Our Country's Fiery Ordeal

A blog about the American Civil War, written and maintained by historian Daniel J. Vermilya, author of The Battle of Kennesaw Mountain (History Press, 2014) and James Garfield and the Civil War (History Press, 2015)

Dedicated to my great-great-great grandfather, Private Ellwood Rodebaugh, Company D, 106th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, killed at the Battle of Antietam, September 17, 1862.

"And may an Overuling Providence continue to cause good to come out of evil, justice to be done to all men where injustice has long prevailed, and finally, peace, quiet, and harmony to come out of this terrible confrontation and our country's fiery ordeal." -- Albert Champlin, 105th Ohio, Diary entry of June 19, 1864 (Western Reserve Historical Society)

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Kennesaw Mountain Book Announcement

Greetings from Georgia!

If you recall, a few months ago I posted about visiting Georgia for research and battlefield hiking to prepare for a new project. Well, I am back in the beautiful state of Georgia once again. I flew in to Atlanta on Friday, and will be here for the next week to visit family, hike battlefields, and work on my new project, which has been ongoing for a few months now. I haven't been able to announce it yet, but I am now able to tell you about it because I have gotten the final go ahead from the publisher.

I have agreed to write a book for the History Press on the June 1864 Battle of Kennesaw Mountain!

This book will be a part of the History Press's Civil War Sesquicentennial Series, a series which features two outstanding books by my friend and colleague, John Hoptak (his books are on South Mountain and on Gettysburg). John is a big reason why this project is happening, as he put me in touch with the folks at the History Press. I owe him a tremendous thanks for his help. The book will be an overview of the battle, but considering that there aren't many books out there solely devoted to this fight, it will be based largely off of primary sources from soldiers who fought in 1864.

While Antietam has long been my main field of interest, I have also spent considerable time studying the Atlanta Campaign. While at John Carroll I wrote my Master's thesis on Ohio soldiers who fought during this campaign, and I have made several trips to Georgia to see the battlefields from this pivotal campaign in the American Civil War. I have also posted on here about Kennesaw Mountain before.

Of course, while in Georgia, I am staying with my Uncle Jeff and Aunt Paula, who live in Kennesaw and are opening their home and giving me a place to stay while I work on this project. Yesterday, Jeff and I spent some time hiking at Pickett's Mill State Battlefield, a very well preserved historic site with miles of trails that allow visitors to see the site of the May 27, 1864 Battle of Pickett's Mill that resulted in a Confederate victory.

My Kennesaw Mountain book likely won't be finished until this fall, and it won't hit the shelves until late this year or early in 2014, but I am very excited and looking forward to this incredible opportunity!

Stay tuned to the blog for more information and updates about the book over the upcoming months. I will post on here regularly about the project and about Kennesaw Mountain, in addition to my ongoing Antietam research which I hope will be published soon as well (more on that to come soon!)

I am very grateful for this wonderful opportunity. From time to time, when things get difficult and I don't know what my next step will be, God always tosses me another stone to jump to, to continue on across the stream and along the path He has set before me. Whatever success I may have had, I owe it all to Him. Thank the Lord for this great opportunity for which I could not be more excited.


  1. Congratulations! Will this be your first published book? Count me in for a pre publication reader if you need one.

  2. Congratulations. (And thanks for the kind comment on Artillery Hell above).

  3. Steve, it will be my first widely published book. I authored a short narrative on the Maryland Campaign that will be published this year (hopefully) by Western Maryland Interpretive Association. Thanks for the kind words everyone!