The Washington County Historical Association will host a commemoration of the Battle of Fayetteville from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, April 15, at Headquarters House, 118 E. Dickson St., Fayetteville.
The schedule of activities includes visits with historical re-enactors as soldiers from the Civil War from 10 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. You can join the infantry, drill with a cannon crew or learn a dance from the Civil War era or make a rag doll. You can also tour Headquarters House, and there will be a display of artifacts from the Civil War period.
At 12:30 p.m. the Northwest Arkansas Heritage Brass Ensemble will perform a concert, and at 1 p.m. Robert Kroening will present “The Battle of Fayetteville” followed by the Battle of Fayetteville Commemorative Ceremony:
- 1:45 p.m. — Surgeon’s Program, by Doug Kidd
- 2:15 p.m. — Medicinal Herb Program, by Janice Neighbor
The historical society’s bookstore will be open during the event, and Charlie Alison will be on hand at 1:30 p.m. to sign his new book A Brief History of Fayetteville, Arkansas.
The battle was waged April 18, 1863. Fayetteville was under command of Union troops at the time, led by Col. Marcus La Rue Harrison of the First Arkansas Cavalry. Confederate troops led by Brig. Gen. William L. Cabell entered Fayetteville from the south during the early morning hours, firing artillery from East Mountain (present-day Mount Sequoyah) and eventually charging the Union lines near the intersection of College Avenue and Dickson Street. By 10 a.m., casualties on both sides of the battle lines were about even, but the Confederate troops withdrew when ammunition for their artillery ran low. Although the Union fended off this attack, the threat of future attacks caused the Union troops to withdraw from Fayetteville a week later, not to return permanently until the following September.
Headquarters House was used by the Union army as its headquarters at the time of the Battle of Fayetteville. It had been the home of Jonas and Matilda Tebbetts and their family prior to the war, and today is maintained as a period museum by the Washington County Historical Society, a nonprofit organization with a mission to preserve the past for the future. Memberships in the historical society are open to the public and support the mission of the society to preserve the county’s history, educate the public about the historical and cultural richness of the region, and foster research about the history of the Washington County.