by William B. Kurtz | | Wednesday, November 29, 2017 - 12:52


The Nau Center has only recently begun to recover the stories and experiences of those alumni and students who fought for the Union during the Civil War. PhD candidate Brian Neumann has already explored some of those stories in blog posts about Joseph Cabell Breckinridge, James Overton Broadhead, and William Meade Fishback.

by Jane Diamond | | Thursday, November 2, 2017 - 10:54


In August 1864, three men named John Allen, James H. Garland, and George W. Lewis enlisted in Company A of the 127th Regiment United States Colored Troops (USCT). They were young—giving their ages as 17, 20, and 26, respectively on their enlistment papers—and all lived in Mercer County in western Pennsylvania. They were from a local community named “Pandenarium,” although all three had actually been born far to the south in Albemarle County, Virginia.

by Brian Neumann | | Thursday, October 12, 2017 - 10:32


In the decades following the Civil War, the University of Virginia erased its Union veterans from its history, constructing a narrative of unwavering Confederate commitment. The few writers who mentioned these UVA Unionists insisted that they were northern students, thereby reaffirming the image of southern unity. In 1906, Captain William W.

by Brian Neumann | | Tuesday, September 19, 2017 - 00:00


As the seven Lower South states seceded in the wake of Abraham Lincoln’s election, Unionists in the Upper and Border South struggled to hold their fracturing country together. Many of these Unionists insisted the country could endure “half slave and half free”—as it had for more than eighty years—and they worked tirelessly to contain the crisis by finding a middle ground in the debates over slavery. Their efforts failed, however, because southern secessionists and hard-line Republicans refused to compromise, but also because of divisions within the Unionist ranks.

by Amelia Gilmer | | Tuesday, September 12, 2017 - 00:00


Now that the summer is over, I can safely say that working at Richmond National Battlefield Park was incredibly rewarding and enjoyable. Although I faced some challenges working as woman in the male-dominated field of Civil War history, it was so wonderful to spend the day talking about my passion for Civil War history with most of our visitors. Throughout the course of this internship, I learned so much about the field of public history and historical interpretation.