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Greencastle museum to host Civil War event on Saturday

June 12, 2012|By ROXANN MILLER | roxann.miller@herald-mail.com

GREENCASTLE, Pa. — As part of the commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, the Allison-Antrim Museum is hosting an event on Saturday that shines the spotlight on Greencastle.

From 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the museum at 365 S. Ridge Ave., Civil War historians, Civil War music and speakers will help visitors understand the events of 1863.

Greencastle-Antrim’s 2012 commemoration of the Civil War 150th is free and open to the public and will be held rain or shine.

Civil War 150 is a planned five-year recognition across the United States that began in 2011.

Bonnie Shockey, president of the board of directors at Allison-Antrim Museum, said Greencastle and Antrim Township were invaded by Confederate troops several weeks before the Battle of Gettysburg.

“Troops camped on farms, helped themselves to supplies, food, feed for their horses and anything else they wanted,” she said.

Shockey said one of the highlights of Saturday’s Civil War event is the focus on local heroine Dolly Harris.

When Dolly was 17, she walked up to Confederate Gen. George Pickett as he passed her home, waved a Union flag in his face and denounced his troops as “traitors to their country,” Shockey said.

Born and raised in Greencastle during the mid 1800s, Harris married John Lesher and moved to Waynesboro, Pa., before later settling in Chambersburg, Pa., Shockey said.

Dolly was the only Franklin County woman buried with full military honors because of her Civil War heroism, according to Shockey.

She is buried alongside her husband in the Cedar Grove Cemetery in Chambersburg.

“So, she really, truly is a Franklin County Civil War heroine — not just a Greencastle (heroine),” Shockey said.

To honor Dolly Harris, Allison-Antrim Museum is raising money throughout Franklin County to construct a life-size bronze statue of Dolly, near the location of her childhood home on North Carlisle Street.

The “Dimes & Dollars for Dolly” fundraiser began in April 2011. Approximately $37,000 is needed to design, produce and install a life-size bronze statue. All donations are tax deductible.

“We want to have the money collected by the end of this year. I know it seems like a very uphill climb, but I think it can be done,” Shockey said.

The goal is to erect the statue by next June for the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg.

All of the activities will take place on the grounds of the museum, with speakers and exhibits in the barn.

BBQ by Ralph will provide chicken for the festivities.

For more information, log onto www.greencastlemuseum.org or call 717-597-9010.

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Civil War speakers on tap Saturday

In addition to Confederate and Union soldiers and women and children dressed in Civil War clothing, five speakers will discuss a variety of Civil War topics at Greencastle’s Civil War celebration on Saturday.

•At 10 a.m., Ted Alexander, chief historian at Antietam National Battlefield, will present “When War Passed This Way: Confederate Incursions into the Cumberland Valley: 1862-1864.”

•At 11 a.m., Jerry Bayer of Harpers Ferry will discuss Civil War weaponry and display some weaponry. 

•At noon, Alicia Miller will educate visitors on the important role the Ladies’ Aid Societies of Greencastle, Mont Alto, and Waynesboro played during the war. 

•At 1 p.m., historian Jeffrey Wert of State College, Pa., will present “Lee’s Army during the Gettysburg Campaign.” 

•At 2 p.m., Steve Recker, well-known producer of interactive CD-ROMs, will guide visitors through the interactive battlefield tour “Virtual Gettysburg.”

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