Category Archives: Personalities

Chief Joseph: If not for Howard, “there would have been no war”

My favorite description of Oliver Otis Howard comes from historian Frank O’Reilly, who has called him “pious but vapid.” After the twin disasters that befell Howard’s Eleventh Corps at Chancellorsville and then, two months later, at Gettysburg, it’s always been … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership--Federal, Personalities, Ties to the War, Western Theater | Tagged , , , , , | 12 Comments

McClellan’s Brother

The official reports from the Sixth Corps are woefully incomplete for the 1864 Overland Campaign. Many officers waited until the fall to write and by then the entire organization had seen significant change, eliminating any chance for full reports. After … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership--Federal, Personalities | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

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

Posted in Common Soldier, Personalities | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

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

Posted in Navies, Personalities | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

“The numbers of cannoneers is so small”

Lt. Edward Williston commanded Battery D, 2nd United States Artillery at the Battle of Antietam. While at the National Archives, I found this revealing letter about the issues Williston’s battery encountered on the Antietam battlefield due to a shortage of … Continue reading

Posted in Artillery, Battles, Leadership--Federal, Personalities, Primary Sources | Tagged , | 6 Comments

Freedom’s Forts

Emerging Civil War welcomes back guest author Steve T. Phan “The Red-Legged Devils have returned” was the battle cry as elements of the modern Co. A, 5th New York Infantry, “Duryee’s Zouaves,” arrived to Fortress Monroe National Monument in 2018. … Continue reading

Posted in Personalities, Slavery | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

The Trust’s Teacher Institute: The Men Who Invented the Constitution

“There are, every now and then, rooms where it all happens,” said David Stewart. “If we have a sacred space in this country, that’s it. That’s the room to see.” Stewart, author of The Summer of 1787: The Men Who … Continue reading

Posted in Personalities, Preservation, Revolutionary War | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

McCook and the Czar

100 years ago last night, Czar Nicholas II and his family were killed by the Bolsheviks near Ekaterinburg, Russia. This was the end of the Romanov Dynasty, which had ruled Russia since 1613. The US representative to Nicholas II’s coronation … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership--Federal, Personalities | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

All Star President of the New York Mutuals Captain Jack Wildey–Part 2

When the 11th New York got back to Washington and took stock of their situation, it did not look good: almost seventy men had been sent to Richmond as prisoners and as many as 177 were lost to action. At … Continue reading

Posted in Civilian, Personalities | Tagged , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Home Run Derby Star Captain “Jack” Wildey–Part 1

When John Hay and George Nicolay drove their rented buggy over to Camp Lincoln to say hello to their friend Colonel Elmer Ellsworth, they found him wearing his “blouzy red shirt” and enjoying that New York favorite: Base Ball. Most … Continue reading

Posted in Civil War in Pop Culture, Common Soldier, Holidays, Personalities | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment