Picture of Union Banners


Muster and Procession of United States Armed Forces
and Living History Event
Saturday April 16, 2011 - Rain or Shine

followed by gala period Civil War Ball at the Historic Union League


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Learn about Philadelphia's role in the Civil War and about military and civilian life in the 1860s, with this once-in-a-lifetime FREE event!

On April 15, 1861, President Lincoln called for volunteers to defend Washington DC -- a city surrounded by enemy territory. Three days later, Philadelphia responded.

This event salutes that response, and all Union troops and the civilians who supported them with a colorful march of hundreds of re-enactors in period costume, accompanied by bands and by representatives of the current armed services.

The parade will end at Broad & Washington, site of the 1861 passenger depot where the troops left for Washington. Parade-goers can experience Civil War life through dozens of displays of military and civilian activities -- as diverse as military drills and camp life, demonstrations of sidesaddle riding, Civil War-era clothing, cooking and games, and possibly even a Temperance event.

The living history events following the parade will last at least two hours.

GALA CIVIL WAR BALL -- Open to the public. The Union League of Philadelphia will host a gala Civil War ball in its historic 1865 building that evening from 6-10. Cocktails, dinner, and dancing. Period attire or black tie. Reservations required. Tickets $85. Click here for flyer.

Parade Details

A muster of Union volunteers and their supporters will be held between 5th street and 6th Street between Arch Street and Race Street at the current site of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia PA.

Ranks will be formed into a military parade that will step off at 10:00 a.m. from the intersection of 6th Street and Arch Street. The ranks will consist of Union Army re-enactors and uniformed living historians accompanied by Regimental Musicians and civilians in period attire. In support of the formation will be uniformed members of the Armed Forces of the United States representing the U.S. Army, Navy and Marine Corps with their attendant colors and Guards of Honor.

The line of march will be south on 6th Street to Chestnut Street, then west on Chestnut Street to S. Broad Street (below City Hall). The formation will proceed south on Broad Street with the leading Guard of Honor along with the Color Guard, the Colors and the Regimental  Band stepping out of the line of march at the foot of the Union League House located at 140 S. Broad Street. The lead ranks of the parade formation will halt no farther south than Walnut Street in order to hear remarks, after the presentation of the colors, from the front balcony of the Union League House presented by invited dignitaries.

The formation will then continue south on Broad Street to the NW corner of Broad Street and Washington Avenue where the formation will turn west and disperse for living history activities and demonstrations at the former site of the train station.

The time of the parade and review is estimated to be two hours.

View CALL TO ARMS Civil War Parade, April 16, 2011 in a larger map

Media Advisory and Hi-Res Images | Parade Map | | Parade Flyer | Flyer for Ball | More April Events

Tweet the parade at #cwphillyparade


Photo credit, mounted soldiers: Christopher Woods. All other photos, Civil War History Consortium staff.

Many thanks to all who worked so hard to make this parade a success.

Read about it in the Philadelphia Inquirer.

See also the April 12 "Civil War Begins" article in the Inquirer

Parade coverage in the Gadling travel blog

Chester County Daily Local News

Delaware County Daily Times

YouTube parade video in three parts by Jarmanpress:

Video of Mayor Nutter's remarks at the Union League of Philadelphia

Video of the parade turning by Independence Hall

A blog report and fabulous photos by Scott Manning

Photo album from Paula Gidjunis and John Shivo

A photo album by Rebecca Thron

VIDEO LINKS FOR BROADCAST COVERAGE (will only last a week or so -- all the April 16 clips are very short)

April 13, CBS, Civil War Medicine

April 16, ABC, Action News
April 16, Fox29
April 16, KYW Eyewitness News
April 16, Myphl17 News at 10

April 17 NBC News Today Weekend

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