BGES Members Making a Difference: Bryan Hagan

The Civil War era—and all of American history, for that matter—has had its fair share of colorful characters. For BGES member Bryan Hagen, this undeniable fact is one of the things that makes the study of our nation’s past so fascinating. And it’s even more fun for him when he gets to be “in character.” … Read more

Time Travel: Pamplin Historical Park

This lesser known private park, celebrating its twentieth anniversary in 2019, occupies the spot where the battle that ended the nine-month-long Petersburg Campaign took place on April 2, 1865, resulting in the Confederate’s evacuation of their capital at Richmond. Here you’ll find four antebellum homes, four museums, daily living-history demonstrations, hiking trails winding past important … Read more

Five Questions: The Virginia Campaign of 1781, with Richard Britton

The Revolutionary War wrapped up in Virginia, with the French assisting the Colonists in defeating the British at Yorktown. The final steps leading up to this final American/French victory—including why British Gen. Charles, Lord Cornwallis was there in the first place—are explored on an upcoming BGES tour, The Virginia Campaign of 1781, slated for November … Read more

Behold BGES’s 20th Monograph!

After a nearly thirteen-year break, BGES Executive Director Len Riedel is editing the twentieth monograph in The Papers of the BGES series. Historian Parker Hills drafted the tome, his second in the series—the last one being the second in the series back in 1995. It is slated to be released later this fall. The monograph details … Read more

A Field Report from St. Louis and Southeast Missouri

Between July 10 and 13, 2019, Felix Losco joined six intrepid BGES travelers, Len, and the resident expert, Kyle Sinisi, on BGES’ “An Uncivil War: St. Louis and Southeast Missouri: 1858–1865” tour, which extended from St. Louis to Cape Girardeau. Here is his field report. Day One We met at a convenient hotel near Lambert … Read more

A Test of Loyalties Field Report

Most of the time, BGES Executive Director Len Riedel is tirelessly working to plan and execute BGES’ large and diverse organization and programs. This time, he took the back seat—literally—on a recent Field University program—A Test of Loyalties: East Tennessee Raids, Railroads, and Rebellion, which took place July 24–27, 2019, with military historian Jim Ogden … Read more

Four Questions: Stuart’s Ride, with Len Riedel

When Robert E. Lee took command of the Army of Northern Virginia in 1862, he wasn’t sure what was going on behind the lines of the Federal Army of the Potomac, under command of George McClellan. So he sent his 29-year-old cavalry chief, J.E.B. Stuart, to study McClellan’s vulnerabilities—a tour that Lee used to crush … Read more

BGES Members Making a Difference: Kimble Johnson

  The Battle of Shiloh raged on April 6 and 7, 1862, in southwestern Tennessee. It remains the seventh bloodiest battle of the Civil War, and the nineteenth bloodiest battle in all of American history. Monuments to the battle began being erected in 1902, with fifteen total soon honoring the service and sacrifice of different … Read more

Project Intel: Update on Fort Branch Interpretive Signs, with Doug Cumins

“Saving Our Civil War History” has become a new BGES tagline, and we are always keeping our eyes out for ways to proactively restore historical interpretations. One project that we currently are excited about concerns a nearly forgotten Civil War site near Hamilton, North Carolina—Fort Branch—which was in need of new interpretive signs. We last … Read more

Chatting with Thomas Clemens about Saving Antietam

Battlefields just don’t get preserved through wishful thinking. It takes dedication, know-how, funding, and a host of other commitments to ensure preservation of these historic venues. Antietam is one such place that, if not for the devoted efforts of the Save Historic Antietam Foundation, may have been usurped by the rising tide of development and … Read more