Document Type

Blog Post

Publication Date


Department 1

Civil War Era Studies


This past Saturday night, I was standing in one of my old haunts. The Dry Goods Store at Harpers Ferry National Historical Park is perhaps my favorite place to be an interpreter, especially at night. Low wattage lightbulbs (simulating whale oil or tallow lamps) and the darkness outside the windows make that building a perfect time machine. Near the end of the night, a family came in with two enthusiastic sons. One wearing a toy kepi and carrying a brand new souvenir envelope of Confederate money rushed around the store asking if he could, “buy that with this.” His excitement at being in the historical space could not be contained. [excerpt]


Interpreting the Civil War: Connecting the Civil War to the American Public is written by alum and adjunct professor, John Rudy. Each post is his own opinions, musings, discussions, and questions about the Civil War era, public history, historical interpretation, and the future of history. In his own words, it is "a blog talking about how we talk about a war where over 600,000 died, 4 million were freed and a nation forever changed. Meditating on interpretation, both theory and practice, at no charge to you."

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License