Making Sense of the American Civil War

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Appomattox Court House, Virginia. Group of Federal soldiers at court house.

1. Imagining War
  Saturday, January 21, 2012
  3:00 PM
  Downtown Bend Library - Brooks Room
  • Geraldine Brooks, March [2005]
  • Louisa May Alcott, “Journal kept at the hospital, Georgetown, D.C.” [1862]

2. Choosing Sides
  Sunday, February 5, 2012
  12:30 PM
  Downtown Bend Library - Brooks Room

Selections from the anthology:
  • Frederick Douglass, "What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?" [1852]
  • Henry David Thoreau, "A Plea for Captain John Brown" [1859]
  • Abraham Lincoln, First Inaugural Address [March 4, 1861]
  • Alexander H. Stephens, "Cornerstone" speech [March 21, 1861]
  • Robert Montague, Secessionist speech at Virginia secession convention [April 1-2, 1861]
  • Chapman Stuart, Unionist speech at Virginia secession convention [April 5, 1861]
  • Elizabeth Brown Pryor, excerpt from Reading the Man: A Portrait of Robert E. Lee Through his Private Letters [2007]
  • Mark Twain, "The Private History of a Campaign That Failed" [1885]
  • Sarah Morgan, excerpt from The Diary of a Southern Woman [May 9, May 17, 1862]

3. Making Sense of Shiloh
  Sunday, February 19, 2012
  3:00 PM
  Downtown Bend Library - Brooks Room

Selections from the anthology:
  • Ambrose Bierce, "What I Saw of Shiloh" [1881]
  • Ulysses Grant, excerpt from the Memoirs [1885]
  • Shelby Foote, excerpt from Shiloh [1952]
  • Bobbie Ann Mason, "Shiloh" [1982]
  • General Braxton Bragg, speech to the Army of the Mississippi [May 3, 1862]

4. The Shape of War
  Sunday, March 4, 2012
  3:00 PM
  Downtown Bend Library - Brooks Room
  • James M. McPherson, Crossroad of Freedom: Antietam [2002]

5. War and Freedom
  Sunday, March 18, 2012
  3:00 PM
  Downtown Bend Library - Brooks Room

Selections from the anthology:
  • Abraham Lincoln, address on colonization [1862]
  • John M. Washington, "Memorys [sic] of the Past" [1873]
  • Frederick Douglass, "Men of Color, To Arms!" [March 1863]
  • Abraham Lincoln, letters to James C. Conkling [1863] and Albert G. Hodges [1864]
  • Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address [1863]
  • James S. Brisbin, report on U.S. Colored Cavalry in Virginia [Oct. 2, 1864]
  • Colored Citizens of Nashville, Tennessee, Petition to the Union Convention of Tennessee Assembled in the Capitol at Nashville [January 9, 1865]
  • Margaret Walker, excerpt from Jubilee [1966]
  • Leon Litwack, excerpt from Been in the Storm So Long [1979]
  • Abraham Lincoln, Second Inaugural Address, 1865

Let’s Talk About It: Making Sense of the American Civil War is funded by NEH as part of its We the People initiative, which promotes scholarship, teaching, and learning about American history and culture.

Photographs from the Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Online Catalog

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Last modified on Wednesday, February 01, 2012