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Park Celebrates Christmas With A Bang

Fort Pulaski National Monument

National Park News

On the evenings of December 14th and 15th, park staff and volunteers commemorated the Confederate “Nog Party” of 1861. Visitors sang Christmas carols and enjoyed candle lantern tours of the historic fort, Civil War music, hot cider and soldier demonstrations. The highlight of the evening was the firing of the park’s new 30-pound Parrott rifle by members of the 22nd Georgia Heavy Artillery.

Confederate soldiers stationed at Fort Pulaski celebrated Christmas in 1861 with a lively party organized in part by ladies from the city of Savannah.  One soldier remarked that the mess hall tables were “moaning under the weight of the good things piled upon them.”  The garrison enjoyed music, songs and jokes, and filled themselves with “baskets of delicacies from the City.”     

Four months later, Fort Pulaski was the scene of a heavy bombardment from nearby Tybee Island.  Union forces used rifled cannon to breach the fort’s seven-foot-thick walls and forced the surrender of the Confederate garrison. The Battle for Fort Pulaski, April 10-11, 1862, featured the first significant use of rifled cannons in combat, and signaled the end of masonry fortifications.   



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