Tag Archives: Civil War

Belle Boyd: Her visit to Knoxville and Blount Mansion

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?


The “Fighting Irish” from the Mountains and Beyond

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.


The Dear Old Hills of Patrick

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.


Recently published ‘Midnight Rising’ book reviewed

Please welcome guest author Frank Slider of Middlebourne, WV. Slider is a flyfisherman and amateur naturalist who volunteers for the US Fish and Wildlife Service on the Ohio River Islands National Wildlife Refuge, and is an avid Civil War history buff.   This vivid portrayal of the guerilla uprising that galvanized this country in 1859 is a […]

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