Author Archives: Kevin Pawlak

There Stands Jackson Like Stonewalls? A Union Soldier Speculates on Jackson’s Famous Nickname

The story of how Brig. Gen. Thomas J. Jackson received his famous nickname atop Henry Hill on July 21, 1861, is well-known to Civil War enthusiasts today. For Southerners, they knew it too, and quickly after the Battle of First … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Leadership--Confederate | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Descendants of Revolutionary Riders in the Civil War

Most Americans know the story of Paul Revere and William Dawes and their midnight ride on April 18-19, 1775, through the Massachusetts countryside (Revere’s role is better know than Dawes’). I would wager that most readers of this blog know … Continue reading

Posted in Revolutionary War, Ties to the War | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Marching to Manassas

Twice in thirteen months, soldiers led by Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson pulled off long marches during a campaign that culminated in battle along the banks of Bull Run. Both marches were remarkable in the distance they covered and the time … Continue reading

Posted in Campaigns | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

They Held Lincoln’s Life in Their Hands

Less than 15 minutes had passed since John Wilkes Booth pulled the trigger of his derringer and sent a bullet into the back of President Abraham Lincoln’s head. Army Dr. Charles Leale, the supervisor of Lincoln’s health, and the host … Continue reading

Posted in Lincoln, Primary Sources | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Morgan’s Magnificent March from Cumberland Gap

From his perch behind miles of stout defenses in Cumberland Gap, Brig. Gen. George W. Morgan could look daily into his enemy’s camp in front of him. Strangely though, Morgan had more to worry about beyond the enemy in front … Continue reading

Posted in Campaigns, Western Theater | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Kentucky’s Governor Fought and Fell at Shiloh

On February 8, 1862, Confederate generals Albert Sidney Johnston, P.G.T. Beauregard, and William Hardee conferred on the most recent turn of events in the Western Theater at Beauregard’s Bowling Green, Kentucky, headquarters. Fort Henry fell to Union forces two days … Continue reading

Posted in 160th Anniversary, Battles, Personalities, Western Theater | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Why Did Robert E. Lee Think Highly of George B. McClellan?

When Civil War students rate the top generals of the war, Robert E. Lee and George B. McClellan can usually be found at opposite ends of the rankings. Though he has had some detractors, Lee is commonly found among the … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership--Confederate, Leadership--Federal | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Forts: “Too Heavy to Level Down”: Fort Beauregard in Manassas

Earthworks and manmade fortifications have withstood battle, nature, and development to serve as tangible reminders of the American Civil War. Hopefully, they will be around many more decades to serve as teaching tools for battlefield trompers and Civil War students. … Continue reading

Posted in Battlefields & Historic Places | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

When Their Countries Called

West Point’s Class of 1846 is its most famous of the pre-Civil War era. Perhaps a close second could be the Class of 1854, which included 46 graduates. Of those 46, 37 fought in the Civil War: 23 for the … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership--Confederate, Leadership--Federal, Personalities | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

A “Dexteritous” Climb to the Top of the Capitol’s Unfinished Dome

It towered over Abraham Lincoln during his inauguration on March 4, 1861 as a fitting symbol for the task ahead of the new president and the state of the country. Unfinished but a work in progress, the construction of the … Continue reading

Posted in Common Soldier, Lincoln, Primary Sources | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments