Author Archives: Chris Mackowski

“Dawn of Victory” has arrived!

Edward S. Alexander’s new Emerging Civil War Series book is now out: Dawn of Victory: Breakthrough at Petersburg. If you’re around the Cockade City for 150th anniversary events this week, be sure to pick up a copy. While copies are … Continue reading

Posted in Books & Authors, Emerging Civil War Series | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Meeting “Old Joe” on the Battlefield

The first time I met Joe Johnston on the battlefield, he was pointing dramatically at something indistinct off in the distance. He was also out of position. It was a gloomy day. Johnston stood like a silhouette against the clouds, … Continue reading

Posted in Battlefields & Historic Places, Leadership--Confederate, Memory | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Lee’s Curious Order at North Anna

Reading primary sources is an especially fun part of researching a book. Not only is it interesting to read other people’s mail, as a once-upon-a-time radio newscaster, I’m always on the lookout for great “soundbites”—those great lines or pieces of … Continue reading

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A Soldier’s Letter: “I will ask no greater honor”

“Every man was born for some purpose and if it is my lot to leave earth on the battle field, I can only say . . . Lord give me grace to endure it,” wrote Thomas Martin of the 76th New … Continue reading

Posted in Common Soldier | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Losing Touch with the Words of Lincoln’s Greatness

Abraham Lincoln’s best-known words, delivered on a November afternoon at the new Soldiers National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, laid out a call to action at a specific moment in the American Civil War. Attendees at the dedication, he said, must rededicate themselves … Continue reading

Posted in Civil War Events, Leadership--Federal, Memory, Monuments | 8 Comments

The Civil War: Regional, Regimental and Personal Experiences

We don’t normally post information here about academic conferences, but this one is a little different (and I have a vested interest in it!). On August 1st, 2015, St. Bonaventure University—the institution where I teach—will host a conference on the Civil … Continue reading

Posted in Books & Authors, Civil War Events, Civilian, Common Soldier | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Some Context from Donelson for the 150th’s Surrender Season

With the Sesquicentennial’s surrender season nearly upon us, this week presents a good opportunity for us to give upcoming events some context—for it was this week in 1862 that Ulysses S. Grant accepted the surrender of Confederates defending Fort Donelson. … Continue reading

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Exploring Jericho Mills

It feels more like late March than late January as we walk across the field at Jericho Mills. The sky is as open and clear as the ground we’re walking across. Dried cow patties dot the field like landmines, and barbed wire … Continue reading

Posted in Battlefields & Historic Places, Campaigns, Preservation | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

The Weight of a Year

Working on the layout for Bert Dunkerly’s upcoming To the Bitter End, I was searching for a photo of President Lincoln from 1865. As I sorted through the Library of Congress’s stash, I came across a pair of photos taken … Continue reading

Posted in Emerging Civil War Series, Leadership--Federal, Personalities, Photography | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Question of the Week: February 2, 2015

Saturday, January 31 marked the 150th anniversary of the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment, abolishing slavery. The Fourteenth and Fifteenth would grant former slaves citizenship and give them the right to vote. I have called the Thirteenth Amendment “arguably the … Continue reading

Posted in Question of the Week, Slavery | Tagged , , | 8 Comments