Reconstruction at the Civil War Institute 2016

I am soon onward and upward to the Civil War Institute’s annual conference. This is my second time going to the college for it (though my third year involved with the Institute’s annual conference). I always look forward to meeting new folks, seeing familiar faces, and catching up with people who have a mutual interest in this period of American history.

I remember back in 2013 at the Institute’s Future of Civil War History conference, Peter Carmichael, the institute’s director, approached me and several others asking if we though a conference dedicated to Reconstruction would be successful. I said yes. I’m not sure he was sure; but, I also know he was committed to going through with it. I said then, I’d be willing to help however I could.

The participants on the schedule are going to touch on a variety of subjects that include and go beyond the long traditional period of 1865-1877. I look forward to learning more from those in attendance.

I hope that everyone comes with good questions (well, that’s probably a given); but just as important leaves with more questions and curiosity to find answers.

I am on a panel titled “Finding Reconstruction at Historical Sites.” The panelists will tackle how historic sites are or could interpret the complexity of Reconstruction.


Chimborazo Hospital, 1865. “What is that doing on this post,” you ask? Well, soon you’ll hear. Photograph courtesy of the Library of Congress

I know that some of the CWI staff thought that there would be no interest in this topic. For better and for worse (not or), we’ve seen that this nation continues to debate the repercussions of the Civil War, race, and the legacy of the laws created in the aftermath of April 1865.

You can check out my pre-conference interview here


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