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)

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Flying Home to Ohio

Sadly, my time in Georgia has come to an end. Today, it was in the 60s and sunny. Tomorrow, I fly back to Cleveland, where assuredly, the sun will not shine again until sometime in mid-June, and there will still be snow on the ground when the Indians open their season in April.

But, my stay in Georgia was wonderful, as always. I love spending time with my Uncle Jeff and Aunt Paula, and I have had an amazing trip for researching, hiking, and getting to know the battle of Kennesaw Mountain much better than I ever did before. If one is going to write about history, no matter what kind, I am thoroughly convinced that experiencing things first hand is crucial. Walking the ground of battlefields, touring historic homes, or even just being in the same places as historical figures always helps the writing process.

For me, spending time hiking the many trails at Kennesaw Mountain is very important. Because this was my last full day in Georgia, I saved the biggest, best known trail for last.

Today, Jeff and I hiked up Big Kennesaw, all 1808 feet.

The land behind me is the ground over which Union and Confederate forces struggled during the Atlanta Campaign in the lead up to the fight at Kennesaw Mountain in June. In the distance are the fields of Pickett's Mill, Resaca, and Rocky Face Ridge.

 Pumpkinvine Creek at Pickett's Mill Battlefield, a Georgia State Park

Further north are the blood soaked grounds of Chickamauga and Chattanooga

The Brotherton Cabin at Chickamauga

And many miles further is Cleveland, where I head tomorrow. It has been a great trip, and it has reminded me why I love the South so much. I can't wait to come back. But, for now, it is publishing Antietam research, writing my Kennesaw Mountain book, hoping for a new season at Antietam, and awaiting what else God has in store for me.

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