The 2014 Sons of Confederate Veterans National Reunion was held in North Charleston, South Carolina, July 17-19.  Wednesday night, prior to the start of the Reunion, I was invited to a drop-in to celebrate the return of the Star of the West ship’s bell to Charleston.  This was quite an honor and the highlight of the week for me.  I also had the privilege of ringing the bell.

The bell was displayed at the Reunion, Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  It will be on exhibit at the Citadel for six months.  If you are in Charleston and have time, I suggest a visit to see it.

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The 2014 National Reunion of the Sons of Confederate Veterans was held July 16-19, 2014, at the Convention Center in North Charleston, SC. The opening ceremony on Thursday, July 17, 2014, included a welcome by Convention Chairman Randy Burbage, and the posting of the colors by the 16th South Carolina Color Guard of Honor. Greetings were brought by state and local dignitaries and by representatives from other heritage organizations. The opening ceremonies were concluded with the singing of “Dixie,” led by Past Chaplain-in-Chief Cecil Fayard. A business session was held each morning, Thursday through Saturday. Tours were available, including a boat tour of Charleston Harbor, and visits to the Confederate Museum, the Hunley exhibit, and battle sites.

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A group of Southern Heritage organizations have launched a project to clean up and restore the historical monument located on Wade Hampton Boulevard, East of Greer, dedicated to the memory of the ancestors of Wade Hampton III, who was probably the greatest South Carolinian who ever lived. The project is being led by the members of Camp 36, 16th South Carolina Volunteers, Sons of Confederate Veterans, along with the Hampton Lee 1281 and Hunley 2667 Chapters of the United Daughters of the Confederacy.

In July, 1776, the year the United States declared independence from Great Britain, Anthony Hampton, who had established a homestead on the banks of the Middle Tyger River, in Spartanburg County east of what is now Greer, South Carolina, along with his wife, son Preston and young grandson were massacred by Cherokee Indians. The surviving son Wade, age 24 at the time was away from the home hunting and returned to find his family dead and their home burned.

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Camp attendees were sponsored by 16th Regiment SCV, Winnie Davis 442 UDC and Evan Davis Camp 907 Children of the Confederacy


Three young people who attended the Sam Davis Youth Camp earlier this year reported on their activities to the local organizations that sponsored them.

Kimberly Huddle is a member of Winnie Davis 442 United Daughters of the Confederacy. Neyland Huddle is a member of the Evan Davis Camp 907, Children of the Confederacy.

Southside High School JROTC Cadet Detron Burdine received a scholarship to the Sam Davis Youth Camp by winning an essay contest sponsored by the 16th Regiment, SCV.

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On Monday, May 19, 2014, Michael and Julia Barnes met with Jack Dalton at Big Creek Baptist Church between Belton & Williamston, SC, to give consultant services for gravestone cleaning.  After checking the cemetery, which is one of the most historic in Anderson County, the decision was made to clean the gravestone of Confederate veteran George Richardson, who died in 1879, as the demonstration subject.  Dr. Julia Barnes is a member of Winnie Davis chapter, UDC, and Hudson Berry DAR.  Mike Barnes is a member of Palmetto Sharpshooters, Sons of Confederate Veterans.  The Richardson gravestone was covered with black algae and other growths.  The cleaner recommended by Dr. Barnes is D/2, a biocide that is recommended by the National Park Service and others because it is so safe to use on historic stones.  After the application of D/2 solution, the stone was left for about 15 minutes to allow the solution time to take effect.  During this time, Mr. Dalton discussed plans for the cemetery restoration and other work done in the area.

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Don-Gordon_Page-05Don Gordon of Columbia, South Carolina was the guest speaker at the March meeting of the Sixteenth Regiment, S.C.V. in Greenville. Mr. Gordon used his unique presentation style to create a map of the battlefield out of the meeting room itself before walking out the movements of the contesting forces as he gave his vivid account of General Grant's Overland Campaign of 1864. At the conclusion of his presentation Mr. Gordon quoted from memory a lengthy portion of a stirring speech given by Wade Hampton in Walhalla, S.C. on September 22, 1866 at the formation of the Soldiers' Association. Quoting from Hampton "Pickens gave to me besides Calhoun's brave men and volunteers in that noble battery of Germans of Bachman one whole Company in the gallant 1st South Carolina Cavalry which formed so important a part in my old and beloved Brigade, a Brigade which though it fought on a hundred fields never knew defeat."  The Presentation drew an enthusiastic standing ovation from the packed banquet room at the Phoenix Inn.

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