New exhibit looks at Confederate memory
The South Carolina Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum has unveiled an exhibit titled “No Holier Spot of Ground” – Confederate Memory in South Carolina’s Cemeteries, Monuments, and Museums.
Of approximately 63,000 South Carolina troops mustered into service during the War Between the States, nearly 21,000 died. Their gravesites range from major locations such as Magnolia Cemetery in Charleston and Elmwood Cemetery in Columbia to the small-town graveyards and tiny family plots that dot every corner of the state, testaments to lives lost and dreams dashed.
“Each number within this astounding death total directly represents an individual whose life came to a short end, leaving behind unfulfilled hopes and dreams,” according to an introduction for the exhibit. “Likewise, it also represents the families whose worlds were instantly shattered. Never again would they feel the embrace, hear the voice or experience the comfort of their loved one.”
The exhibit tells South Carolina’s story of memorializing the Confederacy through establishing burial arrangements, monuments and museums. It examines how families and communities in the state attempted to cope with loss during the war, and how later generations continue these forms of commemoration.
The exhibit will be on display at the Columbia museum through Aug. 2, 2009.