11/25/12 — Bentonville Battlefield to celebrate Christmas

View Archive

Bentonville Battlefield to celebrate Christmas

By From staff reports
Published in News on November 25, 2012 1:50 AM

FOUR OAKS-- People tired of the modern-day trappings of Christmas are being urged to leave the hustle and bustle of modern holidays behind and travel back to a simpler place and time at Bentonville Battlefield State Historic Site's "Civil War Christmas" event.

On Saturday, visitors are encouraged to help decorate an 1860s style Christmas tree, spend time with Confederate soldiers around the campfire, sip cider with civilian living historians and tour the circa 1855 Harper House. The holiday program will take place from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., and is free and open to the public.

Members of the 27th North Carolina Infantry re-enactment group will demonstrate how the average Civil War-era soldier and civilian marked the holidays, by presenting musket demonstrations, mail call and discussions about uniforms and what soldiers did while home on a Christmas furlough. A small military camp will be set up and visitors can also enjoy seeing the Harper House kitchen, which will be festively decorated, with volunteers serving hot cider and cookies.

To get into the spirit of the season, people can help the costumed interpreters string popcorn and cranberries, cut out paper ornaments and decorate a Christmas tree. The Harper House, which was turned into a hospital during the Battle of Bentonville, will be set up as Union field hospital and open for hourly tours.

The Battle of Bentonville, fought March 19-21, 1865, involved 80,000 troops and was the last Confederate offensive against Union Gen. William T. Sherman.

The battlefield is located at 5466 Harper House Road, Four Oaks, about three miles north of Newton Grove on state road 1008, about 20 miles west of Goldsboro.

For information, visit www.nchistoricsites.org/bentonvi/bentonvi.htm or call 910-594-0789.