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The Buckland Races

The Buckland Races A song by J.E.B. Stuart Come listen to me, ladies, A story I’ll relate. Which happened in the eastern part Of the Old Dominion State Away down at New Baltimore, On a day of Autumn bright. The Yankee braggadocio Was...Show More Summary

“Will This Be on the (A.P. U.S. History) Test?”

Larry Krieger, the educator most voluble in his criticism of the new Advanced Placement U.S. History course guidelines, has a quick answer to the fact I documented yesterday: that most of the topics he and his allies say are missing from the new guidelines weren’t in the older, shorter guidelines either. Show More Summary

Why Paternalism is Meaningless on the Plantation

It’s disheartening to hear people who continue to insist on distinctions between good and bad slaveowners. I’ve never understood such arguments. It’s the commodification of the individual itself along with the possibility and reality of sale of so many that renders the institution by definition as evil.  What takes place between master and slave on... Continue reading

How Georgia red clay stills works for a strong Civil War connection

In Sunday’s Washington Post, one of the twice-yearly “Civil War 150” special editions is included in both the paper and electronic versions. The front page has an extraordinary studio photograph that invokes the high cost of the war, particularly as it was coming to an end. Read full article >>

Looking for the R.N.C.’s “Critical Topics” in A.P. U.S. History

Having found the 2006-07 version of the College Board’s guidelines for the Advanced Placement U.S. History test (P.D.F. download), I decided to test it against the objections listed in the Republican National Committee’s resolution from last month.The R.N.C. Show More Summary

The Problem With Baptists “The Half Has Never Been Told”

I think I am beginning to get a grip on what some people find troubling about Edward Baptist’s new book, The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism. Before saying anything I should point out that my understanding of the historiography of slavery is limited. I’ve read a number of... Continue reading

The “5-Page Topic Outline” and the “98-Page Framework”

One of the common complaints about the new Advanced Placement U.S. History Course guidelines is that they’re so much longer than they were before. For instance, World Magazine reported: The new framework is 98 pages long, compared to the five-page topic outline teachers used previously, [critic Larry] Krieger said. Show More Summary

Just Imagine What the Virginia Flaggers Could Accomplish…

… if they could get more than 10 people to show up to one of their protests.

150th anniversary of Third Winchester

The small staff of the nonprofit Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation, in New Market, Va., is doing the work of many as it prepares for the 150 th anniversary of the Battle of Third Winchester  on Sept. 19-21. This weekend, they are finishing a long list of to-dos including the completion of walkways, fencing and sign placement. Read full article >>

What Lies Behind Complaints about the A.P. U.S. History Test

One of the hot topics is American historiography lately has been an attack on the new Advanced Placement U.S. History course and test guidelines (P.D.F. download). Last month the Republican National Committee passed a resolution calling for those guidelines to be both rewritten and investigated. Show More Summary

The Lovett School in Atlanta Remembers the Civil War

Even if you just have just a few minutes check out this wonderful dramatic reading focused on the Civil War in Georgia performed by students a The Lovett School in Atlanta. This is one of the best student productions that I’ve seen in quite some time and serves as a useful model to connect an... Continue reading

Great Hamilton

Ten years ago Hamilton, Ohio, founded in 1791, installed a statue of its namesake, Alexander Hamilton. (The city has branded itself as a “City of Sculpture.”)Kristen Visbal won the competition to design and produce the Hamilton statue. Show More Summary

A Lee Who Supports W&L’s Decision to Remove Confederate Flags

In his convocation address yesterday at Washington & Lee University, President Ken Ruscio reflected on his decision to remove Confederate flags from inside Lee Chapel. At one point Ruscio shared a letter he received from an Alumnus of the Class of 1949. I have been following the issues…. I write to offer my unqualified endorsement... Continue reading

Soldiers of the 48th: Private Charles Abel T. St.Clair, Co. A. Killed On This Date In 1864

A proud Private Charles A.T. St.Clair stands for his photograph before setting off for war. Charles St. Clair was just sixteen years of age when the American Civil War broke out that fateful spring of 1861. Too young...Show More Summary

Just In Case You Are Taking the GED…

…here is what you need to know about the American Civil War. [Uploaded to YouTube on September 10, 2014]

Smithsonian to Restore Landsdowne Portrait Starting in 2016

The “Landsdowne portrait” of George Washington, painted by Gilbert Stuart in 1796 and purchased by the Smithsonian in 2001, is scheduled to be cleaned and restored starting in 2016. The Associated Press reports: Conservators wanted to clean and restore the painting for many years, but the museum was reluctant to take it off view. Show More Summary

See me on C-SPAN-3 on Saturday, September 13….

Last month, I was honored to be the keynote speaker at the first annual symposium put on by my friends at Emerging Civil War. A camera crew from C-SPAN was there to record the entire program. I’ve just learned that my talk, which was...Show More Summary

What Historians Missed about the Baptist Kerfuffle

From Edward Baptist’s, The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism. What enslavers used was a system of measurement and negative incentives. Actually, one should avoid such euphimisms. Enslavers used measurement to calibrate torture in order to force cotton pickers to figure out how to increase their own productivity and... Continue reading

A Sedimental Education

Heather Hoppe-Bruce wrote an op-ed essay in the Sunday Boston Globe about what might be unearthed in a new Boston harbor dredging project. Among the possibilities:HMS DianaOn May 28, 1775, during the Battle of Chelsea Creek, this schooner was abandoned, captured by provincial forces, then set ablaze and run aground. Show More Summary

Even in Death They Still Can’t Get It Right

This past week Mattie Rice, who was a descendant of Weary Clyburn passed away. Over the past few year I wrote extensively about the Sons of Confederate Veterans’ and United Daughters of the Confederacy’s efforts to distort the history of Clyburn. Both organizations did their best to celebrate and remember Clyburn as a soldier rather... Continue reading

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