Lunch and Learn: Victorian Mourning Customs and Battlefield Tour

Published 7:24 pm Monday, March 5, 2018

KINSTON — Many mourning practices from the Victorian era remain today, such as wearing black for mourning or elaborate funerals for the deceased. Learn more about Victorian era (1837-1901) mourning practices at a lunchtime presentation followed by a battlefield tour March 10 at the CSS Neuse Civil War Interpretive Center during the Victorian Saturday program, noon to 4 p.m. Preregistration is required; tickets are $12.

“This program will be enlightening to individuals interested in the “ ‘real’” story of disease, death and mourning,” said Programs Coordinator Rachel Kennedy. “The battlefield tour will give visitors a chance to learn what happened on the battlefield in December 1862 in Kinston.”

Victorian mourning customs and diseases will be presented by Kristin Phillips, with the N.C. Maritime Museum at Southport. She has worked at the Lower Cape Fear Historical Society, Brunswick Town/Fort Anderson State Historic Site and other cultural agencies. She holds a BA and MA in history and is passionate about researching and interpreting 18th and 19th century social history.

Dr. Lonnie Blizzard will guide the battlefield tour after lunch, focusing on the First Battle of Kinston. He served in the U.S. Army, holds a Ph.D in adult education from N.C. State University and is on many boards, including the Lenoir County Battlefield Commission.

The $12 fee includes lunch, the presentation and tour of the battlefield of the First Battle of Kinston. Lunch will be provided by Hawk’s Nest Café and will include a sandwich, chips, drink and cookie or fruit cup. Tickets are available online at, or by contacting Rachel Kennedy at (252) 526-9600, ext. 222.

The CSS Neuse is the only remaining commissioned Confederate ironclad above water. It was part of a new technology that the Confederacy used to combat the superior manpower and firepower of the Union Navy. Learn about this technological advance and warfare in eastern North Carolina at the CSS Neuse Civil War Interpretive Center. The Confederate Navy launched the CSS Neuse hoping to gain control of the lower Neuse River and New Bern, but ultimately destroyed the vessel to keep it out of Union hands.

The CSS Neuse Civil War Interpretive Center is located at 100 N. Queen St., Kinston, N.C., and open Tuesday-Saturday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission: adults $5, senior/active military $4, Students (ages 3-12) $3, ages 2 and under free.