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New Birth of Freedom Recognized
A slim and richly illustrated book about the Civil War Home Front in Woodstock, Vermont has won a top award from the National Association of Government Communicators.
“New Birth of Freedom”, published by the National Park Service, won the first place “Blue Pencil 2014” award for a soft or hardcover book. The book was inspired by a walking tour developed by rangers at Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Park in Woodstock Vermont and offered several times during the summer.
“Everyone in the country was affected by the Civil War,” said the Park’s Museum Curator Laura Anderson. “This book and the ranger program highlight the Home Front and explore a history that was far from the battlefields. Instead, they tell about the experiences of civilians and local soldiers swept up in the maelstrom of the Civil War. Woodstock was a microcosm of the unthinkable loss that occurred in small towns across the nation during and after the Civil War.”
The book follows the route of the walking tour, telling the story of the war years in Vermont through the stories of still-existing buildings and the former inhabitants of a town that had a sizable free African-American population at the time.
The tour and book – and an associated free iPhone app – highlight such Woodstock residents as barber Charles Wentworth who joined Union Army in the only role he was allowed as an African American – as an officer’s servant, and Peter Washburn, administrator of the State’s entire Civil War effort, late elected Governor of Vermont.
The ethnically integrated history of the area is also recognized by the inclusion of Woodstock as a station on the Vermont African American Trail developed by the State’s Historic Sites Department. Details of this trail may be found at http://historicsites.vermont.gov/vt_history/african_american
The book “New Birth of Freedom” is available free of charge from the park. The two-hour ranger program will be offered five times this summer: Sunday July 6, Sunday August 19, Monday September 1 (Labor Day) and Saturday, September 20. Please call 802 3 457 3368 ext 22 for further information and reservations.
2014 Best Work of Government Communications announced National Press Club, Washington DC June 12 2014,
Soft/Hard Cover Book
A New Birth of Freedom: the Civil War Home Front
Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park
By Diane Leggitt, Laura Anderson, Rob Wood, Jill Jasuta