Lee-Jackson Day

From “Lee and Jackson Last Meeting” by Everett B.D. Fabrino Julio (1843 – 1879)

Over the last year, there has been a great deal said, a great deal of controversy, and sadly, a great deal of violence over the issue of Confederate monuments and the history of the Civil War.

Richmond, Virginia has long been known as the Capitol of the Confederacy, and the city with its large African American population still struggles with that.

Some say tear the monuments down. Some say they must stay.

There’s a lot to be said about the tourism dollars that come to the city and the state because of the history.

There’s no easy answer.

That’s why, in part, back in the 1990s, a compromise was born.

For years, Virginia celebrated Lee-Jackson Day on the third Monday of January.

When that day became the federal day honoring Martin Luther King, Jr., for a while, Virginia celebrated Lee-Jackson-King Day.

Then Governor Jim Gilmore signed legislation designating the preceding Friday as Lee-Jackson Day while maintaining the third Monday as Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

State employees got a four-day weekend, just two weeks after the New Year’s Holiday.

History is complicated. Sometimes it isn’t pretty.

But, it’s always fascinating.

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Check out these great festivals coming to Richmond in September

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While summer doesn’t technically end for a few weeks, Labor Day weekend is the traditional end of summer vacation. Pools close. Theme parks close. And the kids go back to school.

But, that doesn’t mean an end to the fun. There are plenty of festivals coming to the River City in September. Check these out.

Fall Line Fest
September 6th and 7th in Downtown Richmond
Fall Line Fest is a two-day celebration of music, art and food.

Harvest Wine Festival
September 7
James River Cellars in Glen Allen
James River Cellars joints with three other wineries to present the 8th Annual Harvest Wine Festival. Enjoy tastings, wine seminars, tours and live music.

RVA Street Art Festival
September 11-15
The former GRTC Bus Depot on Cary Street
Nationally and internationally acclaimed artists will join with RVA’s local talent to create murals on trolley barns, create sculpture and offer arts education, local crafts and food and drink.

Shockoe-on-the-half Shell Festival
September 14
17th Street Farmers Market
If you love oysters, this event is a must. Enjoy oysters and the shops of Schokoe Bottom all in one visit.

43rd Street Festival of the Arts
September 14
1412 W. 43rd Street
Over 70 of RVA’s best and most creative artisans will be onhand to present their creations.

Armenian Food Festival
September 19-22
St. James Armenian Church
Enjoy the 55th Armenian festival for great food, dance and fun.

St. Benedict Oktoberfest
September 20-22
300 N. Sheppard Street
Enjoy German music, dancing, food and beverage(s) of your choice. Proceeds support Catholic education in Saint Benedict Parish.

Capital Ale House Octoberfest
September 21-28
623 E. Main Street
Enjoy Germany style cuisine and plenty of Virginia craft beers.

Virginia State Fair
September 27 – October 6
The tradition of the Virginia State Fair continues at Meadow Event Park in Doswell.

RVACON
September 27-29
Plant Zero Event Space
Check out Richmond’s first convention that showcases anime, comics, gaming, technology and music.

RVA Peace Festival
September 28
St. Stephens Episcopal Church
The RVA Peace Festival began in the aftermath of the attacks of 9/11. The Festival seeks to provide a place for children, youth and adults to gather to celebrate diversity and to promote peace.

Richmond Italian Festival
September 28-29
17th Street Market
Experience an authentic Italian village at Richmond’s 9th Annual Italian Festival.

Festival of India
September 28-29
Greater Richmond Convention Center
Enjoy Indian culture and cuisine.

H/T RVANews

Image via RVA Creates

Abraham Lincoln’s Visit to Richmond

This drawing by L. Hollis was engraved by J.C. Buttre and depicts Lincoln’s visit to Richmond.

This drawing by L. Hollis was engraved by J.C. Buttre and depicts Lincoln’s visit to Richmond.

It was two days after Confederate forces evacuated the City of Richmond. On April 4, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln and son Tad visited the City. Former slaves greeted them enthusiastically.

Admiral David D. Porter landed with Lincoln and said, “No electric wire could have carried the news of the President’s arrival sooner than it was circulated through Richmond. As far as the eye could see the streets were alive with negroes and poor whites rushing in our direction, and the crowds increased so fast that I had to surround the President with the sailors with fixed bayonets to keep them off…They all wanted to shake hand with Mr. Lincoln or his coat tail or even to kneel down and kiss his boots.!”

Crowds made Lincoln’s short journey to the U.S. military headquarters, the former Confederate White House nearly impossible. There he found a delegation of Southerner seeking to have a discussion with him about ending the war in a swift and peaceful manner.

Lincoln left Richmond the next day never to return. Four days later General Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox Courthouse. Less than a week later, Lincoln was assassinated. Events at the end of the war and Lincoln’s death drew attention away from the visit.

In April, 2003 the National Park Service rekindled that interest when they unveiled a statue Lincoln and his son Tad depicting the 1865 visit. The sculpture by Louis Frech resides at the Historic Tredegar Iron Works. The words “To Bind up the Nation’s Wounds” from Lincoln’s second inaugural address are displayed behind the sculpture.

Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809. He died on April 15, 1865.

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