The Best Of The Best In Civil War History


Edwin C Bearss is our nation's preeminent Civil War historian. Ed's encyclopedic knowledge and unflagging energy are legendary.  He is a decorated WWII veteran and earned degrees at Indiana University and Georgetown University before embarking on a 41-year career as an historian for the National Park Service.  In 1981, he was named Chief Historian of the National Park Service, a position he held until 1995.  After his retirement, he was given the title Chief Historian Emeritus that he holds to this day. He has authored countless articles dealing with a variety of Civil War topics. His three-volume history of the siege of Vicksburg is a model campaign study. His most recent books are Fields of Honor, a “Bearss-eye-view” of the Civil War and Receding Tide: Vicksburg and Gettysburg.


A retired history professor and a foremost historian of the Maryland Campaign, Tom Clemens has studied Antietam and the Civil War for more than 30 years. He co-founded the Save Historic Antietam Foundation, and serves as a licensed Battlefield Guide and a National Park Service volunteer interpreter.

A regular contributor to several military and history magazines, Tom has spent more than two decades editing and richly annotating Civil War veteran Ezra A. Carman's definitive study of the Maryland Campaign. The result is The Maryland Campaign of September 1862, in 3 Volumes.

Replete with firsthand accounts, personal anecdotes, maps, and photos, this long-awaited, work will be appreciated by anyone interested in the events of the Civil War's Eastern Theater during September 1862.

A. Wilson Greene

Wilson Greene, began his history career in Petersburg, VA in 1973 at Petersburg National Battlefield. He served sixteen years in the National Park Service before becoming the first Executive Director of what became the Civil War Trust (today’s American Battlefield Trust).

In 1995, he became the founding director of Pamplin Historical Park and the National Museum of the Civil War Soldier. Will, who holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in history, is the author of ten books, including Breaking the Backbone of the Rebellion: The Final Battles of the Petersburg Campaign; Civil War Petersburg: Confederate City in the Crucible of War;  and A Campaign of Giants - The Battle for Petersburg, Volume 1: From the Crossing of the James through the Battle of the Crater.

Richard W. Hatcher III

With a degree from Virginia Commonwealth University, Richard W. Hatcher III is the author and coauthor of numerous books and articles on the battle of Wilson’s Creek and Fort Sumter. He worked for almost 40 years with the National Park Service including tours of duty at Richmond National Battlefield Park, Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield, and Fort Sumter National Monument. His books include Wilson's Creek, The Second Battle of the Civil War and the Men Who Fought It and The First Shot, a pictorial history of Fort Sumter.


Lead historian at Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park, Frank O'Reilly is scheduled to lead this tour. Frank has served as park historian for the Fredericksburg battlefields for over 28 years.

His first book, Stonewall Jackson at Fredericksburg, was published in 1993. Frank's book, The Fredericksburg Campaign: Winter War on the Rappahannock, received a 2003 nomination for the Pulitzer Prize in Letters.

He is currently researching a book on the 1862 Battle of Malvern and the Seven Days' Battles around Richmond. Frank has appeared in documentaries and has lectured extensively on military history to audiences around the world, including numerous conferences at Oxford, U.K.


Chief Historian at Chickamauga Chattanooga National Military Park, Jim Ogden began his career with the Park Service in 1982. In 1988, he became the historian at Chickamauga Chattanooga National Military Park.  He knows the ground better than anyone.  In addition to leading countless tours of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga battlefields, Jim periodically takes groups to Stones River, Nashville, Franklin, and sites of the Atlanta Campaign.

Jim has led over 400 staff rides for the U.S. Army officers and he has spoken to numerous organizations around the country.  He has published a number of short articles in several local publications and has appeared on Greystone Communications/Arts and Entertainment Network's "Civil War Journal," the History Channel's "Civil War Combat," PBS's "History detectives" and C-SPAN.

Patrick Schroeder

With a passionate desire to preserve the stories of those heroic individuals that helped to shape our country as we know it today, Patrick Schroeder has edited, and/or published over twenty-five Civil War titles. In the spring of 1990, he graduated Cum Laude with a B.S. in Historical Park Administration from Shepherd College, Shepherdstown, WV.  He has a M.A. in Civil War History from Virginia Tech. From 1994–1999, he was employed at Red Hill, the Patrick Henry National Memorial.  From 1999-2002, Patrick was an independent researcher.

Patrick is now the full-time Historian of Appomattox Court House National Historical Park.  .


The preeminent expert on the Battle of Shiloh, Tim Smith is a veteran of the National Park Service and currently teaches history at the University of Tennessee at Martin. In addition to numerous articles and essays, he is the author, editor, or co-editor of sixteen books, including Champion Hill: Decisive Battle for Vicksburg (2004) and Corinth 1862: Siege, Battle, Occupation (2012), which won the Fletcher Pratt Award and the McLemore Prize. His most recent book is Shiloh: Conquer or Perish (2014), which won the Richard B. Harwell Award, the Tennessee History Book Award, and the Douglas Southall Freeman Award.

His history of the Battles of Fort Henry and Fort Donelson, Grant Invades Tennessee, was published in November 2016. He is currently under contract to write a book on the May 19 and 22 Vicksburg assaults.


A name familiar to anyone who has studied the Civil War, Jeff Wert is a noted Civil War historian and the author of nine books. He has written a critically acclaimed biography of Gen. James Longstreet, General James Longstreet : The Confederacy's Most Controversial Soldier-A Biography and compared and contrasted the Civil War service of the Stonewall and Iron Brigades: A Brotherhood of Valor : The Common Soldiers of the Stonewall Brigade, C.S.A., and the Iron Brigade, U.S.A.

His most recent book examines in detail the third and final day of the Battle of Gettysburg: Gettysburg, Day Three – which was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.


Terry Winschel is a retired historian with the National Park Service. For most of his career, he was the historian at the Vicksburg National Military Park where he succeeded Edwin C. Bearss.

Terry has written 75 articles on the Civil War and is author of Triumph & Defeat: The Vicksburg Campaign, Vols. I and IIVicksburg is the Key: The Struggle for the Mississippi River, The Civil War Diary of a Common Soldier, and Vicksburg: Fall of the Confederate Gibraltar.

Terry was named National Park Service Preservationist of the Year in 2007 and is the 2013 recipient of the Carrington Williams Preservationist of the Year Award presented by the Civil War Preservation Trust.

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