By noon of day one (Thursday) the 100th signature was already recorded in the guest registry in the front of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Franklin. Taking into account that one person often signed for a couple or family attending, there have already been more than 200 guests to pay their respects by 3 pm. A high school group of 25-30 young people attended in the early afternoon.
The coffin viewing and visitation is open to the public until 8 pm tonight and Friday.
The coffin was placed in the church sanctuary by 8:30 am this morning and reenactor sentries – gray and blue – stood charge next to the simple pine box with the remains of a Civil War soldier who probably lost his life fighting in the battle of Franklin (30 November 1864).
In the first 6-7 hours there must have been 200-300 guests overall. Many are coming from our community but some even listed Brazil as their home.
Docents, or ladies dressed in civilian period dress from circa 1860, are also generously spotted throughout the day greeting guests and telling the story of the unknown soldier.
I have more pictures of today’s events to post on the blog later tonight. Check back soon.