Past is Prologue

Clint Schemmer writes about history, heritage preservation and the American Civil War.  On Facebook: Past is Prologue  On Twitter: @prologuepast  ContactEmail Clint or call 540/374-5424.

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Today, It’s Still Christmastime at Ellwood!

As the Twelve Days of Christmas continue, the holiday spirit is burning bright today at eastern Orange County’s best-known historic site.
This winter’s first big snowstorm–the one that weather wags dubbed the "Shopper Stopper of 2009"–forced Ellwood to call off its scheduled Dec. 19 event. Santa was able to get there because he has those flying reindeer, I’m told, but visitors were not!

Undeterred, the volunteers of Friends of the Wilderness Battlefield invite you to visit from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today for a dose of Christmas cheer, song, refreshments, a visit with ol’ St. Nick, and some Virginia history.

Ellwood looks beautiful decorated for the season, and a very special Santa–a Victorian-style one–is coming, so children will have a chance to thank him for the fine Christmas he brought.

The Joysong Chorale will perform, and Ellwood’s volunteers will offer a holiday-related interpretation of the plantation home that welcomed the Marquis de Lafayette, James Madison, James Monroe and Civil War generals. Inspired by the guides, you can experience the season as much as the Lacy family, Ellwood’s owners, did during the last quarter of the 19th century.

Here’s the schedule for the "Christmas Season at Ellwood" event hosted by the nonprofit Friends of Wilderness Battlefield and the National Park Service:

9-11 a.m. — "Thank You, Santa" and Victorian period activities for children.

11 a.m. — Concert of 19th-century music by Joysong Chorale.

12 to 4 p.m. — Historic interpretation of Christmas from 1861 to 1896.

Refreshments will be served all day.

Ellwood is located on State Route 20, one-half mile from its intersection with State Route 3. As one heads toward the town of Orange on Route 20, Ellwood’s driveway is on the left.

FOWB’s Web site is