I’ve been designing a Civil War exhibit in my mind since I was 10! So this project was like being a kid in a candy store. The Historical Society has a great collection of Civil War objects, letters, and diaries.
One of the challenges was that we were charged with creating a display that would be on continual display for the entire 4 year length of the Civil War Sesquicentennial.
As a result, we weren’t able to show some of the best things that we had for that length of time. We ultimately decided that the stories that we could best tell, that our collection supported, were the stories of everyday people. Initially there was this sense that the exhibit would be all of the great Civil War objects of Virginia history collected from institutions all over the country.
Instead, what the exhibit became was an exhibit about ordinary people during extraordinary times doing extraordinary things, as told through relatively simple objects that they left behind.
Please welcome guest author Katie O. Gobbi. Gobbi is the Director of Euharlee History Museum in Euharlee, GA. The Euharlee History Museum , located 15 minutes west of Cartersville, GA, recently opened a new temporary exhibit on the Civil War history of the area. This is an important year in Georgia as it is […]
Local legend has always held that Belle gave her speech from the Blount Mansion. But there are some issues with that legend. Belle is very specific that she stepped out of a window onto a balcony to address the crowd. The problem is there has never been a balcony at Blount Mansion. There have been porches on both the front (Hill St) and back of the house at times but never anything that could be considered a balcony. Also there are no windows that would open in a way to allow you to step out onto a porch or a balcony. So what is going on with this story?
For all the “Fighting Irishmen” there were also large numbers of Irish shirkers. Across the Confederate army, the Irish had a higher propensity to die in action but also to desert. They seem to have bought into the rhetoric of the Fighting Irish but ultimately not enough to see it through for the Confederacy. This more complicated story of the Irish in the Civil War, just like the one in the southern Appalachians (as also highlighted for example by John Inscoe in his work on western North Carolina), is not useful to movies or politicians looking to simplify things for their respective audiences. But, it is the more accurate one.
Born in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains of the Appalachian Range, “Jeb” Stuart continues to be in the shadow of his image in the American psyche. The man in the plumed hat who rode around like a knight from the age of chivalry was an image he cultivated, but James Ewell Brown Stuart was a human being. He deserves more than to be the man in the plumed hat. He came from the Patrick County community of Ararat in real life and from the age of romanticism in his flair in dress and manner.