Category Archives: Cavalry

“To Make A Foray”: A Letter From The Chickahominy Raid

This week I’ve been getting my notes ready for the Virtual Symposium filming session where I’ll be sharing about J.E.B. Stuart’s 1862 Chambersburg Raid. In the process of reviewing the historical information, I moved backward on the timeline and re-examined … Continue reading

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Sheridan and the Franco-Prussian War

150 years ago this month, the Franco-Prussian War broke out. By early September the Prussian/German forces had smashed two French armies, captured Emperor Napoleon III, and were marching to Paris to lay siege to the city. When the war ended … Continue reading

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Gettysburg Off the Beaten Path: The First Shot Marker

Part of a series. On the morning of July 1, 1863, the men of Maj. Gen. Henry Heth’s division strode confidently toward the town of Gettysburg. Heth was a recent addition to the Army of Northern Virginia, having served at … Continue reading

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Gettysburg Sunday: Cavalry After Church

The last full week of June 1863 had been a stressful time of uncertainty for civilians in southern Pennsylvania, but for the citizens of one little town, safety and confidence seemed restored as Federal cavalry arrived on the warm summer … Continue reading

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Private McAlpine’s Horse

My own twice-great granddaddy 43-year-old David Jackson McAlpine left Jackson, Tennessee, in October 1861, for a $100 bounty. He probably needed the money. He and Miss Eliza Wells–married on Christmas Eve in 1839–had sixteen children at the time and one … Continue reading

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Fall of Tallahassee

Horses’ hooves could be heard pounding the dirt roads outside of town accompanied by the dust clouds associated with it. Brigadier General Edward McCook and his five staffers came trotting in Tallahassee, Florida, the capital of the state. The next … Continue reading

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The Ends of the War in Rectortown

I’ve come to Rectortown, Virginia, looking for one end of the war, but I’ve unexpectedly found several. (The anniversary of one of them is today, April 21, as it happened.) Thick puffs of clouds that look like smoky cotton balls … Continue reading

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Deep South Die Hards vs. James Wilson

1865 saw the Union launch a series of offensives meant to destroy the Confederacy’s last field armies and destroy its remaining industrial infrastructure. Among the offensives was James H. Wilson’s cavalry raid. It was the grandest of the Civil War. … Continue reading

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Book Review: Custer’s Gray Rival

Biographies abound of the Confederacy’s more well-known cavalry officers, especially J. E. B. Stuart and Nathan Bedford Forrest. But similar works detailing the lives of the next tier of Confederate cavaliers are less easy to find. Sheridan R. Barringer’s Custer’s Gray … Continue reading

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“Ms. Yulee…asked me if I could conceal a very valuable trunk…”

On the night of April 14, 1865 in Greensboro, North Carolina, Confederate Captain Micajah H. Clark with assistance packed into ambulances and wagons Confederate Government archives, baggage of Confederate officials, and $35,000 in currency. Their goal was to secrete these … Continue reading

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