The Grand Review and Demobilization of the Armies: Gettysburg Winter Lecture

Here’s Ranger John Hoptak giving an absolutely outstanding presentation on the demobilization of the armies, the Grand Reviews, and how the soldiers made it home.  The video’s description tells us, “The American Civil War ended in April of 1865 … or did it? Ranger John Hoptak takes us through the war’s final months, looking at the politics of the Grand Review parade, the experiences of prisoners of war on both sides, and what the final moments of the war were like for soldiers of both Union and Confederate armies.”



  1. Thanks for posting this.

    I find it hard to accept that the Grand Review was not deliberately segregated. If Sherman could be brought to Washington to represent the war in the west, then a few black regiments could have been there. The fact that an alternative all-USCT review took place in Harrisburg

    1. I agree, Pat. I think what John was getting at was that the evidence he had pointed in the direction he gave and he didn’t have any definitive evidence of deliberate segregation.

      1. I agree. He doesn’t give his opinion on whether it was segregated.

  2. Bob Nelson · · Reply

    Good presentation, Al. My great-great uncle, Wm. Herold, volunteered in February 1865 and was assigned to the 48th Wisconsin. Why he did so, I do not know. Anybody know if bounties were still being offered then? Well anyway, the 48th was split up by companies and these little groups spent the summer of 1864 doing garrison duty at various forts in Kansas and Colorado. Four companies were mustered out in December 1865. The other six, however, were sent to Fort Leavenworth. Most, including Herold, simply deserted. Those that hung in there weren’t mustered out until February-March 1866.

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