Emmerse yourself in holiday traditions on the home front, at the soldier's encampment and at an officer's ball

MORRISTOWN, NJ - Experience the holidays during the Civil War on the home front, at a soldier’s winter encampment, and at an Officer’s Ball! Visit Historic Speedwell in Morristown, on Saturday, December 3 from 12 noon to 5 p.m., and Sunday, December 4 from 12 noon to 4 pm to experience a Civil War Christmas with the help of the 2nd New Jersey Brigade.

“The Civil War raged on for four years, many soldiers experienced multiple Christmases away from home. Around the holidays, it was vital to enhance the troops’ morale, and offer some of the comforts of home,” Mark Sutherland, Historic Sites Manager of the Morris County Park Commission stated.

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Visit the soldiers’ encampment where, “A special holiday meal was cooked, and a small tree decorated with popcorn and dried fruit. Soldiers sang Christmas carols, many of which we enjoy today; Silent Night, Deck the Halls, and Jingle Bells to name a few,” Sutherland added.

On the home front, listen to the family read actual letters from Union troops written to their loved ones. Discover the simple, yet elegant holiday decorations, and a formal-set table for the Christmas meal.

You are invited to a Civil War era Officer’s Ball, complete with fiddle music, period costumes, and dance! An authentic period dance instructor teaches re-enactors and visitors how to properly dance to the historic pieces.

Enjoy a traditional craft workshop, and sip on hot mulled cider by the outdoor fire. Peruse The Friends of Historic Speedwell’s Gift Shop which is filled with unique holiday decorations, gifts and stocking stuffers.

Admission for A Civil War Christmas is $7 for adults, $6 for seniors (65+), $5 for children (4 - 16), and FREE for children age 3 and under.

For more information and directions to Historic Speedwell, visit morrisparks.net, or call 973.285.6550.