In the Merrimack Valley: Civil War Encampment on Lawrence Common

Least we forget the 150th remembrance of the Civil War, the Lawrence Civil War Guard plays host to the 10th Annual Civil War Weekend with an encampment at Campagnone Common in the heart of Lawrence. As Mark Volger tells us in the Eagle Tribune today:

Campagnone Common will become a Civil War campground tonight for about 50 “Union soldiers” from Maryland, Maine, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Massachusetts who plan to spend their weekend living and sleeping in the past.

The group of re-enactors – including the Lawrence Civil War Memorial Guard – will provide visitors with “camp life living history” demonstrations tomorrow and Sunday as part of the city’s10th annual Civil War Weekend.

The soldiers will also fire off cannons to mark every hour during the two-day event, which draws an audience interested in Civil War history, particularly its local aspects.

Don’t miss the reference to Gustavus V. Fox – the Assistant Secretary of the Navy who was in charge of the rescue fleet for Fort Sumter and a valued administrator of naval build-up, including the building of iron-clad ships. In fact Fox was de facto chief of naval operations during the Civil  War. Fox was in the Lowell High School Class of 1837 along with former Governor, Congressman and Civil War General Benjamin F. Butler. He was an agent for the Bay State Woolen Mills in Lawrence and managed the Middlesex Mills in Lowell. Fox died in Lowell, Massachusetts in 1883 at the age of 62. Learn a bit more here:

 Gustavus V. Fox,  Assistant Secretary of the Navy (1861-1866)

Read  the full article here at

One Response to In the Merrimack Valley: Civil War Encampment on Lawrence Common

  1. DickH says:

    After graduating from Lowell High, Fox went to the Naval Academy at Annapolis and served as a naval officer for a number of years. He married the sister of Montgomery Blair who was Lincoln’s Postmaster General. It was Blair who got Fox into the White House to pitch his Fort Sumter relief plan to President Lincoln. After the war, Fox brought a chunk of the USS Monitor’s armor back to Lowell and donated it to the library where it is now on display. In 1866, President Andrew Johnson sent Fox on a mission to Russia where he helped save the life of the Czar and his family. When the son of the Czar visited the United States a few years later, he paid a visit to Fox at his Lowell home which was on upper Merrimack Street. I believe it became either the rectory or the convent for St Jean Baptiste Church.