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Bearss' Three Volume Set On Vicksburg Campaign

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  • Tony Gunter
    Has anyone here ever read the full three-volume set? I just received Volume 2, which I wanted to see in order to understand what sources Bearss used for the
    Message 1 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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      Has anyone here ever read the full three-volume set? I just received
      Volume 2, which I wanted to see in order to understand what sources
      Bearss used for the Battle of Raymond assertions that I didn't agree
      with. I had previously read his take on the battle in a magazine
      article that didn't include the footnotes.

      I can only say ... wow. Some of his suggestions are just way out
      there, and he offers them matter-of-factly without support as if
      these assertions were simply common knowledge.

      Just a few pages into it, he suggests that Grant could have taken
      Vicksburg directly by amphibious assault. WHA ... what do you mean?
      Are you suggesting he could have landed at the waterfront and fought
      house-to-house? That he could have landed below the defenses and
      charged up those 300 foot vertical bluffs under fire from heavy
      artillery? That he could have landed his forces near Snyder's Bluff
      and forced his way across the unfordable bayou fronting it, then
      charged up those 200 foot vertical bluffs under fire from the heavy
      artillery? We don't know for sure, because it's just one of those
      matter-of-fact statements that he throws out there without
      explanation, as far as I can tell.

      One of the Battle of Raymond factoids that I have picked up and woven
      into my writing is that the Confederates asked for volunteers from
      the 7th TX to picket the bridge over Fourteen Mile Creek. I have
      been banging my head against the wall attempting to hunt down the
      source I had originally found this in, so I could footnote it. It
      wasn't in the O.R.: the O.R. clearly indicates that the men were hand-
      picked from Companies A&B but does not mention anyone asking for
      volunteers. So I had basically re-read every single source I have
      ever used ... *BAM* right there in Bearss' "Grant Strikes a Fatal
      Blow," we get the assertion that the men who served on the bridge
      were volunteers. So now I have to unprogram that factoid out of my
      brain.

      Having only read the Raymond section and the first chapter, can
      someone tell me if they noticed anything similar in the rest of the
      three-volume set?

      Has anyone here ever done a battle tour with him? I understand it's
      a near-religious experience. I looked into a Vicksburg tour this
      spring (2007), but they're asking *cough* something on the order of
      1700 bucks.
    • Carl Williams
      it s funny to me that you would say near-religious , as you seem to have decided he has, well, clay feet. I personally do not have these books
      Message 2 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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        it's funny to me that you would say "near-religious", as you seem to
        have decided he has, well, clay feet.

        I personally do not have these books

        > Has anyone here ever done a battle tour with him? I understand it's
        > a near-religious experience. I looked into a Vicksburg tour this
        > spring (2007), but they're asking *cough* something on the order of
        > 1700 bucks.
        >
      • Bob Huddleston
        NO, I have not read the three volumes -- but I have glanced t them from time to time. Remember, they were written decades ago and reflected the knowledge of an
        Message 3 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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          NO, I have not read the three volumes -- but I have glanced t them from time
          to time. Remember, they were written decades ago and reflected the knowledge
          of an earlier area.

          As for his tours: they are a religious experience! We took one of
          Chickamauga a couple of years ago and I was prepared to be under whelmed.
          But wasn't! It was an unbelievable tour -- everyone should take a Bearss
          tour!

          Take care,

          Bob

          Judy and Bob Huddleston
          10643 Sperry Street
          Northglenn, CO 80234-3612
          303.451.6376 Huddleston.r@...

          ...the greatest and the noblest man of the last century was Abraham
          Lincoln.Though America was his motherland and he was an American, he
          regarded the whole world as his native land.

          Mahatma Gandhi, August 26, 1905




          ________________________________

          From: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com [mailto:civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com] On
          Behalf Of Tony Gunter
          Sent: Wednesday, November 08, 2006 1:14 AM
          To: civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: [civilwarwest] Bearss' Three Volume Set On Vicksburg Campaign




          Has anyone here ever read the full three-volume set? I just received
          Volume 2, which I wanted to see in order to understand what sources
          Bearss used for the Battle of Raymond assertions that I didn't agree
          with. I had previously read his take on the battle in a magazine
          article that didn't include the footnotes.

          SNIP
          Has anyone here ever done a battle tour with him? I understand it's
          a near-religious experience. I looked into a Vicksburg tour this
          spring (2007), but they're asking *cough* something on the order of
          1700 bucks.
        • gnrljejohnston
          ... wrote: it s funny to me that you would say near-religious , as you seem to have decided he has, well, clay feet. I personally do not have these books Has
          Message 4 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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            --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Williams" <carlw4514@...>
            wrote:

            it's funny to me that you would say "near-religious", as you seem to
            have decided he has, well, clay feet.

            I personally do not have these books

            Has anyone here ever done a battle tour with him? I understand it's
            a near-religious experience.

            Never have done a battle tour with him, but I did spend five days with
            him in a seminar along with Wiley Sword, Ted Wilson (NPS Historian at
            Antietam, Richard McMurry, and (?) Greene the director of Pamplin Park.
            Seminar topics were great, but we learned more at the bar following
            all the discussions. :-)

            JEJ
          • Tony Gunter
            ... I have issues with his three-volume set, but the following write-up from Wikipedia certainly makes me want to see him doing what he does ...
            Message 5 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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              --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Williams" <carlw4514@...>
              wrote:
              >
              > it's funny to me that you would say "near-religious", as you seem to
              > have decided he has, well, clay feet.

              I have issues with his three-volume set, but the following write-up
              from Wikipedia certainly makes me want to see him doing what he does
              best:

              ---

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ed_Bearss

              Touring
              Bearss is a consummate tour guide, bringing history alive to visitors
              of all knowledge levels, revealing encyclopedic stores of memory and
              enormous personal energy, but always with rich and colorful anecdotes.
              A Washington Post reporter described his style as "Homeric monologues."
              The Wall Street Journal wrote that he evokes "almost hallucinatory
              sensations." Historian Dennis Frye said a "battlefield [tour] with Ed
              Bearss [is a] transcendental experience." Admirers have suggested that,
              if the United States ever recognizes Living National Treasures, as
              Japan and Australia do, Bearss should be an immediate honoree.

              Bearss started interpretative touring as part of his official duties in
              Vicksburg, leading eight one-hour tours a day. Although he was no
              longer required to do so after 1958, he kept it up as an avocation on
              weekends. He attracted ROTC classes, active-duty military officers and
              VIPs, and other historians. Beginning in 1961, he began annual tours
              for the prestigious Chicago Civil War Roundtable. One of his greatest
              challenges was his annual tours of Vicksburg for the Louisiana School
              for the Blind and Deaf. He is a lifetime honorary member of the
              Cleveland Civil War Roundtable, to which he has spoken many times,
              beginning in 1962 and as recently as 2004.

              Currently, Bearss, in his eighties, continues to lead numerous tours—
              traveling as many as 200 days per year—around the United States, the
              Pacific, and Europe. He routinely outpaces his much younger guests in
              charging over rough terrain, recreating the color of famous infantry
              and cavalry attacks.

              ---

              The particular tour package I pulled up was a $1700 dollar package for
              spring 2007:

              http://www.smithsonianjourneys.org/unitedstates/032404vicksburg.asp
            • Stanley Balsky
              Maybe the clay feet is why it is near-religious rather than religious Stan ...
              Message 6 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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                Maybe the clay feet is why it is near-religious rather
                than religious
                Stan
                --- Carl Williams <carlw4514@...> wrote:

                > it's funny to me that you would say
                > "near-religious", as you seem to
                > have decided he has, well, clay feet.
                >
                > I personally do not have these books
                >
                > > Has anyone here ever done a battle tour with him?
                > I understand it's
                > > a near-religious experience. I looked into a
                > Vicksburg tour this
                > > spring (2007), but they're asking *cough*
                > something on the order of
                > > 1700 bucks.
                > >
                >
                >
                >
                >





                ____________________________________________________________________________________
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                Associate's, Bachelor's, or Master's - in less than one year.
                http://www.findtherightschool.com
              • Stanley Balsky
                Maybe the clay feet is why it is near-religious rather than religious Stan ...
                Message 7 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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                  Maybe the clay feet is why it is near-religious rather
                  than religious
                  Stan
                  --- Carl Williams <carlw4514@...> wrote:

                  > it's funny to me that you would say
                  > "near-religious", as you seem to
                  > have decided he has, well, clay feet.
                  >
                  > I personally do not have these books
                  >
                  > > Has anyone here ever done a battle tour with him?
                  > I understand it's
                  > > a near-religious experience. I looked into a
                  > Vicksburg tour this
                  > > spring (2007), but they're asking *cough*
                  > something on the order of
                  > > 1700 bucks.
                  > >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >





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                • Stanley Balsky
                  Maybe the clay feet is why it is near-religious rather than religious Stan ...
                  Message 8 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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                    Maybe the clay feet is why it is near-religious rather
                    than religious
                    Stan
                    --- Carl Williams <carlw4514@...> wrote:

                    > it's funny to me that you would say
                    > "near-religious", as you seem to
                    > have decided he has, well, clay feet.
                    >
                    > I personally do not have these books
                    >
                    > > Has anyone here ever done a battle tour with him?
                    > I understand it's
                    > > a near-religious experience. I looked into a
                    > Vicksburg tour this
                    > > spring (2007), but they're asking *cough*
                    > something on the order of
                    > > 1700 bucks.
                    > >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >





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                  • Tony Gunter
                    ... to ... does ... visitors ... and ... anecdotes. ... monologues. ... Ed ... that, ... duties in ... on ... and ... tours ... greatest ... School ...
                    Message 9 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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                      --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tony Gunter" <tony_gunter@...>
                      wrote:
                      >
                      > --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Carl Williams" <carlw4514@>
                      > wrote:
                      > >
                      > > it's funny to me that you would say "near-religious", as you seem
                      to
                      > > have decided he has, well, clay feet.
                      >
                      > I have issues with his three-volume set, but the following write-up
                      > from Wikipedia certainly makes me want to see him doing what he
                      does
                      > best:
                      >
                      > ---
                      >
                      > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ed_Bearss
                      >
                      > Touring
                      > Bearss is a consummate tour guide, bringing history alive to
                      visitors
                      > of all knowledge levels, revealing encyclopedic stores of memory
                      and
                      > enormous personal energy, but always with rich and colorful
                      anecdotes.
                      > A Washington Post reporter described his style as "Homeric
                      monologues."
                      > The Wall Street Journal wrote that he evokes "almost hallucinatory
                      > sensations." Historian Dennis Frye said a "battlefield [tour] with
                      Ed
                      > Bearss [is a] transcendental experience." Admirers have suggested
                      that,
                      > if the United States ever recognizes Living National Treasures, as
                      > Japan and Australia do, Bearss should be an immediate honoree.
                      >
                      > Bearss started interpretative touring as part of his official
                      duties in
                      > Vicksburg, leading eight one-hour tours a day. Although he was no
                      > longer required to do so after 1958, he kept it up as an avocation
                      on
                      > weekends. He attracted ROTC classes, active-duty military officers
                      and
                      > VIPs, and other historians. Beginning in 1961, he began annual
                      tours
                      > for the prestigious Chicago Civil War Roundtable. One of his
                      greatest
                      > challenges was his annual tours of Vicksburg for the Louisiana
                      School
                      > for the Blind and Deaf. He is a lifetime honorary member of the
                      > Cleveland Civil War Roundtable, to which he has spoken many times,
                      > beginning in 1962 and as recently as 2004.
                      >
                      > Currently, Bearss, in his eighties, continues to lead numerous
                      tours—
                      > traveling as many as 200 days per year—around the United States,
                      the
                      > Pacific, and Europe. He routinely outpaces his much younger guests
                      in
                      > charging over rough terrain, recreating the color of famous
                      infantry
                      > and cavalry attacks.
                      >
                      > ---
                      >
                      > The particular tour package I pulled up was a $1700 dollar package
                      for
                      > spring 2007:
                      >
                      > http://www.smithsonianjourneys.org/unitedstates/032404vicksburg.asp

                      Oops ... that would be the 2004 tour, here's the 2007 tour:

                      http://www.smithsonianjourneys.org/unitedstates/042507vicksburg.asp
                    • Ronald black
                      I have the three volume set and have read 1 1/2 volumes before being sidetracked by the honey dew list. I enjoyed them very much and specially so because of
                      Message 10 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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                        I have the three volume set and have read 1 1/2 volumes before being sidetracked by the honey dew list.  I enjoyed them very much and specially so because of having a complete history of the campaign from start to finish in this set instead of in scattered books.  Yes, I will complete reading the set and plan on reading it a second time.    
                        Ron
                        -- Original Message -----
                        Sent: Wednesday, November 08, 2006 5:55 PM
                        Subject: Re: [civilwarwest] Re: Bearss' Three Volume Set On Vicksburg Campaign

                        Maybe the clay feet is why it is near-religious rather
                        than religious
                        Stan
                        --- Carl Williams <carlw4514@yahoo. com> wrote:

                        > it's funny to me that you would say
                        > "near-religious" , as you seem to
                        > have decided he has, well, clay feet.
                        >
                        > I personally do not have these books
                        >
                        > > Has anyone here ever done a battle tour with him?
                        > I understand it's
                        > > a near-religious experience. I looked into a
                        > Vicksburg tour this
                        > > spring (2007), but they're asking *cough*
                        > something on the order of
                        > > 1700 bucks.
                        > >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >

                        ____________ _________ _________ _________ _________ _________ _
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                        Get an Online or Campus degree
                        Associate's, Bachelor's, or Master's - in less than one year.
                        http://www.findther ightschool. com


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                      • James W. Durney
                        I have the full set and have read only the 1st book. I enjoy reading Bearss, he writes in the present. It gives me a better feel of what they thought was
                        Message 11 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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                          I have the full set and have read only the 1st book. I enjoy reading
                          Bearss, he writes in the present. It gives me a better feel of what
                          they thought was happening. This makes what they did more logical.
                          Brarss will say 1,000 men are advancing down the road. After all the
                          action takes place, he tells you the report was false. Most authors
                          will give you a "were move to cover based on bad information".

                          My knowledge of Vicksburg isn't good enough to nitpick Bearss. In
                          terms of a landing, often what we think they could do, just never
                          occured to them.

                          I've never toured with him but have listened to recording of his
                          talks. These are excellent and being their would seem to be much
                          better.
                        • basecat1@aol.com
                          In a message dated 11/8/2006 5:28:07 PM Eastern Standard Time, huddleston.r@comcast.net writes: As for his tours: they are a religious experience! We took one
                          Message 12 of 15 , Nov 8, 2006
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                            In a message dated 11/8/2006 5:28:07 PM Eastern Standard Time, huddleston.r@... writes:
                            As for his tours: they are a religious experience! We took one of
                            Chickamauga a couple of years ago and I was prepared to be under whelmed.
                            But wasn't! It was an unbelievable tour -- everyone should take a Bearss
                            tour!

                            Take care,

                            Bob
                            Bob,
                             
                            Have taken a couple of tours with him at Perryville and battlefields of the Seven Days, and well worth the price of admission.
                             
                            Regards from the Garden State,
                             
                            Steve Basic
                          • hank9174
                            ... I took a Smithsonian day tour with him at Petersburg on a dark, gloomy March day a long time ago. I m not sure about near-religious , but at the end of
                            Message 13 of 15 , Nov 9, 2006
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                              --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Tony Gunter" <tony_gunter@...>
                              wrote:
                              >
                              >
                              > Has anyone here ever done a battle tour with him? I understand it's
                              > a near-religious experience. I looked into a Vicksburg tour this
                              > spring (2007), but they're asking *cough* something on the order of
                              > 1700 bucks.
                              >

                              I took a Smithsonian day tour with him at Petersburg on a dark, gloomy
                              March day a long time ago.

                              I'm not sure about 'near-religious', but at the end of the day the sun
                              came out and a beam came through a stained glass window at Blandford
                              church as we finished ;)


                              HankC
                            • hank9174
                              Bearss leads numerous day trips in the Washington area. Here is a recent list. See more at http://www.civilwarstudies.org/ ... SMITHSONIAN CIVIL WAR SEMINARS &
                              Message 14 of 15 , Nov 9, 2006
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                                Bearss leads numerous day trips in the Washington area. Here is a
                                recent list. See more at http://www.civilwarstudies.org/ ...

                                SMITHSONIAN CIVIL WAR SEMINARS
                                & One Day Events

                                New! John Mosby in Fairfax, Fauquier, and Loudoun
                                Sunday, September 24
                                Join Civil War authority Edwin C. Bearss for a tour of Mosby country -
                                the setting for much of Mosby?'s behind-the-lines activity -
                                beginning in Fairfax and ending in Loudoun County.

                                New! Civil War at Kelly's Ford and Bristoe Station
                                Saturday, September 30
                                Civil War authority Edwin C. Bearss leads this tour, which explores a
                                strategic travel route between Washington and Culpeper that was used
                                during significant campaigns.

                                Jeb Stuart's Ride to Gettysburg
                                Sunday, October 1, 7:30 am
                                This tour, led by Civil War authority Edwin C. Bearss, follows the
                                controversial cavalry operations of Stuart and his troops during the
                                Gettysburg campaign.

                                Booth's Escape Route
                                Sunday, October 8, 8:00 am
                                Civil War authority Edwin C. Bearss retraces Booth's escape route and
                                reveals the personalities and intrigues surrounding the assassination.



                                HankC
                              • Tony Gunter
                                ... My knowledge of Vicksburg isn t good enough to nitpick Bearss except in regard to the Battle of Raymond. In that particular section, however, he just
                                Message 15 of 15 , Nov 9, 2006
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                                  --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "James W. Durney" <JWD2044@...>
                                  wrote:
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > My knowledge of Vicksburg isn't good enough to nitpick Bearss.

                                  My knowledge of Vicksburg isn't good enough to nitpick Bearss except in
                                  regard to the Battle of Raymond. In that particular section, however,
                                  he just plain makes stuff up, sometimes out of whole cloth. Which
                                  makes me uneasy as I read the rest of the material. I feel like I
                                  ought to be checking his sources every time I see a footnote.
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