March 2021 Newsletter
Happy Women's History Month!
From the Editor
For as influential as John Bachelder was on the formation of Gettysburg National Military Park, there aren’t a lot of photos of him. Of the couple I’ve seen, my favorite shows him as an older man standing near some of the boulders of Devil’s Den with his wife, Elizabeth, seated nearby.
I love this picture primary because of the expression on Elizabeth’s face.
If you look closely, Elizabeth’s expression seems to tell the story of a million other Civil War wives over the last century and a half: he has dragged me to a battlefield again.
I don’t mean to sound sexist here, because I know there are plenty of women who drag their husbands with them to the battlefields. But anecdotally, from my own personal experience, I know a lot more guys who drag their wives along than wives who drag their husbands. The good-natured Civil War wife is a special breed of person.
I was reminded of this in mid-March when I gave my first in-person roundtable talk in months, and my wife, Jennifer, accompanied me. I’m certain the overnight accommodations in Virginia Beach, more than my spellbinding story of Mine Run, lured her along. Whatever it takes, I figure!
I was delighted to have her with me. Jennifer’s company relaxes me, and she’s always a huge help: she takes care of books sales, chit-chats with roundtable members, and generally classes me up.
Jennifer owns her own business, so there’s never an “off” day. She used to be able to build in a little flexibility for herself in order to travel with me for talks, but since our son, Maxwell, came along, she’s not had that flexibility. Having her back on the road with me was wonderful.
I get to have the Civil War life I do because of Jennifer’s good-grace and patience. She’s the one at home in the evenings taking care of the four-year-old while I’m out talking to roundtables or pounding around on battlefields or cloistered away at the writing computer. Like Elizabeth Bachelder, Jennifer might not necessarily want to be on the battlefield herself, but she’s gracious enough to let me be there. And if I’ really lucky, she tags along.
So, for this year’s Women’s History Month, I want to give a shout-out to all the Civil War wives out there. Thank you for enabling/empowering/allowing/encouraging/indulging/supporting us as we explore our love of history.
— Chris Mackowski, Ph.D.
ECW News & Notes
Stephen Davis (right), of Cumming, Georgia, has had his two recent books, Texas Brigadier to the Fall of Atlanta: John Bell Hood (2019) and Into Tennessee and Failure: John Bell Hood (2020) honored by the New York Civil War Round Table, which has bestowed upon them its esteemed Fletcher Pratt Award. Steve will fly to New York this fall to receive the award. Mercer University Press is publisher of both works.
In addition, Into Tennessee and Failure has been honored by the Atlanta Civil War Round Table with its Richard Barksdale Harwell Award. Steve will address the group on November 9.
Doug Crenshaw and Bert Dunkerly recently met with Vic Vignola, who is writing a book on Fair Oaks for Savas Beatie. Vic gave a great and detailed tour! While most of the battlefield is built over, there are still some landmarks to be found, and hopefully at some point, some preservation will occur.
Bert and Doug will be discussing our new book Embattled Capital: Richmond in the Civil War  on April 7 for and for the American Civil War Museum online on April 8.
Caroline Davis accepted a seasonal position at George Rogers Clark National Historic Site in Vincennes, Indiana. “I'm pretty excited about it,” she says. “It’s not Civil War, but it’s something new and different for me! Should be a great adventure!”
Meg Groeling reviewed Imagining Wild Bill: James Butler Hickok in War, Media, and Memory by Paul Ashown and Ed Caudill. “This book is well written and filled with new information,” Meg says. “It is broad in scope. . . . The assessments are fair and balanced, and the conclusion of the book . . . puts the subject in its historical place.” Imaging Wild Bill is part of ECW’s “Engaging the Civil War” Series with Southern Illinois University Press.
Chris Kolakowski reviewed My Dear Nelly: The Selected Civil War Letters of General Orlando M. Poe to His Wife Eleanor, edited by Paul Taylor, for the April 2021 issue of Civil War News. Chris called it “an important and vivid new primary source from a senior Federal leader.”
Nathan Provost traveled to Richmond in March to continue research for his dissertation. While there, he took the time to spend an afternoon in Spotsylvania exploring the battlefield with fellow ECWers Sarah Bierle, Chris Mackowski, and Terry Rensel. (see photo)
ECW Bookshelf
By Dwight Hughes
Well, the box finally arrived, and with it the surreal experience of holding in your hand what had been for a few years just ideas in the head and words on the screen. Unlike Anything That Ever Floated: The Monitor and Virginia and the Battle Hampton Roads, March 8-9, 1862, the first dedicated naval volume for the Emerging Civil War Series, is now available.
We hope to inform our regular Civil War fans about this iconic battle while expanding the series audience to devotees of naval history. The book discusses strategy, tactics, technology, and personalities as well as military, cultural, and political impacts of the engagements. It puts the reader right in the action. Our motto for the book: If you don’t know the story, this is the place to begin; if you think you know the story, you will be surprised. 

The book is available from publisher Savas Beatie, Amazon, and other retailers of Civil War books.
(More Than) 10 Questions . . . with Meg Groeling
We’re taking a departure from our usual “10 Questions” feature to share some news from ECW fan favorite Meg Groeling—news that raises more questions than it answers. You can read Meg’s full bio here.
By Meg Groeling
In early March, I received a diagnosis of cancer: Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, which no one expected but showed up anyway.
It has been very hard to see a doctor here in California with Covid-19, but finally, my overall health got bad enough that I was finally able to see someone. Come to find out, Leukemia makes you very weak, which is why I’d been feeling so bad.
What happens when one gets cancer is a whole bunch of doctor's appointments! I have been getting PET scans, CAT scans, and the beginning doses of chemo. Next month is filled with appointments, as well, with more doctors and psychologists and assistants who have all done such a wonderful job explaining everything--all is good and positive. Apparently, this cancer has been studied for more than 100 years and, although little remission, excellent results for control of the condition. It is just gonna be a hard fight.
The really good news is that Chris M. and Sarah B. have been looped in--Chris first--all along. I simply have not been able to do everything I need to do to fulfill my ECW responsibilities, and I am no longer sure of being able to catch errors, typos, or skewed thinking. None of this is permanent, and I can even see improvement after just two chemo treatments. Chris and Sarah have both been a great support. I told my publisher, Ted Savas, of course. He is very supportive and understanding, and Chris M. is also helping out there with the final details of my upcoming book, First Fallen.
And now I am telling you.
I am going to remind my fellow ECW writers that we write, edit, study, read, talk, and care for the best group of folks ever. ECW has given us chances we might never have had or might have had to wait years for. ECW is a public presence in this field. It is a pleasure to be associated with all of you.
And it is a pleasure to be associated with all our readers, too, whose support of our work has buoyed me on great days and will buoy me as I wrestle through this current challenge.
So, this week, I am reading, working on the Weekly Whitman (which is picking up readers, apparently), and outlining my presentation for the Symposium in August. Oh--and petting cats, of course.
This isn't gonna take me out, although I have images of President Grant finishing up his book out there on the porch in New York. I also remember he is the one who said, "Lick 'em tomorrow, though." That gives me great hope!
ECW MultiMedia
ECW cranked out a lot of content on our YouTube channel and through our podcast in March. Some of it was just our usual awesome stuff, but much of it was specifically geared to commemorate Women’s History Month:
·     Chris Mackowski visited a few sites at Petersburg National Battlefield for a series of videos.
·     Melissa Winn, director of photography for HistoryNet, talked about her work for Civil War Times, America’s Civil War, and the company’s other history periodicals.
·     Brian Matthew Jordan discussed his new book, A Thousand May Fall: Life, Death, and Survival in the Union Army.
·     Licensed Battlefield Guide Sue Boardman spent a windy day sharing some of her favorite places on the Gettysburg battlefield.
·     Sarah Kay Bierle, JoAnna MacDonald, and Cecily Nelson Zander participated in a roundtable discussion about their favorite leadership moments of the Civil War. (see photo, right)
·     Sarah also conducted a series of interviews featuring women working in the field of preservation.
We also make a number of our interviews available as free podcasts on the ECW Patreon page.
Be sure to subscribe to the Emerging Civil War YouTube channel to get all the latest. While you’re at it, don’t forget to follow ECW on Facebook and Instagram (@Emergingcwblog). Please share and like our pages!

Emerging Revolutionary War News
By Phill Greenwalt
March saw two momentous occasions in the buildup to the American Revolution. On March 5, 1770, what would become known as the Boston Massacre unfolded in Massachusetts. To hear about the events of that night, join Emerging Revolutionary War historian Mark Maloy, either on ERW's Facebook or ERW's YouTube page, who was there at the site for the 250th anniversary last March.
Then tune in every other Sunday, for the next installment of the "Rev War Revelry." Discussion span topics and wars of the Revolutionary era. 
The other notable March build-up event was Patrick Henry's famous "Give Me Liberty" speech on March 23, 1775, in Richmond, Virginia. Check out an ERW blog post about that speech and where it unfolded in Virginia by clicking here.
Also, while on the blog check out information on how to register for the Second Annual Emerging Revolutionary War Symposium held in conjunction with Historic Alexandria in May. This year it will be virtual. 
You can also purchase your tickets for the First Annual Emerging Revolutionary War Bus Tour, this November 12-14th, as we take you through the Ten Crucial Days of the American Revolution in New Jersey. 
All that and more can be found at:

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