Child of the 60s

By Paul Burkholder
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2012, All Rights Reserved

I was born the same year as the Cleveland Civil War Roundtable (1956), which means I grew up in the 1960s. As I reflect on the 60s, I marvel at the density of events. From 1963-68, we experienced the assassinations of JFK, RFK and MLK, Malcolm X, Medgar Evers, and three freedom riders in Mississippi, not to mention the less tragic murder of George Lincoln Rockwell, founder of the American Nazi Party. Assassination was a common political recourse in 1960s America.

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When Legend Becomes Fact

By Paul Burkholder
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2012, All Rights Reserved

I think the historiography of the Civil War – the story of how the Civil War history was created and handed down to us – is as interesting as any other aspect of the Civil War. There may be other instances when the history of a war was written by the losers of the conflict, but I’m not aware of one. That, of course, is exactly what happened with the American Civil War; its history, as Americans have been taught it for the last 145 years, was largely written, framed and colored by veterans of the Confederacy and those sympathetic to its cause.

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A Rebuttal to “Shelby Foote Was Wrong!”

By Greg Biggs, President, Clarksville TN CWRT
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2014, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in October 2014.


I read with interest the Dick Crews op-ed on how Shelby Foote got it wrong when he called Nathan Bedford Forrest one of the two geniuses of the Civil War. Forrest remains a controversial figure of the Civil War but he was, as Foote suggested, a true genius.

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Shelby Foote Was Wrong!

By Dick Crews
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2014, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in October 2014.


Way back in the year 2000, when William Vodrey was President of our Roundtable, Shelby Foote was our big name speaker. You can argue that Ed Bearss or Bruce Catton are bigger name Cleveland CWRT speakers, but Shelby Foote was by far the most expensive.

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The Confederate Battle Flag, Personal License Plates, and Litigation

By Dennis Keating
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2015, All Rights Reserved

In Tony Horowitz’s Confederates in the Attic: Dispatches from the Unfinished Civil War (Random House, 1998), he devotes a chapter entitled “Dying for Dixie” to the killing of a neo-Confederate in Kentucky devoted to the Confederate flag by a black teenager and the antipathy of African Americans to Confederate symbols that defended slavery. In contrast, many Southerners regard the flag as a symbol of Southern patriotism and reject attempts to ban it from public places. The definitive history of the Confederate battle flag and the contemporary controversies over its display is The Confederate Battle Flag: America’s Most Embattled Emblem (Harvard University Press, 2005) by John Coski, Library Director of the Museum of the Confederacy.

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The Campaign Against the Confederate Battle Flag

By Dennis Keating
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2015, All Rights Reserved

July 9, 2015 saw Nikki Haley, the governor of South Carolina, sign the bill removing the Confederate battle flag from the grounds of the state capital. This ended a decades long struggle. The flag came down the next day, to be placed in a museum. This was triggered by the massacre of nine African Americans participating in a Bible study group in the historic Emanuel African Methodist Church in Charleston on June 17 by a white supremacist.

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Tactical Defeat

By Matt Slattery
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2008, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in the winter of 2002.


Many of the books on the Civil War (the fighting Civil War) deal with the strategy of the governments, North and South, and as carried out by their leading generals. Then there is a great break and many books then turn to the story of the individual soldier, the young man in blue or gray, and his contention with the terrors of battles and the risks of years’ long campaigning.

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Grant vs. Lee

By Dan Zeiser
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2008, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in December 2002.


The age-old question. The two best-known generals of the war. The commanders who battled one other at the end of the war. Lee’s surrender to Grant is generally, and incorrectly, considered the end of the war. Given his besting of Lee, is Grant the better general? Much has been written over the years, yet the question remains.

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How the South Could Have Won the War

By David Thomas
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2008, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in the spring of 1999.


In the beginning of the Civil War, the Confederacy won many decisive victories. As the war continued, however, the Confederacy weakened and in the end, the Union was the victor. But, could the South have won? There are five events that, had they turned out differently, might have allowed the South to win:

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