Category Archives: Battles

Under Fire: “I never witnessed a battle field before”

ECW welcomes back guest author Jeff T. Giambrone As darkness fell over the Chickamauga battlefield on September 19, 1863, the booming of cannon and crash of musketry slowly faded, only to be replaced by the cries of the wounded and … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Common Soldier, Regiments | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments

Under Fire: The 17th Maine in “the immediate presence of death”

On the evening of December 12, 1862, Pvt. John Haley of the 17th Maine huddled around “the very smallest” of fires and tried to keep quiet. The regiment had moved into a reserve position along the Rappahannock River near the … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Common Soldier, Regiments | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Under Fire: “Seemed to Forget that He Was an Officer, and Gave No Commands Whatever”

When the 6th Pennsylvania Reserves formed in the spring of 1861, its men and officers elected William W. Ricketts as its colonel. The 24-year-old was a solid choice; he had attended West Point and though he hadn’t graduated, opting for … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Leadership--Federal | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Under Fire at Ball’s Bluff: “You Have Established Your Reputation”

“We crossed the river…under command of Colonel Lee, in all one hundred men, in a whale boat that would carry sixteen, and two small boats holding five and four respectively. I went over first, and found a steep bank one … Continue reading

Posted in 160th Anniversary, Battles | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“We Made A Charge”: The 17th Mississippi Infantry at Ball’s Bluff

It was a battle that wasn’t really supposed to happen, and one combat that is often overlooked, though it had notable effects in 1861. A Union reconnaissance mission gone wrong launched the Battle of Ball’s Bluff on October 21, 1861, … Continue reading

Posted in 160th Anniversary, Battles | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Fallen at Cedar Creek: Charles Russell Lowell, Jr.

On October 15, 1864, Colonel Charles Russell Lowell Jr. wrote to his wife from the camp of the 2nd Massachusetts Cavalry near Cedar Creek in the Shenandoah Valley: “I’ve only ten minutes to write to you; I was out all … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Primary Sources | Tagged , | 7 Comments

Stonewall Jackson at Gettysburg on YouTube

We have a special treat for Stonewall Jackson fans next week. Back in August at the Savas Beatie author get-together in Gettysburg, ECW’s Chris Mackowski popped in to offer a talk about “Stonewall Jackson at Gettysburg.” ECW’s friend Cory Lesmeister … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Books & Authors, Personalities | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Under Fire: “You Did Not Wear The Marks Of The Muddy Trenches”

In May 1901, veterans of the 1st Massachusetts Heavy Artillery journeyed to Central Virginia, returning to the battleground at Harris Farm, north of Spotsylvania Court House. Thirty-seven years early these men had come under battle fire for the first time, … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Memory | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Under Fire: “Till My Heart Sickens and War Is Not Glorious” — John Pelham at First Manassas

It had been three months since John Pelham of Alabama left West Point Military Academy under the cover of darkness and began his circuitous journey into the heart of the newly formed Confederacy. His months of waiting, asking for advice, … Continue reading

Posted in Battles | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Under Fire: First Ironclad Shots at the Head of Passes

In May 1861, New Orleans river captain John Stevenson travelled to Montgomery, Alabama, proposing to “adapt some of our heavy and powerful tow-boats on the Mississippi” by armoring them and “preparing their bow” with a ram “capable of sinking by … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Navies | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment