Gettysburg Field Trip – September 2008

By Paul Burkholder
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2008, All Rights Reserved

From Thursday, September 25 through Sunday, the 28th, twenty-five of our members, led by president Jon Thompson, participated in the Roundtable’s annual field trip, this year to the hallowed ground of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The club’s return to Gettysburg was driven in part by the ongoing work being done by the Park Service to restore the battlefield to its 1863 state, in part by the opening of the new Visitor Center there, and in part by the unveiling of the freshly restored (and moved) Cyclorama. Without cutting to the chase too quickly, let me report with some relief that those responsible for these changes have produced admirable results on all counts (save, perhaps, for the funding of these many projects, but more on that later).

Continue reading “Gettysburg Field Trip – September 2008”

The Myth of a Weak Confederacy

The Confederacy WAS a Viable State.

By Paul Burkholder
The Cleveland Civil War Roundtable
Copyright © 2008, All Rights Reserved

Editor’s note: The subject of the annual Dick Crews Debate at the January 2008 Roundtable meeting was: “The Southern Victory of 1865: Was the Confederacy a Viable State?” Five members made presentations on the topic; the article below was one of those five presentations.


CSA Independence

I think most of us would agree that, with a not too absurd twist of fate, there were several points before 1865 when the Confederacy could have won its independence. The Confederacy’s best chance for a viable independence with the least absurd twist of fate occurred in the fall of 1862 when Lee was invading Maryland, Bragg was invading Kentucky and Lord Palmerston’s government in London was seriously deliberating English intervention.

Continue reading “The Myth of a Weak Confederacy”

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.

Continue reading “Child of the 60s”

So Long, Farewell…

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

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in The Charger in May 2012. It was the final President’s Message of Paul Burkholder’s Presidency.


Our May meeting ends my term as president of the Roundtable.

I suspect I was like many future Roundtable presidents when, four years ago, Jon Thompson and Mel Maurer approached me about serving as treasurer/vice president/president. I really wanted nothing to do with it and immediately started scheming on polite ways to say “no,” such as: “I’m too busy!” “Public speaking makes me violently ill!” “I’m too involved at church!” “I gave at the office!” “The dog ate my homework!”

Continue reading “So Long, Farewell…”

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.

Continue reading “When Legend Becomes Fact”

Officer Profiles: Short Biographical Sketches of Civil War Officers

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

Editor’s note: This page contains a collection of brief biographical profiles of Civil War officers published in the Charger over the years. Most of these profiles are not original to either the Charger or this website but were cobbled together from various sources. The focus of these profiles is on less well-known players in the Civil War drama and not the superstar generals on whom we tend to more often focus our attention.


Continue reading “Officer Profiles: Short Biographical Sketches of Civil War Officers”