If you haven’t done so already make sure you pick up a copy of Joanne Freeman’s new book, The Field of Blood. It’s one of the best Civil War-era titles to be published this year. Eric Foner gave it a very positive review at the London Review of Books.

This passage in the review caught my attention:

Despite the many incidents Freeman describes, in the years before the Civil War the House and Senate were functioning institutions. They accomplished far more than they do today, when lawmakers are hard-pressed to keep the government functioning, much less address issues such as climate change and healthcare.

That is quite horrifying.

I actually talked with the two lawyers in this case two weeks ago about the history of the Lost Cause and the memory of Robert E. Lee specifically. Our conversation was confined to the relevant history being raised in this case and not about guilt or innocence of their client or whether the portrait prevents this individual from receiving a fair trial.

Unfortunately, I was unable to travel to Virginia to testify. I will be interested to hear the judge’s decision.

For this #ScholarSunday on twitter I asked my followers to share their recent book publications or those forthcoming in the near future. The result has been overwhelming. I was directed to a number of new Civil War books that for one reason or another I had missed. Anyway, check out the list if you are on twitter.

This discussion between Brooks Simpson, Isabel Wilkerson and moderator Clarence Page on Reconstruction is well worth watching.


Here is David Blight discussing his new biography of Frederick Douglass here in Boston. I attended this talk and have also read the book, which I highly recommend.


Stay tuned for updates on the progress of my forthcoming book on the myth of the black Confederate soldier as well as speaking engagements.

This story should make all of us cringe. It’s certainly another reason to change the Mississippi state flag.

This is a test of the new MD feature Stream. Perhaps I will use it on Civil War Memory