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Civil War Trust

Civil War Primer - February 13, 2009 - Civil War Preservation Trust

 Civil War Preservation Trust Teacher Newsletter

The Civil War Preservation Trust (CWPT) is America's largest non-profit organization (501-C3) devoted to the preservation of our nation's endangered Civil War battlefields. CWPT's Education Department  promotes Civil War battlefield preservation by encouraging the study of the war's timeless lessons, provoking thought about the vital roles these battlefields play in our nation's history.


    Civil War Preservation Trust's Eighth Annual Summer Teacher Institute
    July 24-26, 2009: Fredericksburg, VA



    "It's Our Turn: Fight to Save Civil War Battlefields"




    Civil War Preservation Trust's Eighth Annual Summer Teacher Institute
    July 24-26, 2009: Fredericksburg, VA


The Civil War Preservation Trust (CWPT) will host its Eighth Annual Teacher Institute from July 24-26, 2009 in Spotsylvania County, VA. This free weekend will feature workshops, battlefield tours of Chancellorsville and Fredericksburg, entertainment, speakers, and networking opportunities.  Teachers or librarian / media specialists who work with students in grades K through 12 are eligible to attend.

This year the institute will include teacher exhibits, giving teachers the chance to show off what they have been doing in their classroom to teach the Civil War. Teachers are encouraged to bring student work samples, lesson plans, and ideas that have proven successful.

The institute registration page is now online.  Register at the link above for both the program in general and the teacher exhibit area.  Directions, workshop information and frequently asked questions are also available on our updated Institute page.  Stipend applications will be available online soon.

Friday and Sunday workshops include African American Leadership During the Civil War Era - Using Primary Sources to Create First Person Narratives; Local Civil War History: How to use Your Local History to Learn About and Teach the Civil War; Using Technology to Teach the Civil War: Web 2.0 Tools and Techniques; From Antietam to Chancellorsville: The Civil War Diary of C.D.M. Broomhall, 124th Pennsylvania; Math and the Civil War: Using Graphs, Charts, and Stats to Learn About the Civil War; From Dred Scott to Emancipation: Evolving Views on Slavery; Civil War Multimedia Journals: Using Technology to Create a Civil War Journal; The Civil War and the Library of Congress: Best Practices for Searching the Library of Congress; Liverpool and Confederacy: Exploring the Relationship Between Liverpool and the Confederacy; and The Civil War and Fiction: Using Fictional Stories to Teach the Civil War.

Saturday field trip choices are Chancellorsville - featuring CWPT property The First Day at Chancellorsville OR Fredericksburg - featuring CWPT property at Slaughter Pen Farm.

Virginia Tech's Center for Civil War Studies will be an active partner in the institute. Dr. James I. "Bud" Robertson, Director of the Center, will be a keynote speaker at the institute and will be joined by William C. Davis, Director of Programs for the Center. Through our partnership with Virginia Tech, CWPT is able to offer Continuing Education Unit credits to participating educators.  Also participating will be The Virginia  Sesquicentennial Commission, History, and Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Parks.

Accommodations are reserved at the Fredericksburg Hospitality House and Conference Center.  Hotel reservations must be made by June 30th, 2009 to receive the Teacher Institute rate. When you call be sure to indicate that you are with the Civil War Preservation Trust Teacher  Institute.

More details are available on the web site.  If you need additional information, call (202) 367-1861 ext. 223 or email



"History Is Elementary: A Blog for History Teachers and Anyone Who Enjoys Reading about History and History Education"  This is a wonderful, award-winning source of history articles, ideas and classroom inspiration.  The entry for Thursday, February 12 is "Thirteen Battles Involving Thunderstorms".  Note that the Civil War battles of Chantilly (Ox Hill) and Monterrey Pass are mentioned.

Lincoln Emancipation Proclamation exhibit, several Lincoln podcasts and various Lincoln resources available at the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History

Read the March 1924 issue of "Modern Mechanix" - featuring a surprising inventor.

A wonderful database of Civil War soldier information.  At top right, notice "Soldier of the Moment:  Daughterty, William W." of the 27th Indiana Infantry.  Read his biography and view his letters (both the transcript and a PDF image are available).  The soldier of the moment changes frequently, giving you a rich source of information for your students.
Book Primary Sources from "Soldier Studies"
     George W. Huntington Diary of 1864
     Reminiscences of a Rebel - Wayland Fuller Dunaway, 40th Virginia Infantry Regiment.
     The Story of a Common Soldier of Army Life in the Civil War, 1861-1865 (1920) - Leander Stillwell, 61st Illinois Infantry
     Echoes of the Civil War as I Hear Them - by Michael Hendrick Fitch, 21st Wisconsin Regiment

"Andre Cailloux: The Death of a Southern Patriot" from the "This Mighty Scourge" Civil War blog.  Cailloux was the first black officer in the U.S.  Army, as captain of Co. E, 1st Louisiana Native Guard.  He had been born into slavery in 1825 near New Orleans and was given his freedom in 1846.  He joined the Louisiana Native Guard at the outbreak of the Civil War; this became the 1st Louisiana Native Guard when Benjamin Butler became military commander of the Department of the Gulf in 1862.  Cailloux was killed during the May 1863 battle at Port Hudson.  His funeral was held July 29th, and was attended by thousands of blacks AND whites.

His story is also mentioned in the biographies section of the CWPT Two-Week Curriculum, which you may download at
The Opper Project.  Lessons for using editorial cartoons in the classroom. -- "Historic Peace Churches" -- "Who are the Dunkers"

Useful for studying areas such as Sharpsburg or Third Winchester, where members of the Historic Peace Churches (such as the "Dunkers") were numerous.


==> ==> ==> The CWPT history pages have moved to:


"It's Our Turn: Fight to Save Civil War Battlefields"
For Grades 4 through 12, by the Civil War Preservation Trust and History

If you had only one minute to convince your elected officials to stop a developer from destroying a Civil War battlefield  what would you say?  Why should a community fight to protect its battlefield? How will saving a battlefield benefit a community  and future generations? Why does preserving a battlefield make us better people in the long run?

Use and develop the slogan ("It's Our Turn: Fight to Save Civil War Battlefields") while you create either a poster or an essay to convince  Americans to preserve our Civil War sites.

Elementary, for students in grades 4, 5, and 6
Junior, for students in grades 7, 8, and 9
Senior, for students in grades 10, 11, and 12

Junior, for students in grades 7, 8, and 9
Senior, for students in grades 10, 11, and 12
NO Elementary Essay Division

First  $200
Second  $100
Third  $50

Students win cash prizes; teachers win gift certificates in equivalent amounts. Due to its generosity and its concern for students and teachers, History (The History Channel) has graciously donated the prizes.

All entries must be received in our office by May 15, 2009.

Students may enter either the poster contest or the essay contest in their age group, but not both. (Note that there is no elementary essay contest.) There is no group entry category  one student per essay or poster. Posters AND essays must use the slogan as their title, and the title must be spelled correctly. Each entry must be labeled with the following information. (Tip: many teachers create labels in advance, and then attach one label to each entry.)

Student Name and Grade
Teacher Name
School Name and Address
School Phone
Teacher E-mail

Entrants will be notified of contest results in June of 2009 via letter and Hallowed Ground magazine.

Mail Entries to:

CWPT Poster and Essay Contest
Civil War Preservation Trust
11 Public Square, Suite 200
Hagerstown, MD 21740

Need More Information?  Complete rules are at

Call 1-888-606-1400 or email


From President Lincoln's Cottage at the Soldiers' Home and The White
House Historical Association

"During the warm, humid months of the year, President Abraham Lincoln and his family relocated to a comfortable cottage on the grounds of the government-run Soldiers' Home located in a rural setting three miles north of the White House.  President Lincoln's regular commute from the cottage to his office at the White House took him through the heart of Civil War Washington."

==> Students learn and understand the differences between Civil War
Washington (muddy streets, much less development, etc.) and  Washington today.

Lincoln passes several important locations (the cottage at the Soldiers' Home, the National Cemetery, an ambulance caravan, Walt Whitman's  residence, the White House, and contraband camps) - and also survives an August 1864 assassination attempt.  Key players are connected by means of Lincoln's commute:  soldiers, white Washingtonians,  contrabands, the dead and wounded (who still have a powerful presence), officers, and civilians with divided loyalties.

This presentation meets the following NCSS Standards:

 * Standard I:  Culture
 * Standard II: Time, Continuity and Change
 * Standard III: People, Places and Environments

This site provides:

 *An audiovisual presentation to supplement the textbook
 *An aerial view of present-day Washington which may be used to compare the city today and in the 1860s
 *An 1860s map which highlights the lesser-developed nature of the city compared with today
 *A brief segment with Walt Whitman, which may be used to introduce Whitman's poetry within the lesson
 *A brief introduction to the many different types of people living in the city during the Civil War
==> How could you use this site to meet your state's Standards of Learning?



A.  What was General Order 100, or, the Lieber Code?

B.  How old was George Armstrong Custer when he rose to the rank of Brigadier General in the Union army?

C. "Bragg's a good dog but 'Hold Fast's a better."   Who is "Hold Fast"?

D.  After which battle did Robert E. Lee exclaim, "My God! Has the army been dissolved?"

E.  Who was William Cathay?

Answers at bottom.


Unless indicated otherwise, email for details.

==> ** CWPT Gifted & Talented Curriculum: Character & Leadership in the Civil War.
Examine Civil War leaders through the lenses of character and leadership.  Designed for "gifted and talented" students -- or for students with a special interest in the Civil War -- this adaptable enrichment experience may be used alone or in addition to your existing curriculum.  Follows the NCSS Thematic Strands as well as Character Counts!(sm) and the Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership.

==> **Two-Week Civil War Curriculum CD-ROM:
For grades 5, 8 & 11.  Download online, or send your land address. The classroom curriculum guide is endorsed by History (The History  Channel). According to Dr. Libby O'Connell, Chief Historian at History, the CWPT Civil War curriculum guide is "the best two-week curriculum on the Civil War available to teachers today."

==> **Teacher Institute: July 24-26, 2009, Spotsylvania County Virginia.
Eighth Annual Teacher Institute from July 24-26, 2009 in Spotsylvania County, VA. Features "field trip" tours of Chancellorsville and Fredericksburg, focusing on techniques teachers can use to make a battlefield visit a central part of their Civil War curriculum. Open to all teachers and school librarians grades K-12, not just history teachers.  For more information contact the Civil War Preservation Trust at (202) 367-1861 ext. 223 or email

==> More Civil War Lesson Plans

==> **Classroom Memberships:
Monthly "Civil War Classroom" and quarterly "Hallowed Ground" magazine, classroom materials, curriculum CD-ROM & "It Happened in the Civil War". Email to sponsor a classroom, sign up, or review a newsletter.

==>**Adopt a Battlefield:
Great for your springtime Civil War unit!  Receive free Civil War materials including a mix of fun and informative items with adaptable activities.  Participants pledge to become involved in preservation through fundraising, service and advocacy.  For youths, classrooms, scouts, and homeschoolers.

==>**Civil War Preservation Trust Book List

 ==>**Traveling Trunk:
Reserve one for the 2009-2010 school year to access hands-on items, books, music and visuals.



A.  Before the Civil War, there weren't written rules governing the treatment of prisoners, flags of truce, treatment of spies, and so on.  Abraham Lincoln asked a law professor, Francis Lieber, to draft a paper about these issues.  Eventually, Lieber's paper was accepted by Lincoln and became "General Order 100", issued April 24, 1863.  The rules only applied to the United States, but they did reflect many existing laws and customs.  Read the code at Civil War Home:  You may also learn more at, or visit the International Committee of the Red Cross and search for "Lieber Code".

B.   Best known for his "last stand" at Little Big Horn, Custer was a successful, if colorful, Civil War general.  He was 23 years old when promoted to Brigadier General.  See  Another short biography of Custer is available at Civil War Home:

C.  William Starke Rosecrans.
"The results of the battle were not what we had hoped, and yet there was a general feeling of elation. One day, after we had gone into Murfreesboro', I accompanied General Rosecrans in a ride about our camp. We had come across some regiment or brigade that was being drilled, and they raised a shout, and as he rode along he took off his cap and said : " All right, boys, all right ; Bragg's a good dog, but Hold Fast's a better:' This well expressed my feeling as to the kind of victory we had won." -- Lt. Col. G.C. Kniffin, of Gen. Crittenden's Staff.  From _Battles and Leaders of the Civil War_, Vol. 3, p. 634.  Read about Rosecrans at

D.  Sailor's Creek.  Learn more about the battle - and our efforts to help preserve this site -  A brief history is located at

E.  William Cathay was really Cathay Williams - the only known female Buffalo Soldier.  She had been born a slave in Missouri in 1842.  Early in the Civil War she was freed by Union soldiers.  She joined the military as a paid servant, eventually with Philip Sheridan.  She was present during the destruction of much of the Shenandoah Valley.  A desire for financial independence motivated her November 1866 decision to enlist in the Thirty-Eighty United States Infantry, Co. A.  (There was no medical examination.)  She took the name "William Cathay".  Read more at
You can see an image of the enlistment form at



Jennifer Rosenberry
Education Coordinator
Civil War Preservation Trust
11 Public Square, Suite 200
Hagerstown, MD 21740


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