August Meeting Notice and Newsletter

August 17th, 2011 – Our 89th  Meeting!

The next meeting of the Clarksville (TN) Civil War Roundtable will be on Wednesday, August 17th at the Bone & Joint Center, 980 Professional Park Drive, right across the street from Gateway Hospital.  This is just off Dunlop Lane and Holiday Drive and only a few minutes east of Governor’s Square mall.  The meeting begins at 7:00 pm and is always open to the public.  Members please bring a friend or two – new recruits are always welcomed.

OUR SPEAKER AND TOPIC:           “The Civil War of Nashville’s Maggie Vaulx, April 1861 to March 1862”

In 1862, a 17 year old girl growing up during a time of great national strife spoke these words, “that I may be in after years an ornament to society and the delight of my dear parents.”  Margaret Nichol Vaulx came of age during the American Civil War and left writings which are that very ornament which she so prophetically spoke of.  Margaret, also known as Maggie was indeed the delight of her dear parents.  Maggie’s journals have been described as both national and state treasures and as one Belmont University literary professor said, “she can be compared to a civil war Anne Frank.” Even though Maggie identified her journals as private, their emphasis is on a difficult 3 week period known in Nashville as “the Panic.”  Nashville came under Federal control in February 1862 and remained occupied by the Union army throughout the rest of the war.  Great hardships were placed upon the citizens of the city including the children.  Maggie began her journals 2 week after the war began and she continued to write well beyond the surrender.

Nashville’s Ross Hudgins will bring Maggie’s story to life at this month’s meeting.  There is a fascinating story as to how he came to find these journals that he will share with us this month but the main event will be Maggie and her perceptions of what was going on around her.  Ross Hudgins is a military veteran as well as a former Tennessee Valley Authority employee.  He will offer a Power Point with his presentation.  Please join us for the story of Nashville’s Maggie Vaulx at this month’s meeting of the Nashville Civil War Roundtable.

Please join us for this program about a very observant Nashville young lady.


We were very fortunate to have one of the premier historians from the National Park Service, Bobby Krick, from the Richmond National Battlefield, speak to us about the staff of Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia.  Krick delved into the handful of staff officers that helped run the army all molded in Lee’s concept of how big the staff should be and what they should do.  With staff officer experience himself, Lee’s concept was based on personal experience.  A criticism made against Lee was that the staff was too small for an army so large, and that is a valid argument considering how large French and Prussian staffs were in the Napoleonic Wars.  There were times when the staff officers worked very well and times when the staff seemed not up to the task at hand but the same can be said for Lee himself (and for that matter any other commanding general in history).  It was an illuminating program that offered insights into how a mid-19th Century American army was run delivered with superb knowledge and sometimes dry wit.  Your CWRT would do very well getting Bobby Krick to come and speak!


September 2011 – Ross Massey, historian and author, “General James Chalmer’s Cavalry Division in the Battle of Nashville”

October 2011 – Phil Seyfrit, Richmond, KY Battlefield – “The Battle of Richmond, Kentucky“

November 2011 – Eric Jacobson, Battle of Franklin Trust – “Baptism of Fire: The Role of Federal Recruits at the Battle of Franklin”

December 2011 – John Marler, Battle of Franklin Trust – “The Siege of Petersburg”

January 2012 – Teresa Prober, Austin Peay State University, “The Dover Hotel and Dover, Tennessee in the Civil War”

February 2012 – Myron Smith, historian and author, Tusculum College, “Union Navy City Class Ironclads on the Western Rivers”

March 2012 – Ltc. Harold Knudsen – “General James Longstreet – Modern General

April 2012 – Mark Christ, Arkansas Historical Commission – “Arkansas 1863” (tentative)

May 2012 – Michael Bradley, author/historian – “The Staff and Escort of Nathan Bedford Forrest”

TBA –  Kraig McNutt, historian and author – “The Civil War Letters of Addison Lee Ewing, 63rd Indiana Infantry, Late Summer 1864-January 1865”

July 2012 – Steven Woodworth, historian/Author/Texas Christian University – “Jefferson Davis and His Generals” (tentative)

MEMBERS AND DUES: Your name badge will have a ribbon and a star if you are current with your dues.  If it has neither please pay your dues at this meeting!  Thank you if you have already done so.

Thanks to all of you, the Clarksville CWRT continues to grow.  We would love to have you join us!  If you have friends interested in the Civil War, please bring them along.  July is our fiscal year when dues for the current campaign were due.  If you haven’t paid your dues for this season yet please do so.  Our dues help us get great speakers and for historical preservation.  Annual dues are as follows:

Ö         Student – $10

Ö         Single membership – $20

Ö         Family – $30

Ö         Military – Active duty and veterans – $15

Ö         Military family – Active duty, veterans, and family – $25


Help Conserve The 6th Tennessee Cavalry Battle Flag at the Tennessee State Museum

Ronny Mangrum is well known to many in Middle Tennesse Civil War circles.  An ardent member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, he is passionate about conserving battle flags in the Tennessee State Museum.  He has already worked to conserve the silk flag of the 20th Tennessee and has now turned his sights to conserving the 6th Tennessee Cavalry banner, made at the Augusta Depot in Georgia and issued in early 1864.  To help raise money, he holds an annual “Ronnaroo” music and food event at his home near Peytonsville, Tennessee featuring bands, fellowship and much more.  This year’s event is Saturday, August 13th, 2011.  Tickets are just $20 and the money goes to conserve the flag.  You can also send donations to the Tennessee State Museum’s Flag Conservation Fund if you cannot attend the event.

The event will be held at the antebellum Smithson home located at 4762 Peytonsville Road, off I-840 southeast of Franklin.  The doors open at 3 PM and the music begins an hour later.  For more information please contact Ronny at or by calling (931)374-8368.

Franklin Civil War Round Table Programs

Sam Davis Elliott will be speaking on his recent book on Tennessee’s Civil War governor Isham Harris. A Chattanooga resident,   Mr. Elliott’s intriguing presentation begins at 3:00, August 14th at the Franklin Police Complex Community Room.  This is a new meeting place for the Franklin CWRT and it’s just down the street from the old library location.

On September 11, the Franklin CWRT will host Chris Kolakowski, director of the Gen. George S. Patton Museum at Fort Knox, Kentucky.  His topic will be on the Perryville Campaign of 1862 of which he is an acknowledged expert and author.  The meeting begins at 3 PM in their new home at the Franklin Police Department.

Please support Tennessee’s Civil War Roundtables!

New Tennessee Civil War Roundtable Begins This Month In Dover

The Fort Donelson Civil War Roundtable begins operations on Thursday, August 18th, 2011.  Their debut speaker will be Jimmy Jobe, noted historian of Fort Donelson National Battlefield.  The meetings begin at 7 PM at the Stewart County Visitors Center on Highway 79 which is located right across the highway from the main entrance to Fort Donelson National Battlefield.  This will be yet another Tennessee Civil War Roundtable that will meet on a Civil War battlefield along with Franklin, Middle Tennessee, Chattanooga and the Nashville CWRTs.  Not that many across the country are so privileged.

Atlanta Campaign Tour Led by Greg Biggs – October 21-23, 2011

If you are planning on going on this tour you need to get your checks in to the Tennessee Valley CWRT of Huntsville, Alabama as soon as possible.  The tour bus is filling up and space is getting tighter every day.  For all of the details please contact Kent Wright at –  The tour fee includes hotels, bus, guide, park fees and much moreYou will have a great time!

Lots of Civil War Events in Kentucky – September–December 2011

Our neighbors to the north have lots of events for the Civil War Sesquicentennial.  Here’s just a small sampling of things, most of which are within 3 hours of Clarksville.  So head up I-24 or I-65 and have some fun in the Bluegrass State.

Hart County Civil War Days – September 9 – 11, 2011

Events include battle reenactments, living history camps, guided tours, ceremonies, games, historical presentations, food, music, booths, period dancing, period church service, and more.  Munfordville is the site of two Civil War battles.  For information call (270) 524-4752 or (270) 524-2892 or go to

Bowling Green’s Remembering the Civil War – September 17, 2011

Multiple sites in Bowling Green, including the Kentucky Museum, the Historic Railpark and Train Museum, Riverview at Hobson Grove, and the Lost River Cave and Valley are partnering to present a multitude of activities related to Bowling Green and the Civil War.  This is a wonderful opportunity to visit several historic sites in Bowling Green.  For information, see

Ongoing exhibition – “Lexington During the Civil War” – Through January 1, 2012

Location: Lexington History Museum.  For information, see

Ongoing exhibition – “Lincoln and His Wife’s Hometown” – Through January 1, 2012

Location: Lexington History Museum.  For information, see

Ongoing exhibition – “Relics of the Past: The Forgotten Story of Confederate Camp Beauregard” Through January 1, 2012

Location: Market House Museum, Paducah

For information, see

Living History and Skirmish presented by the Friends of Fort Negley, Metro Parks and Fort Negley Visitors Center
On September 24, 2011, a Civil War skirmish and living history will be held on the grounds of Nashville’s historic Fort Negley.  There will be lots of hands-on activities for kids, military and civilian reenactor encampments, a miniature train ride, guest speakers and a skirmish!  Events begin at 9 AM and conclude at 5 PM.  Admission is $5 with children under age 5 getting in free.  Fun for the whole family!  Please park and enter at the Greer Stadium parking lot from Chestnut Street.  The proceeds go for Fort Negley projects.  Last year’s event drew nearly 1000 people so plan 

on making this year’s event even bigger!

Historian Bobby Krick’s Army of Northern Virginia Staff Officer Book Suggestions

Last month’s speaker was kind enough to email a list of books written by staff officers of this famous army for your further education into their jobs and their wartime experiences.  As follows with his short reviews of each:

E. Porter Alexander, Fighting For the Confederacy.  We think of Alexander as a general, but he was more of a staff officer–to Lee and others–than anything else.

Charles M. Blackford, Letters from Lee’s Army
.  A staff officer in the 1st Corps.

W. W. Blackford, War Years with Jeb Stuart
.  A staff officer for the famous cavalry commander.

G. Campbell Brown, Campbell Brown’s Civil War
.  Brown had extensive ties to Tennessee, and his recently published writings are superb.  He was on the staff of Richard Ewell and
Jubal Early.

W. W. Chamberlaine, Memoirs of the Civil War.
  Unavailable for nearly 100 years, and just issued in paperback.  Chamberlaine was on the staff of the 3rd Corps artillery, and offers a different perspective than the other traditional accounts.

H. Kyd Douglas, I Rode With Stonewall
.  One of the timeless classics of the Civil War now somewhat unfairly maligned I think.

Theodore S. Garnett, Riding With Stuart:  Reminiscences of an Aide-de-Camp.  An extremely underappreciated book, Garnett never finished his memoirs, but he wrote enough to make for a worthwhile posthumous publication.

Jedediah Hotchkiss, Make Me a Map of the Valley.  The famous diary of a cartographer and staff officer for Stonewall Jackson, Richard Ewell, and Jubal Early.

More next month.  Thanks for the fine list Bobby!

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