Examination Boards

Officers in the Regular Army, especially veterans of the Mexican War, had “a regular’s contempt for ‘fancy volunteers.’”  Men like George McClellan denigrated untrained and undisciplined volunteer officers as the dregs of society, kicked out of “county courthouses, & low village bar rooms.”  Unyielding in his disdain, McClellan sought to double the number of officers…

Mount Vernon in the Civil War

In April 1858, John Augustine Washington, George Washington’s great grandnephew, executed a contract to sell Mount Vernon to Miss. Ann Pamela Cunningham, Regent of the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association. As David Ribblett explains in his article, “Saviors of Mount Vernon,” Ann Cunningham’s mother had sailed past the deteriorating estate in 1853 and then asked her…

a terrible hand-to-hand fight ensued

Maj. Gen. John Pope, commanding the Army of Virginia, certainly thought the gods of war were smiling on him as the sun broke over the horizon on the morning of August 30, 1862. Most of the intelligence Pope was receiving indicated the Army of Northern Virginia was retreating. Overly confident, Pope not only made little effort…