Category Archives: Events

Battle of Spotsylvania Lecture by Gordon C. Rhea – June 12 at 7pm

As one of the final events in the Lest We Forget series of events, the Andover Historical Society looks forward to welcoming the pre-eminent living expert on the Battle of Spotsylvania, award winning historian Gordon C. Rhea, to Andover to discuss the Battle of Spotsylvania, which occured in May 1864 as part of the U.S. Civil War. Mr. Rhea will be speaking at the Town House (aka Old Town Hall) on Thursday, June 12 at 7:00 p.m. The event is free and open to public.

The Andover Bookstore will provide copies of several of Mr. Rhea’s books for sale at the event.

Mr. Rhea is a nationally acclaimed historian. He has lectured extensively on topics of military history at the United States Army Training and Doctrine Command, at several National Military Parks, and at historical societies and civil war round tables across the country. He had been a member of numerous boards of directors of historical societies, magazines, and historic preservation organizations, including the Civil War Library and Museum, Philadelphia, and North and South magazine. Mr. Rhea has appeared on History Channel, A&E Channel, and Discovery Channel in programs related to American history and has written scores of articles for various scholarly and popular publications. His books, which are considered authoritative in their fields, include:
• The Battle of the Wilderness, May 5-6, 1864
(LSU Press: Baton Rouge, 1994). (History Book Club Main Selection, Book of the Month Club Selection, winner of Landry Award, Civil War Regiments’ Award).
• The Battles for Spotsylvania Court House and the Road to Yellow Tavern: May 7-12, 1864
(LSU Press: Baton Rouge, 1997) (History Book Club Dual Main Selection, winner of Landry Award).
• To the North Anna River: Grant and Lee, May 13-25, 1864
(LSU Press: Baton Rouge, 2000) (History Book Club Main Selection, winner of Landry Award, 2000, and the Fletcher Pratt Award, 2001).
• Cold Harbor: Grant and Lee, May 26-June 3, 1864
(LSU Press: Baton Rouge, 2002) (History Book Club Dual Main Selection, Military History Book Club Dual Main Selection; winner of Daniel M. Laney Award, Austin, and Richard Barksdale Harwell Award, Atlanta.
• Carrying the Flag
(Perseus, New York, 2003)
• In the Footsteps of Grant and Lee: From the Wilderness to Cold Harbor
(LSU Press: Baton Rouge, 2007) (with Chris Heisey, photographer)
• The Battles of Wilderness and Spotsylvania
(National Park Civil War Series: Eastern National Park and Monument Association, 1995).

Support for Lest We Forget has been provided by The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

Guided Tours at Memorial Hall Library

Civil War Artifacts

Led by local history librarian Kim Lynn

Take a tour of the Civil War history of Memorial Hall Library

Did you ever wonder why Andover’s library is called “Memorial Hall?”  Take a 30 minute tour and learn the history behind the building constructed to honor the town’s Civil War veterans. View the huge marble plaques inscribed with the names of those who served, as well as artifacts specific to Andover’s history in the late 1800s.

Register online or call 978-623-8401 x31.

Lest We Forget: Andover and the Civil War is a series of events commemorating the 150th Anniversary of the American Civil War.

Susan Lenoe as Harriet Beecher Stowe

The Friends of MHL present
Susan Lenoe as Harriet Beecher Stowe

May 15, 2014 at 7 pm

Dubbed “the most famous woman in America” after she wrote Uncle Tom’s Cabin, President Lincoln called Harriet Beecher Stowe “the little lady who wrote the book that started this big war.”

Join us for the Friends’ annual meeting, where Andover storyteller, Susan Lenoe, will portray Harriet Beecher Stowe, and reminisce about her role in the abolitionist movement, her family joys and trials, and her life in Andover, where she lived for twelve years.

Lest We Forget: Andover and the Civil War is a series of events commemorating the 150th Anniversary of the American Civil War. More info at

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Andover Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

Boston Saxophone Quartet: March 30

Innocence, Memories, and Passion:
Music of the Civil War

Sunday, March 30, 2014
2:30 pm
at Memorial Hall Library

Boston Symphony QuartetBSQ will highlight the music of the Civil War including President Lincoln’s favorite composer Louis Moreau Gottschalk, the Creole-influenced American Chopin. BSQ’s Peter Cokkinias, Tom Ferrante, Bob Bowlby, and Rod Ferland will explore Civil War era composers such as Stephen Foster (Oh, Susanna), George Root (Battle Hymn of the Republic), Patrick Gilmore (When Jonny Comes Marching Home Again), and Daniel Decatur Emmett (Dixie).

Memorial Hall Library logoMemorial Hall Library
2 North Main St.
Andover, MA 01810
978-623-8401, x 31 or 32

Sponsored by the Friends of Memorial Hall Library

Faces of Andover Exhibit – Now Open

Civil War Exhibition

Open through August 2014

Charles Poor and wife
Mr. and Mrs. Charles H. Poor

The Andover Historical is pleased to announce its newest exhibit: Faces of Andover, opening in April 2014. This photographic exhibit explores the stories of people who had connections to Andover in the years leading up to, during, and following the Civil War. The exhibit highlights themes ranging from sacrifice and abolition to authorship and heroism, drawing stories and photographs from Andover’s own populace during the mid-nineteenth century.

Learn more about the exhibit and images.

An exhibit opening will take place at the Historical Society on Friday, April 11 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

The exhibit is free and open to the public during regular hours, Tuesdays through Saturdays, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

AHS Logo Oct 2012-225Andover Historical Society
97 Main Street
Andover, MA 01810
(978) 475-2236

North & South: Why the Civil War Happened

As we look ahead to Andover’s celebration of the hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the Civil War battle of Spotsylvania (where so many Andover heroes died in combat) late in May, the Center at Punchard will be offering a special 5-session program entitled

Why the Civil War Happened

 Led by Don Robb, popular presenter of historical topics, the program will focus on split between the North and the South, two very different regions and peoples who had come together to form “a more perfect union.”
What happened to divide these two peoples?  Why could they not reconcile their differences? What were the cultural, social, moral, economic, and political forces which finally drove them so tragically apart?
The sessions will explore two interconnected questions:
  • When did the Civil War really start?
  • Was the Civil War fought about slavery?
The programs will run on Thursday afternoons from 2:00 to 3:30 pm on the following schedule:
  • April 3: How did northerners and southerns differ?
  • April 10: What were the effects of the compromises that each side made to create the Constitution?
  • April 17: How did the compromises begin to fall apart?
  • April 24: How did western expansion drive the two sides further apart?
  • May 1: Why did the conflict finally come to a head in 1861?
 Participants will examine historical data, reflect on statements and actions by people like George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, John Quincy Adfams, Henry Clay, John Calhoun, Daniel Webster, James Polk, Franklin Pierce, William Lloyd Garrison, Robert Haynes, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, John Brown, Stephen Douglas, Jefferson Davis, and Abraham Lincoln, among others.
In each session, specific links will made between national events and incidents here in Andover.
Join us for a lively program of exploration and discussion about the causes of the most significant event in American history.
Center at Punchard
30 Whittier Court
Andover, MA 01810
(978) 623-8321

Drummer Boys of Andover, May 1

Evening Lecture
Drummer Boys of Andover

Thursday, May 1 at 7pm
Andover Historical Society

Join Andover Historical Society past president Doug Mitchell as he explores the history of Andover’s own drummer boys and the roles played by musicians during the Civil War.

The event is free and open to the public.

AHS Logo Oct 2012-225Andover Historical Society
97 Main Street
Andover, MA 01810
(978) 475-2236

Uncle Tom’s Cabin Book Discussion

Panel Book Discussion of
Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe

Sunday, March 30, 2014
2:30 pm
at Memorial Hall Library

Hailed as a powerful abolitionist novel, Uncle Tom’s Cabin was published in 1852, and sold over 300,000 copies its first year. Join the Friends’ president, Susan McKelliget, and others for a discussion of this very important book. All are welcome.

Extra copies of Uncle Tom’s Cabin are being made available in addition to what’s in the library catalog. To borrow a copy, contact Stefani Traina at 978-623-8401 x49 or

Memorial Hall Library logoMemorial Hall Library
2 North Main St.
Andover, MA 01810
978-623-8401, x 31 or 32

Sponsored by the Friends of Memorial Hall Library