Civil War Lectures 2013-2014 Season
First Minnesota Infantry at Gettsburg, July 2, 1863. Painting by Don Troiani.
The following talks have already taken place. Please check this page later this year for Civil War-related First Wednesdays talks for the 2014-2015 season.
Norwich Public Library, October 2
The Rewards of Risk: Two Civil War Admirals. Acclaimed Civil War historian James M. McPherson traces the careers of two Civil War admirals with contrasting personalities: Samuel Francis DuPont, who captured Port Royal Bay in 1861 but failed to capture Charleston in 1863, and David Glasgow Farragut, who captured New Orleans in 1862 and Mobile Bay in 1864 as well as helped capture Vicksburg and Port Hudson in 1863.
Rutland Free Library, October 23 (special date)
The Civil War and American Art. Senior curator at the Smithsonian American Art Museum Eleanor Jones Harvey examines the impact of the Civil War on American art, looking to photography and genre painting as a way of understanding the human cost of war, and landscapes as a barometer of the nation’s psyche.
Kellogg-Hubbard Library, Montpelier, November 6
Walt Whitman and the Civil War. Whitman’s Civil War writings give us a dual portrait, first of the war as “a strange, unloosen’d wondrous time,” and second of the emergence of a new Whitman. UVM Professor Huck Gutman examines some of the most remarkable poems about war ever published, and looks at Whitman’s development into the man Whitman had always wanted to be. Sponsor: Pomerleau Real Estate
Ilsley Public Library, Middlebury, December 4
Giants: The Parallel Lives of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. Douglass and Lincoln—one born a slave, the other born dirt poor—became respectively one of the nation’s greatest orators and one of its greatest presidents. Harvard professor and Civil War scholar John Stauffer examines their friendship, the similarities in their lives, and their legacies.
Learn more about First Wednesdays lectures in Brattleboro, Essex Junction, Manchester, Middlebury, Montpelier, Newport, Norwich, Rutland, and St. Johnsbury.