Tag Archives: Peninsula Campaign

America’s First Air Force: Union Aeronauts and McClellan’s Peninsula Campaign, Part Four – Davis, Lee, and Longstreet Were Standing in a Field

ECW welcomes back guest author Jeff Ballard Read Part One, Part Two, and Part Three. Serving as an airborne sentry was the first, and perhaps the most obvious role of the balloon on the battlefield and Lowe’s balloons gave McClellan … Continue reading

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America’s First Air Force: Union Aeronauts and McClellan’s Peninsula Campaign, Part Three – Gaines’ Farm Station

ECW welcomes back guest author Jeff Ballard Read Part One and Part Two. The final week of May 1862 denoted the high-water mark of McClellan’s Peninsula Campaign as five corps of the Army of the Potomac partially encircled Richmond. By … Continue reading

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America’s First Air Force: Union Aeronauts and McClellan’s Peninsula Campaign Part Two – A Novel Contraption

ECW welcomes back guest author Jeff Ballard Read Part One. With the bombardment of Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861, “numerous balloon enthusiasts hurried to Washington D.C. and besieged the War Department with various proposals for achieving victory by use … Continue reading

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America’s First Air Force: Union Aeronauts and McClellan’s Peninsula Campaign Part One – Maker of Water

ECW welcomes guest author Jeff Ballard On the last day of May 1862, Lieutenant E. Walter West, U.S. Army, peered through his field glasses and noted Confederate infantry preparing to attack the Union position straddling the Richmond & York Railroad … Continue reading

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The “Fighting Naturalist” of the 19th Massachusetts

It was hot and muggy most of the time. It rained frequently and the men made acquaintance of the “wood tick,” and enumerable bugs and specimens of insect life hitherto unknown to them. The very earth moved with “new life.” … Continue reading

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On The March: Magruder’s Deception on the Peninsula

Though usually the means of moving from Point A to Point B and perhaps determining a campaign or battle by speed, marching also became a tool for deception. Especially in April 1862 on the Virginia Peninsula. Confederate General John Bankhead … Continue reading

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The Sleeping Sentry’s Final Rest

“By the hand of God helping me, I shall some day outride the storms of affliction and land my soul on the other side of Jordan and head our weary souls home to rest where there shall be no death. … Continue reading

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ECW Weekender: Lee’s Mill Park

Much of the Warwick River defenses and trenches on the Virginia Peninsula from 1862 have disappeared under modern roads, golf courses, or housing tracts. However, there are a few excellent places to see earthworks that have the bonus of preservation … Continue reading

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ECW Weekender: Hiking at Newport News Park

At the beginning of March while the weather was still chilly enough to keep the bugs and snakes at bay, I spent a day on the Virginia Peninsula around Yorktown, exploring Civil War sites and a few miles of earthworks. … Continue reading

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Col. John McLane of the 83rd Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry at Gaines Mill

In 1859 John W. McLane formed and commanded a mostly ceremonial militia unit in Erie, Pennsylvania, known as the Wayne Guard. When war broke out in April of 1861, McLane, now a colonel, put out a call for volunteers. Within … Continue reading

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