Two Years Blogging

2 11 2008

I made my first post on Bull Runnings on November 2, 2006.  It’s been a fun two years, and I’m hoping for a few more (at least), the Good Lord willing and the creeks don’t rise.  By way of a recap on the digital history part of this site, I’ve posted all of the Official Reports (After Action Reports) for Bull Run proper, at least all of those included in the Official Records; citations for all Bull Run MOH awardees; Orders of Battle for both armies; a few biographical sketches; links to beau coup digital books; one previously unpublished contemporary letter from a prominent participant; transcripts of one witness’ testimony before the Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War; and three photo galleries.  Lots of miles to go yet.

Bull Runnings has been featured in one print magazine, and I was interviewed for an Internet Civil War radio program.  One series of posts was included in the 14th Military History Carnival.

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Blog stats.  I’ve written 463 posts in 36 different categories, and received 940 comments (a useless stat since it includes links between articles).  I’ve also received (and blocked thanks to Akismet) 10,798 spam comments. At the suggestions of Craig and Robert, I’ve started using something called “Tags”.  I don’t understand the difference between tags and categories, but I’ve created 25 of the former in the past couple of days.  I haven’t decided yet if I’ll go back and tag every old post, but may do so as I revisit them for whatever reason.

As of right now, my pages have been viewed 72,551 times.  For the 2 months I was up in 2006, I averaged 63 pageviews per day; 73/day for all of 2007; and 137/day so far in 2008.  Right around 90 different computers visit Bull Runnings each day.

Not very impressive numbers, I realize.  But I’m OK with it if you are.  I know of a few sure-fire ways to increase traffic, but writing about such things would violate the few very simple rules I established when I first set out, and I’m not willing to make that sacrifice.

Thanks to each and every one of you who read my stuff – even you who come here via Google searches for striated glutes.  Thanks to you who have provided great information that has helped make the Bull Run Resources on this site a meaningful tool.  Thanks to all my fellow bloggers who have been so helpful over these past two years.  And last, thanks to my wife and son who have had to ask distracted dad the same questions or give him the same instructions repeatedly while he taps away on this keyboard.

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16 responses

3 11 2008
steve keating

Harry

Congrats on the milestone, and thanks for the help you’ve given me figuring out the Mathews Hill portion of the battle.

3 11 2008
steve keating

Okay, now that I have congratulated you, where is Douglas Heights? Is it on the battlefield, or somewhere away form it?

3 11 2008
Harry Smeltzer

Steve,

Glad to be of help, and I hope you share the fruits of your research here at some point.

Douglas Heights, accourding to Joseph Mills Hanson, is northwest of Groveton. I know there are some guns there, so I’m guessing it’s part of the 2nd BR battlefield. I’ll try to find out exactly where.

3 11 2008
Robert Moore

Harry, FYI, I have recategorized my Southern Unionists Chronicles site (http://southernunionistschronicles.wordpress.com/) and am now considering it (for lack of another phrase) a Civil War “information compilation site.” I have also added a category and am including links to like sites (and have included your site). Any chance you might be interested in adding a new/similar category on your site? Thanks! Robert

3 11 2008
Harry Smeltzer

Robert,

I saw that and have already added you to my CW blogroll. But I like the idea, and think I’ll do the same here. I see you have Civil War Women and To the Sound of the Guns, and I can think of a few more that I already have listed either in my blogroll or my links. What are the parameters?

3 11 2008
Don

Congratulations, Harry. I look forward to reading many more interesting posts here in the future.

3 11 2008
Robert Moore

Harry, I turned this over a bit in my head, and have concluded that some of us have blogs that aren’t by definition, dedicated “blogs.” There can be, from time to time, a mix of thoughts/ideas/opinions with compiled info, but the main focus of some of these “Civil War Information Blogs” is to compile information with the intent to make it avaialable in digital format. So, I’m thinking that any blog that uses the framework to compile information would/should qualify… I think… so far at least. What other sites might qualify? Robert

3 11 2008
Harry Smeltzer

Robert,

OK, blogs only, right? I’d go with the Steve Soper’s 3rd Michigan site, Don Caughey’s Crossed Sabers, Jenny Goelnitz’s Draw the Sword, and Nick Kurtz’s Battlefield Wanderings. What do you think? I didn’t list Behind AotW because it’s separate from AotW, and AotW is not a blog.

3 11 2008
Harry Smeltzer

Don,

Thanks for the kind words.

Harry

3 11 2008
Robert Moore

Harry, Yes. I think those who use the framework of the blog for purposes other than blogging form a rather original group. The grouping of those who use the blog framework to compile information about the Civil War is an even more narrowly focused group and one worth recognizing for the unique use. Now if we could get the others onboard with the same philosophy, we might start something unique here.

3 11 2008
Harry Smeltzer

Robert,

OK – check it out to the right.

3 11 2008
Robert Moore

That’s exactly it. Now I need to tweak and add to the category in Southern Unionists Chronicles.

3 11 2008
brian

Happy blogiversary, Harry!

I know you said you won’t pander, but really, all you’ve got to do is add the words “black Confederate” or “gay Lincoln” to posts now and then for a quick jump in hits. Oh, wait, I just did it for you. And on the topic with Mr Moore, behind AotW is hardly a blog, either – but I second that info-blogs like yours are a great use of the medium and deserve the spotlight.

4 11 2008
New Blog Category « Bull Runnings

[...] Blog Category 4 11 2008 If you’ve been following the conversation here, you already know that Robertand I have added a new blog category to our sites, Civil War [...]

4 11 2008
Harry Smeltzer

Steve,

I got the word from Jim Burgess at the park re: Douglas Heights:

“Douglas Heights is a spur or section of Stony Ridge that extends southward into the Douglas Farm (a.k.a. Brawner Farm). The area being generally open with a commanding view to the east, it offered an excellent position for the deployment of Confederate batteries at Second Manassas.”

Hope that helps.

9 11 2008
Wiki! « Bull Runnings

[...] Two Years Blogging [...]

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