Tag Archives: Petersburg Campaign

Petersburg Day Two: Thursday, June 16, 1864

On the night of June 15, P.G.T. Beauregard sent Robert E. Lee a letter, which was received at 2:00 a.m., explaining the situation and asking him to cover the Howlett Line. Unfortunately, the letter failed to convey the desperation of … Continue reading

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Petersburg Day One: Wednesday, June 15, 1864

On June 15 the Army of the Potomac began to cross the James River. It was an emotional moment. A. M. Judson of the 83rd Pennsylvania likened the army’s arrival at the James to Xenophon and his 10,000 Greeks reaching … Continue reading

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Antietam: The End of the Overland Campaign…of 1862

  An unknown Confederate soldier lies dead next to the recent grave of Lt. John A. Clark, 7th Michigan Infantry The Battle of Antietam signaled the end of the Civil War’s first Overland Campaign. That’s an intriguing thought. The first … Continue reading

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“My Responsibility For These Men”: A Leadership Letter from Petersburg

Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain has received criticism in recent decades for some of his writings which have been questioned for accuracy, purpose, and perspective. As a professor, educator, and gifted writer, Chamberlain seemed to seek a refuge in post-war writings – … Continue reading

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A Petersburg Picket’s Letter

Primary source research is a grinding ordeal but a necessary one for a group of historians whose mantra is to provide fresh perspectives on America’s defining event. It is a rewarding task, too, when you land on a juicy quote … Continue reading

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Vermont Brigade at the Petersburg Breakthrough

April 2, 2019 marked the 154th anniversary of the last day of fighting around Petersburg, Virginia. My research has largely focused on the breakthrough assault by the Sixth Corps southwest of the city during the early morning. I have devoted … Continue reading

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Reams Station Trail Map

Tomorrow marks the 154th anniversary of the Battle of Reams Station. The Union Fifth Corps cut the Petersburg & Weldon Railroad on August 18, 1864, and Confederate counteroffensives failed to drive them off the position. While Gouverneur Warren’s men built … Continue reading

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A.P. Hill’s Death Wish?: The Problem with Using Quotes

Lieutenant General Ambrose Powell Hill rode to his death during the immediate aftermath of the April 2, 1865 breakthrough at Petersburg. Hill sought to meet Major General Henry Heth at the division commander’s Pickrell house headquarters. Instead he encountered Pennsylvania … Continue reading

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Petersburg, the most researched battle of late?

The Petersburg Battlefields Foundation hosted its first stakeholders meeting yesterday to present its strategic plan to potential partners. As the organization’s tourism chair, I planned to spotlight a few new Petersburg publications to illustrate how scholarship on the campaign has … Continue reading

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Stolen Pie, but a Bigger Prize for Sergeant Young at Petersburg

Today is the favorite holiday for math teachers. March Fourteenth (3-14) represents the first three numbers in the mathematical constant pi. I’ve been using pi (3.14159…) a lot more than I had anticipated as a historian. Each time I rescale … Continue reading

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