The Week in Review: April 16th-20th
In the News…
On April 24th, the United States Postal Service will issue two new Forever stamps commemorating the second year of the Civil War. The Battle of New Orleans stamp is a reproduction of an 1862 colored lithograph by Currier & Ives titled, “The Splendid Naval Triumph on the Mississippi, April 24, 1862,” while the Battle of Antietam stamp is a reproduction of an 1887 watercolor by Thure de Thilstrup. The Terra Foundation for American Art has developed a new online collection and teaching resource entitled “The Civil War in Art: Teaching & Learning through Chicago Collections." Likewise, PaperlessArchives.com recently announced the publishing of “Civil War: Harper’s Weekly 1861 – 1865,” which contains every issue of Harper’s Weekly from January 5, 1861 to December 30, 1865. And, the National Portrait Gallery announced a forthcoming exhibit of Matthew Brady images of Union generals.
A little-known bridge along the Santa Fe Trail with ties to the Civil War has been nominated to the National Register of Historic Places. The bridge was part of the Battle of Apache Canyon, a skirmish between Confederate and Union forces that preceded the Battle of Glorieta Pass in March of 1862. And, the Marine Corps Times recently released their “Top 10 Civil War destinations,” which included Fredericksburg, Antietam, Richmond, Pea Ridge, and Alcatraz Island amongst others. In light of this Top 10 list, we want to know what are your top 10 Civil War destinations?
Last Saturday in Raleigh, two Confederate brothers—Joel and Joseph Holleman—were laid to rest side by side for the second time since their deaths 150 years ago. Due to encroachment and impending development, a group of Civil War re-enactors aided in the relocation of the brothers from their original family plot in west Raleigh (near I-40) to Oakwood Historic Cemetery. Meanwhile in downtown Macon, Georgia, a statue of an unnamed Confederate soldier will be cleaned for the first time in its 132 year history. And, Debbie Peevyhouse who was instrumental in the recent burial of the long-forgotten Civil War veteran Peter Knapp, is displeased with the proposed burial marker. As Union soldiers from the Civil War traditionally had upright headstones with the lettering inside a shield, Peevyhouse finds the proposed shieldless 12-by-24-inch flat granite marker an affront.
Civil War History announced that J. David Hacker has won the John T. Hubbell Prize for the best article published in the journal for his study, “A Census Based Count of the Civil War Dead.” Our friend Robert Moore recently revealed that his latest book, Tragedy in the Shenandoah Valley: The Story of the Summers-Koontz Execution, will soon become an e-book from History Press. And this summer, American Public University will be offering middle and high school teachers the opportunity to participate in "Freedom Rising, the Second Year of the Civil War: 1862." This online graduate course will be accompanied by a four-day, summer workshop on-site at historic Harpers Ferry, WV.
What We Are Reading…
In the recently published Atlantic piece, “Were Slaves Really Loyal to the Union From the Start?” Kevin Levin reviewed Glenn David Brasher's new book, The Peninsula Campaign & the Necessity of Emancipation. Brasher’s work explores the dual myths of the "Black Confederate" soldier and the slave who eagerly awaited the president's call to serve the Union’s cause. Brian Matthew Jordan explored suicide amongst Civil War soldiers in “A Veteran’s Death, The Nation’s Shame.” And Keith Harris solved the mystery over Civil War veteran F. A. Whitehead.
Over at Disunion, James I. Robertson Jr. explained how for the average soldier, life during wartime was about letter writing, singing, baseball and avoiding malaria, Kate Masur delineated the long, surprising history of the 1862 D.C. emancipation act, and Susan J. Matt explained the preponderance of home-sickness among Civil War soldiers. Meanwhile, our friends at the Civil War Navy Sesquicentennial published “USS Galena: Flawed, but Still Standing” and “The Unfavorable Mortar Boats.” Craig Swain continued his discourse on naval mortars in “Mortar on a raft: The Navy puts the 13-inch mortar to use.”
In Case You Missed It…
Things have been a little quiet this week at The Civil War Monitor as our editors finish the spring semester and study for comprehensive exams. Regardless, Andy Hall (who also blogs for Dead Confederates) helped us commemorate the Titanic centennial with “Did a C.S.S. Alabama Veteran Die in the Titanic Disaster?” We also commented on the anniversary of the First Confederate Conscription Act. Over on The Bookshelf, Benjamin Cloyd reviewed Albert Taylor Bledsoe: Defender of the Old South and Architect of the Lost Cause by Terry A. Barnhart. According to Cloyd, “Terry Barnhart’s intriguing biography of Albert Taylor Bledsoe reveals that Bledsoe, like the Old South he cherished, was a paradox.” In addition, Michael Fellman evaluated Andrew Delblanco’s The Abolitionist Imagination (The Alexis De Tocqueville Lectures on American Politics) which Fellman found to be “one of the most annoying and ill-informed excursions into the study of abolitionism I have ever read.”
Those are the news and highlights of the week.
Have a great weekend!
Laura June Davis, Contributing Editor.