Category Archives: Primary Sources

Saving History Saturday: Volumes of Black History Records Sent For Preservation

Do we all dream of finding pieces of “lost history” deep in archives? What happens when books or documents have been recognized as historically important and need preservation before they can be fully read, explored, and used? An example of … Continue reading

Posted in Preservation, Primary Sources, Slavery | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

“To Defy The Predictions Of The Universe”: A Wedding Goes Crazy, The Love Story Goes Well

It’s February 14 and Valentine’s Day… So that means I get to bless (or torture) you with a blog post about a historic love story. Now, did you know that February 14 also happens to be a Union general’s birthday? … Continue reading

Posted in Civilian, Leadership--Federal, Primary Sources | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

“I helped…to pack haversacks and cartridge boxes”

Susie King Taylor accompanied the 33rd United States Colored Troops (originally designated as the 1st South Carolina Volunteer Infantry Regiment) during their service. Her husband served in the unit, and she was officially listed as a laundress, though she also … Continue reading

Posted in Primary Sources, USCT | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

A Member of the 8th Missouri Infantry Reflects on Why He Enlisted

One of the most thorough and remarkable diaries I have come across from a Missouri soldier is from a non-commissioned officer in the 8th Missouri Infantry. A German immigrant and Peoria, Illinois resident, Phillip A. Smith joined the “American Zouaves” … Continue reading

Posted in Common Soldier, Primary Sources, Trans-Mississippi | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

A Future President Reflects On An Ending War

Recently, I was sorting through some letters and diaries of U.S. Presidents who fought during the Civil War and I came across an online archive of Rutherford B. Hayes’s wartime letters and diary entries. I’m looking forward to spending some … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership--Federal, Primary Sources | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

An 1863 Staff Ride with the Russians?

Over the holidays, I had a couple of long flights which is the perfect opportunity to catch up on reading. One of the books I had “gifted myself” for Christmas is the edited letters of Theodore Lyman who served on … Continue reading

Posted in Common Soldier, Primary Sources | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Maine at War December 2019

Here’s what our friend Brian Swartz was up to in December at his blog, Maine at War:

Posted in Internet, Websites & Blogs, Primary Sources | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Sam Watkins on the Romney Campaign

While Sam Watkins is best known as one of the most readable chroniclers of the war in the Western Theater, most folks forget his unit served with Stonewall Jackson during the last months of 1861 and into 1862. In the … Continue reading

Posted in Campaigns, Primary Sources | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Civil War Versions of “NUTS”!

Welcome back, JoAnna M. McDonald History does not quite repeat itself in the literal sense, but it does rhyme.   For example, cheeky responses to surrender demands are apparently a tradition in American military history (and in military history in general).  … Continue reading

Posted in Battles, Common Soldier, Primary Sources | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Coffee For Christmas

Christmas 1864 found Confederate soldiers with little to celebrate. The war that so many had said would last just 90 days now reached it fourth winter with a gloomy outlook for their cause. But still, stories of brief holiday moments … Continue reading

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