Book Reviews

Book Review – Gabriel, A Novel of the American Civil War

Recently, I had to fortunate privilege of acquiring and reading a book that I might not have normally picked up in a bookstore. Usually if I take a chance on historical fiction – especially Civil War historical fiction – I pick a book that follows a character that I know I’ll become attached to. I… Continue reading Book Review – Gabriel, A Novel of the American Civil War

Battles in the East

Harper’s Ferry – Confluence at War (Part 1)

Most casual historians will recognize the name of Harper’s Ferry as “ground zero” for John Brown’s infamous raid that was designed to inspire a revolution amongst the enslaved population in America. While the raid did not fully succeed, many claim that Brown’s actions at Harper’s Ferry and his subsequent execution are the instigating factors that… Continue reading Harper’s Ferry – Confluence at War (Part 1)

Traveling Tidbits

The Coffee Mill – Eating Inside Harper’s Ferry

Just down the road from Harper’s Ferry National Park, there’s no lack of eatery places one can stop in to grab a quick bite to eat during their tour through the historic village. The Coffee Mill is one example. Coffee Mill, Harper's Ferry, WV (author photo, Aug 2019) There’s not much information available about The… Continue reading The Coffee Mill – Eating Inside Harper’s Ferry

Portraits of Privates

A Thanksgiving Letter Home

The below letter was written by Charles Clarence Miller (1843-1912), Gates, Monroe county, New York. In the 1860 US Census, 16 year-old Charles was enumerated in his parents household in Gates where he attended school and worked as a farm laborer. 140th NY depicted at Saunders Field In August 1862, he enlisted with Company D… Continue reading A Thanksgiving Letter Home

Battles in the East

“More Than Human Flesh Could Stand” – May 11th – 12th, 1864, Spotsylvania

In the face of staggering losses and terribly mangled plans, Ulysses Grant was still optimistic on the morning of May 11th, 1864. Despite his best efforts to find that weakness in Robert Lee’s heavily fortified line along Laurel Hill and the – supposedly vulnerable – salient to the east, Grant was left with more casualties… Continue reading “More Than Human Flesh Could Stand” – May 11th – 12th, 1864, Spotsylvania

Civil War Trivia

Was It A Civil War or A Rebellion? (Thinking Out Loud)

*I want to stress that this post is simply my opinions or half-baked thoughts that I wanted to share about something that warrants way more scrutiny and research* My husband and I were having a discussion the other night that I thought was worth sharing. He said something to the effect that he had read… Continue reading Was It A Civil War or A Rebellion? (Thinking Out Loud)

Portraits of Privates

A Prisoner of the Wilderness – Laforest Hinton

One of several fates may befall a soldier in combat. They can come out unscathed, become wounded and taken to their own corps’ field hospital, or they can die on the battlefield. One more fate, perhaps even more terrifying than these, is to be wounded and then captured by the enemy. This was the fate… Continue reading A Prisoner of the Wilderness – Laforest Hinton

Women in the War

Drama and Scandal in the Wilderness – Phenie Tapp’s Story

On a cold February day in 1860, a child was born in a cabin owned by the widow, Catherine Tapp. The baby girl was named Eliza Frances, but was known to her family and all those in Spotsylvania County as Phenie Tapp. The situation of the child’s birth – and her later escapades as an… Continue reading Drama and Scandal in the Wilderness – Phenie Tapp’s Story

Civil War Trivia, Portraits of Privates

What Did They Write About? – Civil War Letters

I have always liked a saying that I heard in a documentary once that the life of a pirate consisted of long period of absolute tedium and boredom, punctuated by intense moments of danger and excitement. The same can be said for soldiers of the Civil War (or any war for that matter). What did… Continue reading What Did They Write About? – Civil War Letters

Battles in the East, Historical Homes, Women in the War

Ellwood Manor – Connections in the Wilderness

There’s a saying that every human being on the planet is connected by just six degrees of separation. Nowhere is this more exemplified than in the case of Ellwood Manor, nestled in the heart of the Wilderness. The legacy begins with two brothers. William and Churchill Jones were the sons of Churchill Jones and Millicent… Continue reading Ellwood Manor – Connections in the Wilderness