When 1 Is Greater Than 620,000

By David A. Carrino
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2024, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in January 2024.


Everyone who labored through grade school arithmetic is familiar with the mathematical signs for greater than (>) and less than (<). Students are required to do many simple arithmetic problems just to drill into them what each of those signs means. If students were presented with the equation “1 _ 620,000” and asked to fill in the blank with the correct mathematical sign, they would have to give “<” as the answer in order to be given credit for responding correctly. But in one circumstance, the equation “1 > 620,000” is correct, and that circumstance is hauntingly described in a poem and in a story based on the Civil War.

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Doubleday’s Revenge

By Brian D. Kowell
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2023, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in April 2023.


If you stand on the ramparts of Fort Moultrie in South Carolina and look down the beach west of the fort’s massive guns, in the direction of Mount Pleasant, you will see the place where 162 years ago there once stood a luxurious beachfront hotel. In the evening, with a little imagination, you might see its bright lights and hear the sounds of music and laughter of the well-to-do people dancing at one of its extravagant balls, or sitting along its wide veranda, or strolling along its sandy beachfront.

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Cheney and the 21st OVI

By Dennis Keating
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2023, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in January 2023.


At the final hearing of the Congressional Committee investigating the January 6 insurrection, Congresswoman Liz Cheney began by invoking the memory of her great-great-grandfather, who joined the 21st Ohio Volunteer Infantry Regiment to save the Union. At the end of the war, Captain Samuel Fletcher Cheney commanded the regiment.

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Daniel Stearns and the Barking Dog Regiment

A Civil War Tale from Northeast Ohio

By Paul Siedel
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2022, All Rights Reserved


Several weeks ago, while strolling through the Battle of Franklin Museum in Franklin, Tennessee, I happened upon one of the exhibits titled “Harvey: Company Companion and Comrade.” The exhibit was about a soldier who enlisted in the army and brought along his dog, Harvey. The soldier’s name was Daniel Stearns, and being from the west side of Cuyahoga County, I thought I’d ask the person at the desk where Daniel Stearns had enlisted, there being a Stearns Road near where I grew up. The computer spit out the information on the soldier in question. It said that Stearns enlisted near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which is not what I wanted to hear.

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The Battle of Bentonville and Second Surrender of a Confederate Army in the East

By Dennis Keating
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2023, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in March 2023.


By the beginning of 1865, the Confederacy’s impending doom was becoming apparent with William Tecumseh Sherman’s forces approaching North Carolina at the beginning of March after its path through Georgia and then South Carolina and Robert E. Lee’s army trapped in the defense of Petersburg and Richmond. On February 22, 1865, Confederate President Davis recalled Joseph Johnston to lead a desperate attempt to stop Sherman before he united with Ulysses Grant’s Army of the Potomac.

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The Hero of Gettysburg Surveyed the Great Lakes.

By Daniel J. Ursu, Roundtable Historian
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2022-2023, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was the history brief for the November 2022 meeting of the Cleveland Civil War Roundtable.


Many of our members have enjoyed the recreational pleasures of living on the Great Lakes and especially Lake Erie. Most of us at one time or another have boated, fished, swam, sunbathed on a beach, or simply enjoyed a pleasure cruise, for instance on the Goodtime III. However, it is probably overlooked when we enjoy Lake Erie that this is due in part to the work done prior to the Civil War by the hero of Gettysburg, none other than General George Gordon Meade.

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I’ll Trade You a Fredericksburg for a Winchester and a Pea Ridge.

By David A. Carrino
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2022, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in October 2022.


The October 2021 meeting of the Cleveland Civil War Roundtable was an especially enjoyable one for me. It was not so much a memorable meeting, but a memory-able one. By memory-able, I mean that the meeting brought back memories for me. What made the meeting memory-able is that I sat with AJ Cianflocco, who at the time of the October meeting was a recent recruit to our organization. AJ and I were classmates at John Carroll University, Class of 1972, and we had not really seen each other since our days at John Carroll. The October meeting was a nice opportunity for us to catch up on the decades since our graduation. Talking with AJ is one of the things that made the meeting memory-able, because we had the opportunity to tell each other about our lives since graduation. AJ, like me, has a professional background in an area other than history. AJ is a physician, and I had no idea that he is interested in the Civil War. Because of this, I asked him how he came to acquire an interest in that conflict. His answer was another reason that the October meeting was memory-able for me, because AJ’s answer brought back a memory from my youth. AJ said that his interest in the Civil War began with trading cards about the Civil War that were sold many years ago. I likewise collected those cards, and while I remember the cards, I do not remember much about the specifics of them. This led me to do some investigation into those cards.

Continue reading “I’ll Trade You a Fredericksburg for a Winchester and a Pea Ridge.”

Was “Prince John” Only Acting?

By Brian D. Kowell
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2021, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in October/November 2021.


“He’s the hero for the times,
The furious fighting Johnny B. Magruder”

– Civil War Ballad

Though a small engagement, the Battle of Big Bethel on June 10, 1861, made General John Bankhead Magruder a celebrity. Pompous, egotistical, and given to theatrical behavior, he thrived on the recognition. Nicknamed “Prince John” because of his penchant for lavish entertainment, courtliness toward ladies, and fashionably ornate military dress, he also was fond of strong drink.

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A Footnote in Civil War History

By Brian D. Kowell
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2022, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in February 2022.


There are 18 outdoor Civil War statues spread throughout much of central and northwest Washington, D.C. There are 11 statutes of Union generals, two of Union admirals, and one (which was recently removed) of Confederate General Albert Pike, who was depicted as a Mason and not as a general. The other Civil War statues in Washington, D.C. are a G.A.R. Memorial, Peace Monument, Emancipation Memorial, and, the newest, an African American Civil War Memorial.

In addition to the statuary, there are a number of historical plaques to the Civil War at various sites. One of the strangest sites is located on the grounds of the Washington Naval Yard. The plaque there reads:

“Within this wall is deposited the leg of Col. Ulric Dahlgren U S V
wounded July 6th 1863 while skirmishing in the streets of Hagerstown
with the rebels after the Battle of Gettysburgh”

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The Near Capture of Ulysses Grant by Confederate General Jackson

By David A. Carrino
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2022, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in January 2022.


Perhaps the two most intriguing words in history are “What if?” This is true whether the word “history” is used in the context of the past, itself, or in the context of the study of the past. In the latter context, “What if?” leads to interesting, enjoyable, thought-provoking, and sometimes intense discussions. When people who are interested in history concoct alternative histories based on some event happening differently (i.e., a what-if), the discussions that follow are one of the things that contribute to people’s interest in history. In the former context of the word “history,” a real-life what-if strategically placed into the past (if such a thing were possible) could, as George Bailey learned, produce a substantially different present than the one in which we now live, and this is a significant reason for those interesting, enjoyable, thought-provoking, and sometimes intense discussions when “What if?” is inserted into the study of the past.

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