From now until the end of 2014, the Cherokee County History Museum host the temporary exhibit “Cherokee Voices from the Civil War.”
The story of Cherokee County during the Civil War is told using quotes and first-hand accounts gleaned from original letters, court documents and publications. The exhibit focuses on life at home, on the battleground and from the African-American perspective.
A cornerstone of the exhibit will be the series of original letters sent from Pvt. John T. Beavers of the McAfee and Donaldson Guards to his family in Macedonia.
The McAfee and Donaldson Guard Company also take center stage when each visitor will be handed the description of one of the Guard recruits. At the end of the exhibit, the visitor will find out if their soldier survived the war.
Other items on display will be a collection of military artifacts including bullets, shells and cannonballs, gun tools, an artillery bucket, a Confederate cutlass, a Union officer’s sword, rifles and bayonet. Possessions from the soldiers such as canteens, belts, medals, and stirrups will also be displayed; some of the artifacts were found near Pickett’s Mill and Allatoona Pass.
You may also see a surgical kit and doctor’s textbooks, along with the original speech from 1861 as presented to the Cherokee Brown Riflemen from the Ladies of Canton as they marched off to war.
“This exhibit is a great way to hear about how the Civil War impacted Cherokee County, directly from the residents themselves. We’ve all heard that there were no major battles fought in the county, but in fact, Union and Confederate forces were skirmishing and foraging all through the area, especially in 1864 during the Atlanta Campaign,” says Executive Director, Stefanie Joyner. CCHS Archivist, Lisa Tressler, adds “Preparing for this exhibit really brought home how the war affected everyone in the county. Of course the men who marched off to battle and their women left to fend for themselves, but also the 16 year old daughter of a Unionist bringing food to men hiding in the woods, or the slaves who left to join the U.S. Colored Troops. The individual experiences are so unique and compelling.”
The exhibit is one of the events planned by the Cherokee County Sesquicentennial Committee to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War and the Battle of Atlanta.
Cherokee County History Museum Contact Information
Cherokee Voices from the Civil War
The exhibit is located in Suite 140 of the historic marble courthouse at 100 North Street, Canton 30114.
The exhibit is free and open to the public.
The operating hours are Wednesday–Friday from 10 to 5pm and Saturday from 10 to 3pm.