Civil War

Retouched photo of Pvt.
Orrin C. Reed
I got interested in the American Civil War a few years ago when I discovered that four of my close ancestors fought in the war - two for the North and two for the South. I researched their backgrounds and their war activities and published profiles of each one on a website called

Confederate Samuel Chase Woodfin who served in Tennessee's 18th Infantry and fought alongside three of his brothers. He was among the last of the rebel troops to surrender in April of 1865. John Tipton Womack was in Alabama's 2nd Infantry when it guarded Fort Morgan near Mobile. After a year in service he headed home in 1862.

George Foster was in the New York 152d Infantry and fought in several major battles, including Cold Harbor and The Wilderness. He was captured near Petersburg, Va., and spent 10 months in the notorious Confederate prison at Andersonville before being released at the end of the war. Orrin C. Reed of  New York's 185th Infantry, was also at Petersburg. He was fatally wounded in the battle at Lewis Farm in March, 1865, just a few weeks before Robert E. Lee surrendered.

I wrote about the research process in this article for the Courier-Journal's Op-Ed page: Tracing Civil War forbears - The Courier-Journal, Sept. 13, 2009. 

Living near Kentucky also contributed to my interest in the Civil War. The state was the site of several battles, including one at Perryville, one of the war's bloodiest. 2012 marked the 150th anniversary of Perryville and some of the state's other battles. While I was at The Courier-Journal, I created this 
page and the featured timeline to mark significant dates in history and current articles.

During the summer of 2012, I traveled to Civil War reenactments and events around the Kentucky and Southern Indiana. I posted photo galleries and articles about the events at and tracked the year 1862 with a feature called This Week In The War

I also wrote several reviews of Civil War books for the newspaper's Book Page:

Book review: Seward - Lincoln's Indispensable Man - The Courier-Journal, June 16, 2012
Book reviews | Civil War books look beyond battlefield - The Courier-Journal, Nov. 25, 2011
Book review | Exploring the drama of Perryville - The Courier-Journal, Oct. 23, 2009



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