American Heritage

Articles from Vol. 61, No. 1, Spring

1861 Presidential Inauguration
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Abraham Lincoln Address We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield...
Anaconda Plan
NORTHERN SOURCE Scott Letter Seasoned 74-year-old General-in-Chief Winfield Scott, commander of the U.S. Army since 1841, outlined a plan below to strangle the Confederacy by taking control of the Mississippi and enforcing a coastal blockade....
Baltimore Riot
NORTHERN SOURCE Official Report The first blood spilled in anger during the Civil War carne a week after Sumter's fall, when a secessionist mob in Baltimore blocked the passage of the Sixth Massachusetts Regiment on their way to Washington, D....
Blackbeard's Terror: Recent Treasures Recovered from Blackbeard's Flagship Reveal a New Picture of This Most Fearsome Pirate
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Occupying the nightmare at the edge of the American imagination, Blackbeard has invoked much romantic illustration, including Frank E. Schoonover's 1922 oil painting Blackbeard in Smoke and Flames, above. Study of the record,...
Editor's Letter
Many people said we couldn't do it: build a website in which you could search through hundreds of museum collections across the U.S. Without any government support. "Too ambitious," said many archivists. Well, we invite you to visit our revolutionary...
Finding Father
WHEN I OPENED THE RECENT issue of American Heritage and turned to Edward G. Lengel's incredible account of the Battle of the Meuse-Argonne, tears filled my eyes. The story looked in part at the contributions of 13-year-old Pvt. Ernest L. Wrentmore,...
Fort Sumter Falls
NORTHERN SOURCE Abner Doubleday Journal Capt. Abner Doubleday, the 41-year-old second in command at Fort Sumter, fired the first shot in defense of the fort. He would go on to serve as the acting corps commander on the first day of the Battle...
Guide to Historic Sites in North Carolina
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Colonial Settlement and Historic Homes 1. Historic Halifax This 1760 town, perched on the southern bank of the Roanoke River, became a transportation hub and crossroads...
Playing in the Past
THREE YEARS AGO A TATTOOED, half-naked bodybuilder crashed a Boston conference to announce ... something having to do with the Smithsonian's Luce Foundation Center for American Art. For those in the know, his (temporary) tattoos depicted art objects...
School Tales: Letters Home from a Young Teacher Reveal Life on the Iowa Prairie, 1905-1906
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] In these letters, we encounter 18-year-old Elizabeth "Bess" Corey, a plucky schoolteacher in rural Tennant, Iowa, at the turn of the 20th century. Her homespun epistles, redolent with frontier eloquence and rife with misspellings,...
The President and the Lunatic: The Assassination of President Garfield in 1881 Brought New Questions about the Insanity Plea to the Courtroom
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] ONE WARM SUMMER NIGHT in 1881, a scrawny, nervous man sat in his boarding house a few blocks from the White House. Outside his window, gaslights flickered and horses clopped over cobblestones, but Charles Guiteau barely noticed....
When Politics Was Not Only Nasty ... but Dangerous: Brawling and Dueling among Politicians Remained Prevalent until the Civil War
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] NOTHING IN HIS CHILDHOOD in Gloucestershire's quiet parish of Down Hatherley had prepared 43-year-old Button Gwinnett of Georgia for the fierce polities that he encountered after signing the Declaration of Independence on...
Why the Civil War Still Matters
One hundred and fifty years after the guns began shelling Fort Sumter this April, Americans remain fascinated with the Civil War. Why do we care about a war that ended so long ago? Part of the answer lies in the continental scope of a conflict fought...