Civil War Profiles


Civil War Profiles: ‘Here come the Rebels! — The march to Gettysburg begins

The Confederate Army of Northern Virginia fought and won the battle of Chancellorsville in early May 1863. Gen. Robert E. Lee’s outnumbered army defeated its Union opponent; however, it sustained nearly 13,000 casualties in the process.

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Thursday, June 12, 2014 - 6:36am

Civil War Profiles: ‘Here come the Rebels! — The march to Gettysburg begins

The Confederate Army of Northern Virginia fought and won the battle of Chancellorsville in early May 1863. Gen. Robert E. Lee’s outnumbered army defeated its Union opponent; however, it sustained nearly 13,000 casualties in the process.

...

Thursday, June 12, 2014 - 6:36am

Civil War Profiles: A post-war lynching in Delaware

The end of the Civil War did not bring a complete halt to the massive loss of life that took place during four years of conflict. Animosity between the races frequently led to unbridled mob rule and lynching of African-Americans, as well as...

Friday, May 23, 2014 - 8:04am

Civil War Profiles: A post-war lynching in Delaware

The end of the Civil War did not bring a complete halt to the massive loss of life that took place during four years of conflict. Animosity between the races frequently led to unbridled mob rule and lynching of African-Americans, as well as...

Friday, May 23, 2014 - 8:04am

Civil War Profiles: A Delaware POW returns from captivity

Survival during the Civil War was not an easy task, especially given that the risk of being killed, wounded or a victim of disease was constantly present. For many soldiers, an even less-desirable fate was incarceration as a prisoner of war....

Thursday, April 17, 2014 - 8:17am

Civil War Profiles: James Tilton, M.D. — ‘Delaware’s greatest physician’

Tilton General Hospital in Wilmington, named after the first Surgeon General of the U.S. Army, was the primary medical facility in Delaware during the Civil War (see “Tilton General Hospital, a haven for Civil War casualties,” Coastal Point, Aug...

Thursday, April 10, 2014 - 8:16am

Civil War Profiles: Pea Patch Island in history and myth

As a heavily-laden ship made its way up the channel of the Delaware River around 1770, it foundered and broke apart on a mud shoal, dumping its cargo of peas into the water. When the peas sprouted, an island eventually emerged. Ergo, the legend...

Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 9:56am

Civil War Profiles: The arrest and imprisonment of the Rev. Isaac Handy

When Civil War came to the United States in 1861, it brought along with it a fear of sedition, which prompted limitations in the freedom of expression. Officials in Washington were concerned that the language or conduct of citizens would...

Thursday, March 13, 2014 - 7:19am

Civil War Profiles: ‘The end has come’ for Lincoln conspirators

There was no mystery as the trial of the seven men and one woman linked in a plot to kill President Abraham Lincoln concluded. As expected, it resulted in their conviction. Four sentenced to pay the ultimate penalty; three others jailed “for the...

Thursday, February 20, 2014 - 5:13am

Civil War Profiles: The Lincoln conspirators on trial

Lewis Thornton Powell, George A. Atzerodt, David E. Herold, Samuel Arnold, Michael O’Laughlin, George Spangler, Dr. Samuel Mudd and a lone woman, named Mary Surratt, sat for some 50 days before a military commission that was hearing testimony...

Thursday, February 13, 2014 - 9:38am

Civil War Profiles: Recollecting Lincoln ‘The Martyr’

“I am sitting in the President’s office. He was here very lately, but he will not return…”

With these somber sentiments, written on May 14, 1865, the perceptive New York World reporter George Alfred Townsend reminisced about Abraham...

Thursday, February 6, 2014 - 11:05am

Civil War Profiles: Townsend pens tribute to Lincoln assassination sleuths

In a “letter” published in the New York World, George Alfred Townsend identified the conspirators engaged in the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln. On May 2, 1865, in “The Detectives’ Stories,” the journalist from Delaware lauded the...

Thursday, January 30, 2014 - 9:03am

Civil War Profiles: Unraveling a ‘dark and bloody plot’

George Alfred Townsend’s “letter” to the public titled “A Solution of the Conspiracy,” published in the New York World newspaper on May 2, 1865, concerning President Lincoln’s assassination, announced that “Justice and fame are equally and...

Thursday, January 23, 2014 - 9:32am

Civil War Profiles: The pursuit, capture and death of Lincoln’s assassin

The controversial head of the National Detective Bureau, Col. Lafayette C. Baker, was instrumental in tracking down the man who shot President Abraham Lincoln on April 14, 1865, at Ford’s Theater in Washington, D.C. Officially, Baker was the...

Wednesday, January 8, 2014 - 2:03pm

Civil War Profiles: Who was John Wilkes Booth?

On April 27, 1865, George Alfred Townsend, serving as the Washington-based correspondent of the New York World, wrote the third of his “letters” to the public about the death of President Abraham Lincoln. Having previously reported on the...

Thursday, January 2, 2014 - 6:06am

Civil War Profiles: George Alfred Townsend reports on ‘The Murder’

An earthshaking event occurred at 10:13 p.m. on April 14, 1865, at Ford’s Theater in Washington, D.C. A popular actor named John Wilkes Booth assassinated the president of the United States, Abraham Lincoln.

In that pre-electronic age,...

Thursday, December 12, 2013 - 8:21am

Civil War Profiles: Sussex County’s ‘Gath’ investigates the real Lincoln

One of the finest literary talents Sussex County has produced over the years is George Alfred Townsend of Georgetown. During the mid- to late 19th century, Townsend — who signed his writings “Gath” — enjoyed celebrity as a political columnist,...

Thursday, December 5, 2013 - 7:23am

Civil War Profiles: Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation: The 150th anniversary

Although it is generally believed that the idea of offering thanksgiving originated with the Pilgrims who settled here from England in the 17th century, it was not until the 18th century that days of thanksgiving were promulgated in this country...

Wednesday, November 27, 2013 - 7:02am

Civil War Profiles: Fighting their last battle: The Delaware regiments at Ream’s Station

Following the Union Army of the Potomac’s nightmare at Cold Harbor, Va. on June 3, 1864, where thousands of men became casualties in less than an hour of fighting, Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant continued to pursue the strategy he had adopted at the...

Thursday, November 7, 2013 - 9:41am

Civil War Profiles: In the front line of the attack: Delaware at Cold Harbor

Marching southward from Spotsylvania toward Richmond and avoiding a trap Gen. Robert E. Lee set for the Union army near the North Anna River, Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant sent a message to Washington, “Lee’s army is really whipped.”

Grant’s...

Thursday, October 31, 2013 - 8:41am

Civil War Profiles: Upholding a reputation for valor: Delaware at Chancellorsville

Maj. Gen. Ambrose Burnside’s tenure as commander of the Army of the Potomac ended soon after the fiasco at Fredericksburg that caused many thousands of Union casualties. President Abraham Lincoln appointed Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker in his stead....

Thursday, October 3, 2013 - 10:12am

Civil War Profiles: The bloodiest day: Delaware at Antietam

Older senior citizens well remember gathering around the family radio to hear alarming reports of the attack on Dec. 7, 1941, that took the lives of 2,400 Americans. Most of us alive today witnessed the trauma of Sept. 11, 2001, unfolding on...

Wednesday, September 18, 2013 - 1:58pm

Civil War Profiles: ‘Seeing the elephant’ — Delaware on the Virginia Peninsula

Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan transported his Army of the Potomac, more than 100,000 strong, by ship to Fort Monroe, Va., at the southern extremity of the Chesapeake Bay between the York and James Rivers. His ambitious plan in early 1862 was to...

Thursday, September 12, 2013 - 9:04am

Civil War Profiles: Selfless heroics of a Georgetown surgeon

Capt. William P. Seville, along with his follow troops of the 1st Delaware Regiment, had the utmost regard for their unit’s surgeon, Dr. David W. Maull. Seville wrote in the regimental history that “Surgeon Maull won the highest respect and...

Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 6:04am

Civil War Profiles: Tilton General Hospital, a haven for Civil War casualties

Based on recent research, University of Minnesota Associate Professor J. David Hacker has determined that the death toll from wounds and illnesses during our nation’s conflict from 1861 to 1865 was upwards of 750,000. Beyond that appalling...

Wednesday, August 14, 2013 - 12:29pm

Civil War Profiles: Letters from Vietnam

In the modern electronic age and with the inception of the Internet, the idea of taking pen in hand to write a letter to friends and loved ones has become a rare occurrence. In the mid-19th century, however, letter-writing was the only means of...

Thursday, January 10, 2013 - 11:02am

Civil War Profiles: African-American in the post-Civil War era: "Free at Last!"

In Readings in Delaware History, Carol E. Hoffecker described the attitude of white Delawareans towards the state’s black population during the latter half of the 19th century, “... Delaware did not abandon slavery until forced to do so by the...

Wednesday, November 7, 2012 - 11:47am

Civil War Profiles: Corbit’s Charge at Westminster: ‘an almost suicidal bravery’

Word reached Maj. Gen. Robert Schenck at his Union Eighth Corps headquarters in Baltimore that enemy cavalry under Maj. Gen. James Ewell Brown “Jeb” Stuart had crossed the Potomac River near Rockville, Md., and was headed northward toward...

Thursday, November 1, 2012 - 6:52am

Civil War Profiles: Historic Camden had its share of heroes

The mention of Piccadilly immediately brings to mind a famous street in London, England. Few would recognize it, however, as a small 18th century village in Delaware. Piccadilly — located some three miles south of Dover — was also known as...

Thursday, October 4, 2012 - 2:56am

Civil War Profiles: The Irish in Delaware during the Civil War era

The celebration of St. Patrick’s Day on March 17 is a time for reflection about Irish heritage in the United States, as well as here in the state of Delaware. The U.S. lays claim to some 60 million people of Irish descent – a figure 10 times the...

Wednesday, March 14, 2012 - 2:53pm

Civil War Profiles: Ocean View resident shares Civil War memorabilia

An email arrived recently in my inbox from Philip Johnson, stating that his father, C. Elwood “Doc” Johnson, who lives in Ocean View, had attended the 75th reunion of Battle of Gettysburg veterans back in 1938, as a teenager. In addition, Johnson...

Wednesday, February 22, 2012 - 3:36am

Civil War Profiles: Delaware's military units in the civil war

When civil war erupted in the United States in 1861, residents from the State of Delaware rushed to join military units. Since Delaware was politically affiliated with the North, most men entered the Union ranks. Delaware’s African-Americans also...

Wednesday, July 13, 2011 - 4:05pm

Civil War Profiles Delaware during the Civil War: A Southern, Northern or border state?

Bruce Catton’s “American Heritage History of the Civil War portrays the United States” as a divided country in 1861. Of the 34 states in existence at that time, 19 were free states in the North and West, and 15 were Southern slave states. The...

Thursday, June 9, 2011 - 4:07am

Civil War Profiles

Prior to the 1860 presidential election in the United States, the political parties held conventions to choose candidates.

When the Democrats met in Charleston, and later in Baltimore, they were unable to agree on a policy regarding...

Thursday, May 26, 2011 - 7:13am