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Three-day Gettysburg seminar for $100

The Gettysburg National Military Park and Gettysburg Foundation are among the sponsors of a $100, three-day seminar on Sept. 12 to 14 titled “The Unfinished Work: Abraham Lincoln, David Wills and the Soldiers’ National Cemetery.” The...Show More Summary

First-Person Holder

Noah J. Nelson of Turnstyle via the Huffington Post recently profiled a new videogame—or is that the right term?“Thralled is an interactive experience about a runaway slave in 18th-century Brazil who becomes traumatized over the disappearance...Show More Summary

Thank You Petersburg

As much as I Iove living in Boston I’ve missed the opportunity to take part in sesquicentennial events here in Virginia over the past few years. Spending the week here in Petersburg for the 150th anniversary of the Crater has been especially gratifying. It was so nice having the opportunity to spend time with friends […]

Searching for Mrs. Seaver

Yesterday I quoted from the page of the Hopkinton meetinghouse records shown above, photographed this week for the New York Times: February 26th. 1763. The Church met at the meeting-house (pursuant to adjournment) and unanimously Voted, That the Charge brought against Mrs. Show More Summary

Preserving New England’s Church Records

Yesterday’s New York Times had a front-page article about an ongoing search for old New England church records. Many churches still have those records, but in less than ideal conditions. The region’s Congregationalist heritage means two things. Show More Summary

Review of Smith’s Race and Recruitment

Here is my review of Race and Recruitment: Civil War History Readers, which was just published at The Civil War Monitor. In recognition of Civil War History‘s 60th anniversary, the editors at Kent State University Press are releasing a series of books that feature some of the journal’s most important publications. The essays in the […]

Crater 150

It’s been a long day. I will share some thoughts at another time. For now I will leave you with this photograph of the 22nd USCT’s regimental flag. The reenacting unit took part in today’s ceremony at the Crater.

Battle of Mobile Bay flag on exhibit

A 24-foot-long American flag believed to have been flown on shipboard during the Battle of Mobile Bay in Alabama by the USS Brooklyn is now on display at the former Grand Army of the Republic headquarters in the small town of Adams, Mass., in the northwestern part of the state. Show More Summary

Tree Rings Under the Trade Center

I first mentioned dendrochronology—the new science of matching up the thicknesses of tree rings to identify the age and source of a piece of wood—back in 2007. It’s usually applied to buildings, and especially to determining whetherShow More Summary

The 48th/150th: "If I Had Known What A Blunder It Would Be, I Never Would Have Gone In To Relight The Fuse:" Sgt. Henry Reese Remembers the Crater

Alfred Waud's Depiction of the Explosion of the Petersburg MineJuly 30, 1864 ? It was one of the most remarkable successes of the war...followed by one of its worst disasters. 150 years ago this morning, the 48thShow More Summary

Playing Nice With United States Colored Troops at the Crater

Today the NYTs Disunion page features an essay by Richard Slotkin on the Crater and the story of the “colored” Fourth Division. I recommend his book on the battle, though the source material utilized is very limited. The following passage about the battle cry of the black soldiers caught my attention. Union officers used that […]

Centenary

The 100th anniversary of World War I is upon us, and for the next four years, there will be a flood of remembrances, celebrations, and lamentations. There will be books, web sites, and TV shows. Yours truly (self-aggrandizement warning!) is currently appearing on the History Channel in one of those shows. Show More Summary

Meeting the Younger William Hunter

The Summer 2014 issue of the Colonial Williamsburg magazine includes an interview with William Hunter, as portrayed by Sam Miller. Hunter was one the the town’s Loyalists. Though he remained in town through the late 1770s, he gave up...Show More Summary

See You In Petersburg!

Heading down to Petersburg, Virginia later today for the 150th anniversary of the battle of the Crater. I will be on the battlefield at roughly 4:45 tomorrow morning to mark the initial explosion at Pegram’s Salient and the beginning of the battle. Throughout the day I will do my best to post pics and comments […]

Living Up to Robert E. Lee’s Code of Honor

Southern heritage advocates such as the Virginia Flaggers and Sons of Confederate Veterans love to talk about and claim to live by a Southern code of honor that I assume includes integrity and honesty. Yesterday a post appeared on the Facebook page of the Virginia Flaggers accusing “the Police” of harassing a 15-year old boy […]

Next Month’s Drums Along the Mohawk Drama

Last month I noted a bus tour that will end with a performance of the Drums Along the Mohawk outdoor show in Mohawk, New York. That tour is sold out, but tickets for the show are still available. The Drums Along the Mohawk Outdoor Drama is a two-act play based on Walter D. Show More Summary

How Far Will the Virginia Flaggers Go For Attention?

I’ve already said that yesterday’s protest in Lexington, Virginia over the removal of replica Confederate flags will likely lead nowhere. The Virginia Flaggers know this which is why they have now gone to great lengths to stage another conflict to garner sympathy for their cause.  Earlier today a comment was left purporting to be that […]

Abigail Adams and the Hand of Friendship

I started this series with Abigail Adams’s first impression of Gen. Charles Lee in early July 1775: she called him “a careless hardy veteran” who showed little personal elegance.On 24 July, her husband John wrote to a friend about that...Show More Summary

What the Protest at Washington & Lee University is Really About

Yes, the people who gathered in Lexington, Virginia are incensed about the removal of replica Confederate flags from Lee Chapel. They view it as a threat to their preferred narrative of the history of the Confederacy and the symbolism of the flag both during and after the war. The fact that the replicas will be […]

You Had Your Rally. Now What?

Looks like somewhere around 250 to 300 people showed up today in Lexington, Virginia with their replica Confederate flags to voice their frustration with the recent decision by administrators at W&L University to remove other replica Confederate flags from Lee Chapel.  No surprise that this crowd appears oblivious to the fact that the university will […]

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