A witness to history, the Edmondston-Alston is an important site in Charleston's Civil War saga. It served as the site General Beauregard used to watch the Bombardment of Fort Sumter and a refuge for General Robert E. Lee during the Great Fire of 1861. The permanent collections include a rare original copy of the Ordinance of Secession as well as the parole Charles Alston received from President Andrew Johnson after swearing allegiance to the United States in 1865. Special changing exhibits will mark sesquicentennial anniversaries of the American Civil War on a year-by-year basis and follow the lives of the Alston family and their slaves. Using the family archives and collections of Middleton Place Foundation, each year of war will be viewed through the lens of the Alston family including first hand accounts of the battle for Morris Island and defense of Battery Wagner, which ultimately resulted in the death of an Alston son.