The heat is on here in DC, though thankfully not before we squeezed in a trip to Antietam yesterday. Blogging will continue to be light the rest of the week, though I wanted to share a few pics.
We visited the Unites States Capitol on Saturday. A book I cannot recommend highly enough is Guy Gugliotta’s Freedom’s Cap: The United States Capitol and the Coming of the Civil War. Among the many ironies was Jefferson Davis’s outsized role in its creation. You can’t help but think of how much he must have wanted the Capitol for his own Confederate States of America.
As I mentioned the other day, my first trip to Sharpsburg, in 2009, was one of the biggest turning points in my intellectual development. Seeing Burnside Bridge for myself forced me to challenge my assumptions about the war and by extension everything else. We had some interesting interactions at Antietam yesterday. We discussed the fighting in the West Wood with a twenty-one year veteran of the Army’s artillery branch, and met a couple from Wales who participated in the Pickett’s Charge hike two week’s ago on July 3rd. Apparently the American Civil War is part of their regular routine, because they mentioned being there for the 145th as well.
Speaking of challenging premises, a fascinating piece came through my in-box today about one man’s revelations about his Lost Cause assumptions after a recent visit to Gettysburg. It is worth reading the whole thing.