The Civil War savaged lives yet secured the future of generations in North Carolina and the rest of the nation, and altered the course of American history. The injustices faced by African Americans were some of the most significant factors leading to the American Civil War (1861-1865). The fight for liberation is just one of many moving features of the “Freedom, Sacrifice, Memory: Civil War Sesquicentennial Photography Exhibit.” The exhibit is presented by the Stanly County Library from Feb. 1-28 and will be displayed at the nearby Stanly County Museum in Albemarle.
“The Civil War occurred when photography was just becoming popular and became the first conflict to be widely recorded in this manner,” explains N.C. State Historic Sites Division Director Keith Hardison. “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.”
The exhibit will commemorate the bravery and resiliency of North Carolinians throughout the Civil War with stimulating images gathered from the State Archives, the N.C. Museum of History and State Historic Sites. A total of 24 images will be displayed by the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources in 50 libraries throughout the state from April 2011 through May 2013. A notebook will accompany the exhibit with further information and also seeking viewer comments.
Among images in the exhibit is that of a copy of the 13th Amendment sent by President Abraham Lincoln to the states. The word “Duplicate” is written on the document, which was submitted by Secretary of State William Seward to North Carolina Governor Zebulon Vance. Part of the text reads: “Approved, February 1, 1865.” Passage of the amendment ended slavery in the United States. This original copy of the transmittal letter is addressed “To His Excellency the Governor of the State of North Carolina” and is dated Feb. 2, 1865. Efforts to secure passage of the 13th Amendment are the subject of the film Lincoln.
Call the Stanly County Library at (704) 986-3765 for more information on the exhibit. Contact the Department of Cultural Resources at (919) 807-7389 for tour information.