DURHAM – A merry and measured Civil War-era Christmas will be celebrated with pine cone and ribbon decorations, smoked ham and other seasonal delights on Dec. 11 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and on Dec. 12 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at Bennett Place State Historic Site in Durham .
The “Christmas in the Carolinas During the Civil War” program will present Christmas in the modest fashion of James and Nancy Bennett on the family farm, and will allow visitors to capture the “Make History This Holiday” theme.
Costumed living historians will demonstrate the preparation of packages and letters to send to soldiers off at war. The local duo of Morrison and Southern will perform banjo and fiddle music of the 1860s. The traditional roasting of a hog’s head and apple pressing, unique to the Bennett Place holiday observance, will again occupy the front yard. A military encampment of Confederate soldier re-enactors will share their experiences of a simple but meaningful Christmas.
The farm’s kitchen house will be a delight, filled with the aromas of fried apples, pumpkin pie, onion soup, biscuits and smoked ham. The open-hearth cooking will inspire additional sentiment and warmth. Visitors can warm up with a cup of hot apple cider and enjoy holiday cookies. Admission is free, but donations are appreciated.
Bennett Farm was the homestead of yeomen farmers and the site of the largest troop surrender of the Civil War. Visitors also can see artifacts interpreting the life of the Bennett family and Civil War soldiers, the short film “Dawn of Peace” and the recently commissioned painting “The First Meeting,” depicting the start of negotiations between Union Gen. William T. Sherman and Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston.
For more info rmation call (919) 383-4345 or visit www.bennettplace.nchistoricsites.org.
Bennett Place is located in western Durham at 4409 Bennett Memorial Road , Durham , NC 27705 . It is within the Division of State Historic Sites in the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources, the state agency with the mission to enrich lives and communities, and the vision to harness the state’s cultural resources to build North Carolina ’s social, cultural and economic future. Information on Cultural Resources is available at www.ncculture.com.