Monday, June 6, 2011

Camp Moore Sesquicentennial

Camp Moore Confederate Cemetery and Museum held its Sesquicentennial
commemoration Sunday, June 5, at the historic site in Tangipahoa, La. More
photographs of the event follow the story. (Photo by Mike Jones)
By Mike Jones
     TANGIPAHOA, La. - Camp Moore Confederate Cemetery and Museum commemorated the 150th anniversary of its existence with a special program Sunday, June 5, including an open house, a special guest speaker, decorating graves and paying memorial tribute to the soldiers buried there.
     Located off Hwy. 51 and the New Orleans, Jackson and Great Northern Railroad about 80 miles north of New Orleans, Camp Moore was the main basic training camp for the Confederate Army in Louisiana. It provided an ideal site for training Confederate soldier with its location, plenty of water and piney woods. Thousands of men were trained for defense of Southern Independence and hundreds died there of various causes.
     After the end of the war, the site became a place to commemorate the Confederate war dead and its value of as a historic site was eventually recognized and the State of Louisiana. The state acquired the property. In 1965 the beautiful museum building was opened and displays many fine artifacts. But in 1986 Gov. Edwin Edwards closed Camp Moore and other commemorative sites due to an economic down turn. In 1993 the Camp Moore Historical  Association acquired the property from the state under a 97-year lease and reopened it.
      The well-maintained facility is now operated and lovingly maintained by the dedicated volunteers of the Camp Moore Historical Association. CMHA has refurbished and enhanced the museum and cemetery and hosts an annual reenactment every November.
     To learn more about how to support Camp Moore click here.
     Among the activities for the Sesquicentennial was a special ceremony performed by the 7th Louisiana Infantry living history reenactment group. The unit, nicknamed the Pelican Regiment, was formed there at Camp Moore on June 5, 1861.
     Also, there were special  ceremonies honoring the Confederate dead in the cemetery, estimated to be around 400.
     Charles Elliott, history professor at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond, La. gave a very interesting program on Camp Moore and the important role it played in preparing men for war.
     Refreshments were served and the event was well attended by the public.

Members of the 7th Louisiana Infantry, "Pelican Regiment," living history
reenactment group held a special ceremony to mark the 150th anniversary
of the formation of the unit on that very day in 1861. (Photo by Mike Jones)

Mike Jones, in full zouave regalia of Company B (Tiger Rifles), First Special
Battalion Louisiana Volunteers, standing next to the Confederate soldier statue
just outside the cemetery, honored the members of that unit who were training
at Camp Moore at this time in 1861. He also decorated the grave of Pvt. William
Douglas, a member of the Tiger Rifles who was killed accidentally at Camp Moore
shortly after the camp opened in May 1861. (Photo by Susan Jones)

Charles Elliott of Southeastern Louisiana University gave a very informative program
on the importance of Camp Moore in training men for the Confederate Army. (Photo by Mike Jones)

Members of the United Daughters of the Confederacy and Sons of Confederate
Veterans placed memorial wreaths at the Confederate monument in the Camp Moore
Cemetery. (Photo by Mike Jones)

The 7th Louisiana Infantry fired a volley in salute to the honor of the
Confederate dead buried in the Camp Moore Cemetery. (Photo by  Mike Jones)

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