Buchanan’s Civil War History Weekend highlights the Civil War era through living history camps, battle re-enactors, period skits and more this Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The main portion of activities will take place on Saturday.
During the Civil War, the Town of Buchanan served as an important Confederate supply depot for shipment of agricultural produce and pig iron to Richmond via the James River and Kanawha Canal. Buchanan farmers provided the Confederate quartermaster with beef, cotton, yarn and corn. Buchanan also provided troops for the Confederate war effort, most notably for the Botetourt Artillery. The unit distinguished itself in the defense of Vicksburg.
Federal General David Hunter marched through Buchanan on June 13, 1864 on his ill-fated raid in Lynchburg. The following day Confederate General J.D. Imboden reported that Hunter had driven Confederate troops under McCausland’s command out of Buchanan. Period letters tell how McCausland burned the covered bridge over the James River before leaving, igniting a fire which destroyed close to 30 buildings.
Personal letters of the era also tell of the devastation to Buchanan caused by the war including the burning of Col. John Anderson’s home known as Mount Joy, the three-day Federal occupation of Oak Hill, the Anchorage, the Presbyterian Manse as well as other private homes and offices throughout town. The battle flag of the Botetourt Artillery was said to have been made from the wedding dress of Cassandra Anderson, owner of Mount Joy.
Visitors are requested to leave their pets at home during the Buchanan Civil War History Weekend. The crowded events create an environment that is not conducive to pets (Certified Service Dogs are allowed).
Here is the schedule for this weekend’s Civil War events in Buchanan: