A public dedication ceremony for an Indiana state historical marker, commemorating the life of an African American woman named Lucy, is scheduled for Saturday, April 9, 2011. The marker will be dedicated at 2:00 P.M. (EDT) at Veterans Plaza at East Market and East 10th Streets in New Albany, Indiana.
The text follows for the state marker entitled "Lucy Higgs Nichols":
Lucy, born a slave April 10, 1838, was owned by the Higgs family that by 1850 lived near Bolivar, Tennessee. She gained her freedom in 1862 by escaping to the 23rd Regiment, Indiana Volunteers camped nearby. She worked as a nurse for the soldiers as they fought in many major battles of the Civil War. She mustered out with them in Louisville in 1865. Lucy came to New Albany with returning veterans of 23rd Regiment. She married John Nichols, 1870. Lucy applied for pension after Congress passed 1892 act for Civil War nurses; she was denied. In 1895, Lucy and 55 veterans of the 23rd petitioned Congress; in 1898, a Special Act of Congress awarded her pension. Lucy was an honorary member of the G.A.R. She died 1915.
The public is invited to attend the dedication ceremony for this Indiana historical marker. The program will begin with the VFW Post #1693 Honor Guard and will include several speakers, including Mayor Doug England, Floyd County Historian David Barksdale, and Researcher and Author Pamela Peters. The Bethel AME Youth Singers will perform two songs. Indiana Historical Bureau representatives Director Pamela Bennett and State Marker Manager Dani Pfaff will help to unveil the marker at the conclusion of the 30 minute program. All guests are invited to share refreshments at the St. Paul's Episcopal Church Carriage House after the program. The church is located across the street from the marker location at Veteran's Plaza.
State historical markers commemorate significant individuals, organizations, places, and events in Indiana history. These markers help communities throughout the state promote, preserve, and present their history for the education and enjoyment of residents and tourists of all ages. For more than 95 years the Indiana Historical Bureau, an agency of the State of Indiana, has been marking Indiana history. Since 1946, the marker format has been the large roadside marker, which has the familiar dark blue background with gold lettering and the outline of the state of Indiana at the top. There are approximately 500 of these markers across the state.
For more information about this marker, the Indiana Historical Marker Program, and other resources about Indiana, visit the Indiana Historical Bureau's website at www.IN.gov/history or call 317-232-6276. For more information about the dedication ceremony, call the Carnegie Center for Art and History at 812-944-7336.
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