Brian Downey at Behind Antietam on the Web has a great post on Antietam personality John Moulder Wilson. The post features an 1862 Gardner Gibson (thanks Brian) photo that is part of my round table program. At First Bull Run, Wilson was a lieutenant in Capt. Carlisle’s Battery E, 2nd US, which was attached to Schenck’s brigade of Tyler’s division. At least, I think he was. Brian’s post is a good illustration of why we must be careful to nail these IDs down and not take or make them at face value. He does some great detective work, and I don’t say that just because he points out some shoddy scholarship by – and a resulting faulty conclusion of – a notorious chronicler of the Battle of Antietam.
Jennie Jenny Goellnitz of Draw the Sword weighed in on my post on History as Narrative. She has some interesting thoughts on the subject which are worth a look. However, I should clarify that my point was not so much that the narrative form is deficient in its ability to convey what it was like to be present at a historical event, but rather that the form itself creates an orderly story which may be, and is quite likely, very different from what really happened. That can be, and is quite likely, true even when the narrative is of the highest quality.