Browsing All Posts filed under »slavery«

An ironic newspaper ad

September 3, 2012 by

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But more from our vantage point, and not from those who read it at the time… This is from the September 3, 1862 edition of Hagerstown’s newspaper… 150 years ago today. Now, I guess it seems more ironic because of 1) Hagerstown’s proximity to Sharpsburg/Antietam… and 2) the fact that, in just 14 days, the […]

Telling the story of the Civil War: The Joseph’s Coat* approach

August 10, 2012 by

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Over at Emerging Civil War, Kathleen Logothetis posted something today (Let’s Talk Openly About Slavery: Interpretation at Monticello) that caught my attention and made me think a little more about what might be considered a challenge in telling the story of the Civil War. Not that it’s difficult to weave together the topic of slavery with the Civil War… that’s […]

“I don’t think there were really that many”

July 13, 2012 by

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Not so much a matter of content delivery this morning, and more about a thought that’s been lingering with me for a bit… About a month ago, a friend of mine attended a reenactment, here in the Valley (the Cross Keys/Port Republic event held on… the Cedar Creek battlefield). When he had an opportunity to talk […]

“… he… was not going to vote for a slave government.”

July 11, 2012 by

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The argument can be common. The war was about slavery vs. the war was not about slavery. Usually, when those two points of view collide, the result is a string of reasons why… coming from both sides. More significant to me are the accounts of people who lived in that time… and even better if […]

A former slave vouches for the Unionism of his former owner

July 9, 2012 by

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Seeing what I do in discussions among folks regarding Civil War era studies, there can be extreme views regarding slavery. Some lean hard in one direction, talking about how the cruelties of slavery were all fabrications, or very rare. Some lean hard in another direction and talk about the cruelties of slavery, and that, no matter the case, […]

Along the road to McDowell… another Sesqui moment

May 6, 2012 by

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Because of the move, I’m still without certain notes and books to back me up with quotes and whatnot… so, I’m going to wing it again… The masses are flocking (or so it would seem) to McDowell, Virginia this weekend for the 150th anniversary of the battle, but… it’s not the actual Sesqui until Tuesday. […]

On Southerners and secession (1860-61)… motivations…

January 11, 2012 by

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Please pardon my rather lengthy absences over the past few months. Between dealing with some health issues, having surgery… and somewhere in between… still working an average 90+ hours per two weeks… not to mention the average 12-15 hours of commuting per week… writing has fallen significantly on my list of priorities (sleep has ranked […]

Shenandoah Valley African-Americans in the Civil War… a sampling

October 30, 2011 by

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You might recall a post from this past July, in which I briefly mentioned Shenandoah Valley African-Americans in the USCT. I haven’t had as much time to work with that project as I would like, but it’s one that is always on my mind. Perhaps, over winter, I’ll be able to wrap it up. Anyway, […]

Beyond John Brown… an enduring legacy not always so obvious, in the Shenandoah Valley

October 25, 2011 by

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It’s just over a week after the 152nd anniversary of Brown’s raid on Harpers Ferry. While many will continue to consider the actions of Brown, the man… especially as to whether he should be judged a hero or terrorist… this excellent video, from West Virginia Public Broadcasting, reveals an enduring, positive legacy, in the wake of Brown’s actions at Harpers Ferry… and […]

Confederates, Southern Unionists, and… The Waltons?!

October 23, 2011 by

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To be clear… I’ve always been a fan of the Waltons… though I prefer the first three seasons over the rest. Not only was it based largely on the writings of a Virginian, but also focused on a fictional Virginia family under the shadow of the Blue Ridge (albeit, on the eastern side). I still […]

What historical period dominates the (interpretive) landscape, and which are sorely absent?

October 15, 2011 by

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As I drive nearly the entire stretch of the Shenandoah Valley (excepting the West Virginia counties of Berkeley and Jefferson), at least four days a week, I pass various sites of interests. Few, actually, are marked with any indication of their stories… though I’m aware of the stories for most of them. I suspect many […]

149 years ago today, but, what about a snapshot of 150 years ago today? Life one year before THE battle.

September 17, 2011 by

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I encourage those who are able, to take advantage of all that is going on at Antietam National Battlefield, this weekend. Regretfully, I won’t be able to make it… though I most certainly plan on being there this time next year (and might even take a little time to hop across the Potomac next weekend, […]

“I bought myself”… Henry Roy’s Civil War

July 19, 2011 by

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First, we have USCT soldiers from the Shenandoah Valley (and, yes, there are more stories to come about those men). Now, in yet another effort to add dimension to the Civil War in the Shenandoah Valley, I present Henry Roy… Roy was a resident of Warren County, Virginia, in the northeast central Shenandoah Valley. A […]

More on another view of the Shenandoah Valley’s Civil War

July 10, 2011 by

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So far, I have about 345 USCT soldiers claiming different counties in the Shenandoah Valley as their place of birth… and I’m not even half way through the index which I’ve been looking into.Ultimately, all total, there may be enough to equate to one infantry regiment, or at least a hefty sized battalion. In the […]

More on the Civil War and tangents

July 3, 2011 by

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Funny how things seem to work… Recently, I made yet another visit to Winchester National Cemetery (I seem to be doing that a lot these days), looking to take a photo of a headstone for a trooper from Cole’s Maryland Cavalry. He died of illness in a hospital in Martinsburg, and, like most Union soldiers […]

Upcoming works, now on the “front burners”…

June 8, 2011 by

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While I’ve got a number of projects that are ongoing, ranging from my work on the history of Cole’s Cavalry to history publications about my home county, I’m pleased to say that I’m also going to be busying myself with another project this summer. About a month ago, I signed-on to write five entries for […]

I’m puzzled why Chris thinks I may be puzzled…

June 4, 2011 by

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In this post over at Civil War Voices, Chris Wehner wonders if I am puzzled by “the presence of contraband’s blacks offering substances to Union soldiers”. I recently commented over there about the whole contraband thing, and Chris made that a little more clear, but think I may need to offer a little more. Keep […]

From June 4, 1861, an Ohio paper opines… Virginia Playing the Fool (?)

June 4, 2011 by

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Courtesy of the Cleveland (Ohio) Herald, we have this small clip from June 4, 1861 (via Dickinson College’s House Divided blog). The title (of the original document) reads, “Virginia Playing the Foot”, but I feel that this was an error in printing, and that they (the Herald) meant “Virginia Playing the Fool”. Anyway, I find […]

Eastman Johnson’s “Union Soldiers Accepting a Drink”

May 25, 2011 by

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Just stumbled across this on the Web today, and found it so interesting that I just wanted to share. First, note who is providing the Union soldiers with a drink. Second, I wonder, is that the Blue Ridge in the background? Wonder if this is an image from Johnson’s experiences east of the Blue Ridge […]

Otho Nesbitt: Southern Unionist, but… wanted to free slaves? Eh, not so much…

May 21, 2011 by

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While the house you see is, in this photo, adorned for Christmas, imagine if you will… an American flag… two yards long, draped from the middle garret window. Can you envision it? In fact, in April 1861, Otho Nesbitt had hired a seamstress to make that flag for him… a statement to all those around […]

Letcher, the politician in search of votes, distances himself from the Ruffner Pamphlet

May 14, 2011 by

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I figured that I would follow-up on my post from this morning, and briefly tackle the continued role that the Ruffner Pamphlet played, up through the governor’s race in Virginia, in 1859. During the Democratic nomination run-off for the governorship of Virginia, in 1859, John Letcher may have regretted his stand on the Ruffner Pamphlet […]

Another Southerner who wanted to free slaves… but…

May 14, 2011 by

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… his motivations weren’t centered on freeing slaves as an issue of morality. Dr. Henry Ruffner was well-educated (Washington College, and Princeton, where he received his D.D.), and headed several Presbyterian pastorates in Rockbridge County, Virginia (not to mention one near his family’s salt works in the Kanawha Valley). He was also a fairly active […]

“Submission is Ruin.”

April 10, 2011 by

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I’ll let a pro-secession paper in Virginia speak for itself… Nothing could be more preposterous, nothing more stupid, than the dogma that slavery is a curse to the country. On the contrary, the heaviest calamity that could befall any slave State on this continent, the greatest curse that an angry Providence could inflict upon the […]

A quest to know more about my Virginia ancestor who spoke out against secession

April 3, 2011 by

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As I mentioned yesterday, after posting a few items focused on anti-secession rhetoric in Virginia (during this time of the year, 150 years ago) this past week, I began thinking again about an ancestor of mine who also spoke out against secession at this same time. John Shuler (1815-1908) was a well-to-do farmer in Grove […]