The 150th anniversary of the American Civil War is quickly approaching. The conflict lasted from 1861 to 1865. 2011 is its sesquicentennial. To mark this event, I wanted to do something to further my knowledge of the war as a whole – not just the study of specific battles or biographies, but a way to look at the war day-by-day, as it unfolded. And that’s what I mean to do.
Every day, I will be posting a brief account (400 – 600 words) of what transpired 150 years ago to the day. It’s one thing to look at a specific battle that spanned a day or two, or even a campaign that took place over a few weeks in a very specific area. But it’s quite another thing to be able to study what was happening throughout all theaters of the war on any given date.
I really hope that I can follow through. It’s a long commitment – November 6, 2010 through May 2015. There are kids that haven’t even graduated high school yet that will be through with college by the time this is over.
Regardless of its immensity, I am really, really excited to start this. As I’ve been working on this, looking at the days preceding the firing upon Sumter, the days of the first land battles and everything leading up to the Battle of Bull Run and how it all fits smoothly together, I’m realizing that I need to understand the Civil War as a whole, rather than a handful of battles here and there.
So this blog isn’t just me telling you a bunch of stuff about the Civil War. This blog is me exploring what happened 150 years ago to the day and hopefully finding out how one nation can tear itself in two and so quickly devolve to bloodshed.
While giving the facts, I also want it to be interesting, readable, personable. Time will tell if I can accomplish any of this.
And lastly, I invite you to read along. Feel free to offer further information, advice, happenings I’ve overlooked and kind criticism.