Tag: American Civil War

When Johnny Comes Marching Home

  Something for the weekend:  When Johnny Comes Marching Home.  One hundred and fifty years ago as soldiers North and South were returning to their homes this song was being played.  Written by composer Patrick Gilmore, bandmaster of the 24th Massachusetts in 1863 to comfort his sister who was praying for her fiancée to return safe from

Sic Transit John Wilkes Booth

    Judging from his melodramatic “Sic, Semper Tyrannis!” at Ford’s Theater after murdering Lincoln, Booth perceived his role of assassin as  being his greatest role, a chance to play in real life a doomed Romantic hero, an avenger of a wronged people.  The last twelve days of his life, as he eluded capture must

April 21, 1865: Stanton to Grant: Hostilities to Be Resumed

            For all his world weary cynicism, General Sherman was a complete innocent when it came to political matters, in which he had little interest.  He demonstrated this by the terms of the memorandum of agreement which he entered into with General Johnston on April 18, 1865: T. SHERMAN, Major-General commanding. HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DIVISION

April 20, 1865: Lee’s Final Report

    Although he had no idea where the fugitive President of the Confederacy precisely was, Robert E. Lee on April 20, 1865 wrote his final report to Davis which contained a plea for peace instead of partisan warfare:   Robert E. Lee to Jefferson Davis Richmond, Virginia April 20, 1865 Mr. President The apprehensions I

Mourning Lincoln

  My friends, no one, not in my situation, can appreciate my feeling of sadness at this parting. To this place, and the kindness of these people, I owe everything. Here I have lived a quarter of a century, and have passed from a young to an old man. Here my children have been born,

Now He Belongs to the Ages

  “Now he belongs to the ages.”  So said Edwin M. Stanton, Secretary of War, who had kept vigil at Lincoln’s deathbed, after Lincoln died from an assassin’s bullet. In hundreds of posts since 2008 at The American Catholic and Almost Chosen People, I have examined various facets of the public life of Abraham Lincoln.  Of

Lincoln’s Last Speech

  On April 11, 1865, Abraham Lincoln made his last speech.  It was to a jubilant crowd that had gathered at the White House in celebration of the surrender of Lee.  The speech was an impromptu effort and clearly indicated that Lincoln was shifting gears from the War to the problems of Reconstruction.  Here is

April 9, 1865: Lee Surrenders

    And so the Civil War ended.  Oh, not immediately.  The surrender process throughout the Confederacy would take until June, and skirmishes would be fought.  But with the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia, no one, except perhaps Jefferson Davis, north or south, doubted that the Civil War had ended with a Union