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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Memorial Day ceremonies planned Monday in Fredericksburg

MORE: Read more Spotsylvania County news

MORE: Read more news from Fredericksburg

Fredericksburg's Confederate Cemetery, taken last week before its decoration for Memorial Day. (PETE CIHELKA/THE FREE LANCE-STAR)

Memorial Day ceremony, Fredericksburg Confederate Cemetery. 10 a.m., Monday, May 28. Fredericksburg resident William Freehling, historian and author of “The Road to Disunion” and other works, will deliver keynote speech during Memorial Day program hosted by Ladies Memorial Association. Free. 540/373-5177. Bring chairs or blankets.

Fredericksburg Masonic Cemetery to Gen. Hugh Mercer Statue, A procession of Freemasons will march from their lodge on Princess Anne Street to the cemetery at Charles and George streets. From there, they will march to Gen. Hugh Mercer’s statue. In case of rain, event will take place at Masonic Lodge. 10 a.m. to noon.

Memorial Day procession, from Riverfront Park to Fredericksburg National Cemetery. 10:30 a.m. Monday,  May 28. The  National Park Service, in conjunction with members of the Fredericksburg-area community and the congregation of Shiloh Baptist Church (Old Site), will host a procession from Riverfront Park on Sophia Street to the National Cemetery. The mile-long procession, beginning at 10:30 a.m., will start up Charlotte Street.  Civil War re-enactors representing the 23rd Infantry Regiment, United States Colored Troops, will lead the 2012 march, which will re-create an 1871 march by white and black citizens that culminated in the first multi-racial Memorial Day program held in the town. Like the 1871 event, this year’s march will conclude at the  National Cemetery in time for participants to take part in the cemetery’s 12 p.m. Memorial Day exercises.  Shiloh Baptist Church’s former pastor, the Rev. Lawrence A. Davies, will deliver the keynote address. Both the procession and the Memorial Day program are free to the public.

Memorial Day Service, Shiloh Cemetery, Littlepage Street and Monument Avenue. Elder George Thigpen of Mount Zion Baptist Church will be the speaker. Music by the Gospel Chorus of Shiloh Baptist Church (Old Site). Rain location: Shiloh Baptist Church (New Site). 11 a.m.

Fredericksburg National Cemetery on Saturday. (NATIONAL PARK SERVICE)

Memorial Day commemoration at Fredericksburg National Cemetery. Noon, Monday, 28. The National Park Service will sponsor a Memorial Day program at the National Cemetery, honoring American military personnel who have given their lives for this country.  The Rev. Lawrence A. Davies of Shiloh Baptist Church (Old Site) will deliver the keynote address and the Rev. Thomas Hughes of St. George’s Episcopal Church will offer an invocation and benediction.   James Breeden of American Legion Post 55 will lead the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance and will join the Rev. Davies and Dr. David Sam, president of Germanna Community College, in placing a wreath at the foot of the Humphreys Monument. The ceremony is free to the public.  The cemetery is at the junction of Lafayette Boulevard and Sunken Road.  In the event of rain, the program will be held in the auditorium of the Fredericksburg Battlefield Visitor Center, next to the cemetery. Questions? Call 540/373-6122.

Observance and Film Screening, Riverbend High School, 12301 Spotswood Furnace Road, Spotsylvania. Observance and ceremony that will honor those who have given their all in service to their country; showing of “Taking Chance,” a movie which chronicles the events  in 2004 when Marine Lt. Col. Michael Strobl volunteered to escort the remains of fellow Marine Lance Cpl. Chance Phelps home to his final resting place.  Noon. Free.

Memorial Day program, Spotsylvania Confederate Cemetery. 2 p.m. Monday, May 28. Hosted by the United Daughters of the Confederacy, Fredericksburg Chapter 163. The historic cemetery is off Courthouse Road in Spotsylvania Courthouse, off the Spotsylvania Bypass (State Route 2-8).

Rappahannock POPS Orchestra, Mary Washington Hospital, Ambulatory Care entrance, 1001 Sam Perry Blvd. 6 p.m. Free. Rain Location: Grace Church of Fredericksburg, 1141 Heatherstone Drive, Spotsylvania.  Rappahannock