Between 1861-65 the Civil War—or War Between the States—was fought primarily on the East Coast. That four-year-long encounter that came close to tearing apart the young country had relatively little impact on the Northwest—right?
Civil War Pathways, the just-opened exhibit at Washington State Historic Museum, examines that Battle from several points of view including news coverage from area papers such as the Puget Sound Herald, the Pioneer and Democrat and the Oregonian; debates about what constituted treasonable offenses, and whether slavery would be permitted in the new states.
It also examines the roles played by several soldiers from Pierce County at Ft. Steilacoom: such as August Kautz, George Pickett, and Silas Casey, and also that of Washington’s Territorial Governor Isaac Stevens. One display features Stevens’ desk, as well as his uniform and weapons.
The Pathways exhibit continues through July 6 at WSHM on Pacific Ave. in Tacoma. Hours of operation are from 10 a.m. -5 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays. Visit www.WashingtonHistory.org for more information.
For an in-depth perspective on this historical event, consider visiting Historic Ft. Steilacoom, at 9601 Steilacoom Blvd., in Lakewood, where several Civil War-specific programs are scheduled this year:
Historian John McPherson will speak about the impact of the Civil War on Washington Territory at 2 p.m. on June 15. Author Alan Archambault will present his new book, “Civil War Infantry,” at 2 p.m. on Nov. 16. The program covers the life of Union and Confederate Infantrymen during that period.
Both programs take place at Quarters 2 at the fort. Donations are accepted.
Visit www.historicfortsteilacoom.org for a complete list of this year’s programs at this restored historic site.