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Irish to have role in 'battle' events page 3
Irish dignitaries, descendant units of three Civil War regiments will star in Battle of Fredericksburg's 150th this weekend

 Re-enactors will use two pontoon boats and a U.S. Army floating bridge to cross the Rappahannock River.
REZA MARVASHTI/THE FREE LANCE-STAR
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Date published: 12/7/2012

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Union and Confederate regiments will muster at Federal Hill and Trench Hill about 1:30 p.m. for inspections. At 2:20 p.m. at Maury Stadium, 150 men will fire a three-volley salute before the Battle of Marye's Heights begins at 3 p.m. at Trench Hill.

American History TV

C-SPAN, the National Geographic Channel and Heritage Media LLC, a local firm making a documentary, will shoot video this weekend.

At 6 p.m. Saturday, C-SPAN3, the American History TV channel, will broadcast a segment shot during one of the recent "Battle Town" lectures at the Fredericksburg Area Museum and Cultural Center. Jeffrey McClurken, a historian at the University of Mary Washington, explains "why Fredericksburg became the center for such a massive conflict at a time when most armies of the era would have gone into winter quarters," the professor said. (Think political pressures and the Emancipation Proclamation, issued two weeks after the battle.)

The Battle of Fredericksburg (Dec. 11-15, 1862) was unusual in many respects, particularly the season in which it was fought in and around the town.

Weather counts now, too, so the weekend's forecast may boost attendance. Saturday will be sunny with a high of 70 degrees, Sunday 61 degrees and partly cloudy, AccuWeather says.

LOGISTICS

Plan to take a shuttle bus to get around downtown, to Fredericksburg and Spotyslvania National Military Park's visitor center and Chatham Manor, and the re-enactors' camps at Ferry Farm in Stafford and Slaughter Pen Farm in Spotsylvania.

Fredericksburg is imposing parking restrictions and plans to close roads to accommodate the many big events planned downtown to mark the 150th anniversary.

And if you encounter a stranger, it might well be a descendant of the soldiers who fought here. Their kin are coming from all over to witness the occasion.

Clint Schemmer: 540/368-5029
Email: cschemmer@freelancestar.com


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CULMINATION

3 p.m. Sunday at Sunken Road: Music, words and respect for sacrifices at Fredericksburg

PROCESSION

1 p.m. Sunday at Riverfront Park: Trace soldiers' footsteps

PONTOONS, BATTLES

10 & 11 a.m., 3 p.m. Saturday: 'Fire on the Rappahannock'

TOURS AND TALKS

Park Service rangers inform, guide visitors at Sunken Road, Slaughter Pen, Prospect Hill, in churches, on city streets

ARMIES' CAMPS

Hundreds of re-enactors at Ferry Farm and Slaughter Pen Farm

CANDLELIGHT TOUR

HFFI.org spotlights Braehead, Brompton, Civil War sites

NEXT WEEK

'Real-time' NPS tours Dec. 11-13 and Dec. 15; historians' battlefield preservation banquet Dec. 13

Program: tinyurl.com/frd150

Fire on the Rappahannock: fredericksburg150.org

Tourism: visitfred.com

National Park on Facebook: bit.ly/fbfred

News coverage: bit.ly/fred150