On Saturday, February 22, Charles Herring, history teacher at Crestwood High School, will offer a program on the Civil War at 11:00 a. m. at the White Haven Area Community Library at 99 Towanda Street in White Haven. The audience should not expect a traditional lecture or slide show; instead, Herring will assume the persona of an actual Civil War veteran.
Developed as a special experience for his 11th grade American history class, the program evolved as Herring did extensive research on the Civil War, particularly the history of the 20th Maine Infantry Regiment. This regiment gained fame for its role in the defense of Little Round Top at Gettysburg in July of 1863, a battle that was critical to the outcome of the war.
From his research, Herring has developed a program in which he assumes the role of Theodore Gerrish, an aging veteran of the unit with whom he fought. Gerrish will share memories from his recruitment through the hardships he witnessed at Antietam and Fredericksburg to the historic battle at Gettysburg. He will recall the unit’s final encounter with Confederate troops three days before the surrender at Appomattox in April 1865.
Through the performance, the audience will gain insight into the experience of an individual soldier at crucial points in the history of the Civil War and will come to understand the perspective of Gerrish as he looks back on what his experience has meant to America.
The program, suitable for adults and students 12 and older, should be especially meaningful as we celebrate Presidents’ week and reflect on the history that has created the world we know today. It is free and open to the public. For more information, call the library at 570-443-8723.