Author Archives: Ryan Quint

December 20, 1861: The Battle of Dranesville and the Confederate Battle Flag’s Debut

On a chilly morning, four regiments of Confederate infantry started off from their camps near Centreville, Virginia. They accompanied a battery of four cannon, 150 cavalry troopers, somewhere between 200-400 wagons, and were led by Brig. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart. The … Continue reading

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Fighting Rebels and Fighting Fires: The Life of George F. Griffin (Part 2/2)

Part 1 Can Be Found Here The grizzled veteran George F. Griffin, having survived the war’s gruesome last year, was mustered out of service on July 12, 1865. He had lost two brothers, one even mortally wounded by his side. … Continue reading

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Fighting Rebels and Fighting Fires: The Life of George F. Griffin (Part 1/2)

Sometime around midnight of April 19, 1880, a defective range stove started a fire on the first floor of No. 18, Travers Street, in Boston, Massachusetts. A passing patrolman in the police department saw the flames and raced to a … Continue reading

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Book Review: “Hymns of the Republic”

When the topic of the Civil War’s turning points come up, the traditional answers have always included the Union victories at Gettysburg and Vicksburg, or Lincoln signing the Emancipation Proclamation. Recently, though, historians have advanced the idea of 1864 as … Continue reading

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“But I Tell You the Balls Flew Like Hail Around Us”: An Ohioan’s Monocacy Letter

Today is the 155th Anniversary of the Battle of Monocacy, and as in the past, I wanted to share a primary source from the action known as “The Battle that Saved Washington.” This year’s source comes from Private Henry C. … Continue reading

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Lew Wallace Secures the B&O– For the First Time (Pt. 2)

Part 1 is available here. It was a busy June for Lew Wallace. He and his 11th Indiana Zouaves had been posted at Cumberland, Maryland to guard the vital Baltimore & Ohio Railroad bridges across the Potomac River. Their raid … Continue reading

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Lew Wallace Secures the B&O– For the First Time (Pt. 1)

Lew Wallace, the Hoosier lawyer-turned soldier, readied his command for its move. His objective was a vital connection of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad whose trains were badly needed to transport material and manpower. Wallace wrote later, “The need of … Continue reading

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George B. McClellan Papers Now Available Digitally

Say what you will about George McClellan– a great organizer, though timid in combat; beloved by his soldiers though a bane to Lincoln’s cabinet. Or maybe you’re an avid McClellan devotee, who defends the Young Napoleon to any passerby you … Continue reading

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Robert Dickey: Killer Turned Soldier

Henry St. Clair flew off the porch of Henry Bicksler’s tavern and shouted into the evening air, “God damn your soul, Bob Dickey, what did you hit me for?” Onlookers watched as Robert Dickey turned to face his accuser, and … Continue reading

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Book Review: “The Camel Regiment”

When he served as the U.S. Secretary of War, Jefferson Davis had the grand idea of importing camels. The camels, Davis reasoned, would be perfect animals to use in fighting among the far western reaches of America’s deserts, and thus … Continue reading

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