Programme for Centennial Day

A program of festivities held on Centennial Day, October 7, 1880.

Includes the following:

  • National Salute at sunrise
  • Review of all troops at 10:00 AM
  • Procession to grand stand at 11:30 AM
  • Prayer by Rev. William Martin
  • Singing of the lyric written for the occasion by Clara Dargan McLean from Yorkville, SC, with music written by Professor E. W. Lineback of Salem, NC
  • Reading of the ode written for the occasion by Paul H. Hayne, Esq., read by Col. Charles C. Jones of Augusta, GA
  • Oration by the Hon. John W. Daniel of Lynchburg, VA
  • Procession to the monument
  • Unveiling of the monument by a young lady and governor from each of the states of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee
  • Dress parade of troops at 5:00 PM
  • Pyrotechnic display at 8:00 PM
Oct 7, 1880 Celebration Programme
Full PDF available

Letter from Irma W. Thomson

A letter from Irma W. Thomson, daughter of Bennett Willeford, a merchant in the Kings Mountain area at the time of the Centennial Celebration.

Full Text

Mr. Moomair??,

You will find enclosed the letterhead I have found among my late father’s effects and which I thought might be of some interest to visitors out there to the museum.

My father was Bennett R. Willeford, a young merchant in Kings Mountain at time of Centennial Celebration.

Some one in your office told me you would be glad to have it.

Irma W. Thomson

King's Mountain Centennial Executive Committee letterhead
Full PDF, including the letter, available

Letter from Vermont Governor Redfield Proctor

A letter from Governor Redfield Proctor of Vermont responding to an invitation to the Centennial celebration.

Full Text

Sutherland Falls, September 17th, 1880

J. W. Garrett,

King’s Mountain,

North Carolina.

Dear Sir:

It would give me great pleasure to attend your centennial, but it comes at the opening of the session of our legislature, which of course makes it utterly impossible.

I should be glad to join with you in commemorating the anniversary of a battle which had so important an influence in our struggle for national existence.

Accept my best wishes for the success of the cellebration [sic], and my thanks to you and to the committee you represent for your invitation.

Respectfully yours,

Redfield Proctor.


Letter from Governor Redfield Proctor of Vermont
Full PDF available

Letter from Virginia Governor Frederick Holliday

A letter from Governor Frederick Holliday of Virginia responding to an invitation to the Centennial celebration.

Full Text

Richmond, VA Sept. 16 1880

J.W. Garrett Esq. W. CC.

Dear Sir:

Your very kind invitation ?? to attend the Kings Mountain Celebration in October.

I thank you cordially, and will do so with great pleasure, unless official duties prevent, which I do not now anticipate.

With much respect,

Your very humble?

Fred. W. M. Holliday

Letter from Virginia Governor Frederick Holliday
Full PDF available

Proposed Centennial Celebration

A booklet with planning details for the centennial celebration, including the following:

  • Organization of the King’s Mountain Centennial Association
  • Correspondence between the Governors of Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia
  • Act of the General Assembly of South Carolina, making appropriation to aid in the celebration
  • Resolution of the General Assembly of North Carolina, making appropriation to ad in the celebration
  • Joint resolution by the Virginia legislature, on the subject of the Battle of Kings Mountain
  • Historical Sketch of the Battle of King’s Mountain, prepared by Rev. Robert Lathan
  • Celebration of Washington’s birthday by the association
  • Oration of Col. Thomas Hardeman of Georgia
  • Presentation of the United States flag by the Charlotte and Atlanta Railway Company
Booklet is empty or it doesn't exist.
Cover of Proposed Centennial Celebration Booklet
Full PDF available

Celebration Activities Poster

This poster lists the activities planned for the 1880 Centennial celebration of the Battle of Kings Mountain.

Activities Oct 5-7, 1880 Celebration Activities Full
Full PDF available


  • Ten thousand soldiers encamped on the grounds
  • President Rutherford B. Hayes, his cabinet members, and the governors of all the states in the Union would attend
  • A hundred-foot observatory with a telescope would offer views of the surrounding country
  • Mr. Homesley, running the Piedmont House, offered accommodations
  • Homesley and Williford, proprietors of the Monumental Restaurant, advertised their services:

    If, within, you feel an aching void,
    Come to the “Monumental” and have it destroyed

    Meals we’ll prepare and serve them right
    At all hours, both day and night.

    We’ll have fresh Oysters and fresh Fish,
    Fried or stewed, just as you wish.

    Lunches at all prices,
    And bread in large slices.

    Come my friends and help us “holler,”
    And get a square meal for half-a-dollar.

  • A Centennial Hop would be given every evening
  • A Grand Centennial Bal Masque on October 7, 1880, with Professor Barratti of New Orleans and his Mammoth Orchestra providing music

Printed by E G. Davis’ Print in Henderson, NC