It’s becoming more and more difficult to remember a time when my interest in the Civil War did not somehow connect to blogging. Nine years ago I had just completed a master’s degree, including a thesis on William Mahone and the battle of the Crater, at the University of Richmond. I thought blogging might give me the opportunity to share my interest in the war with a broader audience. It certainly did.
Nine years later and while I see this site as much more than a blog, I certainly understand that the vast majority of visitors come here to read the latest post. I have no plans on giving it up and, as always, thanks for coming along for the ride.
You all know the name. Hodge occupies a special place in the reenacting community given his appearance on the cover of Tony Horwitz’s book, Confederates in the Attic (1998). In this Civil War in4 video he makes an incredibly compelling argument for the value of Civil War reenacting.
[Uploaded to Vimeo on November 5, 2014]
How many times have you been told that the proper way to refer to our civil war is the “War Between the States”? The folks who insist on it almost always assume they are speaking for their ancestors. We don’t need to go into the arguments for or against it here. In 1914, North Carolinians went to the polls to decide whether to change the name of the war to “War Between the States.”
In the end they decided that “War of the Rebellion” worked just fine. Turns out that the generation that fought the war, and their children, knew exactly what they had unsuccessfully engaged in and were comfortable acknowledging it.
It’s probably safe to assume that a recreation of the meeting between Grant and Lee in Wilmer McLean’s home at Appomattox Court House will be part of the sesquicentennial anniversary next April. Unlike the video below, the performance will likely stick to a well vetted script that adheres close to the available historical record. There is something about this meeting that strikes a chord with our Civil War memory. Of course, the two commanders didn’t have to meet to agree to terms of surrender. That they did presents us with a dramatic conclusion to and a sharp contrast with the previous year’s bloodletting. We want to know what these two men thought of one another. [click to continue…]