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“Lafayette: An American Icon” in Boston

The French tall ship Hermione is scheduled to arrive here in Boston on Saturday, 11 July, and to stay for the weekend.The welcoming events include a parade of reenactors, public tours of the ship, church bells tolling, crafts demonstrations on the Greenway, and the screening of a Gene Kelly film at the Museum of Fine Arts. Show More Summary

L’Hermione and the French in Newport

For the last month, L’Hermione, the replica of the ship that carried the Marquis de Lafayette (back) to the U.S. of A. in 1780, has been working its way up the coast to New England. There have been conferences and exhibits in Virginia and New York, and soon it will be our turn. Show More Summary

An enduring controversy: The Pipe Creek Circular and the Battle of Gettysburg–Part Two

Maj. Gen. George G. Meade This is the second part of a two-part series that was cross-posted on Emerging Civil War. In part one of this two-part series, we examined the content of the Pipe Creek Circular, and we also looked at the Pipe Creek Line itself. Show More Summary

An enduring controversy: the Pipe Creek Circular and the Battle of Gettysburg

This is the first part of a two-part series that was cross-posted on Emerging Civil War. No battle of the American Civil War has generated more ongoing and enduring controversies than the Battle of Gettysburg. With the anniversary of...Show More Summary

Dr. Franklin’s Invitation in 1779

When Benjamin Franklin was the American minister to France, he set up a small press at his home in Passy in order to print government documents, mostly forms with blanks to fill in. Later he used the same equipment to publish humorous pamphlets for friends, a fake newspaper page for propaganda, and broadsides. Show More Summary

Celebrating the Fourth of July in 1777

John Adams wrote this letter from Philadelphia to his daughter Abigail, then about to turn twelve, on 5 July 1777:Yesterday, being the anniversary of American Independence, was celebrated here with a festivity and ceremony becoming the...Show More Summary

A timeless valediction

On this July 3, the 152nd anniversary of the conclusion of the Battle of Gettysburg, this ageless valediction proves itself to be true once more, explaining why so many find themselves inexplicably drawn to the battlefield at Gettysburg, including me: “In great deeds, something abides. Show More Summary

Newspaper Scoop of the Year 1776

On 3 July 1776, the Pennsylvania Gazette ran this item at the top of its local news:Yesterday the CONTINENTAL CONGRESS declared the UNITED COLONIES FREE and INDEPENDENT STATES. Last year the Deseret News called this “America’s 238-year-old tweet.” We might also think of it as a leak since the Congress was still working on its Declaration. Show More Summary

Consider, for example, an unwelcome army on your doorstep…

Think about it. When was the last time your government threatened to deploy the military of your government to your neck of the woods. Of course, I’m not talking about a simple military exercise, but a full-blown deployment set on silencing what appeared to be… for better or worse, whether you were in agreement with it […]

The 48th/150th: Off To Mexico?

150 years ago...the soldiers of the 48th Pennsylvania remained encamped at Alexandria, Virginia. Lee, Johnston, and a number of other Confederate leaders had long since surrendered their forces; Richmond had long since fallen; and Lincoln long since dead. Show More Summary

When a Monument To John C. Calhoun Was Torn Down

Calls to take down the Confederate flag battle flag has quickly extended to monuments to the Confederacy, most of which dot local court houses, parks,…

John Goddard: “constant in service of the Province”

Back in April, I quoted from the diary of John Goddard (1730-1816) of Brookline, recording how he carted military supplies out to Concord for the Massachusetts Provincial Congress’s Committee on Supplies just before the outbreak of the...Show More Summary

Heavy rainfall defeats annual Gettysburg battle reenactment for weekend

The much hyped and very popular annual reenactment of the Battle of Gettysburg, scheduled for July 3 to 5, has been postponed until Aug. 7 to 9, according to an announcement from the organizers.The Gettysburg Anniversary Committee cited...Show More Summary

Daniel George, Teen-Aged Almanac Maker

Daniel George was born in Haverhill, Massachusetts, on 16 Dec 1757, son of David and Anne (Cottle) George. He was the second boy named Daniel born to that couple, indicating that the first had died young. He had both older and younger siblings of both sexes.From infancy Daniel was “a Cripple,” possibly having cerebral palsy. Show More Summary

“The White Man’s Flag”

I have referenced John Coski’s book, The Confederate Battle Flag: America’s Most Embattled Emblem, more than once over the past two weeks. It is by…

Washington, Lee, and “tinsel dignity”

Yesterday I quoted Gen. Charles Lee’s letter to Gen. George Washington after the Battle of Monmouth, complaining that the commander-in-chief had spoken too harshly to him on the battlefield.On 30 June 1778, Washington replied to that...Show More Summary

The United Daughters of the Confederacy’s Curious Silence on the Confederate Flag Debate

We have heard quite a bit from Sons of Confederate Veterans over the past week in response to the debate over the Confederate flag on…

Confederate Flag Fun

It’s been a pretty serious week with a good deal of reflection concerning important issues related to Civil War memory. I thought it was time…

150th anniversary of verdict in Lincoln assassination co-conspirators trial

On June 30, 1865, following a seven-week military trial at a hastily constructed courtroom on the third floor of what is now Grant Hall at Ft. McNair, Washington, D.C., the verdict was announced for the eight accused of conspiring to assassinate President Abraham Lincoln. Show More Summary

Charles Lee and “those dirty earwigs”

In the middle of the Battle of Monmouth, Gen. George Washington chided Gen. Charles Lee for his decision to withdraw from the Continental Army’s first encounter with the British forces (an incident recently dramatized in the season finale of Turn: Washington’s Spies). Show More Summary

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