150th Anniversary of Emancipation Day

Today mark’s the 150th Anniversary of the Compensated Emancipation Act, legislation signed into law by President Abraham Lincoln that released slaves in the District of Columbia – nine months before the more well-known Emancipation Proclamation was issued.  Washington, D.C. now honors this day as Emancipation Day, a government holiday.

Today in D.C., a parade will take place on Pennsylvania Avenue to commemorate the holiday, and the Capitol Visitor Center is displaying an original copy of the Compensated Emancipation Act of 1862.

The Washington Post published a good article by Michael Ruane several days ago with interesting information on just how slave owners were compensated for their loss of “property” due to the Act.

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National Park Service Launches Civil War Anniversary Website

Scott's "Anaconda Plan"

Winfield Scott’s “Anaconda Plan” to choke off the Confederacy’s economy.

The National Park Service has just launched a website to serve as another important platform commemorating the Civil War Sesquicentennial, and is timed to coincide with the 150th Anniversary of the Battle of Shiloh.

You may visit the website here: http://www.nps.gov/civilwar

One of the great tools on the new site is a Civil War timeline, replete with links to important events leading up to, during, and post, conflict.

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President Lincoln’s Cottage in DC opens exhibit on modern slavery for Civil War anniversary

The house where President Abraham Lincoln drafted the Emancipation Proclamation some 150 years ago is confronting the reality that more people are held in modern-day slavery than at the height of the trans-Atlantic slave trade.

Article courtesy of: Washingtonpost.com, Published February 17, 2012

WASHINGTON — The house where President Abraham Lincoln drafted the Emancipation Proclamation some 150 years ago is confronting the reality that more people are held in modern-day slavery than at the height of the trans-Atlantic slave trade.

A 2005 United Nations report based on reported cases of forced labor found at least 12 million people worldwide, including people in the U.S., are held in modern slavery and sex trafficking. The U.S. State Department has put the number even higher in its 2011 Trafficking in Persons report, saying as many as 27 million men, women and children are living in such bondage.

In an exhibit titled ‘Can You Walk Away?” opening Friday, President Lincoln’s Cottage in the nation’s capital tells the stories of women working as domestic servants without pay, of women forced to work as prostitutes and of men held in servitude through debt contracts and other coercion. It will remain on view in a small gallery at the site through August 2013.

Curators partnered with the nonprofit Polaris Project, which operates a national human trafficking tip line to mobilize efforts with the FBI and other law enforcement agencies to stop such crimes, to create the exhibit. The centerpiece is a series of filmed interviews with people who escaped modern slavery and with FBI agents who told their stories to mtvU’s “Against Our Will” campaign and for the documentary “Not My Life.”

Lincoln’s Cottage developed the project to mark the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and to further examine the present-day issue of slavery, said museum director Erin Carlson Mast. Many visitors come to the site to learn about Lincoln’s ideas on slavery.

Click here for the rest of the article.

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Why Abraham Lincoln’s birthday isn’t a federal holiday

We just read this great article from the Christian Science Monitor about the history of why Abraham Lincoln doesn’t have his own official holiday.  Very timely for Presidents Day.

Lincoln Memorial

Is Lincoln getting disrespected?

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2013 National Festival of the States Concert Series

Folks in Washington, D.C. love good music.

From varied 6pm concerts at the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, to world-class choral concerts at one of the many stunning churches in the area, to military bands performing at the memorials throughout the summer, the opportunities to hear and enjoy live music in our nation’s capital are endless.

In DC, the annual National Festival of the States concert series has been recognized since 1995, and runs concerts at venues throughout the DC metro area from January all the way through December. Under the NFS banner, music ensembles tour to the DC and receive recognition for their concerts that they would not be able to experience otherwise. From Music Celebration International’s reputation, DC residents are eager to hear MCI groups perform.

Whether an ensemble wants to perform in a massive Gothic or Neo-Byzantine Cathedral, a world class concert auditorium, a suburban concert hall, a major university’s music department or outdoors at one of the magnificent monuments, Washington, D.C. has it all. DC is the BEST town anywhere in America for a unique combination of concert sites AND sightseeing!

In 2013, all concerts conducted under the NFS banner will be part of the ongoing Civil War Sesquicentennial – most notably the pivotal anniversaries of the Battle of Gettysburg and the Gettysburg Address.

Music Celebrations has developed tours for music ensembles to not only visit and perform in DC, but to visit nearby Gettysburg to conduct meaningful commemorative performances for the anniversary.

Peruse our site, check out our links on touring and performing in DC and Gettysburg as part of the National Festival of the States, and contact us if you direct or are part of an ensemble that would be interested in this opportunity.

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Welcome to Gettysburg 150 Concerts

Music Celebrations International is proud and humbled to serve a small role in the commemorations surrounding the 150th Anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg and Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address.

It is here we hope to inspire music ensembles to consider participating in these commemorations with us by blending music, history, and travel together in order to experience the tragedy of the Gettysburg Battle – as well as the majesty of the Gettysburg Address.

Join us now on this musical journey, 150 years in the past.

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