Governor, Civil War historians ask Minnesotans to participate in commemoration efforts on April 9
ST. PAUL, Minn. (March 26, 2015) — Minnesota will participate in a nationwide bell-ringing event this April to commemorate the 150th anniversary of events at a Virginia court house which symbolically ended the Civil War.
Churches, temples, schools, city halls, public buildings, historic sites and others throughout the state are invited to ring bells at precisely 2:15 p.m. CDT April 9. The time and date marks a century and a half from when Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant met with Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee at Appomattox Court House in Virginia to set the terms of surrender of Lee’s army.
“Minnesota’s Civil War veterans fought courageously, and made great sacrifices to preserve our Union,” said Governor Mark Dayton. “I want to thank the members of the Civil War Commemoration Task Force for their leadership, and for helping all Minnesotans remember and honor the soldiers who bravely served our state and nation 150 years ago.”
Bells across Minnesota are to toll for four minutes during the commemoration on April 9th, with each minute representing a year of war. The bells will sound at Appomattox 15 minutes ahead of the rest of the nation to coincide with the moment the historic meeting between Grant and Lee ended.
“This is one of the culminating events capping our sesquicentennial observance of the Civil War,” said Civil War Commemoration Task Force co-chair Rep. Dean Urdahl, R-Acton Township. “April 9, 1865 is a day that changed our country forever and we encourage people throughout Minnesota to join together in remembrance.”
“The end of the Civil War has deep meaning and people may feel a wide range of emotions during this commemoration,”fellow CWTF co-chair Mark Ritchie said. “We ask that citizens take a moment to reflect during this monumental moment in state and national history.”
Organizers of local bell-ringing events are encouraged to assist in efforts to compile a statewide list of participants by emailing Erik Anderson of the Minnesota Historical Society at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit the 150th Anniversary Facebook page.