Mercy Street

(Rochester, N.Y.) – Mercy Street, PBS’s first American-made drama in more than a decade, premieres Sunday, January 17, 2016, at 10 p.m. on WXXI-TV. Based on real events, Mercy Street, a Civil War era drama produced in and around Richmond, Virginia, takes viewers beyond the battlefield and into the lives of Americans on the Civil War home front as they face the unprecedented challenges of one of the most turbulent times in our nation’s history.

Set in Virginia in the spring of 1862, Mercy Street follows the lives of two volunteer nurses on opposite sides of the conflict; Mary Phinney, (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), a staunch New England abolitionist, and Emma Green, (Hannah James), a naive young Confederate belle. The two collide at Mansion House, the Green family’s luxury hotel that has been taken over and transformed into a Union Army Hospital in Alexandria, a border town between North and South and the longest-occupied Confederate city of the war. Ruled under martial law, Alexandria is now the melting pot of the region, filled with civilians, female volunteers, doctors, soldiers including wounded soldiers from both sides, free blacks, enslaved and contraband (escaped slaves living behind Union lines) African Americans, prostitutes, speculators and spies.

The intersection of North and South within the confines of a small occupied town creates a rich world that is chaotic, conflicted, corrupt, dynamic, and even hopeful — a cauldron within which these characters strive, fight, love, laugh, betray, sacrifice and, at times, act like scoundrels. This series is not about battles and glory; it’s about the drama and unexpected humor of everyday life behind the front lines. It’s a fresh twist on an iconic story, one that resonates with larger themes we still struggle with today.

Caption: Nurse Mary Phinney (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) and Jedediah Foster (Josh Radnor).
Credit: Courtesy of Antony Platt/PBS

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WXXI is the essential, life-long educational media resource for the Greater Rochester area. WXXI puts the community first with programming that stimulates and expands thought, inspires the spirit, opens cultural horizons and promotes understanding of diverse community issues. Log on to wxxi.org for more information about our services and programs.

 

WXXI Media Contact:

Kristin Tutino

Creative Services Department

585-258-0253
pressroom@wxxi.org

 



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