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education

Sons of Union Veterans Donate Artifacts

Phelps Camp No. 66, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War recently donated a collection of rare veteran and Grand Army of the Republic artifacts to Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield.

Four Union veteran ribbons from southwest Missouri, three Missouri Grand Army of the Republic documents, and a poster advertising a trip on the “Frisco” line from Springfield, Missouri to the 1895 G.A.R. reunion in Louisville, Kentucky were included in the donation. The Grand Army of the Republic was founded in 1866 and open to honorably discharged members of the Union Army, Navy and Marine Corps. The last member of the G.A.R. died in 1956.

“We are very grateful to the members of Phelps Camp for purchasing and donating these precious artifacts. Material relating to the G.A.R. and Union veterans in Missouri is extremely scarce, and these items will be added to our museum collection, preserved in our climate-controlled storage area, and made available to researchers,” said Superintendent Hillmer, who is in the picture along with Robert Clanton, Commander of Phelps Camp.

Phelps Camp, the local chapter of the national Sons of Union Veterans organization, was formed in 1994. The Sons of Union Veterans is a patriotic and educational organization, founded on November 12, 1881 and incorporated by Act of Congress August 20, 1954. One of the purposes of the organization is to preserve the memory of those who saved the Union from 1861 and 1865. Phelps Camp has donated a number of Civil War documents and artifacts to public collections where they can be enjoyed by visitors and studied by scholars.

Volunteer

Volunteer Program Meeting & Orientation

On Saturday, March 8, 2014 Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield is hosting a Volunteer Recruitment Fair from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The day’s activities will begin with a short video introducing the NPS Volunteer in Parks (VIP) program followed by a thirty-minute presentation to address some of the specific volunteer needs for the 2014 spring and summer season. Anyone interested in volunteering at the battlefield is encouraged to attend.  Volunteers should be at least sixteen years of age to participate in activities.   Light refreshments will be served. Reservations are not required for the meeting.

After the 9:00 a.m. presentation, visitors and prospective volunteers will have the opportunity to stop by several volunteer exhibition tables set up throughout the visitor center. Each station will be hosted by a park staff member or one of the current volunteers at Wilsons’s Creek NB to provide an opportunity for the public to learn first-hand about the various volunteer positions. The volunteers will also share personal in-sight as well as some of their own experiences with the Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield volunteer program.

According to Superintendent Ted Hillmer, “The programs presented at the park are strongly supported by volunteers.  Come and be a part of preserving our nation’s rich cultural history.”  A registration table will be available to pick up the necessary forms and information.

There is an immediate need for volunteers to assist during the busy spring school season (April/May) with providing educational tours of the historic Ray House as well short programs on Civil War medicine and other Civil War topics. These and other volunteer opportunities for FY 2014 will be discussed in further detail during the fair.

10th Annual Memorial Luminary Driving Tour

Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield presents the 10th Annual Memorial Illumination Ceremony, featuring over 2,539 luminaries, representing those killed, wounded, or missing at the Battle of Wilson’s Creek, August 10, 1861.  Admission is FREE!

WHEN:  Saturday, December 14, 2013.

WHERE: Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield, Republic, Missouri.  Directions: Travel west on the James River Freeway (Hwy 60) to exit Hwy M.  Go south on M for about ¾ mile to Wilson’s Creek Blvd. (Hwy ZZ).  Turn south on Wilson’s Creek Blvd., go one mile to Farm Rd 182.  Then, turn east on Farm Rd 182 and the first right is the entrance to the park.

 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:

4:30 pm   Opening Ceremony at the Visitor’s Center

5:00 pm   Volunteer Procession through Illumination

5:15 pm   Memorial Illumination Tour Opens to Public

Over 2,000 people expected to tour Illumination from 5:15 pm to 9:30 pm

 EVENT DETAILS:  Over one hundred volunteers, including Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War, Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield Foundation members, Ozark Civil War Roundtable members, and other community organizations will participate in this event, assembling the luminaries and distributing them along the five-mile tour road through the park.

 A luminary is a paper bag filled with sand and a lighted candle. A special candle will be utilized this year to honor our park volunteers.

 Living history volunteers, carolers, and re-enactors at the Ray House will bring the past to life.  Visitors are encouraged to tour the Ray House and learn about the hardships faced by local families during the Civil War.  Music, refreshments, and information will be provided at the visitor center.

 Vehicles will use parking lights only for the five-mile driving tour through the National Battlefield, with stops at the Visitor Center and the Ray House. There are no restrooms along the tour route.

2013 Anniversary Programs

Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield will observing the 152nd Anniversary of the Battle of Wilson’s Creek over the weekend of August 10 and 11, 2013, with a variety of programs and activities.

On Saturday, August 10, at 10 a.m., at Tour Stop 5, the anniversary program will begin with music and a presentation of land purchased by the Civil War Trust and WICR Foundation.  “This acquisition of land is the continuation of preserving the past for future generations”, according to Superintendent Hillmer.  “Come and enjoy this special presentation.”  Refreshments will be provided.

Visitors attending the anniversary program are encouraged to arrive early, due to the additional time necessary to drive from the visitor center to Tour Stop 5.  Entrance fees for August 10 will be waived.

Living history programs will be presented at Tour Stop 5 depicting the various Southern troops that fought at the battle of Wilson’s Creek.  “Generals McCulloch and Price forged a coalition army consisting of Confederate troops from Arkansas, Texas and Louisiana, Arkansas state forces and the Missouri State Guard in order to oppose General Lyon’s federal troops”, remarked Chief Park Ranger John Sutton.  “The purpose of these programs is to relate the soldier’s combat experience during the battle to the visitor.”

Artillery and infantry small arms demonstrations will take place on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the hour.  A special night artillery firing program will take place on Saturday at 8 p.m. at Tour Stop 5 to conclude the day’s observances.

Junior Ranger Day at the Battlefield

On Saturday, April 27, 2013, from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, the National Park Service and Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield will be celebrating National Junior Ranger Day.    Designed for children ages 4 yrs to 12 yrs old, the Junior Ranger program, at Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield, introduces our young visitors to the various resources and the many stories and events associated with the Civil War in SW Missouri.  According to Supt. Hillmer, “Make your plans now to attend this family event designed to educate our youth about the Battle of Wilson’s Creek”.

During this special Junior Ranger Day event, the staff and volunteers at Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield will be providing different presentations on civilian and military life during the civil war as well as providing tours at the Ray House.  Activities will be available continuously between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm.  Children who complete the activity book will receive an official “Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield” Junior Ranger badge, and certificate.  The regular entrance fee will apply:  $5.00 per individual or $10.00 per vehicle.

The National Park Service is dedicated to conserving, unimpaired, the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations.

Volunteer

Volunteer Recruitment Fair

On Saturday, March 9, 2013 Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield is hosting a Volunteer Recruitment Fair from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The day’s activities will begin with a short video introducing the NPS Volunteer in Parks (VIP) program followed by a thirty-minute presentation to address some of the specific volunteer needs for the 2013 spring and summer season. Anyone interested in volunteering at the battlefield is encouraged to attend.  Volunteers should be at least sixteen years of age to participate in activities.   Light refreshments will be served. Reservations are not required for the meeting.

After the 9:00 a.m. presentation, visitors and prospective volunteers will have the opportunity to stop by several volunteer exhibition tables set up throughout the visitor center. Each station will be hosted a park staff member or one of the current volunteers at Wilsons’s Creek NB and provide opportunity for the public to learn first-hand about the various volunteer positions. In addition to answering questions the volunteers will also share personal in-sight as well as some of their own experiences with the Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield volunteer program.

According to Superintendent Ted Hillmer, “The programs presented, at the park, are strongly supported by volunteers.  Come and be a part of preserving our nation’s history.”  A registration table will be staffed where new or ‘prospective’ volunteers can stop by for additional information and pick up or fill out the appropriate paperwork.

There is an immediate need for volunteers to assist during the busy spring school season (April/May) with providing educational tours of the historic Ray House as well short programs on Civil War medicine and other Civil War topics. These and other 2013 opportunities to volunteer will be discussed in further detail during the fair.