RALEIGH — Heroic tales and valiant feats are depicted in images that reflect North Carolina’s dedication to the war in the “Freedom, Sacrifice, Memory: Civil War Sesquicentennial Photography Exhibit.” Union County Public Library in Monroe will host the exhibit from Nov. 7-28, sharing images and stories that capture the history and people of the Civil War (1861-1865).
The Civil War occurred when photography was just becoming popular and became the first conflict to be widely recorded in this manner. Battlefield images fascinated the public and acquainted them, in a dramatic way, with the horrors of war. The “Freedom, Sacrifice, Memory” exhibit presents images that compare and contrast the conditions of war, then and now,” explains N.C. State Historic Sites Division Director Keith Hardison.
The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources will display 24 images from the State Archives, the N.C. Museum of History and State Historic Sites. Between April 2011 and May 2013, 50 libraries and four museums will showcase “Freedom, Sacrifice, Memory” offering visuals that present gallant women, African American triumph and the perseverance of Confederate soldiers. A notebook will accompany the exhibit with further information and seeking viewer comments.
One of the images is a letter from Colonel Isaac E. Avery that exemplifies the courage of the Confederate forces. Born Dec. 20, 1828, in Burke County, Avery served in the 6th N.C. Troops and led the attack on Cemetery Hill at Gettysburg in July 1863. As his final act, Avery wrote a message to Major Samuel McDowell Tate reading, “Major. Tell my father I died with my Face to the enemy. I. E. Avery,” and marked it with his blood.
The unique exhibit shares history from across North Carolina, from the mountains to the coast, and educates viewers about the hardships North Carolinians faced during this pivotal time. For information on the library exhibit, call (704) 283-8184. For information on the tour visit the North Carolina Civil War Sesquicentennial website or call (919) 807-7389.
For more information on North Carolina arts, history and culture, visit Cultural Resources online.