29 May 2007

Jefferson Davis Memorial

Saturday, June 2nd - 10 AM National Jefferson F. Davis Memorial Service sponsored by the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

The Jefferson Davis Memorial Committee Sons of Confederate Veterans-Virginia Division is sponsoring the 199th celebration of Confederate President Jefferson F. Davis's birth. The ceremonly will take place at Hollywood Cemetery, Richmond, Virginia June 2nd, 2007 at 10am.

This year’s keynote speaker is Virginia Tech Professor Dr. James I. “Bud” Robertson, Jr. There will be music, poems, laying of wreaths, and an artillery salute on the bluffs of the James River. Anyone wishing to lay a wreath please contact Jim Cochrane at 804-356-8868.

For further information or to participate, contact Everette Ellis 804-346-4515, or Russell Darden 757-653-2508. This event is free and open to the public. Period dress is encouraged but not required. Light refreshments will be served, and a limited number of free souvenir programs and ribbons will be available. Ceremonial flags will be available for purchase.

25 May 2007

The Bride of My Youth

This is an early anniversary tribute to the bride of my youth, the love of my life, my counsellor, best friend, and soul mate. I love my "Little Martha." Fortunately, I have been blessed with a wife that shares my Christian faith and love of HIStory. We will be celebrating our 27th anniversary next month. The mother of our 6 children, and grandmother to our 10 grandchildren, is still every bit as beautiful as she appears here in this photo with 3 of our granddaughters; taken just a couple of years ago.

Shortly after we were married, we discovered that we had a common ancestor! Morris Coffey, who fought for the Confederacy in the 51st Virginia Infantry, is buried on Love Mountain, just a stone's throw from our home and is our great-great grandfather. This Southern belle and wild mountain flower is my treasure.

24 May 2007

Where is the Outrage?

We witnessed the constant hand-wringing and heard the outrage (and still do) from the media about the torture at Abu Grab. Where is the same outrage over al-Qaeda torture of Iraqis and others? The silence is deafening. **WARNING: GRAPHIC & DISBURBING IMAGES OF TORTURE METHODS AND RESULTS.** Click Here.

There is no comparison.

23 May 2007

Memorial Day

Ed Hooper, Editor at the Civil War Courier, has once again granted me permission to post his current op-ed. A great piece about the assault on heroes by the political correctness crowd.
Remembering Memorial Day (and Danny Dietz)

U.S. Major General John A. Logan is the man credited as being the most responsible for founding the official Memorial Day holiday with his issuance of General Order No.11 on May 5, 1868. Southern states refused to officially acknowledge the day as a holiday at first. The Confederate Memorial authorized by President William H. Taft and the efforts of former Union officer and President William McKinley to tend to the Confederate dead at National Cemeteries did illustrate a national reconciliation with its past, but southern decoration days in June remained unchanged until after World War I when Memorial Day evolved beyond a day of tribute to Union soldiers. It finally became a day to honor all who had died in service to the United States. While the Southern states still maintained their own decoration days to honor their sons who had served the Confederacy, the descendants of those men continued the patriotic tradition of their families in the U.S. armed forces and are among the honored dead we now commemorate on Memorial Day.

There are many times I am called upon by people to help with Memorial Day ceremonies. Many are the usual speaking engagements, but more and more over the past few years I have been called in ahead of time to deal with protests from anti-war groups and the political correctness crowds who use the holiday to posture their own political agendas. In fact, it has become such a political football for many cities and towns that some have all but stopped their commemoration of the day honoring America’s fallen soldiers. A Memorial Day Parade is becoming a rare site these days and it doesn’t look to get any better judging by current events.

Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Danny P. Dietz 25, of Littleton, Colorado joined the ranks of the fallen we honor on Memorial Day a couple of years ago. Dietz died while conducting counter-terrorism operations in Kunar Province, Afghanistan while serving with a Navy SEAL team. A Taliban force that tremendously outnumbered them attacked the SEAL team and a fierce battle ensued that cost the lives of many American soldiers. The Navy report stated: "Despite this terrible loss, the SEALs on the ground continued to fight. Although mortally wounded, Petty Officers (Matthew G.) Axelson and Dietz held their position and fought for the safety of their teammates despite a hail of gunfire. Their actions cost them their lives, but knowingly gave one of the other SEALs the opportunity to escape."

The location of the U.S. warrior’s body lay unknown for seven days. He was recovered during a combat search and rescue operation on July 4, 2005. For his actions under fire, he was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross, which is the Navy’s second highest military decoration. PO 2nd Class Dietz was returned home to his family for burial where family and friends watched him laid to rest with full military honors. The city of Littleton, Colorado decided to honor his bravery by erecting a statue of Dietz in uniform holding his rifle.

A group of politically correct citizens, however, launched an immediate protest. Their argument was that erecting a statue of a fallen soldier with a gun in his hand would send the wrong message to the community. Why? Because of the Littleton school shootings in 1999. It seems that political correctness puts an American warrior, who courageously died on the field of battle with honor defending his nation, on the same level as Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, who criminally murdered 15 people.

The opponents have said they would rather see a “peace dove” or a “soldier holding a child” because they are tired of the violence in the world and a “gun” sends the wrong message. In other words, the men and women who have put their lives on the line for this nation, embodied the American warrior tradition and gave their lives in the line of duty are now being categorized in a sub-criminal class by these “virtuous” peace-loving people in the name of political correctness. It is a message growing in volume as some national broadcast personalities and newspaper columnists have spewed the same rhetoric.

I have spent most of my life as a military affairs reporter, interviewed and count among my friends numerous Medal of Honor recipients and soldiers who embody what is best not only about the United States, but of the warrior tradition. To think we don’t or morally should never need them is a flawed logic that cannot be explained in this short space. Korean MOH Lee Mize told me once there are three things that lose wars: disrespect for the enemy, indecision and low morale. It is a message that has worked on battlefields throughout the ages and applies to the battle currently waging against political correctness.

The reaction of the opponents to the memorial statue honoring the heroic service of Navy P.O.2nd Class Danny Dietz and the efforts to stop its construction is inexcusable and to use the Columbine shootings as a reason to prevent it is beyond the pale of decency. Mrs. Patsy Dietz, who is Danny Dietz’s widow, has stated repeatedly the statue should be a way for parents “to teach their children the difference between two thugs who murder their classmates and a soldier who died fighting for their freedom.”

God Bless Mrs. Dietz for the comment. Parents HAVE to be the ones to teach their children the differences, as we know we cannot trust that message to the public school system or those pundits who blame the instruments of destruction for crimes and not the person or persons wielding them. Finally, hats off to the city of Littleton, Colorado for standing by what is just and honorable and not listening to the voices of ignorance. On July 4, 2007 – two years to the day this brave soldier’s body was recovered from Afghanistan – the city will dedicate the life-sized statue of Danny Dietz – rifle in hand.

Ed Hooper - © 2007, used by permission. Mr. Hooper is an award winning journalist, author, and historian. He currently works as editor of the Civil War Courier and the Camp Chase Gazette--two of the nation’s oldest and largest national publications on the American Civil War historical community.

22 May 2007

Douglas Southall Freeman

In remembering Robert E. Lee's greatest biographer, I offer the following article to commemorate the great Virginian: Douglas Southall Freeman. His birthday was last week, 16 May and the anniversary of his death is coming up on 13 June:


“To my mind, there is no delight commensurate with that of a good long day’s work.” So Douglas Southall Freeman once wrote to his mother. Many of us today might voice similar sentiments in our callings, but most of us would be hard pressed to match Freeman’s “long day.”

Douglas Southall Freeman is best known as a military historian and winner of two Pulitzers, one for his monumental biography of Robert E. Lee (a massive, four-volume biography that took 18 years to complete), and a second (awarded posthumously) for his equally imposing seven-volume biography of George Washington.

Born on May 16, 1886 in Lynchburg, Virginia to Walker and Bettie Freeman, young Douglas had in his father an excellent role model for perseverance and Christian faith. After fighting for the Confederacy, Walker Freeman returned to the family farm in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Bedford County, Virginia. But there wasn’t much to return to; the war had left Virginia’s economy, along with the Freeman farm, in shambles. Nonetheless, after three years of hard work, Walker Freeman returned the farm to profitability, providing sufficient income to support the family. Freeman promptly turned his share over to his mother and family and began a mercantile business, going on to become a successful salesman and store owner. After surviving an almost disastrous downturn in his shoe business, Freeman changed careers and became a very successful insurance agent with the New York Life Insurance Company.

Sixty-five years later, Douglas Freeman would credit his own success to the example his father had provided in adversity: “Any man is apt to lose his way. The test of his manhood and of his intelligence is to find a new way” (David E. Johnson, Douglas Southall Freeman [Gretna, LA: Pelican, 2002], 35).

Douglas’ proclivity for success and hard work is truly inspiring. After earning his bachelor’s degree from Richmond College (now the University of Richmond), Freeman enrolled in Johns Hopkins University’s graduate program and in 1908 was awarded the Doctor of Philosophy in history, with subordinate applications in political science and political economy. Freeman was ready to tackle the world—almost.

He had once considered a calling to the ministry, but chose not to and entered a season of doubt about his faith. But while still a young man, he returned to the faith of his fathers through an invitation to speak in a dingy, “skid row” Richmond, Virginia mission. As the service began, the former drunks, thieves, and derelicts, their faces aglow with the glory of the new birth, stood up one by one and gave testimony to the life changing power of Christ’s forgiveness. “I saw men as sinful, perhaps, as I was who had been lifted out of themselves. If it works for them, it may work for me,” he wrote (81).

Freeman would always refer to that service as the time he committed himself to “try to lead the Christ life,” and he came to realize it was God’s will that he write: “Every man must have his work, and that is mine—to labour earnestly, to labour honestly, and bring out something that may be worth men’s while to read” (66). So he “went to work for the Kingdom . . . I saw what the name of Jesus was doing with men, how this power was transforming their lives” (144).

And go to work he did. Freeman compressed four full-time careers into his life of sixty-seven years. He was an educator (teaching journalism at Columbia University), an historian and biographer, broadcaster (with a daily commentary on Richmond radio stations for a number of years), and served as editor of The Richmond News Leader. He was also active in politics as an advisor to governors, senators, and several presidents.


Freeman first became editor of the News Leader at the age of twenty-nine. In just seven years under Freeman’s leadership, the paper’s circulation exploded from 22,000 to 47,000. His editorials and morning radio broadcasts became a necessary staple in the morning diet of thousands of Virginians. The newspaper continued to prosper under Freeman and on July 24, 1924, the News Leader moved into a new building in downtown Richmond. Freeman led the staff into the building and had them all bow in prayer to dedicate the paper’s new home.

How did he accomplish all of this? Discipline. For many years Freeman adhered to a time management system that has become legendary. According to biographer David Johnson, this was his typical day:

2:30 am . Awake.
2:31-2:44 Dress, shave, devotional.
2:45 Downstairs to kitchen.
2:45-3:08 Prepare and eat breakfast, walk to car.
3:08-3:25 Drive to Richmond News Leader office.
3:25-3:29 Park, walk into building, up to office.
3:30 At desk, Associated Press wires in hand.
3:31-7:58 Read wire dispatches and morning paper, write editorials, mark items for index.
7:58-8:00 Walk to WRNL radio
8:00-8:15 Broadcast.
8:15-8:17 Walk back to office.
8:17-8:32 Morning staff meeting.
8:32-11:58 Attend to duties of editor: answer mail, receive visitors, attend meetings, check first edition of paper, block and set editorials. In later years, Freeman sometimes took a brief nap at 11:00.)
11:58-12:00 Walk to WRNL radio.
12:00-12:15 Broadcast.
12:15-12:17 Walk back to office.
12:17-12:30 Complete last details of day and prepare for next day. Walk to car.
12:30-12:47 Drive home.
12:48-2:00 Lunch with Mrs. Freeman, work in the garden, walk the grounds. A less structured time.
2:00-2:30 Nap (sometimes the nap would last only fifteen minutes).
2:30-6:30 Work in study on historical projects.
6:30-8:45 Dinner; evening with family.
8:45 Retire for the evening.

Freeman once stated that scraps of time “may seem so trivial they are not worth saving but the wise use of them may make all the difference between drudgery and happiness, between existence and a career” (225). He was so conscious of the Apostle Paul’s admonition to “redeem the time” that he purchased a ready-knotted bow tie and boasted it saved him one thousand minutes a year!

His punctuality was legendary. Freeman’s nephew, Mallory, served as his radio show’s announcer and recounted that he would be looking at an empty microphone as he began every broadcast with the phrase, “and here is Dr. Freeman,” but by the time the last word left his lips, the dependable Dr. Freeman would be seated in his chair, ready to speak!

Freeman was dependable in his service and devotion to God. For many years, he was active in the Second Baptist Church in Richmond, where he was a member and a Sunday School teacher, just like his father before him. He had a small room in his home that included an altar. “There is no history behind this little altar,” he wrote, “except that one needs a place for prayer and meditation—a place apart” (217).

Douglas Southall Freeman, biographer, historian, educator, businessman, and Christian leader, rested from his labors on June 13, 1953 at 4:20 pm. Words he penned in 1948 serve as an appropriate epitaph for his life: “I expect to die with a pen in my hand, with thanks to God on my lips for the opportunity of having led a life where I was permitted to work on the glorious yesterdays adorned by the noble figures whom I had the privilege of knowing ” (351).

Today, Freeman rests from his work in historic Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond. There, he is surrounded by many of "the noble figures whom he had the privilege of knowing."

(Taken from Christian Business Legends by Richard G. Williams, Jr. & Jared Crooks – The Business Reform Foundation © 2004.)

18 May 2007

Update & Meandering Thoughts

Since the 1st week of May, I have been to Roanoke, Lexington (twice), Winchester (twice), and Luray for book talks/signings and interviews. I've also written a foreword for another author's book and written a piece for the Washington Times. It has been a whirlwind of a spring! I consider myself blessed, however, to be able to drive up and down Lee-Jackson Highway (U.S. Rt. 11) and Stonewall Jackson Memorial Highway (U.S. Rt. 340) in these travels and observe the lush green scenery that has now enveloped the Shenandoah Valley and Blue Ridge Mountains. The beauty is simply breathtaking. As of right now, the rest of the summer will be at a little slower pace, as far as signings go anyway . . . one UDC meeting in June, an engagement at Lee Chapel in July, and then a flight to Texas for a very special event (more on that when I return) and a short vacation.


I am currently collecting research material for my next book and am looking forward in beginning the writing phase some time later this summer. I don’t’ want to give away the book, but it will center on historic Lexington, Virginia. However, its main subject matter is not something that has ever been explored. This is shaping up to be a fascinating project and I’m receiving some excellent input and assistance from scholars and historians who are always more than willing to help. I’ve never considered myself anything more than an “amateur historian” with a passion for the War Between the States and Virginia history. Nonetheless, the respect and assistance I receive from the “pros” always humbles me and I am most appreciative of professional input, pointers, critique, and constructive criticism.

Spring will soon melt into the hazy, lazy days of an always hot and humid Virginia summer and I’m sure most of you will have better things to do than read blogs, but I appreciate your visits, comments, and emails and will continue to post as time allows. I also have to finish a few promised book reviews and articles and I've just been told the documentary based on my book will be released some time in mid-summer. I'll have comments on that as news develops. Enjoy the season!

17 May 2007

A Giant of a Virginian

A giant has fallen. Dying as he would have wanted, at work in his office, Dr. Jerry Falwell is now in the presence of the God he so faithfully served. Controversial, dedicated, persistent, hard-working, fearless—these are just a few of the adjectives being used to describe this Gospel preacher. His critics, and those who hated everything he stood for, wasted no time in kicking his corpse. I’ll not repeat the hate-filled comments here; suffice it to say that they are coming from the same crowd on the left who claim to have cornered the market on compassion and kindness. Observe and learn.


What does this have to do with this blog? Well, first of all, this blog is, among other things, about Virginia history. Falwell was a Virginian and arguably one of the most influential leaders of the 20th century. Secondly, he promoted the study of the religious aspects of the Civil War by his support of the new Chaplain’s Museum that will be located on the campus of Liberty University. My friend, Liberty University Professor Kenny Rowlette, has given me permission to share the following email with readers:

Everyone,

As you have probably heard by now, Dr. Falwell has gone on to be with our Savior. Perhaps the most fitting tribute that I can give now is to quote the words of Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton at the moment of Lincoln's death: "Now he belongs to the ages."

Another quote that comes to mind is one by Robert E. Lee: “Duty is the most sublime word in our language. Do your duty in all things. You cannot do more. You should never wish to do less.”

Dr. Falwell's legacy is this ministry and all of those whose lives he touched for Jesus through it. Above all, he so often was that last line of defense between Christians and the secular juggernaut. He admired President Lincoln and General Lee immensely, and his own devotion to his duty as a pastor and a chancellor is to be admired as much as we might admire Lee's sense of duty.

He was a great student of history and did much to help Dr. Hall and me promote the study of the Civil War in our area via our seminar and other activities.

In the past he provided monetary support to the reenactment of The Battle of Lynchburg, The Jackson Procession, and, of course, our fledgling National Civil War Chaplains Museum and Research Center. He also provided support to historical events in other ways to numerous to mention here. He was a true friend of all of us who study the Civil War and strive in various ways to honor our ancestors.

He had relatives who fought in the Civil War, and he understood the need for us to never forget them. Perhaps the best way that we can honor Dr. Falwell is to continue to promote the study of the Civil War and to honor those of both sides who fought in it.

We should all be of one accord in trying to accomplish these goals for his sake and that of others. Please continue to pray for the Falwell family for their loss and for the ministry leadership as it looks ahead to the future without him.

I am quite confident that God will continue to bless this ministry and use it to reach those who are lost. I am also certain that Dr. Falwell is now enjoying himself talking Lincoln, Lee, and others about the great struggle that defined us.

I am honored to have known and worked for such a man as he.

KGRowlette

Despite many hateful comments from the left, I found exceptions to that sad commentary:

"Over the years we became friends; sometimes we had polar opposite points of view. ... I have many fond memories of him. He leaves a great legacy of service and a great university behind. He's left his footprints in the sands of time." ~ The Rev. Jesse Jackson

"My mother always told me that no matter how much you dislike a person, when you meet them face to face you will find characteristics about them that you like. Jerry Falwell was a perfect example of that. I hated everything he stood for, but after meeting him in person, years after the trial, Jerry Falwell and I became good friends. ... I always appreciated his sincerity even though I knew what he was selling and he knew what I was selling." ~ Hustler magazine founder Larry Flynt.

"When a man's ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him." ~ Proverbs 16:7

14 May 2007

Dr. James I. Robertson, Jr.

Last week, I had the privilege of spending some time with the Dean of American Civil War historians, Dr. James I. Robertson, Jr. Dr. Robertson and I were both interviewed for an upcoming (some time in late June) news segment on a cable news program. Dr. Robertson is the consummate scholarly gentleman and his depth of knowledge and grasp of Civil War history is nothing less than amazing. Ever pursuing his passion, after the interview he was off for a 2-week lecture series aboard a riverboat cruise.

In listening to Dr. Robertson discuss his views on both Lee & Jackson, I found the following quote very interesting:

"Robert E. Lee never existed [in the minds of some] because we don't have a Robert E. Lee today." ~ James I. Robertson, Jr.

He was, of course, referring to Lee's commitment to principle, Lee's sense of duty, and his self-denial. It is a sentiment I have often expressed and one with which many who have studied Lee would have to agree. It is also a sentiment similar to what Robert Krick has mentioned in some recent lectures.

12 May 2007

Winchester Trip

This morning, it was my privilege to speak to the Turner Ashby Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy in Winchester, Virginia. My wife and I enjoyed a beautiful drive down the Valley to Winchester via historic Lee-Jackson Highway (U.S. Rt. 11) yesterday and I also enjoyed the company of the gracious and lovely ladies of the UDC. The lady shown here on my right is in her 90's and has been a UDC member since 1948. Much credit goes to the thousands of ladies of the UDC for their perseverence in honoring the memory of Confederate Veterans as well as their broader community service. They are a special group of women.

11 May 2007

VMI Alumni Group Requests Assistance

[If anyone has any relation to these New Market Cadets and has a picture of them, please consider making a copy of it and submitting for this worthy project. Below is a copy of a foreworded email requesting assistance. ~ RGW]

I am leading the efforts of a very small group of VMI alumni who for the past two years have been searching for the graves of all of the famed New Market Corps. Of the 290 some individuals comprising the corps in the New Market campaign, we have had remarkable success in locating all but about thirty of the cadets' graves. We have managed to photograph nearly 200 of the graves. A database of our efforts may be found here. And a more embellished display can be found here.

Unfortunately, with myself located in Georgia, another researcher in Texas, and only one of us in Virginia, we are hard pressed to photograph all of the graves, and as you might guess many of these are in Virginia. Also, of the 30 cadet graves remaining to be located, eighteen are likely to be found in Virginia. (Click here to see the list of cadet graves still missing.)


Numerous SCV camps and UDC chapters have helped us in this effort. I have attempted to email a number of other camps to solicit their assistance. Unfortunately, I suspect that many camps do not monitor their email on a regular basis or have changed addresses. So if you could distribute this to the Virginia camps, it would be a big help.

It would be great if a few camps in the Virginia Division would come to our aide. The members of the camps certainly know the local cemeteries and Confederate veterans burial sites better than we.

Respectfully,

Terry Bowers (tbowers68@comcast.net)
VMI '68

Brigadier General E. Porter Alexander Camp #158

Augusta, Georgia

10 May 2007

C SPAN To Air Stephen Dill Lee Event

The Cable-Satellite Public Affairs Network (C-SPAN) videoed the concluding banquet of the SCV's Stephen D. Lee Institute held April 28. The banquet featured historian Robert Krick as its keynote speaker. The program will air Saturday, May 12th at 10pm. Check your local cable listings for your C-SPAN channel.

(Image is of author and attorney Kent Masterson Brown speaking at the S. D. Lee Institute)

07 May 2007

The Stonewall Procession - Update & Reminder

May 11 - 13, 2007: Please join the Lynchburg Historical Foundation for a weekend of Civil War history packed with events for one and all. We start Friday evening with dinner at Arthur S. DeMoss Learning Center, Grand Lobby, Liberty University with nationally renowned Civil War artist Mort Kunstler and author Rod Gragg. Mr. Kunstler will unveil his Lynchburg print, Going Home, The Stonewall Procession, Lynchburg Va. May 13, 1863. The evening will start at 6:30 p.m.


Going
Home
, by Mort Kunstler, will be unveiled publicly for the first time and sold via a live auction.
Tickets - $55.00 – Limited Seating. The proceeds from the auction will benefit The National Civil War Chaplains Foundation.

Tickets are available at Dixie Outfitters, Madison Heights, 434-846-3006, The Framery on Memorial Ave. 434-846-2844 and Lynchburg Historical Foundation, 434-528-5353.

History in the Making

Saturday May 12, 2007
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Mort Kunstler and Rod Gragg will be at the Depot Plaza for a print and book signing.

A portion of all sales will be donated by Dixie Outfitters and The Framery to the Foundation and the Museum. Can’t attend the signing? Order your print early. Dixie Outfitters and the Framery are taking orders now. Unframed prints are $225.00. Several prints have already been pre-sold.

11:00 a.m. Mayor Joan Foster will read a Proclamation and lay a wreath at the Confederate Monument at the top of Monument Terrace on Court Street.

9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. bus tours to Historic Civil War Sites. Pick up station on Jefferson Street. Tour busses will go to the Packet Boat Marshall, Historic Sandusky, Old City Cemetery and Ft. Early. Sandusky will have a Stonewall Jackson Exhibit.

1:30 p.m. The grand finale memorial procession

Uniformed re-enactors, United Daughters of the Confederacy and civilians alike, will gather on Jefferson Street and follow the procession route when General Jackson’s body came through Lynchburg on the way to Lexington on the May 13, 1863. There will be a brief stop on Main Street, at Bailey-Spencer Hardware, the site of the First Presbyterian Church, where the Lynchburg Funeral was held. Excerpts from the funeral sermon will be read. The procession will end at the bottom of 9th Street where there will be a cannon fired and a twenty-one gun salute. If anyone would like to walk in the procession download the application here. There is a $15.00 fee per person to participate in the procession. We would love to see the streets lined with people and many in the procession. There are historic criteria to meet, so please go to our website for all information. Proceeds of this event will go directly to the Foundation.

There will be a Civil War Encampment with Lee’s Lieutenants and Longstreets Corp, Sutlers selling their wares, music. Amazement Square will sponsor children’s activities. Old City Cemetery will have their Antique Rose Festival and Historic Sandusky will sponsor a Jackson exhibit.

11:00 a.m. - Sunday the concluding event will be a church service at the encampment by the Re-enactors Mission for Jesus Christ. This service will be at Riverfront Park.

All in all a very historic and fun-filled weekend.

Be a part of the history. Please join us.

05 May 2007

New Chaplain's Museum


Click here for a Washington Times article describing the new National Civil War Chaplain's Research and Museum in Lynchburg, Virginia.

(Painting by Dale Gallon, The General and His Chaplain)

04 May 2007

McDowell Battlefield Heritage Days







"On May 8, 1862 about 9,000 Rebel soldiers and an almost equal number of Yankees converged on Robert Sitlington's farm and the little village of McDowell. The year had opened with Union and Confederate forces jockeying for position throughout the western part of Virginia and West Vi
rginia. The Shenandoah Valley, known as the 'Breadbasket of the Confederacy,' held provisions for the Southern army and also had Staunton, a large supply center and transportation network where two major roads and a railroad crossed. Months earlier, General Stonewall Jackson had stated, "If this valley is lost, Virginia is lost."

Billed as: "THE LARGEST GATHERING OF CAMPAIGN-STYLE MILITARY AND AUTHENTIC CIVILIANS IN THE EAST" . . . This is the 145th Anniversary of the beginning of Stonewall Jackson's Valley Campaign. Highland County is one of the most pristine areas in Virginia and a trip there is well worth the effort.

A true "Local Legacy": "Presents a regiment vs. regiment re-enactment of the May 8, 1862 Battle of McDowell--the first Confederate victory in General "Stonewall" Jackson's brilliant Valley Campaign that encouraged the demoralized Confederate forces. Battlefield Days offers tours of the camps of "Confederate" and "Union" troops, continuous portrayals of the local population's interaction with "Union" and "Confederate" soldiers and interpretations of the lives and culture of the landowners and farmers of the Virginia Allegheny Highlands during the mid-19th century. The event also showcases local arts and crafts through demonstrations of quilting, spinning, blacksmithing, butter-churning and more. Period music and church services lend authenticity. Project documentation includes newsletters and promotional materials of the Highland Historical Society (sponsor of Battlefield Days) a report, photographs, newspaper and magazine coverage."

Originally submitted by: Virginia Congressman Bob Goodlatte, (6th District).

Click here for details.

03 May 2007

Local History Publishers

I am curious about the various "local history publishers" such as Arcadia, History Press, Local History Company, etc. and was wondering if any readers/authors have had experiences with these publishers, or ones like them. If so, how did you like working with them?

R. E. Lee by Douglas Southall Freeman

The complete 4 Volume set by Dr. Freeman available online here.

01 May 2007

*Virginia Senator Jim Webb and Historical Revisionism

"Even the venerable Robert E. Lee has taken some vicious hits, as dishonest or misinformed advocates among political interest groups and in academia attempt to twist yesterday’s America into a fantasy that might better serve the political issues of today. The greatest disservice on this count has been the attempt by these revisionist politicians and academics to defame the entire Confederate Army in a move that can only be termed the Nazification of the Confederacy. Often cloaked in the argument over the public display of the Confederate battle flag, the syllogism goes something like this: Slavery was evil. The soldiers of the Confederacy fought for a system that wished to preserve it. Therefore they were evil as well, and any attempt to honor their service is a veiled effort to glorify the cause of slavery. This blatant use of the 'race card' in order to inflame their political and academic constituencies is a tired, seemingly endless game that is itself perhaps the greatest legacy of the Civil War’s aftermath. But in this case it dishonors hundreds of thousands of men who can defend themselves only through the voices of their descendants." (From Born Fighting, by James Webb, Broadway Publishing 2004, p. 207-208.)

*Webb is, by the way,
one of the most highly decorated Marines of the Vietnam War and served as Assistant Secretary of Defense and Secretary of the Navy during the Reagan Administration. He is, of course, also the Democrat who defeated Republican Senator George Allen in 2006. Webb was enthusiastically supported by Democratic New York Senator, Hillary Rodham Clinton, who is a closet neo-Confederate.