150 years ago: Canvas or wood for your pontoons?

As our attention turns to Fredericksburg, the topic of pontoon bridges enters the sesquicentennial threads.  I’ve discussed the nature of constructing these bridges in detail, with respect to those placed at Edwards Ferry in June 1863.  We think of the wooden pontoons most often within the context of the Civil War.  Big wooden boats likeContinue reading “150 years ago: Canvas or wood for your pontoons?”

Disloyalty in the Ordnance Department? The case of William Maynadier

In the tense days of December 1860, Captain William Maynadier became a central figure in the correspondence concerning the disposition of military stores.  Maynadier, a West Point graduate of 1827, was at that time the assistant to the Chief of Ordnance, Colonel Henry K. Craig.  Maynadier had served in that capacity since 1842.   InContinue reading “Disloyalty in the Ordnance Department? The case of William Maynadier”