May 2020
Written by Gary Riggs
Mother's Day is a holiday honoring motherhood that is observed in different forms throughout the world. In the United States, Mother's Day 2020 occurs on Sunday, May 10. The American incarnation of Mother's Day was created by Anna Jarvis in 1908 and became an official U.S. holiday in 1914. Jarvis would later denounce the holiday's commercialization and spent the latter part of her life trying to remove it from the calendar. While dates and celebrations vary, Mother's Day traditionally involves presenting moms with flowers, cards and other gifts. 

The origins of Mother's Day as celebrated in the United States date back to the 19th century. In the years before the  Civil War , Ann Reeves Jarvis of  West Virginia  helped start "Mothers' Day Work Clubs" to teach local women how to properly care for their children. These clubs later became a unifying force in a region of the country still divided over the Civil War. In 1868 Jarvis organized "Mothers' Friendship Day," at which mothers gathered with former Union and Confederate soldiers to promote reconciliation.
Another precursor to Mother's Day came from the abolitionist and suffragette  Julia Ward Howe . In 1870 Howe wrote the "Mother's Day Proclamation," a call to action that asked mothers to unite in promoting world peace. In 1873 Howe campaigned for a "Mother's Peace Day" to be celebrated every June 2. Other early Mother's Day pioneers include Juliet Calhoun Blakely, a  temperance  activist who inspired a local Mother's Day in Albion,  Michigan , in the 1870s. The duo of Mary Towles Sasseen and
Frank Hering, meanwhile, both worked to organize a Mothers' Day in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Some have even called Hering "the father of Mothers' Day." 
The official Mother's Day holiday arose in the 1900s as a result of the efforts of  Anna Jarvis , daughter of Ann Reeves Jarvis. Following her mother's 1905 death, Anna Jarvis conceived of Mother's Day as a way of honoring the sacrifices mothers made for their children.
After gaining financial backing from a Philadelphia department store owner named John Wanamaker, in May 1908 she organized the first official Mother's Day celebration at a Methodist church in Grafton, West  Virginia . That same day also saw thousands of people attend a Mother's Day event at one of Wanamaker's retail stores in Philadelphia.
Following the success of her first Mother's Day, Jarvis—who remained unmarried and childless her whole life—resolved to see her holiday added to the national calendar. Arguing that American holidays were biased toward male achievements, she started a massive letter writing campaign to newspapers and prominent politicians urging the adoption of a special day honoring motherhood. 
By 1912 many states, towns and churches had adopted Mother's Day as an annual holiday, and Jarvis had established the Mother's Day International Association to help promote her cause. Her persistence paid off in 1914 when President  Woodrow Wilson  signed a measure officially establishing the second Sunday in May as Mother's Day.
This purchase includes a 15 page PDF in two formats for e-viewing and printing. I've also included a second project, a Stocking Needle-book, because it goes along so well with the theme.
Anna Worden Bauersmith
Anna is offering another installment in her "In Depth" series: The Velvet Slipper Pincushion. 

This whimsical sewing accessory is playful, fun, yet practical. 

This edition includes an in-depth look at the original Velvet Slipper Pincushion, how to make your own, and additional examples of similar pieces. 
Tryon Palace.
529 S. Front Street
New Bern, NC 28562
(252) 639-3564
Tryon Palace was originally built between 1767 and 1770 as the first permanent capitol of the Colony of North Carolina and a home for the Royal Governor and his family. Governor William Tryon had brought John Hawks, an English architect, with him when he came to North Carolina in 1764. Hawks designed the Palace in the manner of a number of fashionable country houses in the vicinity of London - Georgian in style, with symmetry maintained throughout. It was soon regarded to be one of the finest public buildings in the American colonies. Governor Tryon, his wife Margaret Wake Tryon, and their daughter Margaret lived in the Palace for just over a year. They left New Bern in June 1771, when Governor Tryon was appointed to the governorship of New York. Josiah Martin, the second royal governor to live in the Palace, fled in May of 1775 at the beginning of the American Revolution and his furnishings were later auctioned off by the newly formed state government. Patriots made the Palace their capitol and the first sessions of the General Assembly met there to begin designing a free and independent state. Four state governors used the Palace: Richard Caswell, Abner Nash, Alexander Martin and Richard Dobbs Spaight.

On the evening of April 21, 1791, the Palace was the scene of a dinner and dancing assembly held in honor of President George Washington, who was exploring New Bern while on his Southern Tour. See the section on the Stanly House.

 Raleigh became the state capital in 1794. Space in the Palace was rented for various purposes, including a Masonic lodge, a private school and a boarding house. In February of 1798, a fire started in the cellar, where hay was being stored. The fire quickly devastated the main building, which collapsed, but the Kitchen and Stable Offices were saved. The  Kitchen Office  was demolished in the early 19th century; the  Stable Office  survives. In the 19th century, George Street was extended over the original Palace foundation and dozens of houses and businesses were built on either side. At the end of the street, a bridge crossed the Trent River. In the 1930s a movement began to restore North Carolina's first capitol. The movement gained strength when volunteers tracked down John Hawks' original architectural plans. In 1944, Mrs. James Edwin Latham, a Greensboro resident and native of New Bern, challenged the State of North Carolina to join her in restoring the Palace. She guaranteed her commitment through establishment of a trust fund dedicated solely to the Palace restoration. In 1945, the legislature created the Tryon Palace Commission, a body of 25 persons appointed by the governor, and charged it with the reconstruction of the original Palace from its original plans on its original foundation. As part of its commitment, the state further agreed to maintain and operate the restoration when it opened to the public.

Mrs. Latham died in 1951, shortly before the reconstruction of the Palace began. Her daughter, Mrs. Mae Gordon Kellenberger, took on leadership of the restoration. The first restoration challenge was to clear the site. This involved removing more than 50 buildings and rerouting North Carolina Route 70, including a bridge over the Trent River.

Archaeological digs followed. They soon uncovered the original Palace foundations, directly under the site that the highway had occupied. Layers of stucco were removed from the Stable Office, the only remaining part of the 1770 complex. Then the painstaking job of reconstructing the Palace began. Craftspeople from across the country and abroad were brought in to do the work. In the meantime, trips to England yielded furnishings appropriate to the period of the original Palace. Earnings from Mrs. Latham's trust underwrote all of these time-consuming and costly tasks. The Palace was opened to the public in April 1959, as North Carolina's first great public history project. The furnishings at the Palace are primarily English. Governor Tryon made a very detailed inventory of his possessions following the destruction by fire of his later home at Fort George, New York. This inventory, which revealed the Tryons' taste in furnishings, was used as a guide in refurbishing the reconstructed Palace. Today, guides in period dress conduct tours of the building. Both floors are open, as well as the cellar, which has recently been reinterpreted according to descriptions contained in architect John Hawks' letters.

The site also has some positions open for those seeking employment in the history field:

They are looking for historic Interpreters and you can email for more information.

They are also looking for Public Affairs Director and Development Manager and a Gardener, and email for more information.

For all available positions, visit

Media Contact:
Zaneta Padilla
Discounted magazine subscription offered to our cusotmers!
Today mark's the anniversary of the Battle of Puebla in 1862. Owing to the widespread commercial promotion, most people assume that it is a Mexican national holiday. Even historians make a glancing connection to our American Civil War. Owing to the national emergency, this was in fact, the first and only time in our history that we could not enforce the Monroe Doctrine. The combined forces of France, England and Spain jumped on this moment of vulnerability, and were in a position to be a lethal threat to the country, both north and south. One could only speculate what could have happened, if the Mexicans had not won at this battle in 1862. As we mark this anniversary, we should give pause to the truth that the American Civil War greatly weakened our international defenses, and consequently weakened our neighbors as well.
Narrow subdued straps
We were hoping to have these in stock for the newsletter, but they are about a week away from delivery. With everything being on lockdown, we were very happy to find out that we could still get some things in. These are straps that nobody else has produced since the end or the war, and we are excited to carry them..
John Moss
 I have been a reenactor since 1987 , I am a founding member of the 19th Infantry Regiment Tennessee Volunteers. It was during those early years that I discovered Nick Sekela ,doing business as " The New Jersey Skillet Licker " I have been a customer every since . I have also reenacted other time periods such as World War 2 and 18th century Native. I recently portrayed the character " Ike " in the Refuge Media , movie " A Brothers Christmas " , a story about a family during the war , in East Tennessee . Which can be seen on YouTube . I am in the process of creating the Zollicoffer Grays , a new "mess" group named for General Felix Zollicoffer , the group will be focusing on East Tennessee home guard and Army of Tennessee impressions and occasionally western Federal impressions as well. Currently I have entrusted the multi talented NJ Sekela with the making of a First and also a Second National flag for the Zollicoffer Grays as well as other gear for the group .
Plans for the future are to accurately as possible to portray the soldiers and civilians of East Tennessee during the war.
New Customer Service Rep!

We have really been working hard to clean things up here, and have been joined by the ever cheerful Lisa Lindsey. She is here and is dedicated to creating great experiences for everyone. We are very glad to have her here, and everyone has been grateful for the help that she has given. We will also soon be offering phone orders so that people can talk to a live person. Good things coming!
In the midst of the pandemic, the Battlefield Trust has been offering a series of online discussions, offering different perspectives into history as well as the study of it. The link below gives a listing of current events, as well as the archives of ones in the past.