26 April 2018

Does Academia Suppress Free Speech?

Note the diverse backgrounds of those who would answer "yes" to the question.

25 April 2018

Dr. Carey Roberts on Civil War Monuments and the Legacy of Memories

A different perspective recently presented by Professor Roberts at Liberty University's annual Civil War seminar. The question and answer session at the end is as interesting as Dr. Roberts's talk.

Civil War Monuments and the Legacy of Memories
If you missed the Civil War Seminar or if you just wanted to hear some of the incredible lectures again, never fear! We will be sharing two of the lectures for you to enjoy from the comfort of your computer. Here is "Civil War Monuments and the Legacy of Memories," By Dr. Carey Roberts.
Posted by Liberty University Department of History on Tuesday, April 24, 2018

18 April 2018

Relic Hunting Post #173 - British Cartridge Box Plate: Circa 1775

Just a tease for a longer post/video coming up later . . . I recently recovered this Revolutionary War era British brass cartridge box plate with the GR cypher for George III from a site here in the Shenandoah Valley. This image is right after I recovered it and before I cleaned it up. Though known primarily for its Civil War history, the Shenandoah Valley has a fair amount of history related to America's War of Independence as well. More to come later.

Some of these box plates are stamped brass but others,  like this one, are the rarer cast version. I'm hoping that the other part of this one is in the vicinity and I can locate it at some point in the future. Below is what a complete one looks like.

Don Troiani

13 April 2018

Leading a Tour Today

**Update: This event went very well! A beautiful day and over 30 people showed up for the tour! I'll have a more detailed "report from the field" with some photos coming up soon.

Sorry, this slipped my mind and is a bit late . . .

For immediate release—April 9, 2018

Contact: Terry Heder/SVBF (540-740-4545 office or 540-333-2545 cell)

Battlefields Foundations Offers “Fridays at the Front” Civil War Tours

Free Series of Tours Led by SVBF CEO Keven Walker Kicks off With Waynesboro Tour on Friday, April 13

Following Tours to Include McDowell, Port Republic, Harrisonburg, Page Valley, and Fisher’s Hill

NEW MARKET, Va.— Join the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation on the front lines of history with “Fridays at the Front” tours. The 2018 schedule kicks off this Friday, April 13, from 10am-Noon, with a tour of Waynesboro battlefield sites.

"Fridays at the Front” are special complementary tours of Civil War battlefields and historic sites in the Shenandoah Valley. Led by historian and SVBF Chief Executive Officer Keven Walker, the tours visit well-known sites and little-known hidden jewels, and cover stories great and small, from the accounts of huge armies moving across the landscape to the individual stories of loyalty, determination, and sacrifice involving soldiers and civilians alike. This year, some of the tours will be co-led by eminent historians and authors such as Ed Bearss, Bill Miller, and Richard Williams.

This tours are free and open to everyone. Register by calling the SVBF at 540-750-4545 or by going to www.ShenandoahAtWar.org. The tours will include:

"The last fight of the Shenandoah": The Battle of Waynesboro

(Friday, April 13, 2018, 10am-Noon)
Car caravan tour of sites related to the last significant Civil War battle in the Shenandoah Valley, fought on March 2, 1865. A smaller battle with a big impact, it was the site of Jubal Early's "last stand," saw the destruction of the last sizeable Confederate force in the Valley, and allowed Philip Sheridan and his troops to head east to play pivotal roles in the Appomattox campaign. Tour led by Richard Williams, historian and author of The Battle of Waynesboro, and SVBF CEO Keven Walker

As authorized by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior, the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation serves as the non-profit manager of the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields National Historic District, partnering with local, regional, and national organizations and governments to preserve the Valley’s battlefields and interpret and promote the region’s Civil War story.
Created by Congress in 1996, the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields National Historic District encompasses Augusta, Clarke, Frederick, Highland, Page, Rockingham, Shenandoah, and Warren counties in Virginia and the cities of Harrisonburg, Staunton, Waynesboro, and Winchester. The legislation authorizes federal funding for the protection of ten battlefields in the District: Second Winchester, Third Winchester, Second Kernstown, Cedar Creek, Fisher’s Hill, Tom’s Brook, New Market, Cross Keys, Port Republic, and McDowell.
Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation and Shenandoah Valley Battlefields National Historic District: www.ShenandoahAtWar.org

National Park Service 1992 study of the Shenandoah Valley’s Civil War battlefields:

11 April 2018

75%+ Want to Keep Confederate Names on Schools . . .

In Hanover County, Virginia. And the school board voted the will of their constituents.
The Hanover School Board voted 5-2 on Tuesday night to keep the names and mascots of Lee-Davis High School (Confederates) and Stonewall Jackson Middle School (Rebels) after a months long process in which the majority of county residents urged the board to leave the names undisturbed.
More here.

06 April 2018

Did Robert E. Lee Commit Treason?

Why would the U.S. Government use the image of a "traitor" to recruit U.S. Sailors during WWII?

Answer: They wouldn't.

The question of treason was never adjudicated in a court of law, so all opinions on that question are just that, opinions. That being acknowledged, some opinions are based on emotion, others on logic and legal concepts. Still others on this particular topic are based on the faddish trend among many historians to demonize Lee and to sully his reputation and standing. 

My opinion is no, Robert E. Lee did not commit treason. One might argue Lee's decision was a foolish one or "unpatriotic", and that the results were inevitable, but treason is a very specific and narrow charge. I base my own opinion, in part, on the following:

Treason: : the offense of attempting by overt acts to overthrow the government of the state to which the offender owes allegiance or to kill or personally injure the sovereign or the sovereign's family. (Merriam-Webster)
That's a generic definition and, of course, the "legal" definition is a bit more complicated than that. So I'll delve into the question much deeper as I'm working on a rather lengthy post about the topic. I hope to have it posted over the weekend.

Stay tuned.