Salisbury Confederate Prison Symposium set for April 12-14

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 20, 2019

SALISBURY — The Robert F. Hoke Chapter 78, United Daughters of the Confederacy, has announced the slate of speakers for its 22nd annual Salisbury Confederate Prison Symposium, to be held April 12-14.

Friday events will begin with a reception starting at 4 p.m. at Landmark Church, followed by lectures at 5 p.m. Historians Ed and Sue Curtis of Salisbury will present a slide presentation on the history of the prison, featuring images of the stockade buildings and some of the guards and prisoners.

Larry Hines of Raleigh, a descendant of Capt. Braxton Craven, the first prison commandant, will speak on Craven’s life and military career.

Dane Hartgrove of Salisbury, who is retired from the National Archives, will be the keynote speaker for the evening Friendship Banquet and will discuss the dedication of the Pennsylvania Monument at Salisbury National Cemetery in 1910.

Saturday’s lectures will begin at 10 a.m. in the Stanback Room of Rowan Public Library. Prisoner-of-war descendant Mike DuMont of South Carolina will talk about the daily life of prisoners and how it changed over the course of the prison’s existence.

Author Dan Barefoot of Lincolnton will speak about Col. John Hoke, who brought 700 N.C. Senior Reserves to the prison in October 1864 to serve as guards.

Author Martin Husk of Wake County will remember soldiers from the 111th New York Voluntary Infantry who were captured and sent to Salisbury. Virginia author Tom Perry’s  lecture will be on Col. William Palmer, who was an officer under Gen. George Stoneman when his troops occupied Salisbury in April 1865.

Sunday morning memorial services will be conducted for the Union and Confederate dead buried in the historic Salisbury National Cemetery at 10 a.m. and in the Old Lutheran Cemetery at 11 a.m. These services will be open to the public.

An afternoon tour of the prison site will be conducted for symposium registrants.

The symposium is open to anyone interested in Civil War history in general and the 1861-65 Salisbury military prison in particular.

The registration fee is $70 per person by Friday and $80 afterward. This includes seven historical lectures, plus the banquet meal on Friday evening, a light lunch on Saturday, and a short tour on Sunday.

Checks should be made to the Robert F. Hoke Chapter 78 UDC and mailed to P.O. Box 83, Salisbury, NC 28145-0083.

For more information, contact symposium chairperson Sue Curtis at 704-637-6411 or