Sunday, November 3, 2013

News and Notes - November 2013

I've let about two weeks pass since my last post, and so I thought a quick update might be in order. I continue to settle into life in Charlottesville, Virginia, and unfortunately I have not had much time to devote to the blog. I recently accepted a position at Monticello, and I've devoted the spare time I've had between unpacking and other tasks to brushing up on my knowledge of Jefferson, Revolutionary America, and the Early Republic. As a result, my Civil War reading and research has taken a back seat. While the posts might not come as frequently as they used to, they will keep coming. My next substantive entry will continue my series on French's Pets.

As the blog moves forward, it will evolve a bit to take into account my new location. Initially, Battlefield Back Stories largely focused on the Battle of Gettysburg - a reflection of the fact that I have spent far more time exploring that field than any other Civil War battleground. After all, you cannot write quality accounts of Civil War battles without comprehending the terrain the contending armies fought over. Over time, I have broadened this focus quite frequently, and with my new-found proximity to Virginia battlefields, I hope to continue that trend.

We approach the 150th anniversaries of the Gettysburg Address and the Mine Run Campaign. One of these commemorations will receive a good deal of attention, and I look forward to observing how the national media remembers Lincoln's words. The other will register little more than a blip on most people's radar. As we move towards 2014, I look forward to taking part in some of the sesquicentennial commemorations here in Virginia, but I wonder how much attention these anniversaries will receive outside the circle of Civil War enthusiasts.

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