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October 1999
Robert E.L.Krick, President		John M.Coski, editor
10407 Leander Dr.			1201 E.Clay St.
Glen Allen, VA 23060			Richmond, VA 23219


The Cabinet of Jefferson Davis

8:00 p.m., Tuesday, October 12, 1999
Boulevard United Methodist Church
321 N. Boulevard (Corner of Boulevard and Stuart Ave.)
Enter basement door from Boulevard side.

The four years of the Civil War, while long  in  many,  many
ways, were short in others.  Four years is a short period of
time for a new government to assemble,  organize,  establish
then  move its capital, and carry on the day-to-day business
of governing.  And when a bloody, costly war is raging, then
the  time  seems  even shorter.  Who were the men who helped
make the day- to-day decisions of this new government.  Were
they all suited for the job?  Did they stay in the positions
they started in or did  they  move  around?   Did  President
Davis have some favorites or so me he didn't work well with?
Come and find out the answers to these and  other  questions
as  Scott  Mauger  takes  a look at the cabinet of President

Scott Mauger is well known to the members  of  the  Richmond
Civil  War Round 'Fable and the Civil War community.  Having
been a RCWRT member for 1O years, he has served as president
and  led last fall's field trip with J.E.B.  Stuart IV.  For
the last several years we have all looked forward each month
to  his  book  reviews.   Scott  also  currently  helps each
meeting with the 50/50 Preservation Fund Raising Drive.  This
is Scott's second presentation for the RCWRT.

Review of September Program
by R. Danny Witt

John Heatwole's interest in the burning  of  the  Shenandoah
Valley  started  years  ago  when he was collecting folklore
from the people of the valley.  He kept hearing  stories  of
when  "the Yankees burned the valley." This interest led him
to write the first major book on the subject,  published  in

Three  things  happened  in  1864 that caused U.S.  Grant to
look for someone who  could  prevent  the  Confederacy  from
using  the  valley: the defeat of Franz Sigel at New Market,
the defeat of David Hunter at Lynchburg, and  Jubal  Farly's
march  to the gates of Washington which caused the recall of
the 6th Corps from Petersburg.

Grant then assigned 33-year-old Phil Sheridan to command the
valley  forces.   With his arrival at Charles Town on August
7.  1864 he was commanded by Grant to neutralize the  valley
by  burning  out  as  much as possible.  This would stop the
valley from furnishing food and  supplies  to  the  Southern
army.   Also,  it  could not be used psychologically against
Washington to draw troops from Petersburg again.

Mr.  Heatwole cleared up  two  common  misconceptions.   The
burning lasted thirteen days, not three, and not every house
and barn were burned.   On  September  27th  the  systematic
burning  of  the  valley  began.   Sheridan  gave meticulous
orders that only barns and mills with grain in them were  to
be  burned  while  empty barns were to be left alone.  Also,
tile barns (even with grain in them) of widows, orphans  and
single  women  were not to be burned.  It seems that in most
cases these instructions were well followed.  To  Sheridan's
credit,  he  even  gave  people the opportunity to leave the
valley and furnished them with a wagon, and horses or  mules
to  pull  them.   He had 400 families leave the Harrisonburg
area on October 5th.

When tile burning ended on October 8 around 2000  barns,  70
mills,  12 sawmills, 7 furnaces and miles of fencing in four
Counties had been destroyed.  Also taken were  thousands  of
head of cattle and sheep.  If the cattle couldn't be used by
tile army they were destroyed as well as pigs which couldn't
be driven.

Sheridan  tried  to  rationalize  that  if  the  valley  was
destroyed to end the war, then the husbands and  sons  would
come  home sooner and alive.  On a visit to the valley years
after the war, Sheridan  received  a  surprisingly  friendly
welcome.   But,  as John Heatwole round in his research, the
people of  tile  valley  even  to  tills  day  remember  the
destruction that Sheridan wrought.

December Banquet Meeting Date: Thursday, December 2, 1999 Title: Dinner at 7:00 cash bar 6:00-7:00 Location: Holiday Inn Crossroads / 2000 Staples Mill Road Food Menu: fresh garden salad with dressing, pasta salad, marinated vegetables, tender medallions of beef, boneless breast of chicken Santa Fe, two fresh vegetables, one starch, warm rolls & butter, coffee and tea, holiday dessert table Speaker: William C. (Jack) Davis Cost: $26.00 per person Reservations: limited to 150 people, reservation and check must be received by November 24 Mail check to: R. Danny Witt, 5500 Ashton Park Drive, Glen Allen, VA 23059 Any questions? Please call (364-5589) or email (
Fall Field Trip: A. P. Hill's Last Battles When? Saturday, November 6 and will leave from Azalea Mail at 7:45 a.m. (or, if Azalea Mail is not available, from Brook Hill Mall) Where? (1) St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Petersburg (2)batttle of the Crater (3)Confederate lines (Mahone's division's position) south of Petersburg (4)battle of Weldon Railroad [a site that will soon be developed as an industrial park] (5)battle of Ream's Station (6)battle of Peeble's Farm (7)battle of Hatcher's Run [now an APCWS site] (8) battle of Boydton Plank Road (9)site of A. P. Hill's headquarters at 4'lndiana" (1O)Hill's last ride and death site Who? Chris Calkins will lead the tour - the same tour devised for "Bud" Robertson to assist in writing his biography of A. P, Hill. How Much? $12 per person. Use the form below to register for the tour. Please return it with your payment to Sam Craghead at a meeting or mail to:
Mr. W. S. Craghead 4361 Lakefield Mews Richmond, VA 23231 Date _________________ Name _______________________________ Address _______________________________ Phone# (______)_______________________ Number in party ____ x $12 = $ ______ (enclosed)
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