The Final Gun

Emerging Civil War

Today, we are pleased to welcome back guest author Dwight Hughes

Captain James I. Waddell. Naval History and Heritage Command. Captain James I. Waddell. Naval History and Heritage Command.

The CSS Shenandoah steamed northward through the Bering Sea in Arctic twilight. Shortly after midnight on June 22, 1865, the horizon was smudged by smoke from a whaler’s tryworks, and by morning, the New Bedford whalers Euphrates and William Thompson hove into view. Euphrates made a feeble attempt to flee but was quickly caught. Crews were removed and both ships went up in flames.

From Thompson’s Captain F. C. Smith, Shenandoah’s officers learned of the April 14 assassination of President Lincoln and the attempt on Secretary of State Seward. “I am certain that it was not done by anyone from our side,” wrote First Lieutenant William Whittle, a Virginian, but he feared that Confederates would be blamed anyway.[1]

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Some Reflections on William Tecumseh Sherman

Emerging Civil War

General-Sherman-AtlantaI must admit, it is exceptionally difficult to reflect on William Tecumseh Sherman. No question, he was one of the most enigmatic individuals of the American Civil War. The mere mention of his name in general company today, 150 years after the end of the conflict, still sparks an intense discussion. More often than not through the course of the conversation it will be made known that Sherman single handedly burned the entire South, which is not necessarily true. But is Sherman’s legacy, which is the subject of my presentation at next month’s Emerging Civil War symposium, the March to the Sea?

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