Kill Jeff Davis by Dr. Bruce Venter

This is Bruce Venter giving his presentation on his book, Kill Jeff Davis, at the US Army Heritage and Education Center, Carlisle Barracks, Carlisle, PA. He gave this presentation on June 25, 2016 [the anniversary of the Battle of the Little Big Horn]. You might recognize the back of the head of one of the audience members.

This was a really good presentation, even though the introducer couldn’t properly pronounce “cavalry.”

The presentation is about the Kilpatrick-Dahlgren Raid on Richmond. The video’s description reads, “In 1864, Brigadier General Hugh Judson Kilpatrick led his Union cavalrymen on an ambitious assault of the Confederate capital at Richmond, Virginia, with the help of Colonel Ulrich Dahlgren. Kilpatrick and Dahlgren split forces after crossing the Rappahannock River, resulting in a devastating Confederate ambush and Dahlgren’s murder. Dr. Bruce Venter, author of Kill Jeff Davis: The Union Raid on Richmond, 1864, gives a lecture and holds a roundtable discussion about the raid, providing the minute-by-minute details surrounding Dahlgren’s rumored mission to assassinate the Confederate President. The Kilpatrick-Dahlgren Raid was an attempt to free Federal prisoners of war and to spread word of President Abraham Lincoln’s ‘Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction.’ Allegedly, Dahlgren was found carrying papers with instructions to burn Richmond, kill Confederate President Jefferson Davis, and decimate his administration. It is not clear who these orders came from, or if these orders were accurate, but some scholars say they were forged by Confederates. Nevertheless, the raid was a Union failure and ended in Confederate victory. Venter’s book focuses on the controversies and debates surrounding the American Civil War’s Kilpatrick-Dahlgren Raid. This round table event covers, in detail, the Raid’s poor execution, the veracity of newly discovered documents, myths, and misperceptions, all with the input from a panel of Civil War experts.”


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