First Vice President: Rob Monroe, Editor
Richard Forrester 2416 Edenbrook Dr.
Second Vice President: Richmond, VA 23228-3040
Shep Parsons firstname.lastname@example.org
April 2004 PROGRAM
Mark G. Malvasi,
"My Brother's Keeper: Proslavery Thought
and the Southern Critique of Modernity"
8:00 p.m., Tuesday, April 13, 2004, at the
Boulevard United Methodist Church, 321 N. Boulevard,
Richmond, VA (corner of Boulevard and Stuart Ave.) Enter
the basement door on the right side under the front steps.
Mark G. Malvasi received a B.A. in history from Hiram
College in Ohio, a master's in history from the University
of Chicago and a Ph.D. from the University of Rochester
where he studied under renowned historian of slavery and the
South, Eugene D. Genovese. Malvasi has published over 40
essays, editorials and reviews in newspapers, journals and
anthologies. He is author of The Unregenerate South: The
Agrarian Thought of John Crowe Ranson, Allen Tate, and
Donald Davidson and Slavery in the Western Hemisphere, c.
At present, Malvasi is completing a study of the southern
novelist Andrew Lytle and editing a collection of essays
written by historian John Lukacs. Malvasi has taught
history and literature at the University of Rochester, the
University of Puget Sound and the University of Alabama. In
1992, he joined the department of history at Randolph-Macon
College in Ashland.
Malvasi will address the Round Table on the topic of
slavery. During the 20th century, southern conservative
thinkers argued that slavery had come to the South without
decision. Their efforts to distance themselves and their
tradition from the legacy of slavery have obscured the most
critical and imposing insights of their antebellum
forebears. The generation of southern thinkers who came of
age between 1815 and 1850 recognized the plight of the
modern world arising directly from the brutal nature of the
so-called free labor system and from the exploitive
character of free society itself. They posited slavery as
an alternative. What, then, did southerners think they were
defending when they defended slavery and why were they
willing to risk everything in a great war to do so?
Review of the March Program
The Professor Gary W. Gallagher spoke at the March meeting
of the RCWRT. His lively and often humorous talk, "Has
Enough Been Written About Gettysburg?" and the spirited
question and answer session that followed, were well
In response to his question, Gallagher stated that we really
do not need to know more about the generalship and
battlefield tactics at Gettysburg. What we do need to know
more about is how the battle resonates with time.
According to Gallagher, more has been written about
Gettysburg than any other event in American history. There
are reasons to say perhaps we have had enough. "Lost Cause"
writers have over-emphasized the battle by constantly
seeking answers as to why Lee lost (i.e. "What if Stonewall
had been there?").
Contrary to what is often stated, Gettysburg was not the
turning point of the war, Gallagher insisted. This is one
of the myths resulting from the many writings on the battle.
Gallagher backed up this assertion by explaining that Lee
returned to Virginia after the battle and was soon as strong
as ever. The Seven Days Battles were a true turning point
because Lee assumed command and the war continued for
another three years.
Grant's victory at Vicksburg was a much more important event
in the war, Gallagher asserted. Even Lincoln did not view
Gettysburg as a victory and was furious with Meade for
allowing Lee to slip away as McClelland had done the
Gallagher offered these suggestions about what should be
written about Gettysburg: How did it affect the people,
North and South, at the time of the event. This is more
important than later reflections on the battle. Why is it
still so popular with people today? Gallagher believes a
great opportunity exists for an in-depth study of the many
monuments on the battlefield and how Americans choose to
tell about the battle through them.
Museum of the Confederacy
Publishes Cased Images Catalog
Few objects are more moving to the contemporary student of
history than old, slightly battered photographic portraits
of citizens of a bygone era. For mid-19th-century wartime
Southerners, pride, wariness, hope, and sadness were
rendered eloquently by photographers whose studios welcomed
a steady stream of soldiers, married couples, mothers with
children, and war widows. Most of these images that survive
today are photographs placed on glass or other material and
sheltered in decorative cases, thus known as cased images.
The Museum of the Confederacy, which houses one of the
nation's largest institutional collections of cased images,
has issued the third in its series of museum holdings
catalogs, Cased Image Photographs from the Collection of the
Museum of the Confederacy, and the wealth of portraits
captures a world in transition.
Featuring more than 300 photographs, the paperbound book was
researched and written by the Museum's staff and
photographed by the Museum's Special Projects Director,
Tucker Hill, and by Katherine Wetzel. The catalog showcases
not only the variety of subjects who sat before the
photographer's lens - Confederate soldiers and civilian men,
women, children, both white and black - but also
representative examples of evolving photographic processes,
particularly daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, and tintypes.
Although more than a quarter of the cased images are
unidentified, all photographs in the catalog are captioned
with the type of image and provenance and occasionally a
brief paragraph about the subject. For example, this
caption accompanies the photograph of an unidentified
sweet-faced toddler wearing a white dress and standing in a
chair: "According to a story told by the donor, Pvt.
Heartwell Kincaid Adams of the 3rd Virginia Cavalry, this
ambrotype was in a haversack that he took from the body of a
dead Federal soldier at High Bridge a few days before
Appomattox. A Federal prisoner in Pvt. Adams' care offered
$2 to share the food in the haversack. The prisoner
recognized the photograph as his dead brother's child, but
he declined to identify or take the picture."
In addition to the rich array of 19th-century citizens from
all walks of life, the catalog features some familiar names,
including Gen. Robert E. Lee, Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart
(as a youthful, clean-shaven graduate of the U.S. Military
Academy), President and Mrs. Jefferson Davis, and Irishman
Maj. Gen. Patrick Cleburne. The 64-page book retails for
$12.95. It is available for purchase from The Museum of the
Confederacy's Haversack Store via telephone, (804) 649-1861,
ext. 26, or the Museum's website, www.moc.org.
Invited to Attend Meeting on Freeman Markers
RCWRT members are invited to attend a public meeting to
discuss the preservation and restoration of the "Freeman
Markers." These Civil War roadside markers were erected in
the 1920s and named for the famous historian Douglas S.
Freeman, who wrote the text for most, if not all of them.
The meeting will be held on Monday evening, April 12 (a day
prior to the next RCWRT meeting) from 7:30 to 8:30 at the
Atlee Branch Library, 9161 Atlee Road in Mechanicsville.
Expected to attend are representatives from the Virginia
Department of Historic Resources, National Park Service,
Virginia Department of Transportation, Henrico and Hanover
counties and several citizens groups. For more information,
contact RCWRT's Bernie Fisher at 730-1785 or visit
"Civil War Days" at Pamplin Historical Park and the National
Museum of the Civil War Soldier. Learn about life on the
front and at home during the war. Infantry, cavalry,
artillery and civilian demonstrations. Info:
www.pamplinpark.org or 1-877-PAMPLIN.
"Richmond Civil War Day" at Tredegar Iron Works, hosted by
the Richmond National Battlefield Park. Special events
highlighting the war's impact on the Confederate capital in
1864. Period music, civilian re-enactors, Belle Isle
walking tours, artillery and rifle firing demonstrations,
living history encampments and drills, children's games and
activities. Info: www.nps.gov/rich or 804-771-2145.
RBA Seeks Ukrop's Certificates
Please save your 2004 Ukrop's Golden Gift Certificates to
benefit the Richmond Battlefields Association (RBA). Ukrop's
will send the certificates to its customers during the month
of May. While we know many organizations participate in
this program, please try to direct your, and your friends',
certificates to help our local efforts to save area
Please bring your certificates to a RCWRT meeting or mail
88 West Square Drive
Richmond, VA 23233
Thank you for your continuing support of the RBA!
Chancellorsville and Glendale
on List of Endangered Battlefields
Two Virginia sites are among the ten most endangered
battlefields according to the Civil War Preservation Trust.
The Chancellorsville battlefield is on the CWPT list again
this year. The Trust points to the recent failed attempts
to build a housing development and a bypass on part of the
battlefield as proof of its vulnerability.
Also appearing on the endangered list is the Glendale
battlefield in Henrico County. The CWPT notes that a
housing development now being constructed is taking over 100
acres of land near the Glendale National Cemetery and only a
fraction of the battlefield is preserved or protected.
Other battlefields appearing on the CWPT's most endangered
list are Franklin, TN; New Bern, NC; Wilson's Creek, MO;
South Mountain, MD; Mansfield, LA; Morris Island, SC; Fort
Donelson, TN and the "Hell Hole" in Georgia.
RCWRT Monthly Speakers for 2004
To facilitate the printing and timely distribution of the
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May newsletter April 30
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Richmond Civil War Round Table Newsletter
Rob Monroe, Editor
2416 Edenbrook Dr.
Richmond, VA 23228-3040