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On this cold evening (at least here in Boston) I invite you to snuggle up to the soothing voice of Glenn Beck as he shares the story of Richard Kirkland and his act of kindness during the battle of Fredericksburg. [Uploaded to YouTube on November 28, 2013] Read more

Mac Wycoff on Richard Kirkland

[Part 1, Part 2, and John Hennessy’s assessment of the evidence] Not too long ago I featured a guest post by Michael Schaffner on the subject of Richard Kirkland.  Mr. Schaffner did extensive research on Online sources related to the Kirkland story which left him with a number of questions re: the veracity of the Read more

This morning I was interviewed by Mike Zitz of the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star concerning the Saturday premiere of “The Angel of Marye’s Heights” – a movie about Richard Kirkland.  I made it clear that I could not comment on the movie beyond the few videos previews and other assorted postings that I’ve read on the Read more

Is the Richard Kirkland Story True?

The following guest post by Michael Schaffner examines the wartime evidence for the Kirkland story.  It is a thoroughly researched essay and is well worth your time.  I should point out that Mr. Schaffner did not set out to write a piece debunking this particular story.  Like many of us he was curious about the Read more

A Child’s Richard Kirkland

Some of you are familiar with 10-year old Richard Warren’s earlier portrayal of Richard Kirkland that was filmed at Marye’s Heights in Fredericksburg last year.  He is slated to play a young Kirkland in the upcoming film that was mentioned in yesterday’s post.  There are no surprises in young Richard’s narration; than again we shouldn’t Read more

Sgt. Richard Kirkland For All Of Us

I‘ve been thinking quite a bit about Sgt. Richard Kirkland lately.  Last week Peter Carmichael referenced Kirkland in his speech marking the anniversary of the battle of Fredericksburg.  Carmichael used the Kirkland story and his monument on the Fredericksburg battlefield to point out our tendency to glamorize the Civil War and ignore the more horrific Read more

Thanks to Wayne Motts and the National Civil War Museum in Harrisburg, PA for hosting me yesterday as part of their monthly lecture series. We had a packed house for my talk on Confederate monuments that included one couple that drove two hours for the talk. It’s certainly an important topic and I very much Read more

Yesterday my friend and fellow historian, Barton Myers of Washington and Lee University, delivered the keynote address as part of the 154th anniversary of the battle of Fredericksburg. I delivered this address back in 2008. The National Park Service does a phenomenal job each year commemorating the battle and Professor Myers was certainly an appropriate Read more

Over the past few days I’ve been going over student reflections from last week’s Civil War battlefields trip. There is simply no substitute for taking students to historic sites. The learning that can be accomplished and the connections to the past that can be forged at such places trumps all of the bells and whistles Read more