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Fort Sumter in 3-D!

Check out our new Fort Sumter in 3-D presentation. This presentation, created by the Center for Civil War Photography, allows you to see Civil War photos of historic Fort Sumter as the photographers intended - in three dimensions.

View the Presentation »

From the Educators

April 2011
Dear Civil War Educator and Preservationist,

The sesquicentennial has arrived. While it might seem a lofty goal to get students and teachers alike to simply pronounce, let alone spell, "sesquicentennial," the Trust has slightly loftier hopes for the 150th. We expect to see, and have already seen, a significant increase in media coverage, public awareness, and, therefore, heritage tourism, surrounding the anniversary. This can only help our collective preservation and education missions.

We are also pleased that so much is happening at the Trust as the 150th arrives. The ranks of our annual Teacher Institute are rapidly filling up, our new Civil War Curriculum is garnering praise, we continue to have great success in preserving battlefields, and our various Fort Sumter and 1861-rleated content pieces are very, very cool! All in all, not a bad time to be associated with the Civil War Trust. I pledge to make your association with us worthwhile and rewarding throughout the sesquicentennial commemoration.

Thanks for your support!

Garry Adelman, Director of History and Education


Teacher Institute this Summer in Nashville, TN

Teacher Institute

Calling all K-12 educators, sign-up today for the 2011 Teacher Institute! Help us reach 200 attendees and experience one of the best professional development opportunities on the American Civil War.

2011 Teacher Institute »

Andrew Druart

Join Andrew Druart

10-year old Andrew Druart, one of our youngest and most passionate members, is working to raise $7,000 to help save our Civil War battlefields. See Andrew's photos from his recent trip to battlefields in Tennessee, Mississippi, and Georgia.

Learn More »

Give 150!

Give 150

In commemoration of the 150th Anniversary of the American Civil War, History™ invites the public to help preserve and protect Civil War sites and stories through the Give 150™ national campaign. Give 150™ donations will go directly to the Civil War Trust and the National Park Foundation, to help protect Civil War sites and lands, and support their interpretation.

Learn more »

Feature Lesson: The Country Goes to War

The Country Goes to War

Part of The Civil War Curriculum, The Country Goes to War Lesson has students identify and sequence events from Lincoln's election to the Battle of First Manassas while looking at historic documents and locating events on a map.

See the Lesson Plan:

Elementary »

Middle School »

High School »

Battle of Gaines' Mill: Then & Now

Gaines' Mill: Then and Now

Historian Bobby Krick, maybe the foremost authority on the Battle of Gaines' Mill, describes the great events of June 27, 1862 and the state of the battlefield today.

Learn more »

Newspapers in Education

Newspapers in Education

A great resource for your classroom, Newspaper in Education teamed up with History™ and the Trust to provide educators with an overview of the Civil War in this month's issue.

See the Civil War 150 Issue (PDF) »

Find out more about Newspapers in Education »

Book of the Month

Under Siege

Under Siege! Three children at the Civil War battle for Vicksburg
By Andrea Warren. New York: Farrar Straus Giroux, 2009.

Along with Gettysburg, the battle for Vicksburg was a crucial turning point in the Civil War, but as Warren notes, news of the triumphant capture of Vicksburg, the key to Confederacy, was knocked off the front pages by the epic three-day battle of Gettysburg. In Under Siege Warren puts Vicksburg back in the limelight, from May 1862 -- when the first attempt to capture Vicksburg was made -- through the siege itself and ultimately, to the final surrender on July 4, 1863.

This multifaceted journey back in time is accomplished with deft writing, authoritative research and primary source quotations woven into the narrative. Warren presents the history of the siege through the viewpoints of three children who lived through it, using their memoirs to provide the human interest to the historical record. Ten-year-old Lucy McRae and 11-year-old Willie Lord describe the dangers and deprivations from the Confederate perspective, while General Grant's son Fred does the same from the Union perspective. Warren seamlessly juxtaposes the timeline of the campaign with the experiences of the children and those of other prominent Vicksburg citizens, which makes for fascinating reading, while at the same time providing insight into the tactics and strategy of Generals Grant, Pemberton and Johnston. Her "you are there" approach takes readers on a journey through the alligator-infested bayous with the Union Army, where soldiers stood on deck with brooms to brush away lizards, cockroaches and poisonous snakes that fell out of tree branches onto the ships. They enter the caves with Vicksburg's terrorized civilians to escape the constant shelling of the city, caves so packed with people that there "was no turning room for anybody; air so foul, sometimes you couldn't have made candle to burn in it." They can't help but sympathize with Pemberton's difficult decision to surrender Vicksburg, knowing that the loss would be credited to him.

Throughout the narrative, the effects of war on the civilian population both during the siege and during Union occupation, are made clear; Warren follows up with a postscript for the families and other individuals, providing details on their lives after the Civil War. Winner of the 2010 IRA Teacher's Choice Award, Under Siege is a dramatic account of the forty-seven day siege and the battles leading up to it. Also includes black and white captioned photos, maps and diagrams, glossy pages, endnotes and a selected bibliography. Highly recommended for grades 6 and above.

Purchase Under Siege! Three children at the Civil War battle for Vicksburg »

See More Book Reviews »


Trivia from the Archives

Trivia from the Archives

Q. In April, 1862, what two forts did the Union naval flotilla have to bypass in order to occupy New Orleans?

Q. In April, 1864, this son of a former U.S. President defeated Union forces at the Battle of Mansfield (Sabine Crossroads), turning back Nathaniel Banks' Red River campaign.

Answers from the Archives »


Civil War on the Web

  • Civil War 150
    Learn and teach the Civil War using a highly interactive and beautifully designed resource from History™. Also, find out what our director of history and education, Garry Adelman, thinks are the essential topics of the Civil War.
  • Fort Sumter, 1861 and Today
    View a map of Charleston Harbor today with a historic map overlay. A great way to see where people and places were during the Civil War and where they would be today.
  • Civil War 150 Posters
    Check out these great posters commemorating the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War.

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