The new Civil War Times (April 2008) is out. This issue features yet another extract from Drew Gilpin Faust’s new book, an article about the song “Dixie” by fellow blogger Michael Hardy, and a cover story on Berdan’s Sharpshooters by R. L. Murray. There is also a new Field Guide column, which I imagine will feature a different battlefield each issue, pointing out the “must sees”. This month it’s Shiloh. As I said earlier, I spent a few days this past June touring the place with friends, so I thought I’d take this opportunity to show some of the pictures I took on the trip.
We visited all nine of the spots listed in CWT. I have pictures of seven of the nine, failing to snap any at the Indian Mounds (#9) or Hagy’s Catfish Hotel (#8). Hagy’s was OK, but had been built up so much in my mind that a letdown was inevitable. If you go there on a weekend, be prepared to wait a good while for a table. And the restaurant was also the site of the only inhospitable moment of the trip, while waiting for a table: some old fella with a flat-top, who was sitting at the opposite end of an otherwise empty ten foot bench from me, told his wife that he would rather stand than sit near “that guy”, nodding toward me. We had exchanged neither word nor glance for the 5 or so minutes I sat there. The wife asked him why he didn’t want to sit, and he said “Ah don’t lahk ‘im”. She asked why he didn’t like me, and he said “Ah jez don’t lahk ‘im”. Then they walked away. My friends were standing nearby, and assured me I did nothing wrong, and I had showered up and put on clean clothes after our stomp (which didn’t make me any better looking, however). Weird. The only other thing that came close was at a steakhouse in Corinth when some folks in the salad bar line thought that one of my travelling companions was Charles Manson. I assured them that Charlie is neither half as tall nor half as nuts as Jim (just kidding Jim; you’re nowhere near twice as tall as Manson).
So, in order of their ranking in CWT, here are my photos:
#1 – Shiloh Church (Replica).
#2 – Shiloh National Cemetery. Here are some shots at the 16th Wisconsin color bearers’ graves (from left to right, Mike Pellegrini, Jim Epperson, Dave Powell and Zack Waltz), Grant’s headquarters cannon & marker, and three buddies at the entrance gate.
#3 – The Putnam Stump. This is a replica of the stump under which his comrades buried J. D. Putnam of the 14th Wisconsin.
#4 – The Defeated Victory monument. We also called this the Excuses? We Got a Million of ‘Em monument, or simply the Monumental Excuse.
#5 – Corinth Interpretive Center. See here.
#6 – Rhea Springs. Perfect spot for a picnic.
#7 – Cherry Mansion. This house in Savannah was Grant’s HQ, and also where W. H. L. Wallace died.
#8 – Hagy’s Catfish Hotel.
#9 – Indian Mounds.