This year marks the Bicentennial of the War of 1812, commonly known as America’s second war for independence and often referred to as the forgotten war. So as not to forget the sacrifices made by the veterans of this war, the Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum is planning a special tribute that will pay honor to Fayetteville’s veterans of the War of 1812.
This program will be conducted on Saturday, Sept. 22 in Cross Creek Cemetery Number One, located on North Cool Spring Street. Official War of 1812 bronze markers will be unveiled at the graves of four veterans buried in the cemetery. The veterans to be recognized include a general officer, a commissioned officer, a noncommissioned officer and a private soldier. Brig.Gen. Thomas Davis (1764-1822) was Fayetteville’s ranking ofﬁ cer emerging from the War of 1812, and commanded the First Brigade of the North Carolina Militia. Both Lieutenant John Eccles (1763-1833) and Sergeant John Huske II (1786-1848) served in the Fayetteville Independent Light Infantry. Militiaman John Powers (1794-1881) served in the N.C. Militia and his headstone proudly proclaims that he was a soldier in the War of 1812.
The F.I.L.I. Color Guard, accompanied with bagpipes and drums will be posting the colors. During the War of 1812, the F.I.L.I. Company was deployed for coastal defense.
Opening and closing prayers will be delivered by the Reverend Robert Alves, rector, St. John’s Episcopal Church. The Reverend Alves, who is descended from Brig. Gen. Davis and Lt. Col. Dickson Schaefer, who is descended from Sgt. John Huske II, will unveil the War of 1812 markers at their ancestor’s graves.
The ceremony will include a musical program conducted by the Army Ground Forces Band, featuring music from the period. Brief remarks will be made by David Brook, J.D., Ed.D., director, N.C. Division of Historical Resources and Committee Chair, N.C. War of 1812 Bicentennial Committee.
Mayor Tony Chavonne will read a proclamation designating Sept. 22nd, 2012 as a day of tribute and remembrance to those soldiers from Fayetteville who served in the War of 1812. Military and civilian dressed War of 1812 reenactors will also be present to provide historic interpretations. At the conclusion of the ceremony everyone is invited to the Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum, 325 Franklin St., to join Fort Bragg historians Lee Hartford, Chris Ruff, and Jason Wetzel, from the Office of Army Reserve History, who will bedressed in period military uniforms and will provide a living-history program that will focus on weapons and equipment carried by soldiers in the War of 1812.
Also staff historians Bruce Daws, Jim Greathouse and Heidi Bleazey, from the Transportation and Local History Museum will provide a guided tour of the new War of 1812 exhibit and answer questions. This free event begins at 10 a.m, Saturday, Sept. 22, in Cross Creek Cemetery on North Cool Spring Street, across the street from Heritage Place Retirement Home. If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact museum staff at 433-1457, 433-1458 or 433-1944.
Photo: John Huske is one of the American soldiers who will be honored during the ceremony to honor Fayetteville’s soldiers who fought in the War of 1812.