Tag: memory

What the Name "Civil War" Tells Us--and Why It Matters

What the Name “Civil War” Tells Us–and Why It Matters

What do Americans call the conflict that tore their nation apart from 1861 to 1865? And what difference does it make what name they use? Today most call it the Civil War, but as I discuss in my recent article in the September issue of the journal, Americans have not ...
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Bringing Peace after Destruction: Civil War Era Monuments and the Memory of the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862

Bringing Peace after Destruction: Civil War Era Monuments and the Memory of the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862

As the fall semester loomed at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, protesters ignited a movement to remove “Silent Sam,” an infamous memorial dedicated by the United Daughters of the Confederacy in 1913. The monument honored students who served in the Confederate armed forces during the Civil War ...
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Summering with Confederate Statues

Summering with Confederate Statues

Our family just returned to California after spending much of the summer driving around the South promoting our new book, Denmark Vesey’s Garden: Slavery and Memory in the Cradle of the Confederacy. We logged about 1,700 miles in the car, visiting thirteen towns and cities in six southern states. We ...
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Editor’s Note: September 2018 Issue

The September issue of The Journal of the Civil War Era will soon be arriving in your mailboxes. For a preview of the excellent work within its pages, see our editor's note reprinted below. This volume combines exciting new work in the military history of the Civil War with essays ...
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Comparing Home Rule in Hungary and the U.S. South

Comparing Home Rule in Hungary and the U.S. South

Home rule, defined as the gaining of political autonomy, is usually associated with the struggle for autonomy in Ireland. Twice defeated, the Irish Republic claimed its independence before home rule took effect.[1] While the British debated home rule in 1886 and 1893, the U.S. South was working toward its own ...
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“Confederate Monuments...What To Do?”:  Historians’ Town-Hall Meeting on Memorialization—and Racial Injustice

“Confederate Monuments…What To Do?”: Historians’ Town-Hall Meeting on Memorialization—and Racial Injustice

Today we conclude our series of reports on relevant panels at the 2018 OAH that will be of interest to readers. Our last entry in the series discusses the future of Confederate monuments in the American landscape, authored by Jonathan Lande. The earlier reports can be found here and here. ...
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Exit Through the Gift Shop: Historical Memory and Gift Shops at Civil War Historic Sites

Exit Through the Gift Shop: Historical Memory and Gift Shops at Civil War Historic Sites

When I was a graduate student living in Indiana, I made a point of visiting historical sites connected to the Civil War throughout the state. One of my favorites was the General Lew Wallace Study & Museum in Crawfordsville. Situated in a quiet neighborhood in northwest Indiana, the site preserves ...
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Legal History's Debt to Frederick Douglass

Legal History’s Debt to Frederick Douglass

Marking his 200th birthday this week, I want to acknowledge the debt legal historians owe to Frederick Douglass. When Chief Justice Roger Taney denied that free black Americans were citizens of the United States in the 1857 Dred Scott decision, Douglass immediately opposed him. Then, across his lifetime, Douglass never forget ...
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Outrageous Inaccuracies: The Grand Army of the Republic Protests <em>The Birth of a Nation</em>

Outrageous Inaccuracies: The Grand Army of the Republic Protests The Birth of a Nation

When the motion picture film The Birth of a Nation was released in 1915, most veterans of the American Civil War were in their seventies and eighties. Membership in the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR)—the largest fraternal organization of Union veterans in the country—had declined by that time to ...
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Public Iconography, Museum Education, and Reconstruction Era History

Public Iconography, Museum Education, and Reconstruction Era History

Today, correspondent Nick Sacco shares his first Field Dispatch. Nick is a public historian working for the National Park Service as a Park Guide at the Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site in St. Louis, Missouri. He holds a master's degree in history with a concentration in public history from ...
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Empty Pedestals and Absent Pedestals: Civil War Memory and Monuments to the American Revolution

Empty Pedestals and Absent Pedestals: Civil War Memory and Monuments to the American Revolution

Today we share the first of our new Field Dispatches, an examination of Civil War memory by Niels Eichhorn, an assistant professor of history at Middle Georgia State University. Dr. Eichhorn specializes in the history of U.S. foreign relations in the nineteenth century, and his work has appeared in Civil ...
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The South Rises Yet Again, This Time on HBO

The South Rises Yet Again, This Time on HBO

For someone who spends a lot of time thinking about how Americans remember the Civil War, the last few months have been something of a treasure trove. The sectional conflict has surfaced repeatedly, in a variety of ways--some hopeful, some troubling--from confrontations over the removal of Confederate monuments to the ...
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A Free Country for White Men: The Legacy of Frank Blair Jr. and his Statue in St. Louis

A Free Country for White Men: The Legacy of Frank Blair Jr. and his Statue in St. Louis

When former St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay suggested in April 2015 that the time had come for a "reappraisal" of a Confederate monument standing in the city's popular Forest Park, few St. Louisians knew that such a statue even existed in the area.[1] The same could be said for three ...
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Key and Peele's “Civil War Reenactment”: Historical Sketch Comedy as Social Commentary

Key and Peele’s “Civil War Reenactment”: Historical Sketch Comedy as Social Commentary

Americans are increasingly forgetful of the fact that the Civil War was about slavery. Atlanta's 2010 Sesquicentennial kicked off with a celebration of secession, sponsored by the Sons of Confederate Veterans. Only a few days ago, Mississippi's governor declared April “Confederate Heritage Month.” Fortunately, opposing voices from the realm of ...
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An Interview with Dr. William Blair, Founding Editor of the Journal of the Civil War Era

Dr. William Blair, History Professor at Penn State University, is the founding editor of The Journal of the Civil War Era. Muster asked Dr. Blair about the journal, Civil War memory, and Daniel Day-Lewis. Thanks to Michael Johnson, a PhD student at George Washington University, for conducting this interview. You were ...
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