Sunday, June 21 began for us with Gregory Downs presenting on “A War That Could Not End at Appomattox,” giving an excellent case that the war did continue past the surrenders because Congress and President Johnson continued to exercise their war powers. Once again, C-SPAN broadcast the presentations:
Next up was Professor Lesley Gordon on “The 16th Connecticut’s Final Year of the War.”
The final presentation of the morning was William Blair of Penn State on “Treason and Loyalty in the Civil War Era.”
He does a great job of showing how the 14th Amendment, in addition to overturning Dred Scott and making African-Americans citizens and guaranteeing them equal rights, was punishment of the rebels for treason.
After lunch we boarded the buses and headed down to the Hilton Garden Inn in Colonial Heights, VA, which was our base of operations for the last part of the conference. After supper we were treated to a fine presentation by A. Wilson Greene of the Pamplin Historical Park and National Museum of the Civil War Soldier, covering “Nine Days in April (and a Week in March): Petersburg to Appomattox, 1865.” Wil gave us a very comprehensive overview of the actions leading to Lee’s surrender at Appomattox.