Author Archives: Bert Dunkerly

The Origins of Memorial Day

Across the country there will be Memorial Day ceremonies today. I recently had the chance to visit two towns that claim the origins of Memorial Day.  Last September I was in upstate New York, near Waterloo. Reading up on the … Continue reading

Posted in Civilian, Holidays, Memory | Tagged | 7 Comments

Brown’s Island Victims

The worst war-time disaster to strike the Confederate home front occurred on March 13, 1863. An explosion rocked the Confederate Laboratory on Brown’s Island in the James River, in the heart of Richmond, Virginia. My research indicates that ten were … Continue reading

Posted in Arms & Armaments, Civilian | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Primary Sources: Confederate Veteran – A Source With Endless Possibilities

Published between 1893 and 1932, Confederate Veteran magazine is an incredible source that I mine for many different topics. Not only is it a good source for battle or wartime accounts, the magazine documents early preservation efforts, and is a window … Continue reading

Posted in Emerging Civil War | 14 Comments

Surprises Don’t Last

December is when my thoughts turn to an fascinating battle I like to study, Stones River. The Confederates were able to mass and overwhelm the Army of the Cumberland on the first day of the battle, December 31, 1862. Yet … Continue reading

Posted in Emerging Civil War | 16 Comments

Railroads: Management in the War

As with much in the war, it’s not just advantages of more resources, but how they’re applied, that is important. Better railroad management was a key in Union victory. Important advantages that the Union possessed included more railroad mileage (20,000 … Continue reading

Posted in Armies, Weapons | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Civil War Railroads: An Overview

As we discuss Civil War railroads this month, let’s start out with some basic concepts. It is important to remember that this was new technology when war broke out. No general, North or South, had ever used railroads in wartime … Continue reading

Posted in Weapons | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Eastern Europe’s Monument Dilemma

Monuments have been in the news a lot lately in our country, and while on a recent trip to Eastern Europe, I thought my thoughts would be far from our Civil War issues. Yet in visiting Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, and … Continue reading

Posted in Monuments, Ties to the War | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Notes on Richmond’s Civil War Hospitals

Recently, while doing some research on Richmond’s hospitals, a few interesting trends and stats stood out to me, which I will share here. The city became home to dozens of hospitals over the course of the war. Centrally located and … Continue reading

Posted in Medical | Tagged , , , , , , | 6 Comments

ECW Weekender: Battles of Mesilla

Sometimes juxtapositions grab our attention and draw us to see connections. On a recent trip to New Mexico to visit family, my thoughts turned to the Confederate invasion of what was then the Arizona Territory. Living close to the Confederate … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, ECW Weekender | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Battlefield Markers & Monuments: Yorktown Monument – A Victim of Another War

It was early in the war, in the spring of 1862 when the armies converged on Yorktown, Virginia.  The fact that many had not yet seen combat and been hardened to the realities of war, combined with the surge of … Continue reading

Posted in Battlefields & Historic Places, Common Soldier, Monuments, Primary Sources | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments