US Colored Troops Symposium in Kinston, NC – March 11-13, 2011

The Seventh Annual US Colored Troops Symposium will be held in Kinston, NC, on March 11-13, 2011. The organizers of the project consider it to be the most significant gathering of historians, re-enactors, storytellers, students and heritage travelers on the subject of the USCT.

The theme of this year’s symposium is “Civil War To Civil Rights.”

The event will be at the Hampton Inn, Kinston, NC 28501, phone number 252-523-1400.

The USCT Symposium and re-enactments are free. Award Banquet ticket fees are $25 in advance, $35 at door. Those interested in attending may register for the symposium by calling 252-523-1239 or go to and download the registration forms and seminar schedule. Exhibitors and sutlers may also call 252-523-1239 or send an email to .

More details are below.

SPRING 2011 Symposium on The United States Colored Troops, MARCH 11-13, 2011

Kinston, NC — “Civil War To Civil Rights,” a national symposium about the role of the US Colored Troops in the Civil War will be held March 11 -13 at the Hampton Inn in Kinston, NC in conjunction with the Kinston’s Blue-Gray Civil War Living History Weekend in commemoration of the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War. The weekend will feature presentations and exhibits from national and regional historians, storytellers, civil war scholars, a CSS Neuse commemoration, live weapons demonstrations, and living history cultural interpretations revolving around the participatory role of African Americans in the Civil War.

The conference begins on Friday with Civil War Living History demonstrations held for area schools in the morning, then from 12 noon to 5:00 pm, workshops on inclusion of USCT in the Civil War battles will be held at the Kinston/Lenoir Blue-Gray Visitor Information Center on Hwy -70 Bypass. Beginning at 8:30 am on Saturday at the Hampton Inn (252-523-1400) , the conference will feature seminar tracks focusing on NC history, NC Battles, Black Spy Network, Genealogy, Bernie Siler and the Emancipation Proclamation, Frederick Douglass, Dr. David A. Anderson aka Sankofa, storyteller, the Underground Railroad.

Civil War Re-enactors from Maryland, D.C., Pennsylvania, Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, South Carolina and Wilmington, NC; USCT descendants and others will memorialize the USCT soldiers from Lenoir County on Saturday afternoon. A Friday evening welcoming reception will be held at the Arts Center and Saturday evening’s banquet at the Hampton Inn will feature the Visionary Leadership Heritage Awards, honoring Annie Whitehead, Gregory Hannibal, Barbara Carr, Rudolph Knight, Eric Cantu, Edwin Jones and other outstanding leaders in the field of African American Culture and History. On Sunday an open house will be held at the Cultural Heritage Museum, 242 S. Queen Street, to commemorate the fallen members of the US Colored Troops that fought in those memorable Civil War battles 1863 – 1865 in North Carolina.

The symposium is produced by the Cultural Heritage Museum (CHM), NC’s primary resource on African American participation in the Civil War located in Kinston and co-sponsored by the Kinston-Lenoir Tourism Development Authority, North Carolina Humanities Council, the African American Civil War Memorial and Museum, Military Road Preservation Trust, NC Association of Black Storytellers, and USCTLHA, a national association of USCT Re-enactors, Historians, Researchers and Genealogists.

This project is made possible in part by a grant from the North Carolina Humanities Council, a statewide nonprofit and affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

USCT Symposium – Schedule


AM Schools Demonstrations 9 – 11:30 AM

Symposium Opens: 1:00 pm K/L Visitors Center
Opening Remarks K/L Public Officials
1:30 – 2:30 Seminar#1: Kinston Battles – Dr. Holland & Dr. L. Blizzard
2:30 – 3:30 Seminar#2: Underground Railroad: Dr. David Anderson
3:30 – 4:30 Seminar#3: Emancipation Proclamation: Bernie Siler
4:30 – 5:30 Seminar#4: USCT Descendants & Family Genealogy – Asa Gordon
6:30 – 9:00 Reception – Arts Center
Welcome – Public Officials
NC Black Storytellers – 19th Century Civilian Life

Saturday – Hampton Inn

8:30 am Opening Remarks -Public Officials
9:00 – 10:00 Seminar #5: Civil War to Civil Rights: Dr. CR Gibb; #6: Winton Triangle Soldiers/Family Genealogy…: Marvin Jones
10:00 – 11:00 Seminar#7:Black Spy Network: Hari Jones; #8: Camp Wm. Penn USCT Training: Joe Becton
12:00 – 1:00 Seminar#9:Myth of Black Confederates: Earl Ijames & Asa Gordon; Seminar#10: NC USCT Battles: Dr. Joseph Askew
1:30 -2:30 Lunch: Pig Pickin’ at CSS Neuse Site , Vernon Avenue
3:00 – 4:00 Weapons Salute to K/L USCT soldiers and descendants
6:30 Visionary Heritage Leadership Awards Banquet – Hampton Inn
Honorees include: Annie Whitehead, Greg Hannibal, Barbara Carr, Edwin Jones, Juan “Eric” Cantu and Rudolph Knight


10 AM – Church Services – CSS Neuse II -Herritage Street
12 -3 Open House Cultural Heritage Museum & CSS Neuse Interpretative Museum – Queen Street
12 – 3 Tours of Battlefields and other tourist sites – Kinston Tour Bus Company


For a view of the happenings from the event, go here.


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