Discussions of the upcoming sesquicentennial of the Civil War have been overshadowed by concerns that cash strapped states may scale down or even scrap commemorative plans as a result of budgets constrained by the recession. At least two states have managed to develop web sites for their sesquicentennial programs despite trying times.
I stumbled across North Carolinas site while searching for information on the Burnside Expedition in 1862. The site includes a chronology of the various campaigns in the state, a number of historical articles, maps by Mark A. Moore (these are first rate), and a list of events planned at various state historic sites. Definitely worth a look, and a great effort that other states ought to take note of. Visit the site at www.nccivilwar150.com/default.htm.
Virginia has also cobbled together an impressive site, though it seems much of the content is in development. Clicking an interactive map opens a list of events, both historical and current, for a given county, though this section needs quite a bit more work. The state has involved local round tables in the planning stage, and as Governor Tim Kaine is a staunch supporter of Civil War battlefield preservation, it is safe to assume Virginia’s commemorative programs will be substantial. Virginia’s site is http://www.virginiacivilwar.org/index.php.
Hopefully more states will follow suit with their own sesquicentennial programs. Bills have been introduced her in Maryland to establish a commission, but support may be lacking. Let’s hope Maryland’s lawmakers have the foresight to look beyond the current budget crunch and plan a meaningful program. If nothing else motivates them, perhaps the thought of increased tourism may spur them to action.
3 hours ago