Grant Cottage Special Events for 2017
The Cottage will be open for tours on Wednesday through Sunday through Labor Day, with BONUS DAYS on Tuesdays during the Saratoga Racing Season, July 25 - Sept. 1. We are open on Saturdays and Sundays from Labor Day through Columbus Day There is a suggested donation of $5 for programs.
The Wheatfield, Gettysburg
Saturday, July 29, 1 p.m.
Historian Marilyn Jess first visited the Gettysburg battlefield over 15 years ago. She has expanded her knowledge of Civil War battlefields through reading, joining preservation efforts, and visiting other Civil War and Revolutionary War battlefields. In 2010, she attended the multi-day Civil War Institute at Gettysburg College, and continues to do so annually. Join us for her reflections of the place and the soldiers who fought at the Wheatfield, where over 20,000 of them fought.
Researching and Writing Leaves Torn Asunder: A Novel of the Adirondacks and the American Civil War
Sunday, July 30, 1 p.m.
Award-winning local author Glenn L. Pearsall’s most recent work is a historical novel set in the Adirondacks during the American Civil War. Deeply researched, Leaves Torn Asunder weaves a story that portrays what it was like for local farm boys as they went off to war and fought with the 22nd and 93rd New York Volunteer Infantry, units principally recruited in the Southern Adirondacks. Join us for their stories and the equally compelling ones of the folks left at home; the parents, siblings, wives and children, and how they struggled on those hardscrabble farms during the war.
General Grant Remembers President Lincoln
Tuesday, August 1, 1 p.m.
It’s August 1st, 1865. The assassination of Abraham Lincoln took place four months ago. General Ulysses S. Grant has recovered from his shock and sorrow and is finally able to talk about the late President. Lincoln and Grant were the leadership team that won the Civil War. The General will discuss the unique working relationship he had with his Commander-In-Chief and the human qualities that made Lincoln, the man, so remarkable. General Grant will be portrayed by Grant Cottage tour guide Steve Trimm.
Flags at Half Mast: The Price of Freedom: US Grant and the Politics of Race
Saturday, August 5, 1 p.m.
Ulysses S. Grant will explore America’s “color-line,” both as slaveholder and as Civil Rights architect, through watersheds like the Fugitive Slave Law, the Dred Scott Decision, John Brown’s Harper’s Ferry Raid, the enlistment of African Americans, the surrender at Appomattox, and reconstruction legislation. Grant will explain why his views on Black Lives continue to Matter. Historian Randy F. Weinstein may assist him from time to time.
The Man Who Ruined Ulysses S. Grant
Tuesday, August 8, 1 p.m.
In May 1884, Ferdinand Ward robbed Ulysses S. Grant and his family of every dime they had. For his crimes, Mr. Ward (one of the boldest embezzlers of the Gilded Age) was sentenced to 10 years in prison. None of the money he stole was ever recovered. Mr. Ward is about to be released from Sing Sing. Before the prison gates swing open, he will be questioned about his role in General Grant’s tragic downfall. The infamous Ferdinand Ward will be portrayed by Steve Trimm, Grant Cottage tour guide.
Johnny Has Gone for a Soldier: 1776 – 1976
Saturday, August 12, 4 p.m.
Presented by the 77th New York Regimental Balladeers, “Johnny Has Gone For A Soldier 1776-1976" is a music and film tribute honoring all who served. Experience America's wartime story through song, still images, film, verse and several sing-a-long segments. Through music, Americans on the home front supported those in uniform and contributed to the war effort. This special concert in honor of the “Citizen Soldier” is a music timeline that harkens back to the era of the fiddle and banjo, concert hall productions, and radio broadcasts. The historic Grant Cottage porch is the perfect location to honor all who have served. The 77th New York Regimental Balladeers are celebrating their 20th year and over 450 concert performances. This heralded music troupe has been recognized by the U.S. Department of the Interior, Gettysburg National Military Park for their outstanding portrayal.
Tickets $10 per person, available at the Grant Cottage Visitor Center or by clicking here.
Welcome Home, President and Mrs. Grant!
Tuesday, August 15, 1 p.m.
U.S. Grant couldn’t wait to leave the White House (although his wife Julia wanted very much to stay). Retirement allowed Grant to indulge in his favorite pastime: travel. Within weeks of leaving Washington, D.C., the former President and First Lady began a tour of the world. It would take them more than two years to circle the globe. They returned to the U.S. in the fall of 1879. It is now 1882 and the Grants have returned to Saratoga to visit the “Queen of the Spas.” Join Grant Cottage tour guide Steve Trimm (portraying Grant) and Site Historian Melissa Trombley-Prosch (as Julia) on the porch of Grant Cottage as they share stories of foreign cultures & societies and how America is viewed by the peoples of Europe, the Middle East and the Orient.
Profiles in Courage: Abolitionists, Civil Rights Activists, Humanitarians – The Grimke Sisters and their Nephews - Featuring Glens Falls Art
Saturday, August 19, 1 p.m.
Hear the remarkable story of three generations of the prominent South Carolina Grimke family, whose contributions to the abolitionist movement, women’s rights, civil rights and the arts spanned well over a century beginning in 1820 through 1950. Sisters Sarah and Angelina Grimke were born into a South Carolina slaveholding family. They became fierce abolitionists before and during the Civil War and, later in life, advocates for women’s rights. In 1868, the sisters discovered their deceased brother had three sons with one of his slaves. Join program presenters and Grant Cottage docents Diana O’Brien and Pat Smith, along with historian Duke Paden, to learn how two generations of the Grimke family joined a third to become brave architects and advocates for pathways to justice and opportunity.
In addition, fine art photographer Craig Murphy will provide the magic of tintype photography to visitors from 10 AM to 4 PM (weather permitting). Craig will create new tintypes using the same equipment and wet plate process as were used in the 1860’s. Tintypes created will be made available for purchase and may include volunteer subjects!
Tintype Photography Demonstration & Talk
Sunday, August 20, 1 p.m.
Fine art photographer Craig Murphy will provide visitors with the magical experience of bringing photographs into existence exactly as it was done in the 1860’s. Join us to learn about the history of photography, including the equipment used to make tintypes, the chemistry behind the collodion wet plate process and how tintypes were finished and placed in their signature cases. Subjects may include a still life or a volunteer portrait!
Knee High History
Wednesday, August 23, 10 a.m.
The Civil War years were more than soldiers at war. It was a remarkable time in our country’s history. In song and story, program facilitators Diana O’Brien and Tom Smith will remind us that there were heroes on the battlefields, cities, towns and villages who built upon the legacy left by our nation’s founders and who envisioned a country of freedom and opportunity for all. Designed specifically for young learners ages 3-9, this program is the first in a series of three Civil War-themed programs for children. This program is FREE and lasts approximately 45 minutes.
In his Father’s Shadow: The Life and Career of Frederick Grant
Sunday, August 27, 1 p.m.
Explore the lesser known figure of Frederick (Fred) Dent Grant, eldest son of Ulysses and Julia Grant, from a childhood on a Missouri plantation to a teenager who found himself on Civil War battlefields to West Point graduate, U.S. diplomat and Major General. Join us to learn about his illustrious life and career. Fred, like his father, encountered hardships and found himself in the midst of scandals and controversial wars, but displayed the same characteristic resolve to fulfill his duty through it all. When needed by his father in his final months, Fred faithfully and tirelessly assisted his father, served as the family’s spokesman and provided critical support to his mother and other family members following the death of the elder Grant. Fred Grant will be portrayed by Grant Cottage staff member and living historian Ben Kemp.
The Grant Cottage Arts Festival – A Plein Air Event
Saturday, September 4
Music provided by the Lost Radio Rounders.
Elmira, NY Civil War Prison – Death Camp of the North
Sunday, September 10, 1 p.m.
The Civil War prison camp in Elmira, NY was called by some Hellmira or the Andersonville of the North. Why a prison in Elmira? Why the high rate of deaths? The purported poor management of the prison by the government will be examined by presenter Dave Hubbard, Grant Cottage Site Manager.
Edison Bulb Tour of Grant Cottage
Saturday, September 16, Guided tours from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
What was life like for the Grant family during the long evenings at Grant Cottage in 1885? Step back in time and experience the awe and wonder of the beginnings of the Electric Age as you take a tour through Grant Cottage lit with 19th century style Edison light bulbs. Reenactors dressed in period 1880’s clothing will be on hand to help bring the Grant family and their visitors to life. Take the opportunity to immerse yourself in the same charming environment that surrounded an American hero in his final days. Registration required. Early registration is recommended as space is limited.
The Yanks are Coming
Saturday, October 7
Civil War Encampment
The Grimke Sisters
Elmira, NY Civil War Prison – Death Camp of the North