Of Noble Warriors And Maidens Chaste

Oriana Weems, Alma Lamour, Caroline Fitzhugh, Seth Rawbon, Netley Shiplake, Mordaunt—none of these improbable names is likely to mean anything to the modern reader, but to the generation that lived through the Civil War, and sighed and wept over the novels that it spawned, the names were as familiar as Scarlett O’Hara is to us. For these are some of the heroes and heroines of a genre of Civil War romance that flooded the market almost as soon as the shooting started. Read more »

Asa Smith Leaves The War

AN AMERICAN HERITAGE ORIGINAL DOCUMENT
Edited and with an introduction

In the summer of 1861 a twenty-five-year-old resident of Natick, Massachusetts, by the name of Asa Smith set out to join the Union Army. It was not very easy to do this, because all the companies around Natick seemed to be full; eventually, on July 2, Smith managed to get into a company being raised at Watertown, and this company became part of the l6th Massachusetts Infantry.Read more »

The Miracle On Missionary Ridge

The Union stood in danger of losing an entire army at Chattanooga. Then U. S. Grant arrived, and directed the most dramatic battle of the Civil War

On October 17, 1863, aboard a railroad car in Indianapolis, Indiana, General Ulysses S. Grant met for the first time Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton. The Lincoln government had suddenly come alive to the fact that one of its major forces, the Army of the Cumberland, faced imminent disaster in the city of Chattanooga, Tennessee, and fierce Stanton, “Old Man Mars,” had hurried west to straighten things out. He and the President had picked Grant to take charge.Read more »

“Mother, I Do Not Hate To Die”

A choice between life and honor is a fearful one for any man. Here is the unforgettable story of how it was made by a twenty-one-year-old Confederate private.

The dawn seemed reluctant to break through the dismal skies over middle Tennessee on November 27, 1863, and by ten o’clock the gray clouds had given way to rain. The drops fell on soldiers of the 81st Ohio Infantry drawn up around a gallows on Seminary Ridge, just outside the town of Pulaski, and on a slender youngster in gray seated on a coffin in an army wagon that rumbled toward the hollow square of troops.

The Army Of The Cumberland: A Panorama Show By William B. T. Travis

Concerned lest history
overlook their triumphs, veterans of the Army of the Cumberland had them writ large -- on a canvas five hundred feet long.
of the Cumberland had them writ large—on a canvas
five hundred feet long

The Army of the Cumberland was one of the principal Union armies in the Civil War, and it was about as good an army as this country ever had. Its soldiers thought very well of themselves, which is one way of saying that it was a high-morale outfit, and they also thought very well of their generals, especially of the one who led them through a couple of the worst battles any army ever had: Major General William S. Rosecrans, a red-faced, excitable, hard-fighting man who was known to his troops as “Old Rosy.” Rosecrans was a good man but unlucky.Read more »

On Writing About The Civil War

It seems like a long time ago, and as a matter of fact it really was—sixteen years, roughly, which make up a fair fraction of any man’s life—but somewhere around 1950 I got into the Civil War, and now it seems time to talk about it.

Mississippi: The Past That Has Not Died

Both of the pictures shown, here—the ruined ante-bellum plantation, the defiant young Confederates under their battle flag—speak volumes about the turbulent state of Mississippi, for both are a little fraudulent. Windsor plantation was built only in 1861, when the state was new-rich in cotton; Mississippi was opened up too late to have a true “Old South” tradition. The young men are students at “Ole Miss,” jeering at the idea of allowing a lone Negro named James Meredith to enter this seat of learning in 1962.

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TALE OF A TABLE

The fabric of history is often woven of surprising threads: the chance meeting, the extravagant whimsey of fate. No better illustration of this can be found than the string of events surrounding the table in Wilmer McLean’s parlor upon which Ulysses S. Grant drew up the terms that brought the Civil War to a close. Read more »

A Civil, And Sometimes Uncivil, War

A Union veteran talks of life in a prison camp: it was bad, yet there were times one could recall happily

The reality of the Civil W;ir prison camp has long .since gone from Ii u man knowledge, The camps themselves have vanished, although in a few places there are quiet parks to mark their sites, each with a cemetery: thousands of men died. North and South, in those camps, and the headstones are there as reminders. Rut the names that once were so terrible, Andersonville and Elmira, Libby and (lamp Douglas and the rest, are just Civil War names now, out of a past that no one really remembers. Read more »

Heritage Of The War

From the American Civil War to the beginning of America’s involvement in the Second World War is a long time, and the two things apparently have very little relation with one another.Read more »