Muster

Facing the “False Picture of Facts”: Episodes 1 and 2 of <i>Reconstruction: America After the Civil War</i>

Facing the “False Picture of Facts”: Episodes 1 and 2 of Reconstruction: America After the Civil War

In 1884, formerly enslaved African American author and newspaper editor T. Thomas Fortune wrote Black and White: Land, Labor, and Politics in the South, his analysis of the political and economic conditions in the South after the formal end of Reconstruction in 1877. He described the uncertain reality facing freedmen ...
Read More

The Multiple Meanings of Military Occupation: A Report from the OAH

The United States’ prolonged military engagement in the Middle East has given new prominence and urgency to occupation studies across a wide range of disciplines, including our own. Taking seriously the need to contemplate and reckon with the multiple meanings of military occupation, a panel at the Organization of American ...
Read More

“Where the spiders are”: Law, Economy, and the North at the Coming of the Civil War

At this year’s meeting of the Organization of American Historians (OAH) in Philadelphia, participants heard from leading slavery historians at a panel titled “Kidnapping, Capital, and Slavery: Rethinking the North in the Civil War Era.” This panel explored how the kidnapping of free African Americans from Northern free states affected ...
Read More
Changes at Muster HQ

Changes at Muster HQ

We are pleased to announce the addition of a new field correspondent to the Muster team! Please join us in welcoming Michelle Cassidy, who will be contributing posts on Native Americans in the Civil War era, starting sometime later this spring. Dr. Cassidy is an assistant professor of history at ...
Read More
Teaching the American Civil War Through the Experiences of Civil War Veterans

Teaching the American Civil War Through the Experiences of Civil War Veterans

Studying the experiences of Civil War veterans and their families helps students understand the complex forces that shaped late-nineteenth and early-twentieth-century America. Their life stories help instructors explain soldiers’ motivations for service, discuss battles and campaigns, describe conscription and dissent, unravel the process of emancipation, and examine the political and ...
Read More
“Jack My Dear,-Where the devil are you?” John Lothrop Motley, Otto von Bismarck, and the Civil War

“Jack My Dear,-Where the devil are you?” John Lothrop Motley, Otto von Bismarck, and the Civil War

Historians have rarely examined the German States’ reactions to the Civil War. Much has been said about German immigrants fighting in the war, German-American political leaders involved in community and political organization, and the nativist backlash in the United States; however, Central Europe’s perspectives are a blank page in English ...
Read More
Freeman Tilden’s <i>Interpreting Our Heritage</i> and the Civil War Centennial

Freeman Tilden’s Interpreting Our Heritage and the Civil War Centennial

On March 30, 2019, a group of public historians will convene at the National Council on Public History’s Annual Meeting to discuss the interpreter Freeman Tilden’s 1957 publication, Interpreting Our Heritage. My fellow NPS colleague Allison Horrocks and I created this conference panel to discuss Tilden's ideas in historical context ...
Read More

Editor’s Note: March 2019 Issue

Our March 2019 issue is a special issue on veterans, with Susannah Ural serving as guest editor. Below you will find her note of introduction. To access these articles, you can purchase a copy of the issue or subscribe to the journal. It will also be available (in March) on ...
Read More
“Don’t Forget your Soldier Lovers!” A Story of Civil War Valentines

“Don’t Forget your Soldier Lovers!” A Story of Civil War Valentines

Is materialism ripping out the heart of Valentine’s Day? Every February, thousands of Americans lament the commercialism of this holiday with critical articles and tweets about modern consumerism. Some blame the pressures of social media on the rise in spending. And it is definitely rising; the National Retail Federation estimates ...
Read More
Author Interview: Timothy Williams

Author Interview: Timothy Williams

Our December 2018 issue featured top-notch work on the Civil War era, including a fascinating piece by Timothy Williams, titled "The Readers' South: Literature, Region, and Identity in the Civil War Era." We share below a recent interview with Dr. Williams, who is an assistant professor of history at the ...
Read More
Barton Myers

A New Member of the Muster Team, Barton A. Myers

Due to other commitments, our field correspondent James Marten has had to step down from his role at Muster. We will miss seeing his regular posts, but we wish him well in his future endeavors. In his stead, we are pleased to announce a new member of our Muster team, ...
Read More

What Academics Owe Activists: A Report on “Removing Silent Sam” at the AHA

As monuments to (and of) white supremacy, Confederate statues simultaneously re-embodied masculinity in white Southerners who failed their patriarchal society, christened future generations in Lost Cause mythology, and intimidated, punished, and policed the bodies of black Southerners.[1] It was no mistake that Confederate memorialization crested during two periods of intense ...
Read More
Lessons from the Crimean War: The Augusta Arsenal

Lessons from the Crimean War: The Augusta Arsenal

In 1853 a conflict began that, for the first time since the end of the Napoleonic Wars in 1815, pitted most of the great powers of Europe against each other. What initially started as a conflict between the Russian and Ottoman empires quickly escalated to involve the western European maritime ...
Read More
The Grave and the Gay: The Civil War on the Gilded Age Lecture Circuit

The Grave and the Gay: The Civil War on the Gilded Age Lecture Circuit

This is our final field dispatch from correspondent James Marten. We have greatly enjoyed his contributions to Muster and it has been such a pleasure having him on our team. We will be announcing his replacement in 2019, so stay tuned! For decades before and after the Civil War, thousands ...
Read More
Mudsills vs. Chivalry

Mudsills vs. Chivalry

Writing home from Alabama in November 1863, an Ohio cavalryman celebrated the overthrow of the Southern aristocracy: “The mud sills of the North roam at will over the plantations, burn rails, forage on the country, and the negroes flock into our camps, leaving their lordly masters helpless and dependent,” he ...
Read More
The Electoral Politics of “Migrant Caravans”

The Electoral Politics of “Migrant Caravans”

Images of the “migrant caravans” heading north from Honduras, through Guatemala and Mexico and toward the United States, are now familiar to us all. There have been other “migrant caravans” from Central America in the past, but none have registered in American media and politics quite like the one that ...
Read More
Loading...