Author Archives: Chris Kolakowski

Three Points About Stones River

Many of our readers get the preservation mailings from the American Battlefield Trust, asking to save land at various sites. The most recent one covers the Battle of Stones River (Murfreesboro) and seeks to save some land on the Federal … Continue reading

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Civil War Echoes: The Golden Spike

150 years ago today, at 12:47 PM local time, the Golden Spike was driven near Promontory Point, Utah. This ceremony (pictured) completed the Transcontinental Railroad by joining the Central Pacific and Union Pacific. At least two noteworthy Civil War veterans … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership--Federal, Personalities, Ties to the War, Western Theater | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Seniormost Deaths

Today in 1862, Confederate General Albert Sidney Johnston was mortally wounded at the head of his troops during the Battle of Shiloh (or Pittsburg Landing). A plaque on the battlefield, placed by the War Department shortly after the park’s founding, … Continue reading

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Civil War Echoes: The Battle of Okinawa

Today 74 years ago Operation Iceberg, the invasion of Okinawa, got underway as the first of 183,000 soldiers and Marines of U.S. Tenth Army swarmed ashore at Hagushi on the island’s west coast. It was the largest amphibious operation of … Continue reading

Posted in Armies, Battles, Ties to the War, Trans-Mississippi | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Most Terrible Battles

The Duke of Wellington famously said “nothing except a battle lost can be half so melancholy as a battle won.” Battles are inherently destructive events, and they leave their scars on landscapes, places, and participants long after the engagement ends. … Continue reading

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USS Mississippi Visits Okinawa

In 1853, Commodore Matthew Perry arrived in the Far East to open up relations with Japan. His first flagship was USS Mississippi, a side-wheel steamer. Before going to Tokyo, Perry stopped at Okinawa to deal with the Okinawan king regarding … Continue reading

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Primary Sources: Thoughts and Favorites

A primary source is defined as one produced by an eyewitness to an event offering their recollections. Some primary sources provide just basic facts with limited additional details. Other sources, like battle reports, provide more details but often offer little … Continue reading

Posted in Books & Authors, Leadership--Confederate, Leadership--Federal, Primary Sources, Trans-Mississippi, Western Theater | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Final Legacy of the Civil War Generation

The Civil War reshaped and defined the United States in ways still very visible today. That is enough for one generation, right? Yet the Civil War generation also led the United States throughout the late 19th Century of industrialization, expansion, … Continue reading

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A Father’s Legacy: Simon Bolivar Buckner Sr. and Jr.

On January 8, 1914, Simon Bolivar Buckner died. He was the last surviving Confederate lieutenant general, and was buried in Frankfort, Kentucky’s cemetery with considerable ceremony. Born in 1823, in Munfordville, Kentucky, he was named in honor of Simon Bolivar, … Continue reading

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Armistice Day at 100

One hundred years ago today, at 11 AM local time, the guns on the Western Front fell silent as World War I’s armistice took effect. World War I remade the world and set the course for the 20th Century. Its … Continue reading

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