For the last stretch of sesquicentennial blogging… what do you want to see?

I don’t think we can put a mark on the calendar and say “This is when the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War Ends.”  But at the same time, the surrenders of key armies in Virginia and North Carolina is generally recognized as the point of closure.  As such, my project focused on 150th blogging will likewise start winding down. I’d taken on a “post a day” challenge at the end of December 2010, as part of my personal observance of the Sesquicentennial.  And that will come to a close in the next few months.  Reality is there are about sixty days or so to consider, after which the pace of 150ths slows considerably.   (Again, not to dismiss the surrenders west of the Mississippi.  But there’s a lot of empty dates on the calendar after the end of April.)

There are a lot of areas to explore in regard to the last days of the Civil War.  And if you have been reading for a while now, you know I like to work on some of the lesser worked rows, and in particular where the military history (under the classic definition) edges into some other divisions of history.  I’m mulling over continuing the posts on the Carolinas Campaign through North Carolina.  Unlike that of South Carolina, my perception is that the march through North Carolina has gotten its “due” attention from historians.  I don’t think I can improve upon the work done by Mark Bradley or my friend Eric Wittenberg in regard to the Bentonville Campaign or Battle of Monroe’s Crossroads (respectively).

There are some other subjects that I will put focus on through the spring.  One is the last military campaign into South Carolina, lead by Brigadier-General Edward Potter and consisting largely of USCT, through the state in April.  It’s another “footnote” in the larger story of the Civil War, but one that provides a bridge into the post-war situation in South Carolina.   Another topic I’d like to work in within the “day by day” format is President Jefferson F. Davis’ flight through the Carolinas and Georgia.  The path is well blazed by markers, so that allows me to showcase some of those along the way.

And of course… I will be “in the field” at several events between now and the end of April, from which I’ll do my best at covering here on the blog, on Twitter, and through Facebook.

All that said…. let me ask what you folks who spend a little part of your day reading the “stuff” I post what would be preferable.  More on Uncle Billy’s march?  More on something else?  I’ll offer up a poll here, but feel free to drop a comment if you would like:

I can’t say that my coverage of Lee’s Retreat or Wilson’s Campaign would be set upon the firm grounding of the …well… full appreciation of the ground on which the actions took place… as I’ve been able to offer for the Georgia and South Carolina operations.  But I’d consider taking up the task if the need is great.  That is so long as it does not detract from the two topics (Potter’s South Carolina Campaign and Davis’ flight) mentioned above.

4 thoughts on “For the last stretch of sesquicentennial blogging… what do you want to see?

  1. Craig, most of your readers (including me), I would wager, have never really understood the geographical complexities of Lee’s Retreat, and this year I intend to come to grips with the relevant roads and terrain, once and for all. And it seems to me you are uniquely qualified to take on this chronological narration simply because you “cover the ground” better than anybody in the blogging world.
    So, if you blog about Lee’s Retreat, I’ll be in harness alongside you. My vote is in..

  2. I like your idea of covering Davis’s flight as well as the Potter incursion in SC. I also voted for Wilson in the above poll. (I actually just finished “Out of the Storm,” which did a nice job covering all of these topics.) These subjects are lesser-known than the NC and Appomattox Campaigns, and deserve more attention. I’d also throw in a little about the fall of Mobile, Taylor’s surrender, and maybe even E.K. Smith and the Trans-MS, which I assume you are planning on doing anyway! I am hoping to do a little on the reaction around Washington to the war’s end, as well as more on the transitioning of the contraband camps into the Reconstruction period.

  3. I’m really enjoying following Sherman’s army. It would also be interesting to know how the end of the war was managed in cities like Charleston and Savannah from a leadership and logistics perspective? Who and what stayed behind and what were the challenges?

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