Civil War “Letters Play” to be held in Western Pennsylvania.

Civil War battlefield post office where "Soldier, Come Home" letters were processed.

Civil War battlefield post office where “Soldier, Come Home” letters were processed.

Mark your calendars:

On Friday, May 12, 2017, Darlington, Pennsylvania’s Little Beaver Historical Society will present the award-winning Civil War play by Frank W. Wicks at the Lincoln Park Performing Arts Center, Midland, Pennsylvania. “Soldier, Come Home” is based on the Civil War letters of Wicks’ great-grandparents, who lived not far from the Darlington/Midland area.
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Little Beaver Historical Society, Darlington, PA.  724-827-8841

Little Beaver Historical Society, Darlington, PA.
724-827-8841

According to Dave Holoweiko, a board member, “ ‘Soldier, Come Home’ reflects some of our own history at the historical Society. About 4 years ago we were donated a box of Civil War letters from the family of 16 year old William Henry Huffman of Darlington PA. The letters we found mirror Wicks’ play so much it’s amazing.”

In fact, another board member, Jay Paisley, was inspired by the letters and wrote a book entitled, The Huffman Letters: Civil War Letters to Beaver County, Pennsylvania.

For ticket reservations and further information, contact the Little Beaver Historical Society at 724-827-8841. The “Soldier, Come Home” web site is www.civilwarplay.com.

The award-winning Civil War play, “Soldier, Come Home,” has just been launched online by the Samuel French Play Publishing Company as part of its exciting new program, Playwright Direct. Author Frank W. Wicks’ play is now available online free of charge and may be downloaded worldwide.0049038_soldier_come_home_300-1

Playwright Direct allows playwrights to be discovered through the Samuel French website. After receiving a free copy, customers may license the script and present a production of the play. Samuel French handles the rest. Since 1830, Samuel French has been the leading publisher and licensor of theatrical works.

“We are constantly looking for innovative ways to get new work into the hands of theatre lovers,” says a Samuel French spokesperson. “We realize there are a great number of playwrights looking to promote their original works, so we created a platform that allows

Historic Wicks family Civil War letters were the inspiration for Soldier, Come Home, which just celebrated its 100th performance..

Historic Wicks family Civil War letters were the inspiration for Soldier, Come Home, which just celebrated its 100th performance..

theaters and producers around the globe to discover new work easily.”

“Soldier, Come Home” was inspired by the letters of Frank W. Wicks’ great-grandparents, Philip and Mary Pringle, written during the period 1859 to 1865 from western Pennsylvania and from major Civil War battle sites, including Antietam, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, the Wilderness, Spotsylvania, Cold Harbor, the Siege of Petersburg, and Appomattox.

Discovered in a shoe box in the attic of the Wicks family home in South Fork, Pennsylvania, the letters provide a look back at some of the most significant battles of the Civil War as well as what life was like for those family members left behind.

Wicks, a founding member of the Long Wharf Theatre, a graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, and a theater professional since 1958, transformed the letters into a play, weaving the story of his family through the events of the Civil War.

"Soldier, Come Home" at the Lyric Theatre, Loudon, TN, directed by Robert Harrison.

“Soldier, Come Home” at the Lyric Theatre, Loudon, TN. The production used over 75 historic Civil War photos downloaded from The Library of Congress.

The play is performed as reader’s theater by a cast of 5 playing 8 different characters, using mínimal sets, lights and costumes.

“The true magic of Frank Wicks’ play is in its simplicity. says Dr. Steven Brown, Kenosha, Wisconsin.“The letters become  the dialogue – conflict, humor and emotions completely take over the moment the play begins.”

An informal production of "Soldier, Come Home" in the garden of the Merida English Library, Merida, Yucatan, Mexico. Presenting the Prologue is author, Frank W. Wicks

An informal production of “Soldier, Come Home” in the garden of the Merida English Library, Merida, Yucatan, Mexico. Presenting the Prologue is author, Frank W. Wicks

For a free copy of “Soldier, Come Home,” log onto Playwright Direct Online and click the “Add to Cart” button on the top right. At check-out you will have the opportunity to print out the play. For groups or individuals interested in presenting a performance of the play, visit Samuel French Online.  Telephone is 1-866-598-8449 and  email is: info@samuelfrench.com. The author may be reached at frankwicks@gmail.com

The Pejepscot Historical Society as part of Chamberlain Days 2015 presents “Soldier, Come Home,’’ the award-winning play by Frank W. Wicks based on his great-grandparent’s Civil War 11049461_488735744629159_595627080101769580_nletters, on Friday, August 7th, 7:00 p.m. at the Unitarian Church, Pleasant Street, Brunswick, Maine.

“Soldier, Come Home” brings to life the letters of Mary Luke Pringle, her husband, Philip W. Pringle, and family members. The letters provide a look back at some of the most significant battles of the Civil War as well as what life was like for those family members left behind.

In 1950, the long-forgotten letters, written from 1859 to 1865, were discovered in a shoe box in the attic of the Wicks family home in South Fork, Pennsylvania. Wicks, a resident of Harpswell, Maine, transformed the letters into a play, weaving the story of his family through the events and the times of the Civil War.

Mary Pringle wrote to her husband from Armagh, Pennsylvania, while Philip and other family

Wicks family Civil War letters were the inspiration for "Soldier, Come Home."

Wicks family Civil War letters were the inspiration for “Soldier, Come Home.”

members corresponded from several major battle sites, including Chancellorsville, The Wilderness, Spotsylvania, Cold Harbor, the Siege of Petersburg, and Appomattox.

A Kenosha, Wisconsin critic said, “The true magic of Wicks’ play is in its simplicity, which comes alive through extraordinary letters sent between the battlefield and home. The letters become the play’s dialogue. Conflict, humor, urgency, and powerful emotions completely take over the moment the play begins.”

“Soldier” premiered in Brunswick, Maine in 2002 and has been performed throughout America by more than 20 theater companies. Celebrating its 100th performance on August 7, “Soldier, Come Home” is the winner of the 2012 Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Award for Excellence – “Best Significant Community Impact.”

The play is performed as reader’s theater by six actors playing eight different characters. In the Brunswick cast are Jessica Peck-Lindsay, Michael Thomas, Jack Mahoney, Michael Millett, Al Miller, and special guest Araby Wicks Leary, great-granddaughter of Mary and Philip Pringle, playing her great-great grandmother, Mama Luke.

Chamberlain Days is a bi-annual celebration Chamberlain bookof the life of Civil War General Joshua Chamberlain, a Brunswick, Maine resident, governor of the State of Maine and President of Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine.

All tickets for the production are $10.00. For ticket reservations and further information about Chamberlain Days 2015, call the Pejepscot Historical Society at 207-729-6606 or visit http:/pejepscothistorical.org/ Tickets will also be available at the door.

It has just been announced that the live broadcast of Frank W. Wicks’ Civil War play, Soldier, Come Home on WGTD-FM Public Radio, Kenosha-Racine-Lake Geneva, Wisconsin has won the 2012 First Place Award for Excellence from the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association. The play was broadcast

May 4, 2013 award ceremony, Wisconsin Broadcasters Association. First Place Award for Frank W. Wicks' Soldier Come Home - "Best Significant Community Impact." To purchase and download a copy of the play right now, click http://www.civilwarplay.com.

May 4, 2013 award ceremony, Wisconsin Broadcasters Association. First Place Award for Frank W. Wicks’ Soldier Come Home“Best Significant Community Impact.” To purchase and download a copy of the play, click www.civilwarplay.com.

from the Kenosha Civil War Museum in September 2012.

According to the play’s producer and director, Dr. Steven M. Brown, Soldier, Come Home, based on Wicks’ great-grandparent’s Civil War letters, won First Place in the category of “Significant Community Impact.” Brown says, “Congratulations, Mr. Wicks! I love the play, and it’s such an honor to be able to work with you.”

The letters of Wicks’ great-grandparents, Philip and Mary Pringle, were discovered in a shoebox in the attic of the family home in

Wicks Family Civil War letter, February 19, 1862. The letters were the inspiration for soldier Come Home.

Wicks Family Civil War letter, February 19, 1862. The letters were the inspiration for Soldier, Come Home.

South Fork, Pennsylvania. Wicks transformed the letters into a play, weaving the story of one family through the events of the Civil War.

Soldier, Come Home premiered in Brunswick, Maine in 2002 and has since been performed by more than twelve different theater companies across America, including an Off-Broadway presentation in New York City. Critics described the play as “Beautiful – a rare glimpse into the Civil War. This is a theater experience not to be missed.”

Recent performances have taken place in Oregon, Illinois, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio and six dinner/theater performances in Bluefield, West Virginia.  The next performance is June 29, 2013 in

Ashley L. Froy in Soldier, Come Home at the Summit Theatre, Bluefield, WV

Ashley L. Froy in Soldier, Come Home at the Summit Theatre, Bluefield, WV

Tullahoma, Tennessee commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Tullahoma Civil War Campaign.

The play is available for productions in theaters and community centers across America. To purchase and download a copy of the play right now, click on www.civilwarplay.com.

Playwright Frank W. Wicks lives on an island in Maine.

 

 

 

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