Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Serving Their Country: Women Soldiers As Orderlies

During my research, I have increasingly noticed more and more women soldiers who served as orderlies on both sides.  Acting in such capacity means that they would have been tasked with such chores as making coffee for the officers, caring for their uniforms and horses, helping with their meals, and other similar responsibilities.  In short, they were servants.  Because orderlies were considered noncombatants, they would have remained in the rear with the wagons and out of the direct line of fire.  The post was not devoid of risk, however.  Orderlies would have been exposed to overshot artillery rounds during battles and diseases.  

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Colors of Erin: The Flag of Chicago's Irish Legion

Recently, my friend, Tom, treated Mark and me to a behind-the-scenes tour of the Illinois Military Museum in Springfield.  We were joined by another friend, Chris, who had already seen all the cool things we were about to.  

Friday, July 21, 2017

Jennie Hodgers-After She Came Marching Home



After returning home to Illinois upon the conclusion of three years' service with the 95th Illinois Infantry, Jennie Hodgers relocated to four different towns before finally settling in Saunemin in 1869.  With her secret still intact, she maintained her male disguise and continued to take advantage of opportunities denied to women.  She voted in elections when it was still illegal for women to do so and worked at a variety of jobs including farmhand, day laborer, handyman, child sitter, janitor, property caretaker, and town lamplighter.  The ex-soldier was not only popular among her male comrades with whom she fought, but she was also respected and highly regarded by civilians she encountered during her post-war life.  One of the families for whom she worked, the Chesbros, even bought her a house, which still stands today and is open to tourists.   You can read a post about the house by clicking [HERE].

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Hannah Snell-Royal Marine

This is not Civil War related, but I wanted to share her brief story and a neat video to go with it.  Hannah
Snell was an English woman who disguised herself as a man and enlisted in the Royal Marines in the mid-1700's in order to search for a wayward husband who had abandoned her while she was pregnant with their child.  Following the death of the the little girl died at a year old, Snell took to the seas as "James Gray."  After fighting in India, during which she was wounded, she and her fellow marines sailed back to England where she revealed her secret.  Her comrades urged her to seek a pension, which she did.  Hannah was honorably discharged, and after the Royal Hospital of Chelsea officially recognized her service, began to receive a pension in 1750.


Thursday, May 4, 2017

Babes on the Bluff: Women Soldiers at Natchez, Mississippi

Sorry for the title, but I couldn't resist.

Previously, I wrote about the life of William Johnson, the Barber of Natchez, who was a free black man and slaveowner.  Click (HERE) for the post.  This was part 1 of an article detailing forgotten or little known aspects of Natchez history.  Part 2 deals with women soldiers and their connection to the Bluff City.

Friday, April 7, 2017

They Fought in World War I, Too!

With  yesterday marking the centennial anniversary of the U.S. entering the war, I thought I would share a few accounts of women soldiers who participated.....or tried, such as in this first case.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Book: "Death of an Assassin" by Ann Marie Ackermann

I am excited to share my friend Ann Marie Ackermann's book with y'all. Though it does not involve women soldiers, the topic is very interesting! Ms. Ackermann has uncovered an account of a German assassin who died defending Robert E. Lee during the Mexican War.  After committing a murder, he fled to the United States where he enlisted in a Pennsylvania volunteer unit comprised of Germans.  Upon the outbreak of war, the unit was sent to Mexico where it helped defend Lee's battery at the Battle of Vera Cruz.  Among those killed was the assassin.  Afterwards, Lee wrote a letter praising his heroism.


Death of an Assassin: The True Story of the German Murderer Who Died Defending Robert E. Lee
will be released in September by Kent State University Press, but you can pre-order now through Amazon, click (HERE) or Barnes and Noble, click (HERE).  I hope you will check it out!  She has researched this interesting topic extensively, and I am sure has a good story to tell.



I was honored to compose a guest blog post for Ann Marie about the trials of researching women soldiers, which you can read by clicking (HERE).

Until next formation...rest.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Women Soldiers of the Atlanta Campaign

Click (HERE) for a virtual tour of the Atlanta Campaign locations connected with women soldiers.  And then scroll down to see other pictures I posted of other areas in Tennessee and Georgia that are significant to their history.

 And if you missed out on a similar album I posted to my page last year dealing with women soldiers of the Red River Campaign, click (HERE) for those.

I post photos to my accompanying woman soldier Facebook page because Blogger is not conducive for such.  Therefore, if you enjoy my research, you may want to check out and "like" my Facebook page so you won't miss out.

Until next formation...rest.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

The Jackson, Mississippi Arsenal Explosion

Recently, I came across Raina's Facebook page and found her information interesting.  She is writing a book on women working in arsenals, some of whom perished in explosions at various sites.  The working title is In the Midst of Youth and Beauty:  Women in Civil War Arsenals.  You can visit her Facebook page by clicking (HERE) and blog (HERE).  In reading some of her material, I learned that there was an explosion at the arsenal in Jackson, Mississippi which I wasn't aware of.  Because I also enjoy learning about and sharing my own state's history, I asked her to write an article about this event, which she graciously did.  It appears below.   Thanks, Raina!  Following her article, I include information about women soldiers who worked in arsenals....or attempted to.


Thursday, March 2, 2017

My Talk for the Shieldsboro Rifles SCV Camp

"I don't need to test the amp," I said.  "It has always worked fine," I said.  So as I prepared for the first talk of the year, I didn't drag it out and hook it up to ensure it was in good order like the rest of my equipment.