Bob Kenzer, Charles Dew, Gregg Kimball, Lauranett Lee While the population of Virginia was expanding there were problems.  Va was a net exporter of people.  Many white Virginians had to make very difficult decisions such as Cyrus McCormick who moved to Chicago.  Important to distinguish between the many geographic sections of Virginia.  Keep in mind Read more

The 1859 census will show that 99% of the north is white.  Most people in the North do not wake up thinking about the South.  They are thinking about jobs, the possibility of moving west – if the Indians are taken care of.  Indians were a concern for northern whites because many of the tribes Read more

The importance of Cuba connected directly with representation in the Senate – few slave states and a growing number of free states.  Cuba has the potential of bringing some balance to Congress.  White southerners not only have to deal with the growing power of free states in Congress, but an active abolitionist community.  Upward mobility Read more

Christy Coleman, Gary Gallagher, Joan Waugh, Walter Johnson, Edward L. Ayers Panelists are going to paint a broad panorama of what the nation looked like in 1859. EA: What will leep out of the 1859 census? GG: Growth of the nation and expansion of information network.  Dominant theme: growth and energy. JW: Two largest immigrant Read more

Opening Remarks

Edward L. Ayers The goal of today’s panels is to understand how Americans viewed their world in 1859 without the knowledge of what was to come.  From this perspective, Lincoln was a successful lawyer and Jefferson Davis still a senator.  If we do not understand the years leading to secession and war than we cannot Read more

Good morning and welcome to the University of Richmond for the first major event of the Civil War Sesquicentennial.  The Robbins Center is beginning to fill up and there is certain excitement in the air.  As I mentioned we are expecting over 2,000 people today; keep in mind that this is a weekday.  I just Read more

See You in Richmond

Beginning tomorrow morning around 8:45am you can view a live webcast of Virginia’s first “Signature Conference” commemorating the Civil War Sesquicentennial from the Robbins Center at the University of Richmond.  You can also follow the day’s events right here at Civil War Memory where I will be live blogging beginning with Edward L. Ayers’s opening Read more

“Magnolia Morning”

I thought we might start the week off with a scene of peace and beauty. “It was the morning of great dreams and the day of high hopes. The night before, a gala ball had celebrated Southern nationhood, and had honored the men in gray who would go to war the next day. Hours later Read more

I am counting down the days for Wednesday’s much-anticipated inaugural event of the Civil War Sesquicentennial.  Virginia is far ahead of the pack in organizing events for this 4-year commemoration.  In fact, we are so far ahead that we extended the time line to include events marking the lead up to the war.  On Wednesday Read more