Monthly Archives: February 2015

The Live Wire – The Book, “Lincoln and the U.S. Colored Troops”

Here’s John David Smith, the Charles H. Stone Distinguished Professor of American History at the University of North Carolina – Charlotte discussing his book, Lincoln and the U.S. Colored Troops, a volume in the Concise Lincoln Library series from Southern Illinois University Press.

Caring for Gettysburg’s Largest Artifact

Originally posted on The Blog of Gettysburg National Military Park:
A view of the diorama from the catwalk high above. It’s checkup time for the Gettysburg Cyclorama painting. Conservator David Olin at the top of the painting in the background. Gettysburg National Military Park’s largest artifact requires special care and attention. To ensure that the…

Why Did Virginia Secede?

A number of people have tackled this question.  Historian William G. Thomas III discusses it here. You can see historian William Freehling on it here and here. Virginia is another Upper South state.  Their secession is more complex than the secessions of the Lower South.  Add to that the fact that the state didn’t publish […]

The Civil War Careers of Post-Civil War Presidents: Gettysburg Winter Lecture

Here’s Ranger Dan Vermilya giving a really outstanding lecture on what four of the post-Civil War presidents who were Civil War veterans did in the Civil War.  He did not include U.S. Grant or Andrew Johnson, as they are fairly well known.  He focuses on Rutherford B. Hayes, James A. Garfield, Benjamin Harrison, and William […]

American Experience John Brown’s Holy War

Here’s the American Experience episode covering John Brown.  It’s not bad. I’ll post more about John Brown sometime in the future.  In the meantime, where do you stand?  Was John Brown insane or was he sane?  Was he a hero or a villain?

David Herbert Donald In Depth

Here’s the late David Herbert Donald in 2002 talking about his career and his research, and especially his books.  This is a great discussion, marred by only two idiots who called in and made fools of themselves. A few years back at the Civil War Institute at Gettysburg College I purchased a box of back […]

The Secession Movement 1860-1861 by Dwight Dumond

You can read this book for free here.

American Experience – Reconstruction: The Second Civil War – PBS Documentary

Here’s a really good documentary from PBS telling the story of Reconstruction through the eyes of some of the people who lived through it. Part One: Part Two:

Road to Disunion: Why the South Left

Here’s William H. Freehling discussing how it was that secession came about even though, in his estimation, 85% of white southerners were against secession.

OAH Distinguished Lecture “The Legacy of the Civil War”

Here’s the eminent historian Leon Litwack giving an Organization of American Historians Distinguished Lecture on “The Legacy of the Civil War.”  Professor Litwack gives a wonderful lecture, but I have to disagree with him on one point.  He grossly underplays the importance of preserving the Union.  I think he’s wrong for doing that.