Civil War Weapons | HistoryNet MENU

Civil War Weapons

Information and Articles About Civil War Weapons used during the American Civil War

A Cannon Used During The Civil War
A Cannon Used During The Civil War

Many weapons were used in the The Civil War from knives to swords along with a variety of firearms, including rifles, pistols, muskets, and repeating weapons. Also widely used was artillery including cannons. Some of the new weapon technologies used in the civil war include rifled gun barrels, the Minie ball and repeating rifles.

Civil War Cannons

Cannons played a major role in the the civil war. Some of the cannon used by union and confederate forces include the 12 pound Howitzer, the 10 pound Parrot rifle, and the 3 inch ordnance rifle. Lean more about Civil War Cannon

Civil War Guns

The civil war brought many advancements in gun technology, most notably the widespread use of rifled barrels. Popular rifles used in the civil war include the Springfield rifle, the Lorenz rifle, the Colt revolving rifle. Lean more about Civil War Guns

Civil War Swords and Sabers

Swords were still used widely in the civil war. Popular swords include the Model 1832 Foot Artillery Sword, Model 1832 Dragoon Saber, Model 1840 Light Artillery Saber, and the Model 1840 Army Non-commissioned Officers’ Sword. Learn more about Civil War Swords

The Minie Ball

The Minié Ball (aka Minie Ball) was a type of bullet that was used throughout the Civil War. Designed to expand while traveling along the rifle barrel, it increased muzzle velocity as well as providing spin to the bullet, expanding its accuracy and range. This advance in weaponry, along with outdated military tactics devised in an era of older firearms, are often cited as a reason for the large numbers of casualties of the Civil War. Learn more about the Minie Ball


 

 

Articles Featuring Civil War Weapons From History Net Magazines

Featured Article

Grenade!: The Little-Known Weapon of the Civil War

By Joseph G. Bilby

It was akin to shooting fish in a barrel. The Hoosiers of the 45th Illinois were pinned down in a crater that June 25, 1862, the result of a Union mine used in an attempt to blow up a section of the Rebel works at Vicksburg. The Federal attack had faltered in the reeking pit, and the Confederates had taken the opportunity to hurl ad hoc hand grenades, modified artillery shells, down up the helpless Yankees. A Union officer reported that “the enemy…with their hand-grenades render it difficult for our working parties to remain in the crater at all. The wounds inflicted by those missiles are frightful.”

While artillery shells were pressed into service during that incident, there were several varieties of Civil War grenades made specifically for their purpose. Some had an almost cartoonish appearance, with fins for aerodynamics and plungers for detonating. Others looked like deadly bocce balls. But though the grenades used by the Blue and the Gray were far from perfect—some were as dangerous to the thrower as they were to the intended target—a variety of improvised and purpose-built grenades were hurled and used in combat in numerous battles.

Grenades had been used in battle for hundreds of years before the Civil War, and were well known to the military men of the 1860s. In his 1861 Military Dictionary, Colonel Henry Lee Scott described a grenade as “small shell about 2-inches in diameter, which, being set on fire by means of a short fuze and cast among the enemy’s troops causes great damage by its explosion.” For troops attacking fortifications, Scott recommended the use of “blindages,” a French term for armored shields, as protection from grenades.

Colonel Scott suggested that forts be amply supplied with grenades, and the weapons often were staples of garrison armament. At Fort Sumter hand grenades were distributed at critical points during the 1861 siege, including the room over the gateway, to use against a storming party. Captain John G. Foster reported that he had made “complete arrangements for using shells and grenades over the parapet.” The Confederate bombardment exploded some of the grenade piles.

By 1862, grenades were being used in land warfare. In May, the commander of the 37th Ohio Infantry claimed his men were attacked by Confederates armed with grenades, and Colonel George H. Gordon of the 2nd Massachusetts Infantry reported that grenades thrown by civilians from houses in Winchester, Va., killed and wounded his soldiers as they retreated through the town that same month. In April Confederate Brig. Gen. Daniel H. Hill requested that a supply of grenades be sent to his men defending the Virginia Peninsula.

Hand grenades were frequently used during the summer of 1863 at the twin sieges of Port Hudson and Vicksburg. Following the 1862 capture of New Orleans, Rebels fortified Port Hudson, situated atop an 80-foot bluff on a bend in the Mississippi River and surrounded by deep ravines, in a desperate attempt to keep the river open between northern Louisiana and Vicksburg as an avenue to the trans-Mississippi Confederacy. In May 1863, Maj. Gen. General Nathaniel Banks’ army of more than 30,000 men moved north from New Orleans to attack Port Hudson, which, although well fortified, was garrisoned by only around 6,800 Confederates under Maj. Gen. Franklin Gardner. Banks’ goal was to overrun Port Hudson and proceed up the river to join forces with Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant’s force besieging Vicksburg. On May 27, Banks launched an all-out assault on the miles of earthworks surrounding Port Hudson. It failed miserably.

In preparation for a second attack, Banks ordered 500 hand grenades from Admiral David G. Farragut, requesting that they “be accompanied, if you please, by an officer who can explain to our men their proper management.” The U.S. Navy seems to have been the place to go for grenades on the Mississippi, because ships were routinely issued a generous supply to repel potential boarders. In April 1862, Colonel Charles Ellett requested nine cases of “parapet hand-grenades, such as would be most convenient for throwing over a bulwark, to clear the bows of the steamer in case of boarding” for his fleet of ramming ships. In February 1863, Acting Rear Adm. David D. Porter advised one of his captains to “keep your pilot-house well supplied with hand-grenades, &c., in case the enemy should get on your upper decks.”

The naval grenades were issued to Banks’ troops in time for his next attack, which took place on June 14. Special ad hoc grenadier units were created, including one of five companies from the 4th Massachusetts and 110th New York Infantry and another of 100 men from the 28th Connecticut Infantry. The grenadiers were ordered to sling their muskets, closely follow the skirmish line up to the enemy parapets, toss their grenades and continue the fight as skirmishers.

Read More in America’s Civil War Magazine

Subscribe online and save nearly 40%!!!

Banks’ second attack proved to be another disaster, and Port Hudson would hold out until the fall of Vicksburg made the post untenable. During the second ill-fated Yankee attack, most of the grenadiers did not get close enough to the enemy to use their hand grenades. Those who did had some of their grenades thrown back at them. That fact, along with the special training requested by Banks, suggests they may have been issued the hand grenades invented in 1861 by William F. Ketchum. Ketchum’s grenade featured a cast iron cylinder filled with gunpowder and tapered on both ends, with one end fitted with a plunger and percussion cap to facilitate detonation on impact. A dowel with four pasteboard arrowlike vanes was inserted in the opposite end to aid with the grenade’s flight. Sometimes Ketchum grenades would not strike a hard enough object to detonate, allowing them to be tossed back.

At Vicksburg the hand grenade shoe was initially on the other foot, and Confederate defenders used them to repel General Grant’s attempt to take the town by storm on May 22. According to Confederate Maj. Gen. John H. Forney, “hand grenades were used at each point with good effect” against the Union attack. The “grenades” the Rebels used, however, were not purpose-built hand grenades like those the Union Navy supplied to their forces at Port Hudson, but 6- and 12-pound artillery rounds with short fuses that were tossed or rolled onto the attackers. Colonel Ashbell Smith of the 2nd Texas Infantry reported that “to clear the outside ditch, spherical case were used as hand-grenades,” and these were the most common Vicksburg Rebel grenades, although one source states that the Confederates also used glass bottle grenades like those employed by the Russians in the Crimean War.

As the Vicksburg siege developed and Union forces pushed their trenches and saps forward and dug mines under the city’s defenses, the Rebel use of artillery shells as improvised grenades increased. The men of the 55th Illinois countered the enemy tactic of rolling grenades over the parapet by blocking them with a board held up by bayonets at the edge of the Union trench. It worked, and only one shell hurt any of those in the ditch, bursting against one soldier and killing him.

The Confederates soon improved their grenade techniques, however, organizing artillerymen whose guns were disabled or otherwise unusable into a specialized “hand-grenade and thunder-barrel corps.” The grenadiers proved very effective in repelling Union forays.

In an attempt to counter these tactics, the Federals created their own grenadier corps, initially turning to the Navy for genuine hand grenades that were supposedly more portable and easier to pitch than artillery shells. One report, however, cited that “naval hand-grenades…from their peculiar form could not be thrown any considerable distance.”

The statement, coupled with the source of the grenades, indicates that the naval grenades in question were probably Ketchums, especially since the unexploded remains of some have been found by archeologists and relic hunters in the Vicksburg lines. Despite problems with those weapons, designated Yankee grenadiers, including Private William Lazarus of the 1st U.S. Infantry, assumed the job of bomb tossing. It was dangerous work, and Lazarus was killed after throwing only 20 grenades.

Confederate grenades were no more able to save Vicksburg than Yankee ones were able to capture Port Hudson, and the city capitulated on July 4, 1863. Improvised shell-grenades, however, continued to be widely used in other defensive situations by Rebel troops throughout the war, including at Chattanooga and during the Atlanta campaign and the siege of Mobile and, along with turpentine “fireballs” in the Confederate defense of Morris Island and Fort Sumter in 1863. Federals rolled grenades on Southerners trapped in a ditch outside Knoxville’s Fort Sanders in November 1863.

Aside from the Naval grenades used by Union troops along the Mississippi, primary source references to specific purpose-built hand grenades are relatively rare. One intriguing November 1864 intelligence report on the Rebel defense of the ruins of Fort Sumter relates that Confederates stationed there were issued “hand-grenades of the improved pattern” when on night guard duty. These grenades were most likely some of the 1,100 grenades shipped to Charleston from Augusta Arsenal in the fourth quarter of 1863. The body of the “improved pattern” grenade was a Ketchumlike double tapered cylinder fitted with a “sensitive tube” percussion-type detonator. Like the Ketchum, it was attached to a “guide stick” fitted with paper fins wrapped in protective cloth that was removed immediately before throwing. The Augusta Arsenal made almost 13,000 of these grenades during the last 11⁄2 years of the conflict.

It may have been these “improved” grenades that Rebel artillery chief Brig. Gen. William N. Pendleton speculated on using in an offensive mode at Petersburg in June 1864. According to Pendleton, “hand-grenades might do important service in driving off the enemy as we approach his breast-works.” He went on to ask: Have we any made? If so, of what pattern, weight, &c., and how are they put up for transportation? If none are on hand would it not be well to have some prepared very soon?” Yankees were apparently using grenades in the Richmond-Petersburg lines as well, and a month later Rebel Brig. Gen. Archibald Gracie reported that “the enemy attempted to throw hand-grenades…which fell fifteen yards short.”

In addition to the traditional lit fuse, Ketchum-style and improvised shell hand grenades, several other types of Union grenades were designed during the war, although they seem to have been used little, if at all. One was the Hanes “Excelsior” grenade, an 1862 invention of Kentuckian W. W. Hanes. The Excelsior was composed of two spheres, one set inside the other. The operator armed the grenade by unscrewing the exterior sphere, exposing the gunpowder-filled nipple-studded interior one, capping the nipples, and reassembling the weapon. A cushion between the nipples and exterior sphere was supposed to prevent the Hanes grenade from detonating unless it was forcibly thrown against a hard object, but the inherent danger of handling it seems to have limited its actual military use.

Read More in Civil War Times Magazine

Subscribe online and save nearly 40%!!!

Some Hanes grenades apparently got into civilian hands, however, since a device that appears to have been an Excelsior grenade was mentioned during a September 1864 treason trial in Indianapolis of alleged Southern-sympathizing saboteurs of the Knights of the Golden Circle. According to a witness, one of the participants in the failed conspiracy “unscrewed the hand grenade and showed me the nipples on the inner shell.” The grenade was supposed to be used in conjunction with “Greek fire,” a highly flammable liquid mixture, to destroy government property.

The Adams grenade, an advanced and innovative time-fuse device developed by John S. Adams in January 1865, was also patented. It was similar in design to those the French were experimenting with at the time and a true precursor of the modern hand grenade. The Adams was spherical in shape and armed when a strap looped around the thrower’s wrist set off a friction primer that ignited a five-second fuse as the grenade left his hand. There is little information available on the extent to which Adams grenades were actually used, but some apparently made it to the field.

A rusted example was discovered by Colin Dreyden, an 11-year-old boy playing in a crawl space under an old house in Beaufort, S.C., in May 2007. The grenade, which weighed 6 pounds, was removed by U.S. Marine Corps demolition experts, who hoped to disarm and restore it for subsequent display. It proved to be inert, preventing the possibility of a Civil War hand grenade claiming one last casualty.

Joseph G. Bilby is a contributing writer to ACW. His latest book, Small Arms at Gettysburg, is scheduled for a fall 2007 release.


This article by Joseph G. Bilby was originally published in the November 2007 issue of America’s Civil War magazine.For more great articles be sure to subscribe to America’s Civil War magazine today!

Articles 2

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad: The Union’s Most Important Supply LineThe Baltimore & Ohio Railroad survived numerous hardships of the Civil War in its service to the Union.
Battle of New Market Heights: USCT Soldiers Proved Their HeroismOn a gunfire-swept slope near Richmond on September 29, 1864, USCT soldiers stood to the test and proved black men made good professional troops. Fourteen of them received the Medal of Honor for their bravery.
Battle of Gaines’ Mill: U.S. Army Regulars to the RescueAs Robert E. Lee hammered Federal forces at Gaines' Mill, Brig. Gen. George Sykes proud division of Regulars held its post of honor on the Union right. The 'Old Army was showing its mettle to the new.
Siege of Port HudsonPort Hudson, like Vicksburg, was a tough nut to crack. But the Union's traditional superiority in firepower, personified by the 1st Indiana Heavy Artillery, quickly went to work on the Rebel bastion.
Sergeant Milton Humphreys’ Concept of Indirect FireEighteen-year-old Sergeant Milton Humphreys changed the nature of artillery forever with his concept of indirect fire.
Account Of The Battle of ChickamaugaOverconfident and overextended, the Union Army of the Cumberland advanced into the deep woods of northwest Georgia. Waiting Confederates did not intend for them to leave. At Chickamauga Creek, the two sides collided.
American Civil War: No Draft!Angry farmers turn a Wisconsin town into a battlefield when they riot against conscription in November 1862.
American Civil War: The 23rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry RegimentThe Twenty-Third Ohio Volunteer Infantry Regiment included two future presidents and an Army Commander.
America’s Civil War: Loudoun RangersThe Quaker-dominated Loudoun Rangers openly defied Virginia tradition to serve the Union.
Capturing Fort Pulaski During the American Civil WarAs a young U.S. Army lieutenant, Robert E. Lee helped to construct Fort Pulaski. As a Confederate general 30 years later, he confidently assured fort defenders it could not be breached. Union gunners were not so sure.
Battle of Chickamauga: Colonel John Wilder’s Lightning Brigade Prevented Total DisasterArmed with their new, lethal seven-shot Spencer rifles, Wilder's Lightning Brigade was all that stood between the Union Army and the looming disaster at Chickamauga Creek.
Battle of Sailor’s CreekThe April 6, 1865 Battle of Sailor's Creek constituted one of the darkest days in the Army of Northern Virginia's history.
America’s Civil War: Horses and Field ArtilleryWorking side by side with soldiers, horses labored to pull artillery pieces into battle. Without them, field artillery could not have been used to such deadly effect.
Abraham Lincoln and Walt Whitman: War’s Kindred SpiritsKindred spirits Abraham Lincoln and Walt Whitman prepared themselves for another bloody year of war as 1863 dawned.
Battle of Antietam: Controversial Crossing on Burnside’s BridgeShould General Ambrose Burnside have ordered his men to wade Antietam Creek? Author Marvel undertook a personal odyssey to find out.
Battle of Stones River: Philip Sheridan’s Rise to Millitary FameWhen Braxton Bragg's Confederates swooped down on the Federals at Stones River, only one division stood between the Rebels and calamitous defeat. Fortunately for the Union, that division was commanded by Phil Sheridan.
44th Georgia Regiment Volunteers in the American Civil WarThe hard-fighting 44th Georgia suffered some of the heaviest losses of any regiment in the Civil War.
Battle of Antietam: Taking Rohrbach Bridge at Antietam CreekWhile Union commander George McClellan fumed and the Battle of Antietam hung in the balance, a handful of Rebels held off Federal troops at 'Burnside Bridge.'
Battle of Champion’s HillWith Ulysses S. Grant's army steadily menacing Vicksburg, Confederate General John Pemberton left the town's comforting defenses to seek out the enemy army. Too late, he found it, at Champion's Hill.
Battle of Shiloh: The Devil’s Own DayAt a small Methodist meeting house in southwestern Tennessee, Union and Confederate armies met for a 'must-win' battle in the spring of 1862. No one, however, expected the bloodbath that ensued. It was, said General William Sherman, 'the Devil's own day.'
Weaponry: The Rifle-Musket and the Minié BallThe Civil War's deadliest weapons were not rapid-fire guns or giant cannon, but the simple rifle-musket and the humble minié ball.
J.E.B. Stuart’s RevengeA stolen hat and wounded pride spurred Southern cavalryman J.E.B. Stuart into action. His vengeance would be swift, daring, and--unexpectedly--funny.
Union General Judson KilpatrickUnion General Judson Kilpatrick was flamboyant, reckless, tempestuous, and even licentious. In some respects he made other beaux sabreurs like fellow-cavalrymen George Custer and J. E. B. Stuart seem dull.
Battle of Wilson’s CreekThe Battle of Wilson's Creek helped to keep a critical border state out of the Confederacy.
Brigadier General John Gibbon’s Brief Breach During the Battle of FredericksburgAlthough overshadowed by the doomed Federal attack on the Confederate center, General John Gibbon's 2nd Division managed -- however briefly -- to make a breakthrough on the Union left.

Articles 3

Brigadier General Thomas F. MeagherBrigadier General Thomas F. Meagher, the colorful leader of the Irish Brigade, fought many battles--not all of them with the enemy.
Military Technology: The Confederate Floating Battery Revival During the American Civil WarPopular during the Crimean War, the floating battery was revived by hard-pressed Confederates.
America’s Civil War: Fort Wagner and the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer InfantryThe doomed assault on Fort Wagner won the 54th Massachusetts a place in history, but did not win the battle for the North. No regiment could have carried the fort that day.
1st Louisiana Special Battalion at the First Battle of ManassasRecruited from New Orleans' teeming waterfront by soldier of fortune Roberdeau Wheat, the 1st Louisiana Special Battalion more than lived up to its pugnacious nickname--Wheat's Tigers--at the First Battle of Manassas.
America’s Civil War: Guerrilla Leader William Clarke Quantrill’s Last Raid in KentuckyWhen Confederate fortunes plummeted in Missouri, fearsome guerrilla leader William Clarke Quantrill and his band of hardened killers headed east to terrorize Union soldiers and civilians in Kentucky. It would be Quantrill's last hurrah.
Ambrose Bierce’s Civil War: One Man’s Morbid VisionFor Ambrose Bierce, the enemy was not really the gray-clad host at the other end of the field, but death, and the terror of death and wounds.
USS Monitor: The Crew Took Great Pride in Serving on the Famous ShipThe crew of Swedish Inventor John Ericsson's Monitor took great pride in serving on the renowned 'cheese box on a raft.'
Firebrand in a Powder Keg: Nathaniel Lyon in St. LouisWhen secession fever threatened Missouri, a hotheaded gesture by a Yankee touched off riots but helped keep the state in the Union.
America’s Civil War: Front Royal Was the Key to the Shenandoah ValleyThe pretty little town of Front Royal, in the Shenandoah Valley, had a strategic value that belied its size. As Stonewall Jackson knew, it was the key to the valley, the state of Virginia and the war itself.
Eyewitness Account: A Tar Heel at GettysburgAfter capture, Lawrence D. Davis had to undergo being reviewed by 'big & fat' Ben Butler.
America’s Civil War: Pre-dawn Assault on Fort StedmanLed by select groups of sharpshooters, the weary, muddy troops of the Army of Northern Virginia made one last desperate push to break out of Petersburg.
Second Battle of Bull Run: Destruction of the 5th New York ZouavesThe Texas Brigade tide bore down on the isolated 5th New York Zouaves at Second Bull Run. A fine regiment was about to be destroyed.
Immortal 600: Prisoners Under Fire at Charleston Harbor During the American Civil WarKnowingly exposing helpless prisoners to artillery fire seems unconscionable. War, however, has a way of fostering inhumane behavior.
Battle of Gettysburg: Union Cavalry AttacksAfter the conclusion of Pickett's Charge, ill-advised Union cavalry attacks killed dozens of Federal horsemen and a promising brigadier general.
Battle of Antietam: Carnage in a CornfieldMr. Miller's humble cornfield near Antietam Creek became the unlikely setting for perhaps the worst fighting of the entire Civil War.
Major General George Stoneman Led the Last American Civil War Cavalry RaidEven as General Robert E. Lee was surrendering at Appomattox, a vengeful Union cavalry horde led by Maj. Gen. George Stoneman made Southern civilians pay dearly for the war. It was a last brutal lesson in the concept of total warfare.
Battle of Resaca: Botched Union AttackWilliam Tecumseh Sherman waited expectantly to hear that his accomplished young protégé, James B. McPherson, had successfully gotten astride the railroad at Resaca and cut off the Confederate line of retreat. Hours went by with no word from McPherson. What was 'Mac' doing in Snake Creek Gap?
Martha Derby Perry: Eyewitness to the 1863 New York City Draft RiotsThe wife of a bedridden Union surgeon was a horrified witness to the New York City Draft Riots of July 1863.
America’s Civil War: Assault at PetersburgSixth Corps Yankees stumbled out of their earthworks and toward the muddy pits of the Army of Northern Virginia. It was the beginning of the end at Petersburg.
Battle of Gettysburg: Fighting at Little Round TopThe Battle of Gettysburg, and perhaps the fate of the Union, was decided in one hour of desperate fighting on the rocky ledges of Little Round Top.
America’s Civil War in War Tennessee’s Hickman CountyMidnight justice, 'devilish brutality' and coldblooded murder sometimes characterized the Civil War in border regions.
Sullivan Ballou: The Macabre Fate of a American Civil War MajorMajor Sullivan Ballou gained fame for the poignant letter he wrote to his wife before the First Battle of Bull Run. Not so well known is that after he was mortally wounded in that fight, Confederates dug up, decapitated and burned his body.
Eyewitness to America’s Civil War: William W. PattesonTeenager William W. Patteson fled his Virginia farm and fought at the Battle of Cedar Mountain.
America’s Civil War: John Mosby and George Custer Clash in the Shenandoah ValleyWhen Civil War's John Singleton Mosby's Partisan Rangers clashed with George A. Custer's Union Cavalry, the niceties of war were the first casualty. Reprisal and counter reprisal became the order of the day.
America’s Civil War: Union’s Mission to Relieve Fort SumterFor three long months, Civil War Major Robert Anderson and his besieged troops waited for reinforcements at Fort Sumter. Back in Washington, Union naval officer Gustavus Fox raced against time to organize just such a mission.

Articles 4

Battle of Chickamauga: Union Regulars Desperate StandCivil War Brigadier General John King's disciplined brigade of Union Regulars found itself tested as never before at Chickamauga. For two bloody days, the Regulars dashed from one endangered spot to another, seeking to save their army from annihilation.
Battle of Stones River: Union General Rosecrans Versus Confederate General BraggAmerican Civil War Union General William Rosecrans bided his time, waiting to attack Confederate General Braxton Bragg's Rebel army at Murfreesboro, 30 miles south of Nashville.
Battle of Chickamauga: 21st Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry and Their Colt’s Revolving Rifles'My God, We Thought You Had a Division Here!' The 21st Ohio Infantry's unique repeating weaponry was its salvation - and nearly its undoing - at Chickamauga.
Battle of Gettysburg: Confederate General Richard Ewell’s Failure on the HeightsFor the second day in a row, Confederate General Richard Ewell inexplicably failed to take the offensive at Gettysburg. 'The fruits of victory, Robert E. Lee lamented, had not been gathered.
Did Lt. Gen. Richard Ewell Lose the Battle of GettysburgAfter disobeying Robert E. Lee's orders to avoid a general engagement at Gettysburg, Lt. Gen. Richard Ewell received an order to 'press those people.' His failure to do so created a controversy that survives to this day.
America’s Civil War: Digging to Victory at VicksburgTo the armies at Vicksburg, picks, shovels and manual labor proved as valuable as bullets and bombshells.
America’s Civil War: Struggle for St. LouisThe dark clouds of civil war gathered over the nation as two aggressive factions -- the Wide-Awakes and the Minutemen -- plotted to gain political control of Missouri and its most important city, St. Louis. As is often the case, political power began at the end of a gun.
Battle of Kernstown: Stonewall Jackson’s Only DefeatA furious Stonewall Jackson watched impotently as his proud Confederates stumbled down the hillside at Kernstown, Va. 'Give them the bayonet,' Jackson implored -- but no one obeyed.
Second Battle of Winchester: Richard Ewell Takes CommandOne month after Stonewall Jackson's death at Chancellorsville, Robert E. Lee turned to Stonewall's trusted lieutenant, Richard Ewell, to cover his invasion of the North. Was 'Old Bald Head' up to the challenge?
America’s Civil War: Savage Skirmish Near SharpsburgWith Robert E. Lee's wily Confederates waiting somewhere in the vicinity of Antietam Creek, Union General George McClellan ordered I Corps commander Joseph Hooker to advance and turn the Rebel flank. But McClellan, for once, was too quick to move, and Hooker soon found himself in an unexpectedly vicious fight.
America’s Civil War: XI Corps Fight During the Chancellorsville CampaignDisliked and distrusted by their comrades in the Army of the Potomac, the men of the XI Corps would find their reputation further damaged by a twilight encounter with Stonewall Jackson's troops in the dark woods at Chancellorsville.
Joseph Scroggs: Observations From His Diary About the 1864 Petersburg CampaignExcerpts from Joseph Scroggs' diary provide his observations on the service of Negro troops under his command on the Civil War battlefields.
Battle of Chancellorsville: Day OneNew Union commander 'Fighting Joe' Hooker planned to encircle Robert E. Lee at the Virginia crossroads hamlet of Chancellorsville. The plan seemed to be working perfectly, until....
Battle of VicksburgUlysses S. Grant thought his formidable Army of the Tennessee could take Vicksburg from a 'beaten' foe by direct assault. He was wrong, thanks to near-impregnable fortifications, renewed Southern spirit, and surprisingly suspect Northern generalship.
Battle of CorinthThe strategic railroad town of Corinth was a key target for Confederate armies hoping to march north in support of General Braxton Bragg's invasion of Kentucky.
America’s Civil War: Battle for KentuckyIt had been almost one month since Confederate General Braxton Bragg had pulled off an organizational masterpiece--four weeks since the first troop trains had rumbled into Chattanooga, Tennessee, completing an improbable 800-mile odyssey.
Battle of Chickamauga: Colonel John T. Wilder and the Lightning BrigadeColonel John T. Wilder's'Lightning Brigade' did all it could to stave off Union disaster at the Battle of Chickamauga.
The Irish Brigade Fought in America’s Civil WarTheir casualties were enormous but their courage and capacity for fun were legendary. General Lee, himself, gave highest praise to these Yankees of the Irish Brigade.
America’s Civil War: Rebel’s Stand at Drewry’s BluffWhile Union Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan's Army of the Potomac slowly advanced on Richmond in May 1862, the Union Navy made its own play to seize the Confederate capital.
Grierson’s Raid During the Vicksburg CampaignU.S. Grant, bogged down outside Vicksburg, needed a diversion to ease his way. He got just that from a music teacher turned cavalryman--one who hated horses, at that.
Billy Yank and Johnny Reb: On the Road to AtlantaBell Irvin Wiley -- the late dean of common-soldier studies -- works his storytelling magic in this 1964 profile of the extraordinary men who grappled for Georgia's key city.
Who Was the Common Soldier of America’s Civil WarCommon Soldier of the Civil War. Here's what the statistics tell us.
America’s Civil War: Last Ditch Rebel Stand at PetersburgAfter nearly 10 months of trench warfare, Confederate resistance at Petersburg, Va., suddenly collapsed. Desperate to save his army, Robert E. Lee called on his soldiers for one last miracle.
USS Constellation: Union Man-of-War in the American Civil WarOrganization and training were essential to coordinate the activities of the hundreds of men who crewed a Union man-of-war.
Battle of Boydton Plank Road: Major General Winfield Scott Hancock Strikes the Southside RailroadWith Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia stubbornlyclinging to Petersburg, Ulysses S. Grant decided to cut its vital rail lines. To perform the surgery, he selected one of the North's proven heroes -- Major General Winfield Scott Hancock.

Articles 5

An Englishman’s Journey Through the Confederacy During America’s Civil WarSuave, gentlemanly Lt. Col. Arthur Fremantle of Her Majesty's Coldstream Guards picked an unusual vacation spot: the Civil War-torn United States.
War Watchers at Bull Run During America’s Civil WarA crowd of Washington politicos, socialites, and newsmen came out to watch the war's first real battle, along northern Virginia's Bull Run. For most, the view was as disappointing as the fight's outcome. But a few got to see all the action they could handle, and more.
Eyewitness to the Battle of AtlantaAmong the blue-clad soldiers moving against Atlanta in late July 1864 was Major Thomas T. Taylor of Georgetown, Ohio. His letters to his wife described his experiences during the Battle of Atlanta.
Battle of Nashville: Enemies Front and RearUnion forces under George H. Thomas destroyed the Confederate Army of Tennessee at Nashville as Thomas endured his own battle of resolve with Ulysses S. Grant.
The Fall of VicksburgOn July 4, 1863, Lieutenant General John C. Pemberton surrendered the Confederate bastion of Vicksburg, Mississippi, to Union forces under Major General Ulysses S. Grant. The surrender brought an end to 47 days of unendurable siege, but it also brought an end to Confederate control of the Mississippi River.
Union Captain James ‘Paddy’ GraydonHe turned terrified villagers into crack troops and mules into walking bombs. Paddy Graydon was the Union's secret weapon in New Mexico.
Major General J.E.B. Stuart: Last Stand of the Last KnightMajor General J.E.B. Stuart posted his horsemen at Yellow Tavern -- between Union attackers and Richmond -- and waited for the collision. It would come with a deadliness he could never have imagined.
Robert Smalls: Commander of the Planter During the American Civil WarWhen opportunity knocked, an imaginative Charleston slave sailed himself, his family, and some friends to freedom -- and set to work for the Union cause.
Battle of Brawner’s Farm: Black Hat Brigade’s Baptism of FireJohn Gibbon's mostly green Midwestern troops found themselves in quite a scrape as the sun set on August 28, 1862.
Camp William Penn: Training Ground for FreedomUnder the stern but sympathetic gaze of Lt. Col. Louis Wagner, some 11,000 African-American soldiers trained to fight for their freedom at Philadelphia's Camp William Penn. Three Medal of Honor recipients would pass through the camp's gates.
General Francis Channing BarlowGeneral Francis Channing Barlow's clean-cut, boyish appearance belied his reputation as one of the Union's hardest-fighting divisional commanders.
America’s Civil War: Philip SheridanAt an obscure railroad station in northern Mississippi, an equally obscure Union cavalry colonel faced a personal and professional moment of truth. His name was Phil Sheridan, and his coolness and dash clearly marked him for bigger things.
Siege of Petersburg: The City and Citizens Were Impacted from the StartCircled by Confederate trenches, hard pressed by Union forces, the people of Petersburg had nothing left to do but endure -- and pray for a miracle.
Winchester, Virginia: A Town Embattled During America’s Civil WarWinchester, Virginia, saw more of the war than any other place North or South.
Old Dominion Brigade in America’s Civil WarThe Virginia regiments originally under the brigade command of William Mahone seemed to save their best for last. After two years of average service, they became Robert E. Lee's go-to troops in the Wilderness and at Petersburg's Crater.
Admiral Porter’s Ironclad Hoax During the American Civil WarAfter a botched Union naval effort on the Mississippi River, Rear Admiral David D. Porter resorted to trickery to prevent one of his captured ironclads from being used by the Confederates.
Eyewitness to American Civil War: Iron Brigade Soldier’s Wartime LettersTimothy Webster survived Fredericksburg and Gettysburg with the Iron Brigade, but not Petersburg.
America’s Civil War: Desperate Ironclad Assault at Trent’s ReachWith Confederate forces strangled at Petersburg, the Southern Navy prepared to assault the enemy's supply depot at City Point. But first, Rebel ships had to get past Trent's Reach.
Battle of Monroe’s Cross RoadsUnion General William Sherman considered Judson Kilpatrick, his cavalry chief, 'a hell of a damn fool.' At Monroe's Cross Roads, N.C., his carelessness and disobedience of orders proved Sherman's point.
Account Of The Battle of PhilippiAt Philippi, in western Virginia, one overly optimistic young colonel confidently awaited reinforcements as Union columns converged on his tiny force from all directions in the first full-fledged battle of the Civil War.
Battle of Yellow TavernBadly misunderstanding his opponent's intentions, Jeb Stuart played into Phil Sheridan's hands at Yellow Tavern. A swirling cavalry fight ensued.
Book Review: Lincoln’s Cavalrymen: A History of the Mounted Forces of the Army of the Potomac (by Edward G. Longacre): CWTLincoln’s Cavalrymen: A History of the Mounted Forces of the Army of the Potomac, by Edward G. Longacre, Stackpole Books, 717-796-0412, $29.95. Edward G. Longacre has been one of the most prolific Civil War historians of the past three decades. He has written biographies of James Wilson, Henry Hunt, John Buford, and Joshua Chamberlain. He …
Book Review: Tarnished Eagles: The Courts-Martial of Fifty Union Colonels and Lieutenant Colonels (Thomas P. Lowry) : CWTTarnished Eagles: The Courts-Martial of Fifty Union Colonels and Lieutenant Colonels, by Thomas P. Lowry, Stackpole Books, (717) 796-0411, 272 pages, $24.95. With this follow-up to The Stories the Soldiers Wouldn’t Tell: Sex in the Civil War and The Civil War Bawdy Houses of Washington, D.C., Dr. Thomas Lowry has firmly established himself as the …
Book Review: Gettysburg 1863, (by Richard Wheeler): CWTGettysburg 1863, by Richard Wheeler, Plume, 302 pages, $15.95. Every reader who has any interest at all in the Battle of Gettysburg will find Gettysburg 1863 a joy to read. Author Richard Wheeler’s pleasant writing style is enhanced by 12 good maps and more than 100 poignant and well-placed illustrations chosen from Battles and Leaders …

Articles 6

Book Review: The Spotsylvania Campaign (Essays) : ACWFor sheer, unmitigated hellishness, the fighting around Spotsylvania outstripped all other Civil War battles. By Cowan Brew The two weeks of horrific fighting around the tiny crossroads hamlet of Spotsylvania Court House, Virginia, in May 1864 represented a watershed of sorts for Robert E. Lee, Ulysses S. Grant and the armies they commanded. Even for …
Book: Rutherford B. Hayes: Warrior and President (Ari Hoogenboom): ACWRUTHERFORD B. HAYES: WARRIOR AND PRESIDENTIn the wake of the Northern victory in the Civil War, a nearly unbroken succession of bearded Republican war heroes enteredthe White House for the next three decades on the strength of their military service records. Beginning with Ulysses S. Grant in1868, the Republican Party successfully elected six of the …
Book Review: General John Buford (Edward Longacre) : ACWGeneral John Buford, by Edward Longacre (Stackpole Books, Mechanicsburg, Pa., $24.95). Union Brigadier General John Buford had his one brief moment of glory at the Battle of Gettysburg on July 1-3, 1863. After fighting in Virginia at the first and second battles of Bull Run, at Verdiersville, at Madison Courthouse, at Thoroughfare Gap and at …
Civil War Firearms: Their Historical Background, Tactical Use and Modern Collecting and Shooting (Joseph G. Bilby) : ACWCivil War Firearms: Their Historical Background, Tactical Use and Modern Collecting and Shooting, by Joseph G. Bilby, Combined Books, Inc., Conshohocken, Pa., $34.95. This artfully crafted book was honored by the 1997 Small Press Book Awards as a runner-up in the history category. Civil War Firearms is a comprehensive and detailed study of the handguns …
Book Review: Confederate Admiral: The Life and Wars of Franklin Buchanan (By Craig Symonds): ACWConfederate Admiral Franklin Buchanan sometimes fought his friends as fiercely as he fought his enemies. By Robert M. Browning, Jr. On April 22, 1861, Captain Franklin Buchanan, one of the most senior officers in the United States Navy, resigned his Federal commission, ending a 46-year career that saw Buchanan rise to the pinnacle of his …
Book Review: For Home and the Southland: A History of the 48th Georgia Infantry Regiment (by John Zwemer) : ACWFor Home and the Southland: A History of the 48th Georgia Infantry Regiment, by John Zwemer, NButternut & Blue, Baltimore, Md., 1999, $24.95. th Georgia Infantry Regiment went into action during the Peninsula campaign and fought in almost every significant Civil War battle on the East Coast. Its soldiers endured the heavy fire from Federal …
Battle of Gettysburg: Major Eugene Blackford and the Fifth Alabama SharpshootersAs fighting swirled all around the little town of Gettysburg, Major Eugene Blackford and his sharpshooters infiltrated the usually quiet streets to snipe at Union soldiers often mere paces away. It was dangerous duty, but also a sort of reckless sport.
National Battlefield Tower at GettysburgEditorial on the demise of National Battlefield Tower at Gettysburg.
Camp William Penn’s Black Soldiers In Blue – November ’99 America’s Civil War FeatureCamp William Penn's Black Soldiers In Blue By Donald Scott Under the stern but sympathetic gaze of Lt. Col. Louis Wagner, some 11,000 African-American soldiers trained to fight for their freedom at Philadelphia’s Camp William Penn. Three Medal of Honor recipients would pass through the camp’s gates. Major Louis Wagner of the 88th Pennsylvania Infantry …
Stonewall’s Only Defeat – January ’99 America’s Civil War FeatureStonewalls Only Defeat By Lee Enderlin A furious Stonewall Jackson watched impotently as his proud Confederates stumbled down the hillside at Kernstown, Va. “Give them the bayonet,” Jackson implored–but no one obeyed. The Confederate general didn’t want to fight–he wanted to pray. It was, after all, the Sabbath, and if the Good Lord found it …
The Sperryville Outrage – March 1999 Civil War Times FeatureThe Sperryville Outrage Three men in blue thought they could get away with rape and terror on an isolated Virginia farm. They were wrong. BY THOMAS P. LOWRY With two months of intense training under their belts, the gunners and horsemen of Battery I of the 1st New York Light Artillery took to the parade …
From Farm to Prison – February 1999 Civil War Times FeatureFrom Farm to Prison SUBMITTED BY BENJAMIN SMITH OF PORTLAND, MAINE NAME: Llewellyn SmithDATES: 1836 to 1883ALLEGIANCE: UnionHIGHEST RANK: PrivateUNIT: 9th Maine Infantry, Company ISERVICE RECORD: Mustered into the 9th Maine Infantry on September 22, 1861. Captured at Bermuda Hundred, Virginia, on August 25, 1864. Incarcerated at Belle Isle Prison until mid-September and at Libby …
The New Bern Raid – June 1999 Civil War Times FeatureThe New Bern Raid John Wood’s swashbucklers set out to seize a Union fleet. BY PHILLIP RUTHERFORD As the new year of 1864 arrived, General Robert E. Lee’s attention focused on New Bern, North Carolina. Stationed there on the Neuse River was a fleet of imposing Federal warships and Yankee ironclads under construction in the …
MANTLED IN FIRE AND SMOKE – July ’99 America’s Civil War FeatureMANTLED IN FIRE AND SMOKE By David F. Cross The Battle of Gettysburg, and perhaps the fate of the Union, was decided in one hour of desperate fighting on the rocky ledges of Little Round Top. In June 1863, Confederate military fortunes in the East were at their zenith. The Union Army of the Potomac …
The Widow-Makers – October 1999 Civil War Times FeatureThe Widow-Makers The Civil War’s deadliest weapons were not rapid-fire guns or giant cannon, but the simple rifle-musket and the humble minié ball. BY ALLAN W. HOWEY By the time the smoke had cleared and the veterans headed back to their homes, the American Civil War had exacted a terrible human cost. In four long …
WHEAT’S TIGERS Confederate Zouaves at First Manassas – May ’99 America’s Civil War FeatureWHEAT'S TIGERS Confederate Zouaves at First Manassas By Gary Schreckengost Recruited from New Orleans’ teeming waterfront by soldier of fortune Roberdeau Wheat, the 1st Louisiana Special Battalion more than lived up to its pugnacious nickname–Wheat’s Tigers–at the First Battle of Manassas. Of all the units that took the field at the First Battle of Manassas …
Attack Written Deep and Crimson – May ’99 America’s Civil War FeatureAttack Written Deep and Crimson By Robert Collins Suhr The strategic railroad town of Corinth was a key target for Confederate armieshoping to march north in support of General Braxton Bragg’s invasion ofKentucky. In late summer 1862, Confederate armies were on the march everywhere. The most notable advance, that of the Army of Northern Virginia, …
Literal Hill of Death – September ’99 America’s Civil War FeatureLiteral Hill of Death By Jon Stephenson With Ulysses S. Grant’s army steadily menacing Vicksburg, Confederate General John Pemberton left the town’s comforting defenses to seek out the enemy army. Too late, he found it, at Champion’s Hill. Well after dark on May 15, 1863, the tired foot soldiers of Confederate Colonel Francis Marion Cockrell’s …
Desperate Stand at Chickamauga – July ’99 America’s Civil War FeatureDesperate Stand at Chickamauga By James B. Ronan II Brigadier General John King’s disciplined brigade of Union Regulars found itself tested as never before at Chickamauga. For two bloody days, the Regulars dashed from one endangered spot to another, seeking to save their army from annihilation. In the cold, clear predawn of September 19, 1863, …
High Seas Brouhaha – November ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureHigh Seas Brouhaha By Kenneth P. Czech When an overzealous Union captain stopped and searched the British vessel Trent, a full-blown diplomatic crisis erupted between the United States and Great Britain. Interested Southerners watched with glee. As U.S. Navy Lieutenant D.M. Fairfax stood in the bow of a bobbing whaleboat at midday of November 8, …
War’s Last Cavalry Raid – May ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureWar's Last Cavalry Raid By Chris Hartley Even as General Robert E. Lee was surrendering at Appomattox, a vengeful Union cavalry horde led by Maj. Gen. George Stoneman made Southern civilians pay dearly for the war. It was a last brutal lesson in the concept of total warfare. Six-foot-four-inch Major General George Stoneman, powerfully built, …
Confused First Flight – Sidebar: January ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureForgotten Federal Success Despite the censure heaped upon Colonel George A. Porterfield for his conduct at the less-than-epic Battle of Philippi, the men who relieved him– including those who served on the court of inquiry–would do no better than he in wrenching western Virginia free of the tightening grasp of Major General George B. McClellan’s …
Cavalry Clash at Hanover – January ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureCavalry Clash at Hanover By Brent L. Vosburg Southern beau sabreur J.E.B. Stuart hardly expected to run head-on into enemy cavalry on his second ride around the Union Army. But a trio of ‘boy generals’ would soon give the famed Confederate horseman all the action he could handle. In mid-June 1863, General Robert E. Lee, …
Judson Kilpatrick – June 1998 Civil War Times FeatureJudson Kilpatrick BY EDWARD G. LONGACRE Union General Judson Kilpatrick was flamboyant, reckless, tempestuous, and even licentious. In some respects he made other beaux sabreurs like fellow-cavalrymen George Custer and J. E. B. Stuart seem dull. Because he was a passionate man, Kilpatrick won many admirers and made many enemies during his Civil War career–and …
Storm Over Fort Pulaski – March ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureStorm Over Fort Pulaski By Peggy Robbins As a young U.S. Army lieutenant, Robert E. Lee helped to construct Fort Pulaski. As a Confederate general 30 years later, he confidently assured fort defenders it could not be breached. Union gunners were not so sure. In late 1860, as North and South stood face to face …

Articles 7

Commands: The Quaker-dominated Loudoun Rangers openly defied Virginia tradition to serve the Union. – January ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureThe Quaker-dominated Loudoun Rangers openly defied Virginia tradition to serve the Union. By Richard E. Crouch Of all the special units that were formed to combat Confederate partisan rangers in Virginia during the Civil War–the Blazer Scouts, the Jesse Scouts, Cole’s Maryland Cavalry and others–probably the most promising was the Loudoun Rangers, an independent cavalry …
Rebels in Pennsylvania! – August 1998 Civil War Times FeatureRebels in Pennsylvania! The spearhead of Lee’s army was about to strike a lethal blow at the very heart of the Keystone State when the Battle of Gettysburg interrupted. BY UZAL ENT Gettysburg was a small rural town with no special significance or importance, like the thousands of other small towns that dotted the American …
Savage Skirmish Near Sharpsburg – September ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureSavage Skirmish Near Sharpsburg By Scott Hosier With Robert E. Lee’s wily Confederates waiting somewhere in the vicinity of Antietam Creek, Union General George McClellan ordered I Corps commander Joseph Hooker to advance and turn the Rebel flank. But McClellan, for once, was too quick to move, and Hooker soon found himself in an unexpectedly …
NO DRAFT! – June 1998 Civil War Times FeatureNo draft! Angry farmers turn a Wisconsin town into a battlefield when they riot against conscription. BY ADAM J. KAWA A crowd gathered around the steps of the Ozaukee County courthouse in Port Washington, Wisconsin, on November 10, 1862. For the first time ever, Wisconsin men were going to be drafted into the army, and …
Out of a Frozen Hell – February 1998 Civil War Times FeatureOut of a Frozen Hell The wind was howling, snow was falling sideways, and the temperature was dangerously low. What better time to escape from Johnson’s Island? BY ROGER LONG Part two of this article from Civil War Times Illustrated will appear on TheHistoryNet the week of March 30. Editor’s Note: As 1863 gave way …
Missouri in the Balance Struggle for St. Louis – March ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureMissouri in the Balance Struggle for St. Louis By Anthony Monachello The dark clouds of civil war gathered over the nation as twoaggressive factions–the Wide-Awakes and the Minutemen–plotted to gain political control of Missouri and its most important city, St. Louis.As is often the case, political power began at the end of a gun. On …
“Never Were Men So Brave” – December 1998 Civil War Times FeatureNever Were Men So Brave Their casualties were enormous but their courage and capacity for fun were legendary. General Lee, himself, gave highest praise to these Yankees of the Irish Brigade. BY JOHN F. McCORMACK, JR. Out Hanover Street in Fredericksburg they marched that December morning in 1862, sprigs of green in their caps, a …
THE BURNING OF COLUMBIA FROM THE UNION AND CONFEDERATE PERSPECTIVES – October 1998 Civil War Times FeatureBurning Columbia An excerpt from “Sherman’s March from Savannah to Bentonville.” From Battles and Leaders of the Civil War. BY UNION MAJOR GENERAL HENRY W. SLOCUM The fall of Savannah resulted in the adoption of the plan which Sherman had contemplated. In a letter dated December 24th Sherman says: “Many and many a person in …
A California Soldier writes home – May 1998 Civil War Times FeatureA California Soldier writes home BY E.E. BILLINGS A group of San Franciscans wrote John A. Andrew, the governor of Massachusetts, in 1862 offering to provide a company of 100 cavalrymen to be credited to that state’s quota under the draft. The only stipulation was that Massachusetts pay the cost of organizing the company and …
Nothing But Glory Gained – Account of Pickett’s Charge at GettysburgJust before 3 o’clock on the morning of July 3, 1863, Robert E. Lee rose by starlight, ate a spartan breakfast with his staff, and mounted his famous gray horse, Traveller, for the ride up Seminary Ridge at Gettysburg. He went in search of his "Old War Horse," Lieutenant General James Longstreet, commander of I …
VOICES FROM THE STANDS . . . – May 1998 Civil War Times FeatureVOICES FROM THE STANDS In our February issue, we asked readers to send us their thoughts on baseball and its connection to the Civil War. Here is a sampling of what we received. All men have a hidden desire to compete and win. Baseball is a sport played for the fun of it, and the …
Confused First Flight – January ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureReturn To The Killing Ground By David Mallinson At Philippi, in western Virginia, one overly optimistic young colonel confidentlyawaited reinforcements as Union columns converged on his tiny force from alldirections in the first full-fledged battle of the Civil War. On the morning of May 14, 1861, Confederate Colonel George A. Porterfield of Charles Town, Virginia, …
Carnage in a Cornfield – September ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureCarnage in a Cornfield By Robert C. Cheeks Mr. Miller’s humble cornfield near Antietam Creek became the unlikely setting for perhaps the worst fighting of the entire Civil War. On Sunday night, September 14, 1862, Confederate General Robert E. Lee issued orders for his much scattered commands to rally at Sharpsburg, Maryland. His ambitious plans …
Commands: The Quaker-dominated Loudoun Rangers openly defied Virginia tradition to serve the Union. – January ’98 America’s Civil War FeatureThe Quaker-dominated Loudoun Rangers openly defied Virginia tradition to serve the Union. By Richard E. Crouch Of all the special units that were formed to combat Confederate partisan rangers in Virginia during the Civil War–the Blazer Scouts, the Jesse Scouts, Cole’s Maryland Cavalry and others–probably the most promising was the Loudoun Rangers, an independent cavalry …
The 3d Ohio – October 1997 Civil War Times FeatureThe 3d Ohio This Regiment Included Two Future Presidents and an Army Commander BY T. HARRY WILLIAMS AND STEPHEN E. AMBROSE The volunteer citizen army that fought the Civil War for the North was one of the most remarkable military assemblages in history. It represented every facet of the democratic society from which it came–the …
Amid Bedbugs and Drunken Secessionists – October 1997 Civil War Times FeatureAmid Bedbugs and Drunken Secessionists BY JACK D. FOWLERWilliam Woods Averell was a man on a mission–at least he wanted to be. He had come to Washington, D.C., from his New York home to attend President Abraham Lincoln’s inauguration on March 4, 1861. But after the festivities, the world turned upside down. Forces of the …
DISASTER AT DOVE CREEK – Cover Page: February 1997 Civil War Times FeatureDISASTERAT DOVECREEK BY PHILLIP RUTHERFORD Captain N.W. Gillitine and twenty-three militiamen of the Texas 2d Military District stared into the grave they had just opened. On the bottom lay a two-year-old Indian girl, dead not 48 hours. To Gillitine, she was less a dead child than the final proof he needed for an alarming report …
first thunder at SHILOH – Cover Page: March 1997 Civil War Times Featurefirst thunder at SHILOH A REBEL BATTERY’S FIRST SALVO WAS THE PRELUDE TO A STORM THE UNTESTED CANNONEERS COULD NEVER HAVE IMAGINED JON G. STEPHENSON A Confederate artillery captain peered through his field glasses, calmly studying the distant tree line. It was a lovely day. A breeze ruffled the budding branches of the oaks that …
SAVE THE CONSTITUTION – Cover Page: May 1997 Civil War Times FeatureSAVE THE CONSTITUTION “Old Ironsides,” flagship of the U.S. Navy, beats a hasty retreat in the face of secessionist plots. BY ETHAN S. RAFUSE Baltimore boiled with defiant secessionist zeal in April 1861. On the 19th, an anti-Union mob attacked a unit of Massachusetts troops passing through the Maryland port city en route to Washington, …
David and Goliath – December 1997 Civil War Times FeatureDavid and Goliath An Unstoppable Confederate War Machine Meets Its Match BY MICHAEL MORGAN It was the Union’s turn to suffer. For three years its forces had steadily grown stronger along the North Carolina coast. Federal soldiers occupied most of the eastern part of the state. Few ports remained open, and even those were increasingly …
Drop Poision Gas from a Balloon – August 1997 Civil War Times FeatureDrop Poison Gas from a Balloon Bombing enemy positions from aircraft during the Civil War? That’s exactly what one Confederate soldier proposed as a way to overcome a Yankee fort in Florida. BY BELL I. WILEY As various historians have observed, the American conflict of 1861-1865 was the last of the old-fashioned and the first …
Amos Humiston: Union Soldier Who Died at the Battle of GettysburgMortally wounded at the Battle of Gettysburg, Union soldier Amos Humiston died clutching the only clue to his identity:an ambrotype of his three small children.
Battle of Fairfield: Grumble Jones’ Gettysburg Campaign VictoryWhile the Battle of Gettysburg raged a few miles away, two very different cavalrymen fought for control of the strategic Fairfield Gap. At stake was the survival or destruction of General Robert E. Lee's army.
Taking of Burnside Bridge – September ’97 America’s Civil War FeatureTaking of Burnside Bridge By John M. Priest While Union commander George McClellan fumed and the Battle of Antietam hung in the balance, a handful of Rebels held off Federal troops at “Burnside Bridge.” The day–September 17, 1862–promised to be long and hot, and the regimental commanders in Brigadier General Samuel Sturgis’ division of the …
Decks Covered With Blood – May ’97 America’s Civil War FeatureDecks Covered With Blood Union Admiral David Farragut, preparing to brave the frowning bluffs of Port Hudson, kept his young son by his side. They would “trust in Providence,” he decreed. So would their shipmates. By John F. Wukovits The chief justice of the United States, Edward White, walked toward Admiral George Dewey, recently returned …

Comments are closed.