Thursday, March 1, 2012

Ramage Museum Reopens for 2012!

Springtime view of the Ramage Museum
Please excuse the shameless plug, but I really enjoy volunteering at the James A Ramage Civil War Museum and will use this forum to announce our 2012 schedule.

 We re-open tomorrow, March 2, at 10:00 AM and will be open every weekend until mid-December.

We start this year with some new and rearranged exhibits and displays, along with more interpretation to some of our items. We have also created an interactive area for children, where they can try on a Civil War uniform or a period dress (over their clothes.) We plan to expand that interactive section with some more items and activities, and still have a little bit more rearranging of some items to do, but we like how it looks and are excited by the changes.

Our first event on museum grounds will be the Civil War Trust's Park Day on March 31.

Two weeks before that we will have a table at Northern Kentucky Regional History Day at Northern Kentucky University (NKU). It is always a great event. Doors open at 8:00 that Saturday morning and Dr. James Ramage, the museum's namesake, will be the keynote speaker. Both the morning and afternoon sessions have several interesting workshops available.

On April 26, we will have our 2nd Annual Blue & Gray Dinner, our main fundraising event. It will be held at the Gardens of Park Hills along Dixie Highway. This year's event, featuring our silent auction again. The keynote speaker will be Dr. Paul Tenkotte, chair of the Department of History and Geography at NKU. He is an excellent speaker. Tickets are $45 per person and $80 per couple. Please call the museum at 859-344-1145 or email us at for more details.

We will have a public archaeology dig on the weekend of May 18 & 19. This weekend will also feature Dr. Ramage discussing his new book, Kentucky Rising (co-authored with his daughter Andrea Watkins) as well as local author Don Tolzmann an expert on German history who has had several books published.

During late spring and summer, on June 10 and 24 and July 8 and 22, we will hold 4 lectures at the city building in Fort Wright. Details are being worked out, but each talk will feature a military theme, likely to do with local veterans or events. This proved to be a popular idea last year and we hope the interest and support continues to grow.

We will also be represented on June 23 at Roeblingfest in Covington, a great local festival celebrating the Roebling Suspension Bridge that spans the Ohio River from Covington to Cincinnati. This bridge is named for engineer John A.Roebling, who also created the initial design for the more famous Brooklyn Bridge, before his son Washington became chief engineer when the bridge was constructed.

In August, we hold our biggest annual event, Battery Hooper Days, featuring a Civil War encampment with dozens of re-enactors, living history exhibits, music and several children-friendly activities. It is a fun, FREE, family-friendly event and will take place on August 17 and 18. I still love hearing the firing of the cannon and even the shooting of muskets is really cool. Of course, the re-enactment of a court martial that some of the re-enactors performed was fascinating as well. Perhaps they will do it, or something similar again this year. I hope so.

As part of Battery Hooper Days and our fall public dig on September 8 and 9, we plan to focus on the 150th anniversary of the Siege of Cincinnati, when Confederates entered Northern Kentucky and threatened Cincinnati. (Please use the search button to find more about "the siege" in previous blog entries here.)

On September 29, we will hold another edition of our wonderful Antiques Appraisal Fair. People bring lots of neat items for verbal appraisals and all proceeds benefit the museum. This is a wonderful fund-raiser, but it is really cool to see old guns, clocks, works of art and other items. Due to space, we do only accept small items for appraisal, meaning items you can carry or that may fit in a child's wagon.

In November, another popular event, maybe the most meaningful one we hold, takes place when we hold our Veterans Day Ceremony at Highland Cemetery in the neighboring community of Fort Mitchell. This year it will be (appropriately) held on Veterans Day, November 11. Seeing the old veterans gathered there and getting to shake many hands and give many "thank yous" is always a rewarding and humbling experience.

We will close down 2012 with our Civil War Christmas event on December 9. Santa Claus will visit, along with Mrs. Claus, and the museum will be decked out in the style of decorations used in the mid-19th century. We will present displays about Christmas during the Civil War era, and will have lots of stuff for children to do.  They especially like making ornaments out of material like that used 150 years ago.

2012 promises to be another big and fun year for the Ramage Museum, and it all starts tomorrow. If any out-of-town readers happen to be in the Cincinnati area this year, feel free to stop by and Friday, Saturday or Sunday.

Cannon at Battery Hooper Days 2011

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