The Historical Society of Cecil County’s 2012-13 speakers series continues on Dec. 1 with a Civil War living history program. Private James H. Elbert of the United States Colored Troops (USCT) will share stories about African-Americans rallying to the colors to fight for freedom. The free program takes place at the Society’s Genealogy and local history library at 135 E. Main Street in Elkton at 2 p.m.
Accounts of the war and the struggles of the USCT will be told through the eyes of the 24-year-old who enlisted in Sept. 1863. The soldier fought in many battles before being wounded at Petersburg, VA and he lost 300 comrades in the Battle of Olustee, Florida.
Willis Phelps, Jr. , a living history interpreter at Fort Delaware, portrays the soldier, a member of Co. C 8th, USCT. If you haven’t seen the performance before, you won’t want to miss this lively engagement that is coming to Cecil County for the first time. In addition to his popular work at Fort Delaware, Phelps does programs for the Delaware Humanities Forum and has lectured at local universities.
Eric Mease, a scholar-practitioner, will facilitate a question and answer session following the performance. As a graduate student at the University of Delaware, he launched a two year investigation for his master’s thesis that pieced together the story of UCT troops in Cecil County.
Beginning in the middle of fall and stretching through the cold months of winter, the Society hosts lively, engaging speakers on topics ranging from practical research methods to fresh lectures that have broad appeal. The programs take place on the first Saturday of each month at 2:00 p.m. at the Society’s library at 135 E. Main Street in Elkton. All talks are designed to be informative and enjoyable while concentrating on new, broadly engaging topics.