My Civil War Pilgramage

Here is a little video I made up with pictures taken by my Dad, sister and I at Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Ellwood House, the Jackson Shrine, and Spotsylvania.

Published in: on August 28, 2010 at 12:26 am  Comments Off on My Civil War Pilgramage  

quick post

so far on this vacation I have been to Fredericksburg battlefield  twice, Spotsylvania battlefield once, Chancellorsville once, and the Ellwood House. I’m Loving this vacation.

Published in: on August 22, 2010 at 2:24 am  Comments Off on quick post  

Summer Vacation

well, my favorite point of my summer is finally here. My family and I will be going on a two week vacation to the Fredericksburg/Washington D.C. area. I will be seeing such famous places as Marye’s heights, the Bloody Angle, and the Chancellor House. So I will not be posting for that time period.  I will be taking a vacation from writing about the Civil War to go on a trip that will be centered in one of the Civil War centers of the United States, ironic isn’t it?  I hope to glean new information and pass that on to you. So I bid you a fond Adue! 

Published in: on August 15, 2010 at 7:16 pm  Comments (2)  

Reenactment Photo’s

These pictures are from a reenactment in Boscobel WI. The battle portrayed is the battle of Franklin Tennessee. Enjoy

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Published in: on August 11, 2010 at 3:06 pm  Comments Off on Reenactment Photo’s  

Gettysburg the 141st Anniversary

though this past year it was the 147th anniversary of the battle of Gettysburg these pictures are still poignant and interesting so I thought I would post them for you all to see.

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Published in: on August 10, 2010 at 9:16 pm  Comments Off on Gettysburg the 141st Anniversary  

Some of My Favorite Quotes From Some of My Favorite People

There has been so much written and said about the Civil War since it happened 150 years ago. But some of my favorite things said came from those actively engaged in the Civil War itself. So here are a few of my favorite things.

” Well boys, Your troubles are over now, mine have just begun” ~ Abraham Lincoln, the day after he was elected president in 1861. This is a rather humorous quote from Lincoln describing what he knew was to come for him as president.

” I thought his genius was military, but that as a party manager he would not succeed.” ~ Varina Davis, describing her thoughts about Jefferson Davis becoming president of the Confederacy, and his possible ineptness for the political realms.

” The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battle-field and patriot grave, to every living heart and hearth-stone, all over this broad land will yet swell the chorus of the Union…” ~Abraham Lincoln, in this very moving quote describes what he thinks the Union ought to still do, sing the chorus of unity.

” I have got the best suit of clothes that I [ever] had in my life” ~Private Peter Wilson 1st Iowa Volunteers, this also rather humorous quote describes the living conditions of some of the soldiers previous to their entrance in the army

” When my last breath escapes me on the battle field, it will whisper your name.” ~ MaSullivan Balloujor Sullivan Ballou 2nd Rhode Island Infantry, Burnside’s Brigade, in this quote describes his strong devotion to his wife in the time of death. Though this was written only to his wife, it exhibits the feelings of many soldiers.

“There stands Jackson like a stone wall.”~ Confederate Brigadier General Barnard Bee, this Barnard Beeis a most famous quote which in time would give Jackson the nickname “Stonewall”. Though the intended meaning is not known. Some historians say Bee said that because of his gallantry and bravery in the face of fire, but others say it was because Bee needed reinforcements and Jackson was slow in shifting his men to help him.

” We cut our way in and we can cut our way out.” ~ Brigadier General Ulysses Grant, I especially like this one because it shows the fighting spirit of Grant. In a time were many Union generals would not have tried to cut their way in or out Grant did both.Ulysses Grant

Published in: on August 9, 2010 at 4:16 pm  Comments Off on Some of My Favorite Quotes From Some of My Favorite People  

An Appeal For the Country

This poem is a call to peace written before the war. This will be last post on Civil War poetry for awhile.

An Appeal For The country

E. K Blunt

 

“Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace, good will towards men

 

From lake to gulf, from sea to sea

We have knelt in one solemn fast

That God may heal our country’s strife

Forgiving us all our past.

Hear we no voice as we listening stand?

Comes there no angry touch on the angry hand?

Thrills not one heart-throb-throughout the land?

Peace brothers peace

 

Oh by our homes so bright and fair

Where the Christmas garlands wave

Oh, by our loved ones nestling there

By each cradle, by each grave

By the praying of our common prayer

By the Bible on which the people swear

Peace brothers peace

 

Would you render your country’s breast in twain?

It lies bare to the mortal blow

But the sword that could drink her holy vain

Should be that of a foreign fore.

Not her children, cradled free

Not her home- born never be

Such written page of history

Peace brothers peace

 

Would ye part the river which North and South

Rolls grandly its career

Sounds not a tone from its mighty mouth

teaching us, far and near

That the North and South like it must be

One power, one home, one unity

One time, and one eternity

Peace brothers peace

 

Brothers beware the storm is high

Our ship of state strains heavily

And her flag who’s spangles have lit the sky

Is fluttering tattered and torn to be.

God of our father Washington

Our trust is in thy arm alone.

Count thou her start, keep ever one!

Peace brothers peace

Published in: on August 9, 2010 at 12:07 am  Comments Off on An Appeal For the Country  

The Tale of the One Armed

This poem  chronicals the story of 4 brothers in the war and their own seperate fates.

The Tale of The One Armed

W. E. Credesly

His form was straight as the pine whose peak

Pierces the Southern clouds.

As children group when their grandsires speak

Of some fairy scene, or some goblins freak

We stood in the list’ning crowds.

His sleeve hung shrunken and loose by his side

His forehead was pale and wan

But he eyed his stump with a warriors pride

And his narrative began

And we heard him tell, as our watch-fire bright

Threw a smile on the frowning brow of night

The tale of the one-armed man

 

“Where Hudson’s waves, with liquid song

The rocky heights caress.

My native cot the rock among

O’er hangs their loveliness

But Freedom’s shriek thought the nation rang

I left my home for the bugles clang

Myself and brothers three

Left my mother whose silver hair

Pressed my breast as her farewell prayer

Arose to heaven for me

 

Her eyes were dim with falling tears

A mother’s love, a mother’s fears

Were swelling in her heart

But said “good-bye” for her will was steel

Though her heart would show the struggle real

To see her boys depart

Saw the hopes of her years three-score

Leave her hearth for the battle’s din

Her greatest grief she had but four

To aid the land their home was in

 

“My eldest brother loved to roam

On the breast of the ocean wave.

The Navy gave a sailor’s home

And he sleeps in a sailor’s grave

Died at his post in Hampton Bay

Where the Cumberland’s thunders were vain

Deep in the wave her torn hulk lay

But her flag still waved o’er the main”

 

“Three of us pitched our tents on the sand

Skirting Point Royal Bay

And leaped with glee as we trod the land

Grasping our steel with a free man’s hand

While waved our banner gay

But swamp winds heavy with chilly death

Swept through the air with poisonous breath

Opening graves by the score”

“The youngest of our little flock

Never lived to feel the battle shock

He sleeps ‘neath pine trees hoar

Sleeps till the last dead trumpet’s blast

Wakes from the dead their silent rest

As earthquakes shaking mountains vast

Disclose the gems that deck their breast”

 

“Week after week rolled slowly by

Like clouds athwart the sun

Our thoughts were stained with a gloomy dye

With guard and picket, and midnight scout

Through the swamps and wood around about

We waited coming spring

When we saw the sun with ruddy glow

Gleam bright on the shores of Edisto

Smiling our welcoming”

 

“Now waved our banner on James Isle

The amorous zephyrs gave

It’s silken folds to the sunbeam’s smile

Raising them close to Heaven e’er while

As the staff would let them wave

Our soldiers stood in a long dark line

No bullet was in our guns

Waiting to hear from our chief the sign

Of moving still columns

The Rebel cannon frowned black and grim

On breast works high and large

And Stevens smiled as we learned from him

The shout ” Prepare to charge”

Forward, through Minnie and bursting shell

Cleaving the air with our battle yell

While shining bayonets

Poured forth like a wave on the breastwork’s slope

Glistening, and sparkling, and dashing up

O’er earthen parapets

But ah! We saw another force

Come hastening on our right

We looked in vain for fresh supports

To aid us in the fight

While ceaseless through our thinning ranks

Ran death shots to and fro

Back in the steps of our advance

Marched sullen and slow

While spurting blood and crashing bones

With cries of pain and stifled groans

Rang in that sad retreat

While marching on by my brothers side

I saw him fall, while his life blood dyed

The grass beneath my feet

Saw the last of my brothers three

Cross the stream to eternity”

 

“I felt a pang at my shoulder and my memory failed me then

And many days passed o’er my head e’er reason reigned again”

 

Now with his dust stained blouse he swept

One shining tear away

That softly on his lids had crept

To hear the mournful lay

Then slowly from our eager gaze

His stalwart form he bore

And ‘neath our watch-fire’s cheerful blaze

 

We saw his face no more.

 

Published in: on August 7, 2010 at 6:51 pm  Comments Off on The Tale of the One Armed  

A Message

This is a poem about a man killed at the Battle of Malvern Hill and the message he sent after he was wounded.

A Message
E. S. P. Ward (1844- 1911)

Was there ever a message sweeter                                                                                              

Than that one from Malvern Hill                                                                                                     

From a grim old fellow- you remember                                                                                         

Dying in the dark at Malvern Hill                                                                                                   

With his rough face turned a little                                                                                                   

On a heap of scarlet sand

They found him just within the thicket

With a picture in his hand

With a stained and crumpled picture

 Of a women’s aged face

 Yet there seemed to leap a wild entreaty

Young and living- tender from the face

 When they flashed the lantern on it

Gilding all the purple shade

 And they stooped to raise him softly

 “That’s my mother sir” he said

 “Tell her”- but he wandered, slipping

 Into tangled words and cries

 Something about Mac and Hooker

Some thing dropping through the cries

 About the kitten by the fire

 And mother’s cranberry-pies and there

The words fell and an utter silence brooded in the air

 Just as he was drifting from them

Out into the dark alone

(Poor old mother waiting for your message

 Waiting with the kitten all alone!)

Through the hush his voice, “Tell her

 Thank you Doctor- when you can

Tell her that I kissed her picture

 And wished that I’d been a better man

 Ah, I wonder if the red feet

Of departed battle-hours

May not leave for us their searching Message from those distant hours.

 Sisters, daughters, mothers, think you

 Would your heroes now or then

 Dying, kiss your pictured faces

 Wishing they’d been better men?

This is dedicated to all the men who died without saying good bye to loved ones.

Published in: on August 6, 2010 at 12:11 am  Comments Off on A Message  

Little Giffen

The Literature of the Civil War is fascinating to me. So in light of this my next posts for this next week will all be poemse or stories from the Civil War era. My first post on this subject will be the poem called Little Giffen.

Little Giffen                                                                                                                                                                  Francis O. Ticknor  (1822-1874)                                                                          

 Out of the focal and the foremost fire                                                                                                                       

Out of the hospital walls as dire                                                                                                                        

Smitten of grape-shot and gangrene                                                                                                             

(eighteenth battle and he sixteen)                                                                                                                         

Spectre such as you seldom see                                                                                                                               

Little Giffen of Tennessee

“Take him and welcome!” the surgeons said                                                                                                              

“Little the doctor can help the dead!”                                                                                                                         

So we took him and brought him where                                                                                                                

The balm was sweet in the summer air                                                                                                                   

And we laid him down on a wholesome bed                                                                                                      

Utter Lazarus, heel to head!

And we watched the war with abated breath                                                                                                   

Skeleton boy against skeleton death                                                                                                                    

Months of torture, how many such                                                                                                                     

Weary weeks of the stick and crutch                                                                                                                      

And still a glint of the steel-blue eye                                                                                                                     

Told of a spirit that wouldn’t die

And didn’t, Nay more! In death’s despite                                                                                                              

The crippled skeleton learned to write                                                                                                               

“Dear Mother” at first of course and then                                                                                                            

“Dear Captain” inquiring about the men                                                                                                       

Captain’s answer “Of eighty-and-five                                                                                                                  

Giffen and I are left alive”

Words of gloom from the war, one day                                                                                                      

“Johnston pressed at the front they say”                                                                                                           

Little Giffen was up and away                                                                                                                                           

A tear-his first as he bade good-bye                                                                                                                   

Dimmed the glint of his steel-blue eye                                                                                                                    

“I’ll write if spared!” There was news of the fight                                                                                                 

But none of Giffen, he did not write

I sometimes fancy that I were a king                                                                                                                         

Of the princely knights of the Golden Ring                                                                                                            

With the song of the minstrel in mine ear                                                                                                              

And the tender legend that trembles here                                                                                                             

I’d give the best on his bended knee                                                                                                                       

The whitest soul of my chivalry                                                                                                                                 

For little Giffen of Tennessee

I dedicate this to all the boys who died during the Civil War on both sides.

Published in: on August 4, 2010 at 3:11 am  Comments (2)