Many histories have been written about medical care during the American Civil War, but the participation and contributions of African Americans as nurses, surgeons and hospital workers has often been overlooked. “Binding Wounds, Pushing Boundaries: African Americans in Civil War Medicine” looks at the men and women who served as surgeons and nurses and how their service as medical providers challenged the prescribed notions of race and gender pushing the boundaries of the role of African Americans in America. “Binding Wounds, Pushing Boundaries” is currently traveling around the United States.
For the past year, a team of Indiana State University departments and community organizations have been working to bring this national exhibit and some accompanying programs to Terre Haute. Beginning Monday, and through Oct. 6, this display will be staged in the Cunningham Memorial Library on the campus of ISU, one of only two locations in the state to host in 2012.
Also included as part of the display are several artifacts from the archives of the Vigo County Historical Society and the Sisters of Providence. A local connection has been discovered through the Rev. Dr. Willis Revels, who served as a physician during the Civil War and was the brother of the Rev. Hiram Revels, one of the pastors of Allen Chapel AME Church in Terre Haute, founder of the first school for African-American children in the Wabash Valley, and later the first African-American senator in the U.S. Congress.
Programs planned in conjunction with the exhibit include:
• Sept. 6: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Battlefield Medicine of the Civil War
• Sept. 11: 3 to 5 p.m., African Americans in Indiana During the Civil War
• Sept. 19: 5 to 6:30 p.m., Fashions of the Civil War Era
• Sept. 19: 1:30 to 3 p.m., Abraham Lincoln and the Emancipation Proclamation*
• Sept. 25: 5:30 to 7 p.m., Walking the Wabash – Exploring Activities Related to the Underground Railroad in West Central Indiana*
• Oct. 2: 7 to 8:30 p.m., We Should Know Their Courage: Three Black Leaders
While the exhibit and programs are free and open to the public during the library’s normal operating hours, registration is requested for the programs, which (excluding those marked*) will be staged in the ISU library.
Full information on the program is available at www.indstate.edu/olli.