The remarkable Anna Ella Carroll was born and is buried in Dorchester County. The daughter of a Maryland Governor and grand niece of a Declaration of Independence signatory, she prevented Maryland from leaving the Union at the outbreak of The Civil War. Relied upon as a Cabinet Member and important military advisor by President Abraham Lincoln, she devised The Tennessee River Plan — the military plan used to end the war. After Lincoln’s assassination her actual involvement and true identity was obscured by her male counterparts.
In the community she called home, school “marms”, quietly supporting Women’s Suffrage, chose to include her story in their history studies until the late 1970’s. Local historian Earl Brannock fondly remembers studying Ms. Carroll as part of his school curriculum, with that community being the only in the nation preserving her memory as both legend and folklore.
A handful of senior citizens, The Friends of Anna Ella Carroll, determined to preserve the memory of this remarkable 19th century woman, announced the re-institution of a celebration that began in 1895. Bruce Bridegroom, producer of “The Lost River,” the first movie about her life story, and Brig. Gen. Wilma L. Vaught asked the Friends group to celebrate Anna Ella Carroll Day. The first such day was held in 1895, one year after Carroll’s death, when Union veterans had a graveside memorial service. As the Civil War veterans numbers diminished, the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) and the American Legion assumed responsibility for the event which was last held in the 1960’s.
On Saturday, August 27th multiple supporting events and activities are planned throughout the day. The grand finale features Bridegroom’s film which headlined a world premiere showing last year at the Hyatt Resort in Cambridge for an unprecedented audience of 1,200.
For general information, call 410-943-8833 or visit www.missannaellacarroll.com.
Schedule of Events:
August 27, 2011
11am: Cambridge — Opening ceremony in Spring Valley outside the circa 1853 Dorchester County courthouse.
11am: Carriage rides from Long Wharf; offered by T.J. Carriage Services. Information, 443-521-0659.
11am: One hour walking tour of the historic West End. Sponsored by WECA. Meet at Long Wharf. Information, 410-901-1000.
12Noon – 4PM. Afternoon Tea, 1760 Meredith House Colonial Mansion. Sweet & Savory Teas – $20 PP / with Finger Sandwiches – $25 PP. Information and reservations, 410-228-7953.
12Noon – 4PM. Harriet Tubman Museum, 424 Race Street, Cambridge, MD, open for visitors.
12Noon – 4PM. Vienna Heritage Museum, 303 Race Street, Vienna, MD, open for visitors
12Noon – 4PM. The Bethel AME Church “ladies of the kitchen” will offer eat-in and carry-out home cooked, traditional meals at 623 Pine Street, Cambridge, MD.
1pm. Long Wharf. Ride on an authentic Chesapeake Bay oyster dredging skipjack. Reservations, www.skipjack-nathan.org.
2pm. Carroll graveside memorial tribute at Old Trinity Cemetary, Church Creek. Features a military band, cannon firing, wreath ceremony, and guest speaker Major General James A. Atkins.
4pm. Patriotic and spiritual music of the mid-19th century. Combined choirs of Bethel AME Church, Cambridge. Special appearance by FREED, (Female RE-Enactors of Distinction: African American Ladies of the Civil War), an auxiliary organization of the African American Civil War Museum in Washington. Arriving by horsedrawn carriage, 3:40pm. Dressed in period clothing, the group educates the public and promotes the accomplishments of African American Civil War soldiers and the women who supported their fight.
6:00pm. Dinner and a special showing of “The Lost River”, a film based on the true life story of Anna Ella Carroll. Enjoy a crab cake and ham dinner at the American Legion at the Bridge, Cambridge. Advance tickets only, $20.00.
Tickets available from:
Dorchester County Visitors Center, at The Choptank River Bridge /1-800-522-8687
Dorchester Chamber of Commerce / Cambridge, MD / (410) 228-3575
American Legion Post
The Drug Store / Hurlock, MD / (410) 943-3028
or Contact The Friends of Anna Ella Carroll at (410) 943-8833