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Civil War surgery

Garry Ladd talks about being the Regimental Surgeon for the 3rd Illinois Volunteer Cavalry Regiment during a Living History day at Southwestern Illinois College in Belleville Monday. Ladd spoke about the medicine and surgical training a Civil War doctor had during that time period. Ladd made the point that most of the training was done on the job and that the transfer of disease and infection was not a concern or known about during that time period.(caption by Derik Holtmann/BND)

Union forces from the 3rd Illinois Cavalry along with members of the Lt. George E. Dixon Camp #1962, Sons of Confederate Veterans gave students a unique opportunity to learn about our heritage. 


88 years later, Civil War veteran to be laid to rest


PORTLAND, Ore. -- The tireless work of a local woman has finally brought her family the closure it wanted.

Alice Knapp of Nehalem wanted to know what happened to a loved one who served in the Civil War. That loved one was Peter Knapp and for 88 years, his cremated remains sat unclaimed at a Portland crematorium until Knapp family members started tracing their roots. 

That's where Knapp stepped in. She was married to Steve Knapp, a descendant of Peter. She started researching her husband's family back in 1980 when records were primarily kept on paper. And now with the help of modern technology, Alice Knapp was able to continue her search and it started when a distant cousin called her with a tip about Peter Knapp's past.

"She said, 'Did you know Peter Knapp wrote a bunch of diaries about the Civil War?' And I said, 'No.' She says, 'Yeah, look at this article,'" Alice said. "And sends me coughs up a bullet article)

Alice eventually found Peter's obituary.

"From his obituary, it said, they would go to a Portland crematorium and so I called the Portland crematorium and they said, 'Yeah, he's here,'" Alice said. "And I got his death certificate in Washington. I called back and said, 'By the way, is his wife there?' and they said, 'Yeah.' The shock was that he was not ever buried. That was the surprise to me."

That will all change on Friday. 

"His family will be together, also," Alice said. "They are really enthusiastic about the whole thing. I've got relatives coming from Colorado and California."

Peter Knapp will be laid to rest Friday at the Willamette National Cemetery -- exactly 88 years after he died. Friday's ceremony will also mark the 150th anniversary of the Civil War in Oregon. The Oregon National Guard is scheduled to provide full military honors.


National Park Service launches Civil War website

EBB3FCA5-155D-4519-3E28D3FD225C08FBWASHINGTON, D.C. – As part of its commemoration of the Civil War Sesquicentennial and coinciding with events marking the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Shiloh, the National Park Service has launched a Civil War themed website atwww.nps.gov/civilwar that provides an overview of the war, with special emphasis on the Civil War sites administered and preserved by the National Park Service.

The website features a wide range of richly-illustrated content, including stories of the Civil War, ranging from causes of the conflict to its consequences; biographies of notable individuals associated with the war, both military and civilian; places within the National Park System that interpret the Civil War; and information on the ways in which the National Park Service preserves Civil War battlefields, objects, landscapes and other historic resources. New content will be added regularly, so visitors are encouraged to check back to the site often.

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Sherman's March: Was It a War Crime?


Presentation by Walter Hall at the George E. Dixon Camp 1962, March 1, 2012 Camp Meeting. Walter Hall discusses several war crime charges and specification brought against Sherman and contrast them against the laws of war. Camp members vote on each specification in this mock trial.

Black Confederate soldiers



Silas Chandler has become the focal point for the claim that thousands of Black Southerners fought for the Confederacy. Kevin Levin and Mira Chandler-Sampson, a descendant of Silas Chandler, were recently interviewed on the Voice of Russia. Myra's stories are a poingant reminder that history is, at its heart, always deeply personal. 

History or Internet myth?  Listen to the Voice of Russia interview and decide for yourself.
Magazine cover from Civil War Memory

William Charles Kueffner

I spent the morning at Walnut Hill Cemetery in Belleville, Illinois looking for the grave of former Sheriff Frederick Ropiequet (served in 1866 and 1880).  Found my sheriff and then saw this imposing monument.

William Charles Kueffner (February 27, 1840 – March 18, 1893) was an officer in the Union Army during the American Civil War who served in the 9th Illinois Infantry in the Western Theater in several campaigns. He was later brevetted as a brigadier general for bravery in combat and was a noted attorney in southern Illinois following the war.

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