On Tuesday, June 11, Steve Hammond from Congressional Cemetery and Erin Bergin Voorheis will be speaking about the Washington Arsenal explosion at Cleveland Park Library. The explosion in the nation’s capitol during the Civil War is the subject of The Washington Arsenal Explosion by Brian Bergin.
Because Mr. Bergin passed away in 2009, his daughter Mrs. Voorheis bought the book to publication.
The horrific explosion on June 17, 1864 claimed the lives of 21 young women employed at the arsenal and lived in the Island neighborhood (as it was then known) near the Waterfront. The explosion and funerals were widely covered by Washington newspapers of the day. President Abraham Lincoln arrived unannounced at one of the funerals but made no public remarks. The arsenal’s superintendent was charged. Several of the victims were buried at Congressional Cemetery; a monument to them was erected the following year. Today Fort Lesley J. McNair stands near the grounds of the former arsenal.
The program is 7 pm and will be in the first floor auditorium at Cleveland Park Library. This concides with the ongoing 150th anniversary of the Civil War.
Cleveland Park Library is located on 3310 Connecticut Ave., on the corner of Macomb St. and Connecticut Ave. The library is accessible to the Cleveland Park Metro stop on the Red Line. Street parking is available within walking distance. For driving directions, please visit: http://dclibrary.org/clevelandpark