Four Questions: The Texas Two Step, with Neil Mangum

Texas has long intrigued us with raucous tales of its fiercely independent past: The Wild West, shoot-’em-up battles, the Alamo defiance, cattle round-ups, the legendary Texas Rangers … and that only touches on a tiny bit of this fascinating state’s story. Kicking off a new year of BGES touring, historian Neil Mangum is leading two tours in … Read more

BGES Members Making a Difference: Vinney DiMattina

When you’re the proud owner of a basset hound named Monty—after the “Spartan General” Bernard Montgomery—it’s easier to establish your bona fides as a war historian. But longtime BGES member Vinney DiMattina doesn’t need man’s best friend to prove his chops. As a kid growing up in Flushing, New York, he dreamed of a career … Read more

Book Review: How the Civil War’s Barons Helped Win the War

    Civil War Barons: The Tycoons, Entrepreneurs, Inventors, and Visionaries Who Forged Victory and Shaped a Nation, by Jeffry D. Wert (DaCapo Press, 2018) Every once in a while, even the most disciplined reader comes upon a break in their routine that makes sense and which brings an unexpected surprise and pleasure. Having received … Read more

Travel Guide: Harriet Tubman Scenic Byway

  Legendary abolitionist Harriet Tubman (ca 1821–1913) escaped from slavery in 1849, going on to help many others find their way to freedom along the Underground Railroad. She grew up and worked on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, where many Underground Railroad sites have been connected by a scenic highway, the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Scenic Byway. … Read more

A BGES Veteran Reveals How to Approach a Civil War Tour

Gary Wilson has joined many BGES tours over the years, and his discipline in tour participation has been consistent and interesting. Armed with a book of maps, he moves meticulously through the tour, orienting himself to the field and placing the combatants in relation to each other. We asked him to share his insights into … Read more

A Field Report from Antietam, by John Bonansinga

  Tour: Maryland Campaign Part 3, The Battle of Antietam Dates: October 25-27, 2019 Tour Leaders: Dr. Tom Clemens and Scott Hartwig Reported By: John Bonansinga   Having missed the first two parts of this series due to family obligations, I was determined not to miss the finale of the series. I’ve been to Antietam … Read more

Travel Guide: Grand Gulf-Raymond Scenic Byway

In spring 1863, as Gen. U.S. Grant plotted his attack on Vicksburg, he traveled into Mississippi’s interior, knowing he needed to sever the Confederate’s railroad connection between Vicksburg and Jackson. During that time, he transported reinforcements and supplies along the rural road between Grand Gulf and Raymond. “The genius of the campaign is out there … Read more

A Peek into BGES’ Novice Tours, with Len Riedel

BGES Blog: In 2020 you are offering two novice tours, Civil War 101: The Gettysburg Campaign; and Revolutionary War 101: Boston/Lexington/Concord. Normally your tours take deep dives into little known aspects of history. What is the thinking behind these novice offerings? LR: Well, hi Barbara, you sure cut right to the point, don’t you? The … Read more

An Interview With Sam Hood

As an award-winning author and the collateral descendant of a much-maligned Civil War figure, Sam Hood knows that retelling our nation’s history accurately often requires digging a little deeper. In fact, part of his impetus for writing John Bell Hood: The Rise, Fall, and Resurrection of a Confederate General was to set the record straight … Read more