Promotion Day?

August 17 – and guess what? Three very (or moderately) famous Civil War officers got promoted on this day, but in different years. Now you’ve got history trivia for the weekend: Continue reading

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Saving History Saturday: Headstone from Quantrill’s Raid on Lawrence Discovered

Officials from Lecompton city and township prepare to move James O’Neill’s headstone to Maple Grove Cemetery. Courtesy of Carolyn Kaberline.

Deep within a forest in Lecompton, Kansas, two large 19th-century headstones were discovered. One is believed to be of a man killed in Missouri guerrilla Capt. William Quantrill’s infamous Raid on Lawrence, Kansas in 1863. Continue reading

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ECW Weekender: Battlefields and History with the Comfort of Your Air Conditioning

Well, folks it’s that time of the year. Hot, humid, lots of bugs. But…a lot of ECW authors have been on the road this summer and we’ve got some great weekenders in the works once everyone gets back to their desks or wins the battle with broken laptops.

Want to see some of the places we’ve been this summer? It’s your lucky day. Today’s weekender can be enjoyed right now without having to drive or go anywhere and you’ll still get to “see” some historic sites and hear about battles.

We invite you to visit ECW’s ever-expanding YouTube channel where you’ll find always free content and videos from historic sites and discussions about the past. It’s just a click away, so pour yourself another glass of – well, whatever is your preferred beverage – enjoy the air conditioning, and have a little weekend getaway for an hour…or longer. Continue reading

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Recent Book Begins to Trace the Path of Maine at War

by ECW Correspondent Meghan Hall

Over the course of several years, Brian Swartz’s research led him to realize that his home state of Maine had been underappreciated in larger narratives about the Civil War, despite the wealth of meticulous records he encountered. In order to better present Maine’s important role in the conflict, Swartz decided to publish a series of books, Maine at War, which he hopes will engage a new audience and increase public understanding of Civil War history as it affected the North.

Swartz covered between 10,000 and 20,000 miles of ground while researching for his newly released first volume, Maine at War Volume I: Bladensburg to Sharpsburg. He scoured archives, piecing together the lives of Mainers, as well as their involvements in the Civil War. The book, released on May 1 by Epic Saga Publishing of Brewer, Maine, is a culmination of nearly three years of research and writing, though Swartz said that some of the research dates back to 2011. Continue reading

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Grant and Sherman, Maxfield and Ford, Standing by Each Other Always

by ECW Correspondent Joseph Giglio

Polar opposites yet steadfast friends—Ulysses S. Grant and William T. Sherman. Now, a new play gives a glimpse into the enduring friendship of two of the Union’s most famous figures.

Now We Stand by Each Other Always is a play written by Genesee Community College professor Derek Maxfield and performed by Maxfield and fellow GCC professor Tracy Ford. Their theatre company, Rudely Stamp’d, self-describes as “a pair of eccentric college professors who want to bring the past to life with our living history portrayals.” Continue reading

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The Reunion of the Blue and Gray Personified

In 1951, General Douglas MacArthur described himself as “the reunion of blue and gray personified.” The experiences of his family in the Civil War helped mold and inspire MacArthur during his military career. MacArthur ancestors served in the East and West, and were present at some of the most important battles of the war, from the battles of 1862 to Appomattox in 1865.

Emerging Civil War and the MacArthur Memorial are co-sponsoring a free, one day, symposium on September 28, 2019 to explore the MacArthur Civil War story. Today’s post will highlight one of our presenters and the story they will tell. For more information about the symposium or to register, please visit www.macarthurmemorial.org. Continue reading

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Life Lessons from a Civil War Veteran

The Civil War offers us many perceived lessons. Lessons in leadership, in tactics. Lessons in victory and defeat; division and reunification. These lessons are imparted to us through a wealth of records, letters, diaries and newspapers as recorded by the participants and individuals who lived through the events. Even still we don’t often encounter Civil War soldiers or veterans speaking directly to us. Continue reading

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Yellowhammers and Environmentalism: Following the Path of Law’s Alabama Brigade to Gettysburg.

This post continues my story of following Law’s Brigade and delves into the unit’s background.

Joe Loehle and I were at our starting off point, Raccoon Ford, where the area had layers of historical depth. We were where Evander McIver Law’s newly-formed Alabama Brigade was posted in early June 1863. I wanted to explore the area longer and look for campsite remains from the winter of ’63-’64 along the south side of the Rapidan River, but we had many other places to hit that day. Attesting to the thickness of history, the 4th Alabama Infantry’s Adjutant, Robert T. Coles, wrote, “The position assigned the 4th Alabama on the Rapidan at Raccoon Ford above Fredericksburg was the same which Lafayette crossed on his march to Yorktown in June 1781.” Continue reading

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Podcast Additional Resources: “Rudely Stamp’d”

Grant and Sherman. A military team and an American friendship that literally changed history.

Did you catch the latest ECW podcast about these two generals? It’s available to all ECW subscribers on Patreon.

We’re rounded up some additional resources, but our editors are faced with the dilemma of what to add to this post. There’s a lot of Grant and Sherman material on our blog! Here are some of our top picks and we hope you’ll enjoy the posts from the archives. Continue reading

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Kelly’s Ford: Standing Where It Happened

“Mom, I’ve waited about 13 years to come here,” I said in an undertone as we looked at Kelly’s Ford on the Rappahannock River. The river ran low on that August day (just last week), and – though rivers change with passing years – it was still clear that a ford existed. I tried to picture what this place might have looked like in March 1863 when the water ran swift and cold. When the Union cavalry splashed across here, crossing a literal and figurative expanse in the history of volunteer warfare during the Civil War.

Why Kelly’s Ford? Why did I have to visit this site? Though my colleagues teased me about needing to come find the spot of John Pelham‘s last conscious moments, my interesting in the battleground goes back to days before I’d ever heard the names “Pelham” or “Stuart Horse Artillery.” Continue reading

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