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Vicksburg - The Key to the South - the Keyhole
The Official Newsletter of Vicksburg, MS
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May 16, 2013


Commemoration of First Assault on Vicksburg Commemoration of First Assault on Vicksburg

May 19, 2013
First Assault programs begin at 10:00 with the Confederate perspective at Stop 12, Stockade Redan in the Vicksburg National Military Park. The Union perspective begins at 1:00... LEARN MORE:.

Rallying the Troops. Rallying the Troops.

May 19, 2013 1:55 PM
The rally will be from 1:55 pm until 4:15 pm at the Old Court House Museum, 1008 Cherry Street. After the Battle of Champion Hill a drummer will once again call the Confederat... LEARN MORE:.

Vicksburg Sesquicentennial Commemoration: Signature Event. Vicksburg Sesquicentennial Commemoration: Signature Event.

May 23, 2013
A series of open air concerts will take place in front of the Vicksburg National Military Park Visitor Center, 3201 Clay Street. The US Navy Concert Band located in New Orlean... LEARN MORE:.

Vicksburg Vision

Vicksburg Campaign Sesquicentennial Commemoration is near!

Situated high on the bluffs overlooking the mighty Mississippi River, Vicksburg prides itself on its perfect location as a midway point between Memphis and New Orleans as well as Dallas and Atlanta. As the city prepares for its sesquicentennial commemoration of the American Civil War and looking back to that time, it is that location which made it a focus point during the struggle to unite our nation once again. President Abraham Lincoln said, “Vicksburg is the key.” He knew that triumphing in the Siege of Vicksburg would lead to gaining control to the western part of our nation and the Mississippi River. On July 4, 1863 he did just that. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant and Gen. John Pemberton negotiated Vicksburg’s surrender giving the Union complete control.

Visitors can relive that history by visiting the Vicksburg National Military Park, tour homes, museums and other attractions in Vicksburg that highlight that time of grandeur. Programming for the 150th anniversary began with the launch of the Vicksburg Art of Commemoration Guide, Emancipation Proclamation Commemoration, the Battle of Raymond Re-enactment and the USS Cairo Anniversary Commemoration. In April, the Vicksburg National Military Park in partnership with the Southern Cultural Heritage Center and the Old Court House Museum, hosted the Vicksburg Civil War Heritage Fair with three days of period music, dance, crafts and programs. The Vicksburg National Military Park has hosted a series of battle commemorations including Port Gibson, Raymond and Jackson. The Battle of Champion Hill commemoration is tonight and Big Black River is Friday May 17th. On Sunday May 19th, the first assault on Vicksburg commemoration will be at the Vicksburg National Military Park at 9:00 am. After the Battle of Champion Hill a drummer will once again call the Confederate troops as they return to Vicksburg. While the troops rally they will be provided with food and water by Vicksburg citizens and be entertained by the 5th Alabama Regiment Band. Emma Balfour will read from her diary and the 1863 Mayor of Vicksburg will speak to the citizens. The "Rallying the Troops" will be from 1:55 pm until 4:15 pm at the Old Court House Museum.

Vicksburg Civil War Sesquicentennial Signature Event

The preparation has all led up to a climax of events Memorial Day weekend. The Vicksburg National Military Park has been selected to host a National Park Service Civil War Signature Event commemorating the Vicksburg Campaign which will take place May 23-27, 2013. Activities include: concerts by the U.S. Navy Band, Mississippi Symphony Orchestra with special guest Trace Adkins, Jackson Community Mass Choir and the 41st U.S. Army Band; commemorations of the first assault on the city and the second assault of Vicksburg’s defenses; living history presentations that include cannon demonstrations and interpretation of soldier everyday life during the Civil War; Shadows of the Past; a display of Special Boat Unit 22, part of the Navy’s modern river forces; a rededication of the Iowa Memorial; special programs on Civil War engineering and siege tactics; special programs on African- Americans and the Civil War exploring the roles of freedmen, the U.S. Colored Troops and enslaved peoples; and Soldiers through the Ages where a timeline of the military will be presented through static displays and programs. The weekend ends on Memorial Day with the city’s annual parade featuring veterans, Douglas the Camel and Special Boat Unit 22. Afterwards a Memorial Day program will be at the Vicksburg City Auditorium followed by a wreath-laying ceremony at the National Cemetery located in the Vicksburg National Military Park. A complete list of Vicksburg sesquicentennial events can be downloaded at www.visitvicksburg.com/events.

Civil War history is simply part of Vicksburg’s tapestry and can be found throughout the city at attractions including historic tour homes, the Old Court House Museum, the Lower Mississippi River Museum and the Old Depot Museum. Battle commemorations will continue on June 7th with the Battle of Milliken’s Bend and on June 25th with the Explosion at Third Louisiana Redan. On July 3rd the Friends of the Vicksburg National Military Park and volunteers will put out over 20,000 luminaries at each state monument representing the casualties from each state. That night, visitors will be able to drive through and see the Grand Illumination in the Vicksburg National Military Park. The Vicksburg Campaign sesquicentennial commemoration events conclude on July 4th with the Surrender of Vicksburg commemoration and the fireworks display and concert at the city’s riverfront.  Learn about American history and what it’s like along the Mississippi River in Vicksburg, the key to the South.

For more information on all events planned in Vicksburg, visit our Calendar of Events page and be sure to connect with us on Facebook and twitter.

Vicksburg CVB
1010 Levee Street, Boxes B and C
Vicksburg, MS 39183
Phone: 800-221-3536 • Email: laurabeth@visitvicksburg.com

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