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‘I Will Follow Them to the Death: Sheridan’s Soldiers 1864’

By Staff | Jul 15, 2016

On Saturday and Sunday, July 23 and 24, 2016, Harpers Ferry National Historical Park invites visitors to step into a Civil War occupied town for “I Will Follow Them To the Death: Sheridan’s Soldiers 1864.”

From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day, this living history program with the 13th New Jersey military living history group, will demonstrate Union army garrison duties such as: guard mount parade; searching and arresting spies, deserters, and traitors and processing prisoners of war.

Other demonstrations will include: searching citizens; and maintaining military security in an occupied enemy town. Costumed volunteers and staff will interpret civilian life under harsh military rule.

Harpers Ferry, important militarily, suffered constant occupation and action throughout the American Civil War.

In August of 1864, Harpers Ferry became the launching point for Union General Philip Sheridan’s Shenandoah Valley Campaign, whose primary object was to seek and destroy Confederate forces under the command of Confederate General Jubal Early.

A secondary objective was to destroy the food supplies in the Shenandoah Valley that provided sustenance to the Army of Northern Virginia. Harpers Ferry served as both a base of operations and supply center during this campaign.

Sheridan successfully completed both objectives.

His work was so thorough that one soldier ir said to have remarked, “a crow would be well advised to take its own provisions if it intended to fly across the valley.”

For further details, call the Information Center at 304-535-6029.