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October 2004
First Vice President:                   Rob Monroe, Editor       
Richard Forrester                     2416 Edenbrook Dr.     
Second Vice President:                  Richmond, VA 23228-3040  
Shep Parsons                   

October 2004 PROGRAM Mrs. Gail Stephens, "Jubal's in the Valley: The Long, Hot Summer of 1864" 8:00 p.m., Tuesday, October 14, 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. Gail Stephens has a Bachelor's Degree in International Politics from George Washington University in Washington, DC, and has done graduate work at Johns Hopkins University and Harvard University. She worked for the Department of Defense for 26 years, retiring in 1994 as a member of the Department's Senior Executive Service. Upon retirement, she began to pursue her lifetime interest in the Civil War, volunteering at Monocacy National Battlefield near Frederick, Maryland. She has done extensive research on Confederate Gen. Jubal Early's 1864 advance on Washington, the Battle of the Monocacy and its participants, including Lew Wallace, the Union commander at Monocacy. She has lectured, taught at area colleges, given battlefield tours, and written several articles on Monocacy and Lew Wallace . In 2002 she won the National Park Service's E.W. Peterkin Award for her contributions to public understanding of Civil War history. On Tuesday evening, October 12, Mrs. Stephens will address the Richmond Civil War Round Table with a talk titled "Jubal's in the Valley: The Long, Hot Summer of 1864." She will focus on the first three months of Jubal Early's 1864 Valley Campaign - mid-June to mid-September. Mrs. Stephens believes the memory of Early's initial successes in the summer has been overwhelmed by a focus on his battles with Union Gen. Phillip Sheridan. She intends to engender some questions and discussion by looking, instead, at Early's considerable achievements.
Annual Holiday Meeting Scheduled for Next Month
The Richmond Civil War Round Table's annual Christmas holiday meeting will be held on Tuesday evening, November 9 at the Willow Oaks Country Club, 6228 Forest Hill Ave. in Richmond. Come early for the social gathering with cash bar from 6:00 to 7:00. Dinner will be served from 7:00 to 7:45, followed by the business meeting and our featured speaker. The RCWRT is proud to have Dr. Taylor Saunders as our guest for this special evening. Dr. Saunders will be addressing the Round Table on "Lee as President of Washington College." The cost for this annual event is $30. You may bring a check to the RCWRT's October 12 meeting and give to any officer or mail to: Shep Parsons 107 Rose Hill Dr. Richmond, VA 23229 You may call Shep at home, (804) 288-6816, or at work, (804) 782-7236.
Museum of the Confederacy Facing Challenges
The Museum of the Confederacy is finding itself facing massive obstacles. Some of them are more than ten stories high. In the most recent fiscal year, the museum saw its number of visitors drop to its lowest level in over a decade. This has placed a great burden on an already conservative operating budget. The museum recognizes several factors contributing to this decline but unquestionably the major culprit is the increasingly awkward accessibility of the museum. In recent years, hospital buildings from the neighboring Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center (formerly the Medical College of Virginia) have cast a shadow over the museum and the adjacent White House of the Confederacy. Ten and 12-floor buildings have been erected to the immediate south and west sides, dwarfing the museum and hiding it from would-be visitors. VCUMC's latest 15-year growth plan calls for rehabilitation or building on all streets surrounding the museum, starting in January 2005. Included in the plan is a new 14-floor hospital just to the east of the museum. This would permanently block the White House of the Confederacy's view of Shockhoe Valley and would thrust the museum into the heart of a construction site. In a letter to museum supporters, board of trustees chairman J.E.B. Stuart IV writes, "At the end of this process the museum will essentially be a small cultural anomaly hidden within an extensive medical campus." The museum's board is emphatic that they are in no way considering ceasing operations and that will never be an option. Rather, the questions before the board concern chiefly how to sustaining the viability of the White House, possibly relocating the museum, and coping with steadily declining income from entrance fees. "At no time since the museum's early days have we needed help so urgently from our faithful members," writes Stuart. "We need your financial support, because any of the viable options will cost more money than we have asked for in the past."
Upcoming Events
Friday-Sunday, October 15-17 "The Controversial Joe Johnston." Eighth Annual Symposium of the Pamplin Historical Park and the National Museum of the Civil War Soldier. Includes lectures (Fri. & Sat.), tour of Pamplin Historical Park (Sat.) and bus tour of Bentonville Battlefield (Sun.). $195 symposium fee, registration required. For more information, see article in September RCWRT newsletter, go to or call 1-877-PAMPLIN. 140th Anniversary Reenactment of the Battle of Cedar Creek, south of Winchester near Middletown. Belle Grove plantation tours, living history demonstrations, evening candlelight tours and other weekend events in addition to battle reenactments. One day tickets are $20, three day passes are $40. Info: or 1-888-628-1864.
Thursday, October 21 "Why They Fought." Symposium at Tredegar Gun Foundry. See article on back page of this newsletter.
Saturday, October 23 "Haunted Harvest Hayride" with Civil War living historians at the Staunton River Battlefield State Park in Halifax County. Nighttime hayride of the battlefield. Info: (434) 454-4312.
Sunday, October 24 "The Recovery of the H.L. Hunley." Lecture at the Chesterfield Central Library. The latest news on the Confederate submarine discovered off the coast of Charleston, SC and the burial of its crew. This free event begins at 2:00 pm. Info:
Friday & Saturday, October 29 & 30 "Haunted History Hike" at Sailor's Creek Battlefield Historic State Park in Amelia County. Visitors will take a _ mile hike on the battlefield and encounter ghosts of soldiers and civilians who were involved in the battles at Sailor's Creek. Activities for young folks and adults near the Hillsman House. Hikes every hour from 6:00 to 9:00 pm. Info: (434) 392-3435.
Saturday & Sunday, November 6 & 7 "Americans at War." The history of the American military from Colonial Times to the present. Living history demonstrations, military vehicle displays and real veterans of America's modern wars. Free with regular Park admission. Info: or call 1-877-PAMPLIN.
Tredegar National Civil War Center Foundation Presents Program on Civil War Motivations The Tredegar National Civil War Center Foundation will present a symposium about the motivations of Union, Confederate and African American soldiers and other participants in the war that defined our modern nation. The program entitled "Why They Fought" will be held in the Tredegar Gun Foundry at 500 Tredegar Street on Thursday, October 21, from 7:30 to 9:00pm. Admission is free, but reservations are required due to limited seating. To reserve a seat, please call (804) 788-6490 no later than Friday, October 15. The program is another in a series of educational programs in which the Foundation offers the whole community the opportunity to discuss important questions of American history with leading historians. Dr. Joseph T. Glatthaar, Professor of History, University of Houston, and author of Forged in Battle: The Alliance of Black Soldiers and White Officers, will discuss the Union motivation. Dr. Roger Davidson, Jr, Assistant Professor of History at Coppin State College in Maryland will present an African American perspective. His book, A Constant Struggle: Documents and Essays in African American History, Volume I, will be published soon. Dr. William J. Cooper, Jr., Boyd Professor of History at Louisiana State University and the author of Jefferson Davis, American, will discuss how Confederates saw their duty. The Tredegar National Civil War Center Foundation is a corporation formed to create the first museum and learning center in the United States that will tell how modern America emerged from the Civil War. The Center will show how the dynamic interplay among the three major participant groups in that war -- Union, Confederate, and African American -- changed the course of American history. The Center will anchor the western end of the Canal Walk and attract new visitors to the Richmond area, serving as a gateway to other local and regional historical venues. Also, it will offer a variety of learning opportunities for all ages with Web-based programs, community dialogs, and leadership studies.
RCWRT Monthly Speakers for 2004
Newsletter Deadlines To facilitate the printing and timely distribution of the monthly newsletter, information for it should be submitted to the editors no later than the following dates: November newsletter October 29 December newsletter December 3 Information may be emailed to
Richmond Civil War Round Table Newsletter Rob Monroe, Editor 2416 Edenbrook Dr. Richmond, VA 23228-3040

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