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The Library Has Several Civil War-Themed Programs Upcoming

October 21, 2012 by Special To The ...

Cheshire Public Library will present Kevin Johnson as William Webb, an African-American Civil War soldier from Connecticut on Thursday, Nov. 8, at 7 p.m. Private Webb was an actual soldier, a native of Hartford. He was recruited in 1863 and served in the 29th Regiment,
Connecticut Volunteer Infantry in several battles in Virginia. Johnson's presentation of Webb is told from an emotional and exciting first-person perspective that vividly illustrates the struggle of the African-Americans in the Colored Infantry during the Civil War. He tells of his early life in Hartford, his recruitment and training, and the traumatic final battles of the Civil War. The presentation is based on extensive research in the collections of the Connecticut State Library and the Museum of Connecticut History.
Kevin Johnson is an employee of the State Library's History and Genealogy Unit. He has been presenting William Webb for more than 10 years and has given more than 400 presentations.
The program is free and open to the public. Mr. Johnson's presentation is family friendly, and all ages are encouraged to attend. Registration is required either through the library's website:, or by calling (203) 272-2245. For more information, e-mail Jenn Bartlett at

Cheshire Public Library will present Kandie Carle as The Victorian Lady in her program on Civil War era fashion on Thursday, Nov. 15, at 7 p.m. Kandie Carle has been working in the theatre since 1980 as an actress, dancer, and singer throughout the US and abroad. Her performance resume covers the spectrum from Shakespeare to Musical Comedy. Kandie
lives in East Haddam and does a variety of acting and theatre events throughout the area, including vintage dancing demonstrations.
Ms. Carle created this one-woman show in 1996. She has shared her passion for history with audiences at venues including Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz NY, Victoria Mansion in Portland Maine, Mark Twain House Museum in Hartford, the Cosmopolitan Club in NY, the
national Pierce Arrow Antique Car Club, the Brooklyn Museum of Art in NY, the Westgate Hotel in San Diego, CA, and the Yacht Club of Savannah, Ga.
The presentation is not a fashion show, rather, Ms. Carle takes her audience on a journey of discovery by using clothing and accessories as a tool. She dresses in layer upon layer of the clothing of the chosen period and as each piece is added, she explains how it was worn, as well as when and where it was appropriate. Throughout the presentation she shares insights into the clothing, lifestyle, manners, etiquette and customs of men, women and children. Included are interesting anecdotes and “myth busting.” The performance is full of audience interaction, and edited for those in attendance.
Ms. Carle has assembled a vast collection of authentic Victorian and Edwardian clothing and accessories dating from the mid-19th century to the turn of the 20th century. Also an accomplished seamstress, she recreates pieces from actual designs and patterns of the
Civil War, Victorian and Edwardian periods. With many years of research in social history and fashion along with humor and grace, Ms. Carle shares her love of these eras with her audiences.
She is also Artistic Director of the East Haddam Stage Company,, which, among other projects, offers the touring show "They Called Me Lizzy... From Slavery to the White House." Ms. Carle wrote and directed this one-woman history program on the life of
Elizabeth Keckly who was dressmaker and confidante to Mary Todd Lincoln.
This program is free and open to the public. To register for this program, visit the website: This program was funded through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Library of America, and Gilder-Lehrman Institute of American History.

Cheshire Public Library will present Tom Callinan and Ann Shapiro with their musical program, "Brother Against Brother: Songs, Tunes, and Tales from the War of Rebellion or Northern Aggression" on Sunday Nov. 18, at 4 p.m. Drawing on his extensive repertoire of folksongs, sea songs, chanteys, and popular songs and tunes from a variety of times
and places, former Connecticut junior high school teacher, Tom Callinan, has constructed a program of diverse songs from and about the Civil War period.
Slave Songs: "Follow The Drinking Gourd," "The Blue-Tailed Fly," and "No
More Auction Block."
Confederate Songs: "Dixie," "The Bonnie Blue Flag," "The Yellow Rose
Of Texas," "Goober Peas," "Maryland, My Maryland," "Roll Alabama,
Roll," "That Damn Yankee Lad," "Lorena," and "Tom Dula."
Yankee Songs: "The Battle Hymn Of The Republic," "John Brown's Body," "Marching Through Georgia," "The Battle Cry Of Freedom," "Just Before The Battle, Mother," "Farewell To Grog," "Kingdom Coming," "The Minnesota-O," and "Paddy's Lamentation."
Both Sides: "Tramp! Tramp! Tramp!," "Tenting On The Old Camp Ground," "Oh Susanna," "When Johnny Comes Marching Home,” "Two Brothers," and "Connecticut's 9th."
Tom Callinan's entertaining and informative narrative style brings audiences of all ages into the performance with catchy choruses, interesting anecdotes, and an assortment of musical instruments from the string, wind, and percussion families. Special attention is paid to passing on the fundamentals of the age-old art of spoon-playing to contemporary folk.
The program is free and open to the public. This program was funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Library of America, and the Gilder-Lehrman Institute of American History.

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