Category Archives: Civilian

A Beecher ventures to Corning

Elmira can be an unforgiving, frigid place to spend time – even if you are well clothed and sheltered. For a Confederate soldier from the deep South suddenly transported to the prisoner of war camp there it could be a … Continue reading

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Weekly Whitman: Pioneers! O Pioneers!

 “Pioneers! O Pioneers!” is one of the most recorded of Whitman’s poems. Actor Will Geer reads in this YouTube presentation, illustrated by images of American pioneers heading west from the 1840s onward.

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Civil War Cooking: Miss Caskie’s Cake at General Lee’s Headquarters

“You must thank Miss Norvell for her nice cake. I . . . assembled all the young gentlemen around it & though I told them it was a present from a beautiful young lady, they did not leave a crumb.” … Continue reading

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Robin Hood & The Civil War: “The Scott Effect” (Part 3)

Part of a series An old whaling ship was not the only example of Robin Hood’s name appearing in mid-19th Century America. In fact, a search for the English outlaw’s name in newspapers from the Civil War era turns up … Continue reading

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Not a Trick—Walt Whitman Every Week!

In between doing the final edits for First Fallen, reviewing books, worrying about everything in general and nothing in particular, and petting cats, I have been noodling around with some ways of writing about American poet Walt Whitman. He is … Continue reading

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Delity Powell Kelly: A Child in a Confederate Camp

ECW welcomes guest author Sheritta Bitikofer In January of 1930, a new soldier’s pension application was submitted in the state of Florida. While at first glance, this was nothing unusual for the time. Soldiers were growing older and desired compensation … Continue reading

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Photographic Portraits: Cadets Identified, Girl Unknown

“Those are cadet uniforms,” I thought while sorting through thumbnail files of digitized Civil War images on Library of Congress’s website. It was not at all what I was looking for at the moment, but I bookmarked the page to … Continue reading

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The Apple Barrage

Private William McCarter of the 116th Pennsylvania Infantry (Irish Brigade) wrote a colorful memoir and included this autumnal story about soldier and civilian interactions near Charlestown (now West Virginia) in October 1862. Here’s the account in his own words, and … Continue reading

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“Where Death Began”: Tragedy and Memory at the Allegheny Arsenal

ECW welcomes guest author Rich Condon In the early afternoon hours of September 17, 1862, Joseph R. Frick, a local wagon driver, made his final rounds delivering three 100lb. barrels of gunpowder to the main laboratory of Allegheny Arsenal in … Continue reading

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Enemy on the Georgia Home Front

Wesley Shropshire returned home from the secession convention in Milledgeville, Georgia dejected and distressed. Once final passage of the secession ordinance was certain, most Union delegates changed their votes to give the measure more force, but not Shropshire. He departed … Continue reading

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