The National Medal of Honor Museum of Military History will hold its annual fundraiser and awards banquet Saturday at the Chattanooga Convention Center, 1 Carter Plaza. This year's event, which begins at 6 p.m., will commemorate the 150th anniversary of Andrews' Raid, considered one of the most daring events of the Civil War.
Author Russell Bonds is the keynote speaker. His award-winning book "Stealing the General" recounts the story of the locomotive commandeered by Union forces in the raid. After their capture in April 1862, all of the Raiders were initially held in the jail in Chattanooga. Eight are buried in Chattanooga National Cemetery, including four recipients of the Medal of Honor, the first to be awarded.
Jim Wade, executive director of the museum, said Bonds will sign copies of his book before the dinner. "Stealing the General" was the 2007 winner of the Richard Barksdale Harwell Award for the best Civil War book of the year and was on Civil War Interactive's list of the Top 50 Civil War Books of All Time. Paramount and Focus Features optioned for film rights to the book, and it is now in development.
Additional festivities include a brief awards ceremony and a silent auction. A number of highly decorated veterans will be in attendance. The color guard will be from the JROTC unit at Ooltewah High School.
A limited number of $75 tickets will be available at the door. Information is available at the website, www.mohm.org, or by calling 877-2525.
The museum may be visited 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, 1-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at its current home inside Northgate Mall near Piccadilly.