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An example of a Georgia Infantry Regiment (the 4th) in 1861 (Library of Congress)

From Galway to Georgia: B.T. Johnston, Famine Emigrant, Confederate Pensioner

Increasingly many of the personal stories featured on the site are based on the contents of Federal Pension files. Having recently returned from the excellent Ulster-American Heritage Symposium at the University of Georgia, Athens- during which I had the pleasure to visit the Kennesaw Mountain battlefield- I thought it appropriate to have a look at the […]

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General Hospital No. 1 in Richmond where Sister Valentine wrote to Hugh McQuade's mother (Library of Congress)

‘It is Colonel Corcoran I Blame': An Unhappy Irishman After Bull Run

The Georgia Daily Constitutionalist received permission in July 1861 to publish a letter received by one of its Irish readers. It was a note from the Georgia Irishman’s brother, who had fought with the 69th New York State Militia at Bull Run and had been wounded in that battle. Although the authenticity, circumstances and motivations behind the […]

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Brigadier-General Thomas Sweeny, Army of the Tennessee

Dual Allegiances: A Fenian Message during the Atlanta Campaign, 1864

Many of the Irishmen who fought during the American Civil War had a strong commitment to using their experience to strike a blow for Irish Independence when the conflict was over. These were the Fenians, and even when on military duty between 1861 and 1865 it was not unusual for many Irish officers to meet frequently to collect […]

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Andersonville on 17th August 1864

Medal of Honor: Private Michael Dougherty, 13th Pennsylvania Cavalry

On 10th December 1864, Michael Dougherty made the following entry in his diary: I feel no better. My diary is full; it is too bad, but cannot get any more. Good bye all; I did not think it would hold out so long when I commenced. Yours sufferingly, Michael Dougherty, Co. B, 13th Pa. Volunteer […]

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Corporal Robert Coleman, the man who shot General McPherson

Who Shot General McPherson? The 5th Confederate at Bald Hill

Near Atlanta on the afternoon of the 22nd of July 1864, General James Birdseye McPherson, Union Commander of the Army of the Tennessee, was in a hurry. He had just been proved right- despite the doubts of General Sherman, he had feared a Confederate attack on his position, and that attack was now in full […]

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Archaeologists Locate Camp Lawton

Recent days have brought news that archaeologists from Georgia Southern University led by Kevin Chapman have located the site of Camp Lawton in Georgia. The prison camp held Union soldiers for just six weeks before its abandonment in November 1864,  as General William Tecumseh Sherman and his army closed in. As the camp’s location was previously […]

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