If you haven’t seen it yet, check out the latest issue of Blue & Gray magazine. The featured story this issue, the Potomac blockade, was written by ECW’s Rob Orrison and BIll Backus. Rob—a regular contributor at ECW—and Bill are co-authors of A Want of Vigilance: The Bristoe Station Campaign.
Rob says the blockade fascinates him, in part, because “It’s a period and event in the Civil War that so few people know anything about.” The results of the blockade, however, had enormous repercussions during the war. “It is easily skipped over,” Rob says, “but it had a huge impact on how the Lincoln administration conducted the war in the east for the first two years as well as foreign policy.”
Rob, as historic sites supervisor for Prince William County in Virginia, has spent a lot of years along the banks of the river, familiarizing himself with the story. He shares the knowledge in the issue’s “General’s Tour,” the portion of Blue & Gray devoted to helping readers explore modern sites related to the main article. “One thing I think people will find surprising is how many of these sites still exist today and are preserved,” he says.