Artifacts - Military Feed

Battle Flag Of The 26th North Carolina

Battle Flag Of The 26th North Carolina (The Museum Of The Confederacy)

​"North Carolina cannot remain much longer stationary; she must write her destiny either under the flag of Mr. Lincoln and aid to coerce the south or unite with the south to resist and defend their rights.“ 

William Holland Thomas to his wife, January 1, 1861. John C. Inscoe, The Heart of Confederate Appalachia: Western North Carolina in the Civil War. 

North Carolina seceded from the Union only reluctantly, yet it contributed as much as any state to the Confederate cause in soldiers, money, and supplies. North Carolina was also home to many Unionists, and this civil war at home — on top of the hardships of Union occupation, the deaths of thousands of men, and runaway inflation — tore the state nearly to shreds.

From: thecivilwarparlor

Restoring the Texas


The Texas, made famous in a 1950s Disney movie, was one of the players in the war's Great Locomotive Chase in April 1862. Its crew, running the locomotive backward, caught up with Union raiders who tried to destroy track between Big Shanty (now Kennesaw) and Chattanooga, Tennessee.

The raiders achieved little success, and eight of the nearly two dozen captured participants, disguised as civilians, were later hanged in Atlanta as spies. 

"We want to show it as the hard-working engine that it was, not just as one of the engines in the Great Locomotive Chase," Gordon Jones, the history center's senior military historian, said in a statement.

Read the full story here:

Do the locomotion: Famous Civil War engine taking ride on highway

Belt buckles: Real or fake?

How do you know if it’s real, fake, or just a reproduction? A glimpse inside the complex world of Civil War belt buckles

Counterfeit or Reproduction?

Some fakes are easily spotted: the font relief is razor-sharp and obviously freshly struck off a modern die, or the hooks on the back are made of modern steel. But some are devilishly difficult to analyze. Confederate buckles tend to be trickier than U.S. buckles to certify, as the original Confederate buckle-makers were usually amateurs, and their lackadaisical craftsmanship is easy to replicate. This is a difficult field. In extreme cases, an expert may think that a buckle is real for a dozen reasons, yet the strongest pronouncement he feels certain of is that he just can’t prove it’s not fake. 

Union “US” Oval Buckle

The US Oval is the most common Civil War belt buckle on the market, and indeed was the most common buckle on the battlefield during the Civil War. In the North, the Union had the industrial resources and was able to die-stamp as many as a million of these buckles. Consequently, the US Oval is not terribly valuable — some fetch about $300 to $350 — though of course that doesn’t stop fakers from producing their own versions.

From The Civil War Parlor on Tumblr


Civil war sword returned to soldier killed in battle

HONOLULU —The Pacific Diamond and Swiss Watch Exchange is an unlikely place to find a civil war sword, but shop owner Ted Gonzalez had one. He bought it in 2012 in from an estate dealer.

"I thought it was unusual just because I've never bought one before I decided to buy it and decided to keep it," said Gonzalez.
He didn't know what to do with it until client Paul Perrone noticed the name Lt. Edwin Coe engraved on the weapon. The history buff then found a photo of Lt. Coe.
Coe was a union solder from Worcester, Massachusetts. He served in the 57th Massachusetts Regiment and died on June 16, 1864, leading a charge during the Battle of Petersburg.
Documents show he was only 19.

A fallen soldier

Tumblr_nk356pygBm1rs5g28o1_540A Fallen Soldier

"This skull belonged to a soldier of the 54th Massachusetts Volunteers, an African-American unit that took part in a July 1863 assault on Fort Wagner in Charleston Harbor. The regiment sustained 272 killed, wounded, and missing during the attack.

By examining the skull, researchers determined how this soldier died. The size of the wound and the remains of the projectile indicate that he was killed by an iron canister ball from one of the fort’s two 12-pound field howitzers. The ball entered behind his left ear and traveled upwards through the lower part of the brain.”

(Photo and Caption taken from display at the National Museum of Health and Medicine, Washington DC)


Civil War Gear Inspires Veteran To Invent Modern Equipment

By Nancy Jennis Olds

Reenactor James Cragg, who took part in the Gettysburg Anniversary Committee’s 150th anniversary reenactment, has made a business of understanding the Civil War. 

Cragg found himself searching for answers when he wondered why so many pieces of equipment were discarded on Civil War battlefields, especially at 1st Manassas. He wondered if it was because gear was inefficient or uncomfortable for soldiers.

Examining period gear led Cragg to create modern designs. One of his inventions is a chest harness that holds rifle magazines spread in a flat row around the chest.

This design was inspired by Capt. Anson Mills, who served in the U.S. Army from 1861 to 1897. He invented the woven cartridge belt shortly after the Civil War. With the Spanish-American War in 1898 there was increased the demand for Mills’ cartridge belt. Great Britain was the first foreign country to adopt it.

Cragg researched Mills’ belt, the inline profile of the cartridge belt and the Sharps carbine ammunition box and developed a new concept.

His design was adopted by U.S. Army Special Forces in Iraq and five years later by the U.S. Marine Corps and conventional U.S. Army forces. The harness has become the standard for ground combat use in Afghanistan. Many soldiers credit it with saving lives.

Two additional Cragg products originate from the Civil War. The grab and go bags were inspired by cavalry saddlebags, which enabled troopers to fight with gear quickly at hand. Today’s soldiers keep a modern saddlebag, the Mission Go Bag, in their transport vehicles for quick access.

Another Civil War cavalry item, the single point sling for carbines, made sense to Cragg for allowing exceptional control and skill in the saddle. The two-point under-weapon rifle sling, usually reserved for the muskets, was created for parades, not battles, he says.

Cragg gives credit to 19th-century innovators such as Anson Mills and Samuel Colt, whose factory produced revolvers with interchangeable parts and who completely revolutionized weapons. Another technology pioneer was Christopher Miner Spencer, inventor of the lever-action repeating Spencer rifle.

Read more at Civil War News

American National Flag-35 Stars-Southern Sympathizers Bullet Holes-A Folk Art Masterpiece

Few American flags capture the essence of the Civil War like this 35 star homemade flag, made in 1863 along the Ohio-West Virginia border to celebrate West Virginia statehood.  West Virginia was born amidst the conflict of the Civil War when the northwestern counties of Virginia voted to secede from the confederacy and form a new state for the Union.  This flag was flown from the Olive Green General Store in Olive Green, Ohio, a town which no longer exists.  The flag, created by the Ohioans to boldly welcome their West Virginia countrymen back to the Union, stands as a testament to the tensions stirred by West Virginia’s secession.  According to family lore (and apparent upon close visual inspection), the three holes to the right-center of the flag are bullet holes shot through the flag by dissenting southern sympathizers as it hung on the general store.

From the Civil War Parlor

Civil War general's Medal of Honor discovered inside book at church sale

Chamberlain Medal of Honor
Joshua Chamberlain's original Medal of Honor (Courtesy Pejepscot Historical Society)  Fox News

A Medal of Honor awarded to a Civil War general has been returned to a Maine town after it was found inside a book at a church fundraising sale.

The Times Record of Brunswick, Maine reports Civil War Gen. Joshua Chamberlain's original Congressional Medal of Honor has been verified as authentic after it was sent anonymously in July to the Pejepscot Historical Society in Brunswick.

The society at first was skeptical, as they believed Chamberlain's Medal of Honor was already on display at Bowdoin College.

However, that medal was one re-issued to Chamberlain by Congress when the medal was redesigned in 1904, and recipients could either exchange the old medal for the new or keep both. Chamberlain apparently chose to keep both, though he could not wear them at the same time. 

Chamberlain received the original medal in 1893 for his heroism at Little Round Top during the Battle of Gettysburg. 

It had been given to his granddaughter, whose estate was donated to the First Parish Church of Duxbury, Mass., following her death in 2000.

Someone found the medal in the pages of a book bought from the church at a fundraising sale, and sent it anonymously to the historical society.

“There is photographic evidence that Chamberlain was very proud of the medal, that he wore it quite often,” Pejepscot Historical Society Director Jennifer Blanchard tells the Times Record.

The Brunswick home where Chamberlain lived more than 50 years is now a museum.

Read more: Fox News

Grand Army of the Republic flags from museum collection destroyed


Jason Clayworth, The Des Moines Register

DES MOINES, Iowa -- Iowa has destroyed eight flags in its museum collection from a Civil War organization after they were damaged by excessive amounts of mold and sewage.

"It's unbelievable," said Pat Palmersheim, a Vietnam veteran and former director of the Iowa Department of Veterans Affairs. "I can't believe someone would let that happen."

The flags apparently were from the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of veterans who served in the Civil War.

The flags were roughly 12 inches in length and width and believed to be from the early 1900s, possibly used as graveside memorials.

The mold and sewer damage to the flags occurred more than 25 years ago before the state moved its historical museum collections from the basement of the Ola Babcock Miller Building into its current location in Des Moines, officials said.

Continue reading "Grand Army of the Republic flags from museum collection destroyed" »

Southern Cross of Honor

Imagine finding a relic at a yard sale?! 

(September 2013 Civil War News article

PETERSBURG, Va. – A Southern Cross of Honor that turned up at a Northern Virginia garage sale has been donated to the National Museum of the Civil War Soldier at Pamplin Historical Park.
Yard sale browser Hazel Alvey of Dumfries, Va., recognized the small object a sale table was more than a trinket. It was the medal awarded by the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) to Confederate soldiers. 

The Norfolk Chapter of the UDC gave Pvt. Solon Deakins the medal in 1903. Alvey purchased it for $10 and then contacted Mary Schaller, third vice president and historian of the UDC’s Fairfax Chapter 1410, who accepted it as a donation.

In seeking a permanent home for the medal, Schaller asked fellow UDC member Harriet Hunt for suggestions. Hunt, an active member of Pamplin Historical Park, suggested the park. Executive director A. Wilson Greene accepted the medal in July. 

Continue reading "Southern Cross of Honor" »