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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Scott Harris to lead James Monroe Museum & Library

MORE: Read more news from Fredericksburg

Scott Harris, director of New Market State Historical Park in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley, has been named to lead the James Monroe Museum and Memorial Library in Fredericksburg.

Elizabeth Paradis Stern, director of public affairs at the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation, lauded Harris and his 10-year tenure at New Market.

“Scott has been such an incredible partner.  The Shenandoah Valley’s loss is Fredericksburg’s gain,” Stern said in an email Friday night. “We will miss him.”

The Monroe Museum, owned by the commonwealth of Virginia, is administered by the University of Mary Washington. John Pearce of Fredericksburg, a longtime professor at UMW, recently retired as its director.

Harris received his bachelor of arts degree, with honors, in history and historic preservation from Mary Washington College in 1983. He earned a master’s degree in history and museum administration from The College of William & Mary in 1988.

He formerly was director of historic resources for the city of Manassas, which has a multi-site museum system, including a Civil War fort and the antebellum plantation house that served as headquarters for Confederate Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard–hero of the attack on Fort Sumter–in the Battle of First Manassas.

The New Market park commemorates the Battle of New Market, in which 257 Virginia Military Institute cadets helped capture a Union artillery battery. The park is administered by VMI.

Saturday’s Free Lance-Star will have a story on Harris and the James Monroe Museum.