Monday, February 2, 2009
Battle of Natural Bridge Memorial Services and Reenactment set for March 8th
The annual memorial services and reenactment of the Battle of Natural Bridge near Tallahassee will take place at the battlefield on Sunday, March 8th. The memorial service begins at 1 p.m. (Eastern) with the battle reenactment following as soon as the services conclude.
There will be events all weekend, but the main day is always on the Sunday closest to the anniversary of the battle.
Fought on March 6, 1865, the Battle of Natural Bridge was the last signficant Confederate victory of the War Between the States. Southern forces under Generals Samuel Jones and William Miller turned back a Union force commanded by General John Newton in heavy fighting along the St. Marks River. The battle preserved Tallahassee's status as the only Southern capital east of the Mississippi not conquered during the war.
In addition, the battle was unique in the makeup of the troops involved. The cadets from the West Florida Seminary (today's Florida State University) played a critical role in the engagement. FSU's ROTC corps is today one of three in the country that displays a Pentagon approved battle streamer with its colors. On the Union side, all of the infantry forces engaged in the battle were black soldiers from the 2nd and 99th U.S. Colored Infantry Regiments. Like their Confederate counterparts, they fought courageously at Natural Bridge.
If you would like to learn more about the Battle of Natural Bridge, please consider my book on the topic (available for order at the upper right of this page) and also please visit www.exploresouthernhistory.com/nbindex.