Jack Tarver Library to Host National Exhibition on the Civil War Oct. 13-Nov. 3


MACON – Mercer University's Jack Tarver Library is one of 50 sites nationwide selected to host Civil War 150, a national traveling exhibition developed by the Gilder Lehrman Institute to mark the Civil War Sesquicentennial. Civil War 150 will be on display in the library Oct. 13-Nov. 3.

“The Jack Tarver Library is honored to be one of 50 libraries selected to receive a $1,000 grant to host the Civil War 150 traveling exhibition,” said Lee Twombly Olson, outreach and assessment librarian and assistant professor in the Division of Library Services.

“Hosting the exhibit during the 150th anniversary of one of the most contentious times in our history, as well as the opportunity to share through a series of lectures, presentations and performances how the Civil War impacted Mercer University and the local community, will help bring this history alive. In addition, it was in the fall of 1864 that the state of Georgia experienced the impact of the war with Sherman's March to the Sea, making this exhibit more meaningful than ever.”

In conjunction with the exhibition, the Jack Tarver Library has planned four events:

Dr. Sarah Gardner, professor of history at Mercer, will deliver a lecture, titled “Reading during the Civil War,” on Oct. 21 at 7 p.m. in the library. Sherrie' Raleigh (CLA '03) will offer an interpretive reading of Mary A.H. Gay's
Life in Dixie During the War on Oct. 25 at 11 a.m. at the Cannonball House. Arlette Copeland, special collections assistant in the Jack Tarver Library, will deliver a lecture, titled “Mercer in the Civil War,” on Oct. 28 at 7 p.m. in the library. The Eighth Regiment Band will perform a concert on Nov. 2 at 4 p.m. in Willingham Auditorium. (Please note that this event previously was publicized for Nov. 9.)

All events, as well as the exhibition, are free and open to the public.

Developed by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History in partnership with The Library of America, this exhibition was made possible through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The exhibition is part of Civil War 150: Exploring the War and Its Meaning through the Words of Those Who Lived It, a major three-year project funded by the NEH. The project is centered on the four-volume Library of America series The Civil War Told by Those Who Lived It.

Four years of fighting resulted in 1.5 million casualties, making the Civil War the bloodiest conflict in U.S. history, and 150 years after the Civil War, the voices of soldiers and their families still ring true. Experience the battle through the eyes of major political figures, soldiers, families and freedmen. By virtue of letters, personal accounts and images, learn how people grappled with the end of slavery, the nature of democracy and citizenship, the human toll of civil war and the role of a president in wartime.

Civil War 150 is divided into five panels: The Nation Divides; 1861: The Union is Dissolved; This Cruel War; 1863: Turning Points; and The Price of Victory (1864–1865). Drawing from the Gilder Lehrman Collection, each section traces major events during the Civil War.

About the National Endowment for the Humanities

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports learning in history, literature, philosophy and other areas of the humanities. The National Endowment for the Humanities grants enrich classroom learning, create and preserve knowledge, and bring ideas to life through public television, radio, new technologies, museum exhibitions and programs in libraries and other community places. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available on the Internet at www.neh.gov.

About the Library of America

A nonprofit publisher and cultural institution, The Library of America was founded in 1979 with seed funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Ford Foundation to help preserve and foster appreciation for the nation's literary heritage by publishing and keeping permanently in print authoritative editions of America's best and most significant writing. Since then, more than 200 hardcover volumes have been published, and the series, which celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2007, is widely recognized as the unofficial national edition of American writing. More information about The Library of America may be found at www.loa.org.

About the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History

Founded in 1994 by Richard Gilder and Lewis E. Lehrman, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History is a nonprofit organization devoted to the improvement of history education. The Institute has developed an array of programs for schools, teachers and students that now operate in all 50 states, including a website that features the more than 60,000 unique historical documents in the Gilder Lehrman Collection, www.gilderlehrman.org. Each year, the Institute offers support and resources to tens of thousands of teachers, and through them, enhances the education of more than a million students. The Institute's programs have been recognized by awards from the White House, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Organization of American Historians.

Kyle is the director of media relations at Mercer. In addition to being the primary media contact for most academic and administrative units of the university, he coordinates hometown and university news releases and serves as editor of the News@Mercer e-newsletter and Reach magazine.​