The Sampson County Historical Society is ready to kickoff 2018 by inviting the public to learn about a local story and a military campaign that changed one of America’s biggest wars.
Jack Black, president of the historical society, is looking forward to start of the new year with special guest Wade Sokolosky, an author who published several books about Maj. Gen. William Sherman’s March during the American Civil War against the Confederacy. The meeting is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 13 at Carlie C’s in the Jordan Shopping Center, 332 Northeast Blvd., Clinton. The meeting room is upstairs.
Sokolosky, a retired U.S. Army Colonel, is a native of Beaufort. After graduating from high school, he earned a degree from East Carolina University and served with Army for 25 years. One of Sokolosky’s books is “No Such Army Since the Days of Julius Caesar.” The work he co-wrote with Mark Smith focuses on Sherman’s Carolina Campaign from Fayetteville to Averasboro. Together, Sokolosky and Smith also wrote “The Battle of Wise’s Fork, March 1865.”
In addition to writing, Sokolosky also lectures throughout North Carolina, historical places and other round table events.
Topics during the open meetings vary with history the American Revolutionary War, the Civil War, and World War I and II. The Historical Society host quarterly meetings at Carlie C’s. Future meetings are scheduled for April 14, July 14, and Oct. 13. Future guests will present information on a Sampson County slave revolt that occurred in 1831; Jewish immigration in Eastern North Carolina; and North Carolina history on the American Revolutionary War.
Throughout the year, members are also involved in genealogy and family projects.
“A lot of people are doing research on their family history and they really don’t know about some of the resources,” Black said. “Our guest speakers come in and make them aware of it.”
Sometimes presenters share pictures of old family information. Assistance is available at the J.C. Holliday Memorial Library, which has a section for genealogy and family history. Historical Society members also donated funds to help establish the room in the building. A full set of land grant maps, which were donated to the organization, are also available at the library.
Black and other members of the organization are encouraging members of the public to join and become involved. Membership information is available online at www. sampsonhistory.org or by calling Nadine Strickland at 910-564-6471. Additional information about the organization, land grant maps and the Huckleberry Historian is also on the website. Discussions about family and local history are also held through Facebook by typing “Sampson County Historical Society” in the search bar.
Black became the president of the historical society in 2017. Originally from LaPorte, Pa., Black served in the U.S. Army for 22 years. He earned a bachelor’s degree from West Point in engineering; a master’s in management from Webster University; and master’s of business administration from Campbell University. He was an educator for many years and retired in 2011. With his wife, Elizabeth, Black conducted a lot of family research through Ancestry.com. Their family tree includes more than 17,000 ancestors.
“One thing that I discovered is that we think we know our family history,” Black said. “But until we talk to other members of the community, we may discover something we didn’t know about our own family.”
Reach Chase Jordan at 910-249-4617. Follow the paper on Twitter @SampsonInd. Like us on Facebook.