Warfare in the Age of Steam

16 01 2011

I’m currently reading Crimea by Trevor Royle.  I have limited knowledge of the 1854-1856 war and, recognizing the limitations of a comprehensive study such as this, am learning a lot, not the least of which being that many of what I’ve always heard were “firsts” in our Civil War were, at best, seconds.  Not that Royle points these things out: while the United States does play a role in his history of the war, he doesn’t draw comparisons between the two conflicts.

I thought this would be a good time to point you towards a blog I’ve been following for a while, Warfare in the Age of Steam.  Run by someone named Ralphus, it puts the Civil War into a larger context, though that’s not its specific focus.  Lots of cool stuff – Ralphus uses a variety of media including plenty of video clips, and he has a penchant for Zouaves, art, film, and miniatures.  But he’s looking at the world in general during the period.  Check it out.  I’ve added it to the blogroll and it will show up on the page when next I update.

Great, But Not Good

7 01 2011

Check out this thoughtful “teaser” essay by Keith Harris of Cosmic America about the pluses and a pretty big minus of David Blight’s seminal Civil War memory study Race and Reunion.  Hat tip to Kevin Levin for pointing this out.

I’ve added Keith to the blogroll – he’ll show up next time I update the page.  He has some great stuff up and uses some unique angles of approach, so check it out.  I like his style – sort of the Anthony Bourdain of the Civil War blogosphere.


7 01 2011

Liza and Jerry flank the clown that is Bull Runnings

Here’s an interesting post on how un-or-less-established individuals in the Civil War history game can get their voices heard and maybe even become a player.  It’s important to have a handle on who your target audience is, though that may change over time.  But there’s really nothing stopping anyone from being heard.  Getting folks to listen is the key, and entirely dependent upon you.

Tattoo It On Your Forehead

4 01 2011

Here’s a thoughtful post by Dmitri Rotov on how we have come to understand – or rather, “know” – what happened to Confederate general Gustavus W. Smith after he took command of the army outside of Richmond in June 1862.  The opening sentence says it all:

Common knowledge is the curse of Civil War history.

Post title courtesy of Jeffrey [The Big] Lebowski.

Great News – and Coming Up…

1 01 2011

The great news is that I received a communique from the Godfather of battle digitization, Brian Downey, and he plans to be active on his blog again this year (work commitments kept him away for most of 2010).  To show he is in earnest, he has a new post up at Behind Antietam on the Web.  Welcome back, Brian!

Things I’m working on for the next few posts:

  • an interview with a Gettysburg entrepreneur;
  • a preview/review of the January 10 American Experience program on U. S. Grant;
  • a preview of the new issue of America’s Civil War magazine;
  • a couple of items of interest from the new issue of North and South magazine;
  • an expansion on my article on Gettysburg’s Jacob Weikert farm in the current issue of Civil War Times magazine;
  • another way to follow Bull Runnings using an e-Reader (that is what they call those things, right?);
  • and something I’ve been putting off for a long while, a look at an essay that discusses expectations at the time that the great military leader of the Civil War would emerge from a place other than the military establishment.

As usual, other things are sure to come up, including more primary material on First Bull Run and various news items, so stay tuned!

Why Bory Wanted that Flag

21 12 2010

Stuart Salling over at Louisiana in the Civil War has this interesting article on what compelled P. G. T. Beauregard to adopt the Rebel battle flag.  Check it out.  I’ll try to find the original Richmond Daily Dispatch article and put it in the resources section.

Photo courtesy of Craig Swain.

Blogroll Update

8 12 2010

I’ve updated the blogroll once again.  There are a number of additions, some of them are new and some of them have been around for a little while.  Check it out, mostly good stuff there.  If you know of any sites not listed, let me know.  I’ll check them out and if in my magnanimity I deem them worthy, I’ll add them next time around.


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