Battle of Hancock set for Jan. 5-8

December 29, 2011|Anne Weatherholt | Around Hancock

As promised, here is more information about the Battle of Hancock Sesquicentennial Commemoration taking place Jan. 5-8.  

From Thursday evening's opening ceremonies at St. Thomas' Episcopal Church, to Sunday's closing evening prayer service, the events swirl around Church Hill and downtown.  

Friday evening at the Hancock Performing Arts Center is particularly packed with exhibits and two lectures: "Overview of the Battle" by Art Callaham and "Lecture on Civil War Orthopedics" by Dr. John Rathgeb.  

Saturday's events begin at 9 a.m. with the 5K walk/run, plus exhibits at the Hancock Visitors Center, Chesapeake & Ohio Canal Bowles House and the Hancock Town Hall and Community Center.  

Well-known Civil War authors, including Tim Snyder, Bob O'Connor, Steve French, Joe Stahl and John Mentzer will be on hand all day for book signings.  

There will be a firing demonstration at St. Thomas' Church Cemetery at 10 a.m., 12:30 p.m., and 4 p.m., with music throughout the day at various locations.  

Saturday closes with a concert from the Wildcat Regiment Band.

Sunday features more on the role of St. Thomas' Episcopal Church, a soldiers' memorial service and dedication of gravestones and a Civil War period evening prayer service with the choir.  

All events are open to the public.  

For a complete schedule of events, go to

Re-enactors welcome

Re-enactors are welcome at the Battle of Hancock events. The weather might be similar to that reported 150 years ago — cold and snowy. But that is when those heavy wool uniforms come in handy. Just be thankful you will not be asked to ford the Potomac River or camp outside in snowbanks.  

For more information, call Lily Wolford at 301-678-6173 or send an email to

Watch Night service

Hancock Assembly of God, 431 N. Pennsylvania Ave., will hold a Watch Night service on New Year's Eve from 10 p.m. to midnight with special singing from local talent.  The New Year's Day service is at 11 a.m. All are welcome to attend.      

Festival of lessons and carols set for Sunday

Meanwhile, the Christmas celebration continues Sunday morning, New Year's Day, at St. Thomas' Episcopal Church.

The 10 a.m. service will feature a Christmas festival of lessons and carols, based on a service made popular in the early 1900s by the choir at King's College, Cambridge, England.  

The Christmas story is told through a series of scripture readings, carols and anthems. Following the service, the Sunday school will host a birthday party for the Christ child, with the children gathering around the parish Christmas tree for cake and refreshments and to make small outreach offerings for those in need.

Band selling sandwiches

The Panthers Band at Hancock Middle-Senior High School will be selling sandwiches Jan. 3-12. Indoor guard and indoor percussion ensembles have been practicing hard and will perform in February. To order sandwiches, send an email to  

All proceeds assist the band program with instruments, music and many other expenses connected with competitions and learning.  

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To submit items for this column, call 301-678-6888 or send an email to

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