RALEIGH — Since the beginning of the Civil War (1861-1865) 150 years have passed, but its widespread impact and defining characteristics remain vivid. These can especially be seen in North Carolina as illustrated by the “Freedom, Sacrifice, Memory: Civil War Sesquicentennial Photography Exhibit.” The exhibit will be hosted by the Mooresville Public Library from March 5-29, honoring North Carolinians in the Civil War with a variety of images.
“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 honor North Carolinians and their dedication throughout the Civil War with 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 and four museums throughout the state from April 2011 through May 2013. A notebook will accompany the exhibit with further information and also seeking viewer comments.
Images of women who played a role in the war are included. One photograph is of Rose O’Neil Greenhow, a Confederate spy, who was captured and sent to prison with her daughter. In the fall of 1864 Greenhow was traveling aboard a blockade runner that ran aground near Wilmington. The rowboat she attempted to escape in capsized and, weighted down by nearly $2,000 in gold, she was drowned in the surf.
Call the Mooresville Public Library at (704) 664-2927 for more information on the exhibit in Iredell County. Contact the Department of Cultural Resources (919) 807-7389 for statewide tour information.