Meeting of August 23, 2014

Jim Rhetta on “Slavery & Slave Ancestry”

Jim Rhetta and John Herberich

Jim Rhetta and John Herberich at the 2014 Picnic

Jim’s two-part presentation started with Slavery, a Socioeconomic System. It discussed the economic conditions that created slavery, the comparative value of slaves, and the emerging financial forces on slavery. The South was unaware that the increasing amount of currency in circulation, growing immigrant-fueled labor pool, and changing social values were threatening the economic viability of slavery. These emerging socioeconomic forces would have eventually made slavery unprofitable had the Civil War not been fought.

The second part was on Tangled and Incomplete, Tracing Slave Family Histories. It presented the difficulties of researching African-American family histories due to the forced illiteracy in slavery, limited census data, and paucity of travel, legal, and property records. It includes the family history of Jim’s Great-Grandfather’s slave-holders as well as both sides of his family. The value of oral traditions and histories were revealed in this 40-year search of his family history.

Meeting Minutes August 2014

Quiz for August 23, 2014

Civil War Quiz – The Battle of Shiloh

Q#1 – What is another name given to the Battle of Shiloh?

Q#2 – What were the dates when the Battle of Shiloh was fought?

Q#3 – What was the name of the main river that bordered on the Battle of Shiloh?

Q#4 – What were the names of the two Confederate commanding generals at the Battle of Shiloh?

Q#5 – What was the name of the Union Army led by Ulysses S. Grant at the Battle of Shiloh?

Q#6 – What was the name of the Confederate Army that fought at the Battle of Shiloh?

Q#7 – In March 1862, Henry Halleck then Union commander of the Department of the Missouri replaced Ulysses S. Grant as the leader of the western Tennessee offensive with another Union general – then shortly thereafter reinstated Grant as the leader. What was the general’s name who replaced Grant and then was replaced by Grant?

Q#8 – What was the name of the nearby town where Confederate forces assembled prior to their attack against the Union forces located in the vicinity of the Shiloh Church?

Q#9 – Before the battle began, a Union Colonel under General William Sherman warned Sherman that a Confederate attack was imminent. What was Sherman’s response?

Q#10 – Where was Union General Grant located at the time the Confederates started their initial attack at Shiloh?

Q#11 – On the first day of the battle, Union troops formed a defensive line in a field along a road now popularly called the “Sunken Road” where intense fighting occurred. After the battle, what name was given to this location?

Q#12 – Albert Sidney Johnston bled to death on the battlefield of a wound he suffered. What area of his body was he wounded?

Q#13 – On the evening of the first day of battle, Union General Sherman remarked to Grant, “Well, Grant, we’ve had the devil’s own day, haven’t we?” What was Grant’s response?

Q#14 – Who was the Union division commander who arrived late with reinforcements that helped turned the battle towards the Union forces?

Q#15 – What were the reasons the Confederate commanding general withdrew from the battlefield?

Quiz for July 29, 2014

Who Won the Battle?

Q#1 – Who Won the Battle of Big Bethel – Virginia – June 10, 1861?

Q#2 – Who Won the Battle of Wilson’s Creek – Missouri – August 10, 1861?

Q#3 – Who Won the Battle of Fort Henry – Tennessee – February 6, 1862?

Q#4 – Who Won the Battle of Pea Ridge – Arkansas – March 6–8, 1862?

Q#5 – Who Won the Battle of Glorieta Pass – New Mexico Territory – March 26–28, 1862?

Q#6 – Who Won the Battle of Forts Jackson and St. Philip – Louisiana – April 18–28, 1862?

Q#7 – Who Won the Battle of Cross Keys – Virginia – June 8, 1862?

Q#8 – Who Won the First Battle of Murfreesboro – Tennessee – July 13, 1862?

Q#9 – Who Won the Battle of South Mountain – Maryland – September 14, 1862?

Q#10 – Who Won the Battle of Perryville – Kentucky – October 8, 1862?

Q#11 – Who Won the Battle of Salem Church – Virginia – May 3–4, 1863?

Q#12 – Who Won the Battle of Fort Pillow – Tennessee – April 12, 1864?

Q#13 – Who Won the Battle of Yellow Tavern – Virginia – May 11, 1864?

Q#14 – Who Won the Battle of Jonesborough – Georgia – August 31–September 1, 1864?

Q#15 – Who Won the Battle of Palmito Ranch – Texas – May 12–13, 1865?

2014 West Coast Civil War Conference Announced

2014 West Coast Civil War Conference Announced

Craig L. Symonds and Harold Holzer

The Sacramento CWRT will host the West Coast Civil War Conference, November 7-9, 2014. The theme will be “1864” and the fun and learning will start on November 7th (Friday afternoon) with a late afternoon social hour, dinner, and speech. As usual, the activities continue on Saturday with another social hour, dinner, and speech at night. The Conference will continue until Sunday noon when we will all return to our homes.

2014 West Coast Conference Program

2014 Conference Registration Form

We have the commitments of two very well known Civil War historians to provide much of the action over the weekend. Craig Symonds and Harold Holzer will be doing the heavy lifting. We are evaluating along with them a new format for them at some time over the weekend. This would be a “conversational” format where Craig and Hal would sit in easy chairs in front of the room and carry on a conversation about the events of 1864 – giving their views on issues beyond just relating the facts. What an innovation this could be!!! There will be other speakers and activities as well and a detailed agenda will be released in the near future. Hotel rooms including a hot breakfast buffet will cost $99 for up to two people per room. Stay tuned for more! For questions, email Paul Ruud at ruud@starband.net, George W. Foxworth at gwfoxworth@sbcglobal.net, or Don Hayden at djhbooklover@yahoo.com.

Crowne Plaza Hotel (a Holiday Inn Hotel)
5321 Date Avenue
Sacramento, CA 95841-2512
916-338-5800
877-504-0054

For reservations, please say Sacramento Civil War Round Table to get the $99 block of rooms.

Meeting of June 24, 2014

Tom Roza on “Ambrose Powell Hill, A Confederate Warrior: Gettysburg to Petersburg”

During the four year history of the Civil War, there have been a number of military leaders on both sides who exhibited a wide variety of both strategic and tactical skills as well as personal courage under fire. For the Union, there were Joshua Chamberlain, Ulysses S. Grant, William Sherman, and Philip Sheridan among others. For the South, you have Robert E. Lee, James Longstreet, Stonewall Jackson, and Nathan Bedford Forrest.

But, there is one other person who is on a par with these individuals: Ambrose Powell Hill of Virginia. Hill’s entire adult life was spent in the military and during that period, his body was wracked with a variety of medical illnesses and maladies. Despite his very poor health, which deteriorated over time, Hill rose to become the best division commander in the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia and finally the Corps Commander of Lee’s Third Corp. Hill’s exceptional battlefield tactics were nowhere better demonstrated then at the Battle of Antietam when he marched his troops 17 miles and saved Lee’s army from almost certain destruction.

Despite Hill’s exceptional qualities as a battlefield commander, he often had run-ins with his superiors that resulted in Hill being arrested on several occasions and relieved of command, only to be reinstated when the Army really needed him. Hill was involved in virtually every major military event that the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia was involved in from First Bull Run in July 1861 to the collapse of the Southern defense of Petersburg in April 1865.

The story of A.P. Hill takes numerous interesting twists and turns both in his personal and military lives. And, Hill’s interaction with his troops and his superiors reveals numerous little known insights into what made the Army of Northern Virginia the effective fighting force it became. Therefore, in order to do justice to telling the story of AP Hill, there will be two presentations:

  • May: West Point to Chancellorsville
  • June: Gettysburg to Petersburg

Tom Roza has been a student of the American Civil War since 1960 and has toured several battlefields that AP Hill participated at (Bull Run, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, the Wilderness, and Spotsylvania Courthouse). This provided Tom with the ability to see first-hand the terrain where Hill led his troops in combat and these experiences have helped shape the content of the presentations.

Tom’s previous presentations for the SBCWRT have been on John Buford, Winfield Scott Hancock, and Robert Gould Shaw and the 54th Massachusetts Regiment.

Meeting Minutes June 2014

Meeting of May 27, 2014

Tom Roza on “Ambrose Powell Hill, A Confederate Warrior: West Point to Chancellorsville”

A.P. Hill (Wikipedia)

During the four year history of the Civil War, there have been a number of military leaders on both sides who exhibited a wide variety of both strategic and tactical skills as well as personal courage under fire. For the Union, there were Joshua Chamberlain, Ulysses S. Grant, William Sherman, and Philip Sheridan among others. For the South, you have Robert E. Lee, James Longstreet, Stonewall Jackson, and Nathan Bedford Forrest.

But, there is one other person who is on a par with these individuals: Ambrose Powell Hill of Virginia. Hill’s entire adult life was spent in the military and during that period, his body was wracked with a variety of medical illnesses and maladies. Despite his very poor health, which deteriorated over time, Hill rose to become the best division commander in the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia and finally the Corps Commander of Lee’s Third Corp. Hill’s exceptional battlefield tactics were nowhere better demonstrated then at the Battle of Antietam when he marched his troops 17 miles and saved Lee’s army from almost certain destruction.

Despite Hill’s exceptional qualities as a battlefield commander, he often had run-ins with his superiors that resulted in Hill being arrested on several occasions and relieved of command, only to be reinstated when the Army really needed him. Hill was involved in virtually every major military event that the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia was involved in from First Bull Run in July 1861 to the collapse of the Southern defense of Petersburg in April 1865.

The story of A.P. Hill takes numerous interesting twists and turns both in his personal and military lives. And, Hill’s interaction with his troops and his superiors reveals numerous little known insights into what made the Army of Northern Virginia the effective fighting force it became. Therefore, in order to do justice to telling the story of AP Hill, there will be two presentations:

  • May: West Point to Chancellorsville
  • June: Gettysburg to Petersburg

Tom Roza has been a student of the American Civil War since 1960 and has toured several battlefields that AP Hill participated at (Bull Run, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, the Wilderness, and Spotsylvania Courthouse). This provided Tom with the ability to see first-hand the terrain where Hill led his troops in combat and these experiences have helped shape the content of the presentations.

Tom’s previous presentations for the SBCWRT have been on John Buford, Winfield Scott Hancock, and Robert Gould Shaw and the 54th Massachusetts Regiment.

Meeting Minutes May 2014

Meeting of April 29, 2014

Dave Wildman on “Iowa’s Martyr Regiment, The Story of the Thirty-eighth Iowa Infantry”

Dave Wildman

Dave Wildman

(From Drew @ Civil War Books and Authors)

Iowa’s Martyr Regiment: The Story of the Thirty-eighth Iowa Infantry, “is another fine unit history. But it is not a typical one. While many Hawkeye formations forged enviable battle records in the western and Trans-Mississippi theaters, the 38th always seemed to miss the action. Nevertheless, the roster of dead was incredibly high for such a comparatively meager combat history. While only two men were killed in action or mortally wounded, sickness sent over 300 of its soldiers to an early grave.”

In its battle with disease, the Thirty-eighth suffered a no less honored destiny than many regiments whose flags were covered with the names of battles. Combined with those discharged for disability and its combat casualties the Regiment suffered a fifty percent casualty rate without participating in any one of the great battles of the war. These dead are scattered along the Mississippi River from Dubuque, Iowa to New Orleans, and along the Gulf coast from Brownsville, Texas to Barrancas, Florida. Unlike other regiments, perhaps the Thirty-eighth Iowa’s battle flag should have been covered in black crepe, indicative of its fight with an unseen monster. Continue reading

Quiz for April 29, 2014

Civil War Generals

Q#1 – What general commanded Union forces at the Battle of First Bull Run?

Q#2 – Who commanded Confederate forces at the First Battle of Kernstown, which was fought on March 23, 1862?

Q#3 – What Union general commanded the Army of the Ohio at the Battle of Shiloh?

Q#4 – At the Battle of Shiloh, who was Confederate General Albert Sidney Johnston’s second in command?

Q#5 – During the Seven Days Battle, was Union General Joseph Hooker a corps or division commander?

Q#6 – At what battle was Joseph E. Johnston wounded that led to his replacement by Robert E. Lee?

Q#7 – Who was the Union commander of the West Gulf Blockading Squadron that led to the capture of the City of New Orleans?

Q#8 – Who was the Confederate commander during the Union siege of Vicksburg in 1863?

Q#9 – What was the name of the Union cavalry commander who led a raid through Mississippi during April-May 1863?

Q#10 – Who was the Confederate division commanding general that Robert E. Lee left at Fredericksburg in May 1863 when Lee split his army prior to the Battle of Chancellorsville?

Q#11 – In Pickett’s Charge at the Battle of Gettysburg, who were the Confederate generals who replaced the wounded Harry Heth and Dorsey Pender?

Q#12 – Who was the Union commander at the Battle of Chickamauga?

Q#13 – Who was the Confederate corps commander whose troops defended the Bloody Angle on May 12 at the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House?

Q#14 – Who became the commander of the Union Army of the Shenandoah in September 1864?

Q#15 – What was the name of the sole Confederate office who accompanied Robert E. Lee when the surrender documents were signed in the McLean House at Appomattox Courthouse on April 9, 1865? (Note: He was not a general.)

Quiz for March 25, 2014

What Happened During the Month of March 1861-1865?

Q#1 – What major political event occurred on March 4, 1861?

Q#2 – On March 15, 1861, Lincoln met with his Cabinet to make a decision regarding what Union military location?

Q#3 – What was the name of the battle that was fought on March 7-8, 1862, where Union forces won a victory in Arkansas?

Q#4 – What pivotal naval engagement occurred during March 8/9, 1862?

Q#5 – What battle took place on March 28, 1862, in New Mexico Territory?

Q#6 – What action did the US Congress perform on March 3, 1863, that affected the staffing of the Union armies?

Q#7 – What happened on March 2, 1864, regarding a change in Union Commanders?

Q#8 – What was adopted by the Confederate Congress on March 4, 1864?

Q#9 – On March 9, 1864, what action did General Henry Halleck voluntarily take that affected the command authority of US Grant?

Q#10 – What Union military campaign located in the western portion of the country began on March 10, 1864?

Q#11 – What happened on March 17, 1864, that affected William Tecumseh Sherman’s command authority?

Q#12 – What action did President Lincoln take on March 21, 1864, that affected Nevada and Colorado?

Q#13 – What major political event occurred on March 4, 1865?

Q#14 – During March 19-21, 1865, what battle was fought in North Carolina?

Q#15 – On March 25, 1865, what major military Confederate action was initiated?