Meet a patriotic Civil War Santa Claus, visit an officers’ hut decorated for the season, talk with soldiers in winter camps, and tour the historic Union fort at Fort Ward Museum’s “Civil War Christmas in Camp.” This historical holiday program will take placeSuggested donation is $2 per person.
The program will feature a variety of fun and educational activities for all ages. Learn about the history of Santa Claus from historian and interpreter Kevin Rawlings, who portrays a patriotic Union Santa Claus based on a period woodcut engraving from Harper’s Weekly. Civil War Santa will listen to children’s holiday wishes, read “The Night Before Christmas,” and visit troops in camp. Reenactors will interpret how soldiers celebrated the holiday, including opening Christmas boxes from home and decorating living quarters in camp. Children can make a Victorian ornament or greeting card, and see examples of period ornaments on the Museum’s Victorian tree. The Museum and reconstructed Officers’ Hut will be decorated in period style. Soldier-led tours of the fort will be offered, weather permitting. Visitors can also enjoy hot mulled cider and shop for Civil War gifts in the Museum shop.
Fort Ward is the best preserved of the extensive network of Union forts that comprised the Civil War Defenses of Washington. The Museum offers exhibits, programs and special events throughout the year. Fort Ward Museum and Historic Site is located at 4301 West Braddock Road in the west end of Alexandria. For more information, please contact the Museum at 703-746-4848 or check the web site, www.fortward.org.