A walk with Fredericksburg’s diarists and the release of Jane Beale’s diary–May 7

From John Hennessy:

The home of diarist Lizzie Alsop on Princess Anne Street

We are working on a couple of posts looking at the story of Martha Stevens (up tomorrow night or Monday morning), but in the meantime I wanted to let you know that next Saturday, May 7, I’ll be doing a walking tour that will visit the homes of Fredericksburg’s notable Civil War diarists and memoirists.  We’ll walk by Lizzie Alsop’s house, Betty Maury’s, Jane Beale’s, and a few other writers you might not have heard of.

The tours leave from Market Square at 10 and 2 (pick one).  Hope to see some of you there.

The Jane Beale house

Also that day, from 3-6, the Historic Fredericksburg Foundation will be hosting the launch of the new publication of the Jane Beale Diary at Jane Beale’s House at 305 Lewis Street.  We’ll talk about Jane Beale’s house on the tour, but at the launch you’ll be able to go inside and see the basement made famous by her immensely important description of December 11, 1862.

3 thoughts on “A walk with Fredericksburg’s diarists and the release of Jane Beale’s diary–May 7

  1. Hi all,

    John, thank you so much for mentioning the HFFI event this coming Saturday. Just to reitterate, the event is free and open to the public. Ongoing, self-guided tours of the Jane Beale house are from 3-6, and complimentary refreshments will be available as well. RSVP to office@hffi.org or 540-371-4504 if you would like to attend. Please pass this on to anyone you think may be interested. It’s a unique opportunity to see the inside of a home that is not often open to the public!
    Thanks again,
    Kerri Barile

    • Bryan: The scene shown in the film is fabricated. Beale wrote in her diary, “I was greatly distressed to leave the servants but they said they were not afraid of the enemy and would go over the river if they were in greater danger here.” Later in her diary she declares her relief that her house was spared damage by looters. Gods and Generals took those two passages and linked them.

      For what it’s worth, Beale/Howison family lore holds that the house was spared because of the kindness shown Union soldiers during the occupation that previous summer. This seems unlikely, since the Union troops in the summertime occupation were on the south end of the field, and those in town would have had no way to know.

      I hope this helps. John H.

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