:00 – Life on the Homefront – Come to the Talbot House for a look at the woman’s role on the 18th century frontier. See how the women and children fared after the militia had marched off in search of Patrick Ferguson and the Tory army.
1:30 – “Fix Bayonets”!!! – Join Mr. Davis as he shares the history and importance of the bayonet as a weapon of the 18th century.
2:00 – Artillery Demonstration – Join members of the Washington County Militia as they fire the fort’s cannon and talk about artillery in the 18th century.
2:30 – Militia Drill – The Washington County Militia drill and hone their skills as defenders of the frontier. Learn about the different firearms used in Colonial America.
3:00 – New York Times best-selling author Sharyn McCrumb – Join us in the Visitors Center as Sharyn speaks about and autographs her latest book, “Kings Mountain”.
4:00 – Camps Close - Join us tomorrow for another exciting day of life on the colonial frontier!
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 22nd
10:00 – Militia Inspection & Raising the Colors - Witness the Washington County Militia fall in for inspection of arms, and hear the roar of muskets and rifles as the flag is hoisted for the day.
11:00 – Worship Service - Feel free to join the militia for Sunday morning service held in the courtyard of Fort Watauga.
12:00 – Echoes of Revolution – Join the Watauga Valley Fifes and Drums for an exciting glimpse into the musical world of the 18th century.
1:00 – Life on the Homefront – Come to the Talbot House for a look at the woman’s role on the 18th century frontier.
1:30 – Artillery Demonstration - Join members of the Washington County Militia as they fire the fort’s cannon and talk about artillery in the 18th century.
2:00 – Militia Drill – The Washington County Militia drill and hone their skills as defenders of the frontier. Learn about the different firearms used in Colonial America.
3:00 – Retiring the Colors – Camps Close – Thank you for joining us for a great day of frontier living history. Join us next time!
ONGOING ACTIVITIES FOR BOTH DAYS INCLUDE:
Open Hearth Cooking – Flintlock Musket & Rifle Demonstrations – Tavern Life – Militia Drill Colonial Music – 18th Century Camp Life Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area