"Hardtack and Hard Times": Back with news from the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table

Ned Jilton • Nov 19, 2013 at 3:30 PM

After a short absence Hardtack and Hard Times is up and

running in its new HQ (aka the new website) and the telegraph lines are humming

with news. I was thinking that the Times News probably now has more wires

running through the building than the Confederacy had telegraph line stretched

across the country.

Speaking of the telegraph lines (aka e-mail) this in from

the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table. They will be presenting the program “Battle

of Chancellorsville and the Last Days and Death of Stonewall Jackson” this

Monday, May 13, 7 pm in room 239 at the Renaissance Center in Kingsport.

Speaking will be Frank A. O’Reilly, Fredericksburg and

Spotsylvania National Military Park’s permanent historian at the “Stonewall”

Jackson Shrine. O’Reilly graduated in 1987 with a B.A. in American History from

Washington & Lee University. Mr. O’Reilly worked for the

"Stonewall" Jackson House in Lexington, and even guest lectured at

Washington & Lee on Civil War topics while still an undergraduate. He worked

for the National Park Service as a historian at the Fredericksburg &

Spotsylvania National Military Park, Independence Hall in Philadelphia and

again at Fredericksburg in 1990 to fill the permanent historian's position at

the "Stonewall" Jackson Shrine.

O’Reilly’s book “The Fredericksburg Campaign: Winter War on

the Rappahannock”, released in 2002 was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. His

latest book, “The Last Days of Stonewall Jackson” has been released recently.

One of the most famous of the Confederate generals, second

to Robert E. Lee, Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson’s Valley Campaign of 1862

is still studied in military academies around the world. As a corps commander

in the Army of Northern Virginia under Gen. Lee, Jackson lead the flanking

attack that gave Lee one of his most impressive victories.

On the morning of May 2, Lt. Gen. “Stonewall” Jackson

directed his corps on a march against the Federal left flank at

Chancellorsville, which was reported to be “hanging in the air.” At 5:20 pm,

Jackson’s line surged forward in an overwhelming attack that crushed the Union

XI Corps. Federal troops rallied, resisted the advance, and counterattacked.

Disorganization on both sides and darkness ended the fighting. While making a

night reconnaissance, Jackson was wounded by his own men who mistook him and

his staff as Yankee cavalry in the dark. The general was carried from the field

and survived with the loss of an arm to amputation, but died of complications

from pneumonia eight days later. His death was a severe setback for the

Confederacy, affecting not only its military prospects, but also the morale of

its army and of the general public.

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