Lecture: McConnells Mill’s Civil War Connection by Bill May

Saturday, April 13, 2019 | 2:19 PM

What: The Western PA Civil War Roundtable Monthly meeting

Date: 04.17.19

Time: 7:30pm-9pm

Where: Edgeworth Elementary School (200 Meadow Ln, Edgeworth, PA 15143)

Title: LECTURE: “McConnell’s Mill’s Surprising Civil War Connection” by Bill May


It’s probably a safe bet that you have visited McConnells Mill State Park in nearby Lawrence County. With a scenic gorge carved by Slippery Rock Creek, a covered bridge, and a restored watermill, the park makes for a pleasant day trip. But did you know McConnells Mill has a surprising Civil War connection? Join historian/storyteller Bill May for the fascinating and heartwarming story of the creation of McConnell’s Mill State Park through the lives and friendship of Civil War Captain Thomas McConnell and Mose Wharton, a freed slave from North Carolina. Bill will detail the Civil War service of Thomas McConnell and how Mose Wharton went from being born a slave on a southern plantation to spending 72 years helping the McConnell family operate and preserve one of Western Pennsylvania’s most beautiful state parks.

Bill May is the founder of the Butler County Civil War Roundtable, celebrating its 22nd year this month. Bill has spoken to our group several times over the years. Besides being an avid Civil War enthusiast, Bill is very well known as a speaker on local history. His presentations on Faces & Places of Butler in the Civil War, the Biddle Boys & Mrs. Soffel, The History of Butler’s Historic Movie Theaters, The History of Alameda Park – Butler’s Disneyland, and Historic Mansions of Butler Walking Tour have delighted thousands over the years. His Butler Ghost Walk held each October was named one of the top things to do during the Halloween season by Pittsburgh Magazine.

If you like your Civil War history with a local flavor, we think you’ll enjoy this program.

**This months’ bonus!**

Witness Tree Pen to be Auctioned

Many thanks to John Banks for his generous donation of a hand-crafted Civil War-themed pen that incorporates wood from a now-fallen Gettysburg witness tree – the so-called Longstreet Tree. This unique item will be auctioned at the April meeting as a fundraiser.

To learn more about the Western Pennsylvania Civil War Roundtable check out our website at http://www.wpacwrt.org/ or follow us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/wpacwrt/