Browsing All Posts filed under »Virginia in the Civil War«

Magill, on the initial hours of the evacuation of Richmond

April 2, 2015 by

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Picking-up from the previous post, and continuing with Magill’s account: No pen can describe the horror of the moment. In the streets all was confusion. Officers hurried to the different departments of the Government. The Banks were open, and the depositors eagerly embraced the opportunity to withdraw their gold, while the Directors superintended the removal […]

April 2, 1865, from a vantage point within the Second Presbyterian Church, Richmond

April 2, 2015 by

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Taking the time to read various works of fiction from the antebellum period (and shortly after the war), one comes to understand that, quite often, the authors of these works were writing accounts of their own experiences. Mary Tucker Magill was one of those authors. Interestingly, in 1886, Magill’s story (which had originally appeared in […]

A different contribution to the “Sesqui landscape”, on the last days of the war

March 26, 2015 by

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It shouldn’t be too hard to imagine… I subscribe to a number of different Civil War-related blogs, sites, Facebook pages, etc., and over the last week or so, I’ve watched as many have focused on the closing fights… at places like Bentonville and Fort Stedman. While even I noted the anniversary of the attack on Stedman (not in […]

“Marion Harland’s” Civil War

December 27, 2014 by

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Though not a Shenandoah Valley author, Mary Virginia Hawes Terhune (aka… “Marion Harland”) is still someone who caught my attention. Yes… Virginia-born, but… she comes with a particular twist when dealing with the Civil War. Here’s what the entry in Encyclopedia Virginia has to say about her and the war… Harland’s novels were written over […]

Happy 239th, Marines! Here’s to “Chesty”… and with a Civil War tie-in.

November 10, 2014 by

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Ask any Marine, and he/she will know the significance of Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller… period. Likewise, it should be no surprise that the legend of “Chesty” finds its way to the kids of Marines. And, so it goes with me. I don’t know when, exactly, but… it was probably before I was nine, when I thumbed my […]

What might we learn from C.J. Faulkner’s speech of Jan. 1832?

June 19, 2014 by

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For years, I’ve thought an argument was extremely weak. Descendants defending Confederate ancestors…. that they did not fight for slavery. A lot of folks base it simply on the fact that an ancestor did not own slaves. It’s a poor foundation for an argument, and I don’t recommend it. On the other hand, we have […]

Tracking down those whose eyes glimpsed the pages of my SLMs

January 21, 2014 by

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It’s a good, casual, snowy day topic… and actually, I’ve been giving it some thought for a couple of days. Since late last summer, I’ve been collecting (among other literary journals from the early 19th century) copies of the Southern Literary Messenger. I’m not one of those “no price is too high” kinda guys, but […]

A different Sesqui reflection – the fall of the Southern Literary Messenger

January 3, 2014 by

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Recently, I purchased a copy of Volume 8 (1842), of the Southern Literary Messenger. I’ll have another post to discuss this, as well as other individual monthly copies I’ve purchased over the last few months. Anyway, last night, while a steady snow fell outside, I sat next to a lamp and took time to finally […]

The Civil War, “Puritan influence” and Alexis de Tocqueville’s “Democracy in America”

December 30, 2013 by

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First, I sincerely hope everyone had a pleasant Christmas and holiday season. I meant to post prior to Christmas, but time got away from me. So, back at it, then… This is a different sort of post, but… I’m in a discussion elsewhere, and this is the result. I’ve heard, on more than one occasion, where […]

Tallying agric. stats for losses during “the Burning” in the Shenandoah

September 27, 2013 by

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A brief detour from my posts about antebellum literacy in the Shenandoah Valley… When I transcribed the post about navigation and commerce in the Shenandoah (as of 1847), the thought was always in the back of my mind that, long before it was known as the “Breadbasket of the Confederacy”, the Valley served as a […]

A manifestation of Scott’s reflections, in the Valley

September 4, 2013 by

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I need to jump off this line of discussion about Sir Walter Scott in order to get to other topics pertaining to life in the early to mid 19th century Shenandoah Valley, but, I need to offer this post, and perhaps one other piece first. There’s a good deal about Scott’s influence on the 19th […]

The socially elite, Southern writers of the 19th century, and their legacy

September 3, 2013 by

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I just responded to a comment on my post from yesterday, and thought that I should raise my thoughts to the level of a post. Who can we point to (among Southern writers/authors of the 19th century), for having had the most influence on defining the ideology of the 19th century South as it existed […]

“Grandpap”, General Ewell, cousin George, and a bigger story

August 24, 2013 by

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Not long ago, while perusing the papers of Confederate civilians in Fold3, I dropped in the names of some relatives in the Valley, just to see what I might find. For starters, I found that my third great grandfather, William M. Dorraugh, was of help to Gen. Richard S. Ewell. It was a small thing, […]

Gettysburg’s LIVE Codori Barn Webcam

June 28, 2013 by

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Since I posted a link to the webcam for Fort Sumter, over two years ago, I figured I should post the webcam for Gettysburg. Here’s the link. As I mention in the title, this webcam is posted atop the Codori Barn, looking toward the Virginia Monument. Keep checking over July 1-3, but especially on July 3, around […]

Reconsidering 2nd Winchester

June 13, 2013 by

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It might be hard to believe, but a decade ago, I probably wouldn’t have given it a second thought. Back then, it was clear to me… the Shenandoah Valley was Confederate and, any effort made by Confederates here was to rid “Yankees” from it. The understanding being that “Yankees” meant anyone who came in, from […]

A Southern Unionist claim from Fauquier… with a tie to Gettysburg

June 11, 2013 by

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I never know what I’m going to come back with after I cast my net into the Unionist claims. Today was no different. Take the case of Jane Bradford. She, along with her siblings, laid claim for losses incurred by brother Robert Morrow (who died in 1869/70), when Union soldiers cleared a fair number of […]

For the memory of an uncle she never knew

May 2, 2013 by

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It’s a major reason why I’m headed to Chancellorsville in just under six hours. I can list all my relatives in the 10th Virginia, the 33rd Virginia, and the Purcell Artillery who were there, fighting, on May 3, 1863. I can also list my relatives in the 7th West Virginia Infantry who were there, fighting, […]

He gave them victories

May 1, 2013 by

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May 1, 2013… so begins the Sesqui of the Battle of Chancellorsville. As such, I’ve been thinking… What if Stonewall Jackson lived to command beyond Chancellorsville? Frankly, any forward speculation of his possible performances in battles after Chancellorsville is subject to so many factors that it’s not even funny. As such, forward speculation is a […]

Passing of the last real child of the Stonewall Brigade(?)

April 29, 2013 by

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I’ve been seeing postings lately, mostly on Face Book, about the last four surviving children of Civil War veterans (actually, it focused on the last four just in Virginia alone… and I didn’t seem to catch that last part), and I added to each that I thought they were missing somebody. I’m sorry to say… […]

Interpreting USCTs in places where they were not…

March 10, 2013 by

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Recently, there’s been a flurry of posts about USCTs (see Craig Swain’s, here; Emmanuel Dabney’s, here; Kevin Levin’s, here; and Jimmy Price’s, here), and, as I’m in the process of compiling a list of USCTs born in Shenandoah Valley counties, I find it timely. Should the interpretation of USCTs be incorporated into places in which they were not… […]

Tracking-down the history of Winchester’s G.A.R. post

March 7, 2013 by

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As part of the effort to find those elusive Southern Unionists, it shouldn’t be surprising that I would look to the activities of the Grand Army of the Republic in the hopes of finding some of the local boys in blue. Indeed, there were a couple of posts in the Shenandoah Valley, and one of […]

Unionism: Stacking the Valley against the rest of Virginia

March 4, 2013 by

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The following is the result of tallying raw figures (for the entire Commonwealth of Virginia) from Fold3. I simply added the total number of claims that appear in their approved & barred/disallowed categories for Virginia and West Virginia. Sixty-three Virginia counties and nine West Virginia counties are represented in the approved claims. Meanwhile, all ninety-five […]

A Unionist woman, who was also wife to a Ranger riding with Mosby

March 2, 2013 by

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Yes, you read that right. I happened upon this when I “strayed” beyond my normal boundaries, and took a look at claims submitted by those “deep” in Northern Virginia. Letitia Follin Strother (of Vienna, Fairfax County) submitted the claim to which I refer, and was approved. I’ll add to that… we not only know that […]

The Finest Wares: The Old Dominion Coffee Pot

February 24, 2013 by

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Since I began frequenting Harpers Ferry a few years ago, I’ve found an interest in items that were sold/used in the mid-19th century. Antiques… yes, but usually specific to the years between 1830 and 1870. In addition to the narrow span of years, I generally seek out items that would have been used in my neck […]

Visualizing the Valley’s Unionism

February 20, 2013 by

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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 […]

Not in the claims, and not in blue, but… some of the other Southern Unionists of Harpers Ferry

February 9, 2013 by

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Though I often focus on the stories tucked-away in Southern Claims Commission applications, there were more Southern Unionists than those identified in the claims, or even in those who wore Union blue. There are also those Unionists who appear merely as a name in passing, in between the pages of a couple of books that […]

What happened to Capt. Henry’s Napoleon?

December 14, 2012 by

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I meant to include this as a footnote in yesterday’s post, but… having forgotten to do so… … and at the risk of sounding like a Fredericksburg Sesqui post from To the Sound of the Guns (… another great Sesqui-timed post, by the way, about the locations of guns on the battlefields)… Henry’s Napoleon is still […]

Fredericksburg150 – That “other guy” on the Confederate right: Capt. Mathias Winston Henry

December 13, 2012 by

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No, not about Southern Unionists or the Valley… but there’s a tie to the Valley… just wait for it a bit. In Don Troiani’s print, “Bronze Guns and Iron Men”, there is an officer other than John Pelham, just behind the Napoleon, with binoculars in hand. To most, it might appear like a section commander… […]