Author Archives: Sarah Kay Bierle

About Sarah Kay Bierle

I’m Sarah Kay Bierle, historian, editor, and historical fiction writer. When sharing history, I try to keep the facts interesting and understandable. History is about real people, real actions, real effects and it should inspire us today.

A Historian Working In Retail

This past summer I took a part-time job as a cashier in a retail store. Yes, I’m still very involved with Emerging Civil War. No, I’m not quitting the history field. But it was time to take a steady job … Continue reading

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Rethinking What Civil War Soldiers Remembered

Recently, I spent a day at a Civil War living history event here in California. It was a welcome break from a full week of research and writing, and I certainly enjoyed visiting with friends and networking with some of … Continue reading

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Foraging With The 1st West Virginia Artillery

In August 1912, C.H. Senseney delivered an address on the fiftieth anniversary of the enlistment of Battery D of the 1st West Virginia Artillery. His reminiscence speech was later printed and bound in a booklet form, and I was lucky … Continue reading

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Captain Hugh A. White: “To Draw Back Is Impossible”

“…his presence was soon missed, and a member of his company, fearing he had been injured, proceeded to look for him, and soon found his body. He was lying on his face, resting it in his hands, and his pistol … Continue reading

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ECW Weekender: John Wesley Powell River History Museum

If you’re ever traveling cross-country on Interstate 70 through Utah and Colorado, you’ll reach Green River, Utah, either just before or after crossing the “hundred miles of nothin’.” Here, in this little river town, you’ll find a local museum named … Continue reading

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Of “Promotion,” Camp, Gossip, & Flirtation in August 1863

In late August 1863 – after returning from medical leave and a visit home – Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain wrote a letter to his wife Fanny, giving a glimpse of the “quiet days” of war. The moments at Gettysburg created only … Continue reading

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The Determined Delinquents On A Summer’s Day

Recently, I sat in the solemn, silent archives, reading The End of an Era by John S. Wise. Among his treasury of memories and musings about antebellum Virginia, slavery, and the Civil War, there are several sections focused on cadet … Continue reading

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ECW Weekender: Edinburg Mill

Mention the 1864 Autumn Campaign in the Shenandoah Valley and among historians and Virginia locals an image comes to mind: a landscape with burning buildings and fields. Union General Sheridan directed his officers and soldiers to destroy the agriculture, mills, … Continue reading

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Sunk In The Mill Pond: The Fate of the Ironclad Models

The model vessels floated quietly on the millpond water. On the bank, the boys aimed their toy cannon. They’d finally found a target that wouldn’t shoot back and would keep them from getting a scolding. Or so they thought… After-all, … Continue reading

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Play Review – “Elizabeth Hobbs Keckley: From Slavery to Modiste”

In June 2018 I had the opportunity to attend a production of the new stage play Elizabeth Hobbs Keckley: From Slavery to Modiste at The Old Globe Theater in San Diego, California. Entering the theater, I was unfamiliar with the … Continue reading

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