John Christopher Winsmith Rejects Secession and Embraces the Republican Party

John Christopher Winsmith was what historian Jason Phillips refers to as a “diehard rebel.” Throughout the war, Winsmith never wavered in his enthusiasm for the cause.  He believed that it was incumbent on everyone in the Confederacy to make the necessary sacrifices in the army and on the home front.  In letters that routinely characterized…

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Beyond the Civil War and Reconstruction With Jonathan Holloway

Many of you have viewed the Open Yale Course on the Civil War and Reconstruction taught by David Blight.  It’s a wonderful opportunity to take a survey course with one of the nation’s most respected Civil War scholars.  I am currently making my way through Professor Jonathan Holloway’s course, African American History: From Emancipation to…

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First African American Senator From the South Since Reconstruction

Congratulations to Republican Congressman Tim Scott, who was tapped by South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley to fill the seat vacated by outgoing Senator Jim DeMint.  Scott is the first black Senator to serve from a Southern state since the era of Reconstruction: Scott hails from the Palmetto State’s staunchly conservative 1st District, which stretches along along…

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William Mahone and the Readjusters to the Rescue

Looks like the Virginia General Assembly has been busy with resolutions about the Civil War era.  Last week I shared Sen. Henry Marsh’s resolution that would set aside a day to honor Abraham Lincoln and today I bring to you another resolution sponsored by Marsh that would honor black Virginians, who served in state government…

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