Browsing All Posts filed under »Digital History«

Recap: What I’m looking for with my examination of The American Colonization Society

July 25, 2015 by


Since my last blog post, I’ve been looking through my notes, starting to compile a couple lists… but, along the way, I’ve been distracted by a few findings that might be of interest to readers. Of course, my thinking, in going through records of the American Colonization Society (ACS), is that I might find something that […]

It’s not Bruce Catton’s world anymore

August 20, 2013 by


Keep in mind, I’m merely using Bruce Catton as an example of a writer of Civil War history from that era (1950s-70s), but… The point is… the world in which Civil War (and other) history is delivered by an author has changed. I think it’s clear enough that the methodology has changed… but that’s not all. […]

The future of Civil War history… yet another angle

April 24, 2013 by


Harry’s doing some interesting stuff over in his blog. If you haven’t seen it already, there are two polls… here, and here. Chime-in if you haven’t already done so. Now, that said… I’ve had something on my mind for several weeks. I keep meaning to write something about it, but I’m not quite sure how […]

An evening with “Bud” Robertson, part 2

March 30, 2013 by


The second great point that struck me while listening to Dr. Robertson was… in him, are we listening to the end of an era? He didn’t say anything about this… it’s just something that came to my mind. I think we are. Not only are we looking at one of the history community’s living connections […]

It’s the little things… an evaluation of blogging’s “seedlings” on the Web

February 28, 2013 by


Some folks obsess on numbers; some way too much. Some even write to score numbers. That’s fine. To each his/her own. Don’t get me wrong, I like to see that folks are visiting the blog, but I’ve moved on from the “obsessed by numbers phase”. In my first year or two of writing the blog… oh, yes; […]

Visualizing the Valley’s Unionism

February 20, 2013 by


With an interest in seeing Southern Unionism from a different perspective, I’ve been tinkering with data a bit. The following pie charts are just some examples of the ways in which I’m reviewing some of the data I’ve compiled. Each illustrates the different levels of completeness for the various counties of the Shenandoah Valley. Comparing […]

The future of Civil War history entails ___ (fill-in the blank)

January 14, 2013 by


History is an interesting field. There are a wide variety of practitioners, some on the “inside”, some on the “outside”, and some, to some degree, with one foot in both (some overlapping occasionally, and some on a regular basis). But, the inside/outside thing is a matter of perspective. People work in certain circles, and from within […]

What’s the future look like for your blogged labors of love?

December 4, 2012 by


Ron’s comment in my previous post was enough to send me down another path… After all your hard work… what’s the future look like for that content you labored so long in putting on the Web? Considering the way in which we, as bloggers, celebrate milestones in blogging (someone hits 1,000, 5,000, 10,000 posts, etc) … frankly, that’s a […]

And you thought electronically delivered history was all about the content…

February 13, 2012 by


… and you thought all I focus on is history… humpf! I keep telling people, electronically delivered history isn’t simply a matter of a new platform (the Web) for a place to put stuff (aka the same old print media layout and design)… and this round of books in the pic above, being packed-up for […]

Messages in blogs may be cutting edge, but not perfect

June 1, 2011 by


An observation that is probably more apparent to those who blog than those who read… and, that’s not meant as a slight to those who aren’t bloggers… again, just an observation… While I still consider blogging a very effective tool in getting historical information and/or discussions out to a significant (and, likely, a more diverse/broad audience than that which […]

Southern by the grace of cornbread!

February 23, 2011 by


Thinking about Craig’s post from the other day, I remembered something I’ve been meaning to post about cornbread… yes, cornbread. Now cornbread has become known as something distinctly “Southron”, but appears to  have origins with the Native People of what is now the southeastern U.S. (references vary, but among those suggested as originators are the […]

Yes, Page County, you once had slaves…

January 16, 2011 by


While the audience of this blog is typically from well beyond the boundaries of my home county (and, I’m happy to say, even beyond the confines of this continent), I frequently look back to that place, as I have spent a considerable number of years writing about its history. No doubt, it’s fascinating to me […]

“All we ask is to be left alone”

January 15, 2011 by


I’m picking-up from where I left off in my last post… Regarding some of those who opposed secession, and continued to do so… it didn’t necessarily mean that they were ready to go to war against their neighbors and friends, in defense of their position. Instead, many preferred to be left alone. They simply didn’t […]

An against the grain Southerner… I suppose.

December 29, 2010 by


Brooks Simpson’s recent post got me thinking… For some Southerners, maybe it’s just a little too easy to dismiss a Northerner when he/she writes about the history of the Civil War era South. For these same Southerners… when confronted with another Southerner who writes not so much in harmony with the Lost Cause ideology… what […]

One site, multiple angles for interpretation

December 19, 2010 by


One of my favorite historic sites in Page County, Virginia is Catherine’s Furnace. Because of efforts made in the early 2000s, the site has one Virginia Civil War Trails marker. I was fortunate to be involved in deciding that the site merited a marker, and I also wrote the text and provided images for the […]

Immersive experiential history

November 13, 2010 by


From time to time, I discuss the “architecture” and development of digital history, and one area that fascinates me most is the potential for creating immersive experiential history (and yes, just a few steps short of the holodeck) In its present form, I don’t think the tools for the Web are great enough to do […]

The Presidential election of 1860: National Results… and results in the Shenandoah Valley

November 6, 2010 by


On this day, 150 years ago, people voted… and, laid-out on maps, the results were as follows (the top map is much more detailed, but I regret to say, I can’t find a better image): In the Shenandoah Valley, the the popular vote was… County Abraham Lincoln (Republican) John Bell (Constitutional Union) John C. Breckinridge […]

Meem’s Bottom Covered Bridge

November 2, 2010 by


I get this “historic-stuff-seeking urge” to pull-off I-81 at times, during my weekly commutes… this is where I snapped some quick photos today… … and while we’re at it, let’s take a look back toward the Massanutten from the bridge… you may recall my mentioning something about Meem’s Bottom in my post, “Why Cenantua?“. This […]

It’s 1860. Who do you vote for?

November 2, 2010 by


Not the exact date, but today is election day… and on election day 150 years ago, in 1860, a good deal was at stake. So, who do you vote for? Strike that… who would get your ancestors’ votes? Lincoln, Douglas, Breckinridge, or Bell… and why? Without looking, do you know their platforms? After all, a […]

An execution… a ghost’s last hymn… and a curse fulfilled(?)

October 31, 2010 by


As I’ve mentioned several times in my postings throughout the month, October brings to mind stories of witches and ghosts, but one ghost story captures my thinking frequently throughout the month. I suppose, one can almost say that it literally “haunts” me. The story actually developed over time, with each piece of information I uncovered […]

Charles M. Brown… Page County’s “Black Confederate”… or… maybe not(?)

October 27, 2010 by


As, I believe, most are aware (mostly because of the recent issue with the textbooks in Virginia), there is a great deal of talk about the subject of “Black Confederates” at this time, and, in the CW blogosphere, I think Andy Hall and Kevin Levin are handling it just fine. I’ve engaged in discussion about […]

Regarding Mrs. Fannie S. Gibbons

October 24, 2010 by


Having promised to tell more about the subject of the poem that I posted the other day… I really don’t know a great deal about Fannie Gibbons, but know much more about her husband. Nonetheless… Fannie Shacklett, daughter of Samuel (1804-1886) and Maria Graham Henry Shacklett (1811-1870) was born April 27, 1834; Samuel Shacklett being […]

On the Death of Mrs. Fannie S. Gibbons…

October 22, 2010 by


THE breath of Spring is nigh–it comes once more To glad the Earth where Winter’s frown hath been, And violets their fragrant incense pour On flowery paths, through dewy meadows green; But all in vain they smile for us–we mourn For thee, sweet Blossom, from our bosoms torn. The birds, gay warblers, flit from tree […]

… and from Harper’s Ferry, Strother writes…

October 18, 2010 by


Picking-up from where Strother left off yesterday… Early on the morning of the 18th I went up street and there met Joe Burns who informed me that our boys had had a fight and that seven or eight of them had been wounded, two supposed mortally, this was exciting and hurrying to the Depot I […]

Sunday afternoons with “The Porte”, Part VIII

October 17, 2010 by


Continuing from Strother’s last… On Monday, 22d of April, the excitement still continued, the mobs occasionally breaking into shops in search of arms. The battle of Cockeysville did not take place as was expected. The Pennsylvanians, who were for the most part unarmed and altogether unprepared for a warlike encounter, had received warning of the […]

We interupt this broadcast… Strother on Brown’s Raid

October 17, 2010 by


I missed the opportunity during the 150th anniversary of the raid, but thought some might enjoy reading what David Hunter Strother (aka “Porte Crayon” or, here, known as “The Porte”) had to say about the John Brown incident. On the morning of the 17th… 151 years ago today… we find Strother in his office in […]


October 17, 2010 by


Ah, Sunday morning… a fire is in the wood-stove to cut the morning chill, a warm cup of coffee sits nearby as I sit down to transcribe more of Strother’s recollections for appearance here later this afternoon. As I do so, I wonder why so many are more fascinated with the events on the battlefields […]

Caroline & the Jack O’ Lantern

October 16, 2010 by


This ghostly tale is a bit differentv from that of Doc Amiss. What I find particularly interesting is that it comes from the time before the Civil War, and involves one of the Brumback family slaves. I found this tale in a column (a long-running column, I might add) called “Do You Remember”, which appeared […]

I bet Ben would have liked blogging…

October 16, 2010 by


If he would inform, he must advance regularly from Things known to things unknown, distinctly without Confusion, and the lower he begins the better. It is a common Fault in Writers, to allow their Readers too much knowledge: They begin with that which should be the Middle, and skipping backwards and forwards, ’tis impossible for […]

Plumb Grove – home of Jonathan Nesbitt, Jr.

October 11, 2010 by


I’ve got some photos that I took a couple of weeks back while on my road trip to Four Locks and Clear Spring, and I thought that I might as well put them on here for everyone to enjoy. I didn’t include them in the tour that weekend because there is no known tie between […]


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