Volume 03, Issue 04 | October 2018
Emerging Civil War · October 2018 Newsletter
Endurance · Podcast · ECW Bookshelf with Civil War News · ERW Update · News & Notes
From the Editor
On September 14, Hurricane Florence lumbered in from the Atlantic just east of Wilmington, North Carolina. Once a powerful Category 4 storm, it had weakened to a Category 1 just before landfall, but because it moved so slowly, its wind and rain caused widespread destruction.

Two and a half weeks later, I drove down from central Virginia to speak to the Brunswick Civil War Round Table, based in Southport, North Carolina, about twenty minutes south of Wilmington. Clean-up crews roamed the sides of the interstate, picking up storm debris. Chainsaws buzzed in many of the yards I passed. Vans and trucks emblazoned with the logos of contractors, landscapers, and renovators filled the hotel parking lot where I stayed.

The work of recovery went on all around me.

My talk that night was based on my book Grant’s Last Battle. Swindled by his business partners and dying from throat cancer, Ulysses S. Grant struggled to finish his memoirs as a way to save his family from financial ruin. He faced the ultimate deadline, yet he persevered. It is, I think, a remarkable story of endurance.

I’ve shared the story of the Brunswick Roundtable’s remarkable success before. Their membership these days hovers around 1200. And on that night, some 500 of them showed up to hear me speak. It was, one of the organizers told me afterward, a new single-night record for them.

While the attendance delighted me, what made an even more profound impact on me was the fact that this was a community still in recovery mode. A hurricane had turned their lives upside down just weeks earlier, yet here they were, eager for the chance to put misfortune out of their minds for a little bit and enjoy some history, instead.

“You’re looking a little weathered,” I told them when I took the stage. But I quickly got serious, thanking them for making the effort to come out after they had recently been through so much. I was proud to be with so many people who placed so much importance on history. Like Grant’s, theirs was a story of remarkable endurance.

Chris Mackowski, Ph.D.
Editor in Chief, Emerging Civil War
The October Emerging Civil War Podcast
If you haven’t checked out the Emerging Civil War Podcast yet, tune in! In October, we featured an episode on Civil War music with Chris Mackowski, Dan Davis, and Dan Welch. For our premium content, we featured an episode on Civil War writing, editing, and publishing with Chris Mackowski and Kris White, with a special interview with publisher Ted Savas.

New episodes premier the first and third Tuesday of every month.

ECW Bookshelf
Books, books, books—for many Civil War buffs, “books” is what we do. We love to read, and the size of one’s library is often a major source of pride.

If you’re a book lover like so many of us here at ECW are, then be sure to check out the November 2018 issue of Civil War News. It’s their annual book edition—and Civil War News was kind enough to give ECW a lot of great ink.

For starters, Book Review Editor Steve Davis—himself an ECW contributor—invite Editor-in-Chief Chris Mackowski to share the story of the Emerging Civil War Series. Debuting in December of 2012, the series now consists of 27 titles, with more on the way this fall.

The issue also features articles by a number of prominent historians who talk about their favorite Civil War books. Cumulatively, it feels like one big book club, with lots of historians in conversation with each other and with readers about good books of all kinds. Included in the line-up of historians who discussed their favorites: Meg Groeling, Chris Mackowski, and Eric Wittenberg, plus Steve Davis offered a rundown of his favorite books about the Army of Northern Virginia. Steve also had a great column about “Books and Libraries in Camp and Battle.”

The issue also included its usual great array of book reviews. ECW represented well:
  • Steve Davis reviewed “Forrest Stories: Humor of Bedford Forrest and his Cavalry” by G. Lee Miller
  • Meg Groeling reviewed “Keep the Days: Reading the Civil War Diaries of Southern Women” by Steven M. Stowe
  • Chris Kolakowski reviewed “Decisions at Stones River” by Matt and Lee Spruill
  • Chris Mackowski reviewed the Bull Run Civil War Roundtable’s 20th Anniversary Commemorative Publication
  • Kevin Pawlak reviewed “Phantoms of the South Fork: McNeill and His Rangers” by Steve French
Emerging Revolutionary War Update
by Phill Greenwalt

October was a defining month in the American Revolution, with the twin victories of Saratoga in 1777 that solidified French support for the American cause and then, four years later, with the capitulation of Lord Charles Cornwallis's British Army at Yorktown. Throw in an oft-overlooked Battle of Germantown, and October is a busy month!

The same goes for the historians of Emerging Revolutionary War (ERW). The next two volumes of the popular Emerging Revolutionary War Series are currently in stages of drafting and development.

And in early November, a cadre of ERW historians are following the trail of the Southern Campaigns, so check out the ERW Facebook page for "FB Live" videos from the Carolinas!

As always, follow the blog at www.emergingrevolutionarywar.org

In the photo: Benedict Arnold gets the boot at Saratoga.
ECW News and Notes
The Fall 2018 issues of the American Battlefield Trust’s Hallowed Ground features several pieces by ECW historians. The theme of the issue, “Future Presidents Under Fire,” highlights different presidents whose active military service eventually led them to the White House. As part of the line up, Sean Michael Chick wrote a piece about Andrew Jackson, "Old Hickory: Adored and Despised." Phill Greenwalt wrote about one of Ulysses S. Grant’s most infamous battles: "They Called Grant a Butcher...—Cold Harbor," and Chris Mackowski wrote a sidebar about Grant’s treatment of Cold Harbor in his memoirs.

The cover story of the Fall 2018 issue of Civil War Monitor features a fantasy football-like “draft” of Civil War generals. “What if you could create the ideal Civil War fighting force?” the editors asked. Five award-winning historians participated in the fantasy draft, including Dr. Brian Matthew Jordan . Chris Mackowski served as one of three analysts to evaluate the results. “Offering commentary on the draft was the ultimate opportunity to play armchair general,” Chris said.

You can check out an exciting new talk by our own Chris Kolakowski on "The Two Georges: Marshall and Patton" by clicking here. Excellent job, Chris!

Chris Mackowski is fulfilling some new responsibilities at St. Bonaventure University, where he teaches writing in the Jandoli School of Communication. Chris was chosen to serve as the Jandoli School’s associate dean for undergraduate programs.

Rob Orrison and Kevin Pawlak continue to share their research into the Maryland Campaign of 1862. Their book on the campaign, To Hazard All, is the latest release in the Emerging Civil War Series. Most recently, they appeared at the Manassas Museum on October 21 for a free booktalk.

Dan Vermilya’s That Field of Blood: The Battle of Antietam, part of the Emerging Civil War Series, received a favorable review in Civil War News, which called the book “More than another rehashing of the same old story.” “[I]t made me think about my previously held perspectives about why the battle was fought and how its outcome was more than a stalemate,” said reviewer John Michael Priest, who lauded Dan’s “lucid writing” and his “excellent blending of participants’ accounts within his battle narrative.”

Dan Welch recently joined Rob Orrison and Bill Backus at Bristoe Station Battlefield Heritage Park to commemorate the 155th anniversary of the battle of Bristoe Station. Dan continued the story of two hard-hit Gettysburg units at Bristoe, the 1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry and the 8th Florida Infantry.

Eric Wittenberg 's latest book,  Holding the Line on the River of Death , is heading to the printers. Savas Beatie will be publishing the work focused on the Federal cavalry at the battle of Chickamauga. Look for it on shelves soon.
The Sixth Annual Emerging Civil War Symposium at Stevenson Ridge

Don’t forget to get your early-bird tickets for the Sixth Annual Emerging Civil War Symposium at Stevenson Ridge, now available for only $135. The Symposium, Aug. 2-4, 2019, will focus on “Forgotten Battles of the Civil War,” including a keynote address from historian Wil Greene. More details are coming soon! Order tickets here.
Upcoming Presentations
1st: Chris Kolakowski, “Life and Times of Arthur MacArthur,” North Shore CWRT (Long Island)

11th: Julie Mujic, “Hidden Monuments: War Memorialization and the Search for World War I in Columbus, Ohio,” Franklin County Memorial Hall, Columbus, OH

13th: Kevin Pawlak, “Antietam Endgame: September 18-20, 1862,” First Defenders Civil War Round Table of Berks County, Reading, PA

14th: Sarah Kay Bierle, Topic TBD, Inland Empire Civil War Round Table, Redlands, CA

14th: Kevin Pawlak, “Hunting the Gray Ghost,” Phil Kearny Civil War Round Table, Wayne, NJ

20th: Sarah Kay Bierle, “Then Christmas Came: The Justification & Condemnation of War,” Los Angeles Civil War Round Table, Los Angeles, CA

1st: Sarah Kay Bierle, Civil War Christmas Living History Event at Drum Barracks, Wilmington, CA

10th: Doug Crenshaw, The Seven Days, Richmond Civil War Roundtable

10th: Phill Greewalt: “Prospect Hill and the Battle of Fredericksburg,” Western North Carolina Civil War Roundtable

10th: Chris Mackowski, "Plenty of Blame to Share: Ambrose Burnside and the Battle of Fredericksburg," American Civil War Museum, Richmond, VA

10th: Kevin Pawlak, “Antietam Endgame: September 18-20, 1862,” Mahoning Valley Civil War Round Table, Canfield, OH

12th: Edward Alexander, “Dawn of Victory: Breakthrough at Petersburg,” Lynchburg CWRT, Lynchburg, VA

17th: Chris Mackowski, “Simply Murder: The Battle of Fredericksburg,”  Central Delaware Civil War Roundtable , Dover, DE
Happy Halloween!
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