t the time of publication, more than half of the slots for this year’s fall semester seminar and tour—“A Peculiarly Undesirable Place”: Martinsburg’s Civil War—have already been claimed. Throughout the Civil War, Martinsburg, an important commercial and transportation hub, changed hands 37 times, was the scene of numerous military actions and was the home of such notable figures as Belle Boyd and David Hunter Strother. This seminar and tour, based out of the Holiday Inn in Martinsburg, West Virginia, will provide an important look into this border community’s oftentimes overlooked, yet important, place in the Shenandoah Valley’s Civil War story. The registration fee of $25 for this event will cover the morning lecture, lunch at the Holiday Inn, all handouts and the guided tour which will be conducted in MCWI’s traditional caravan format to allow easier access to sites. For additional information about the seminar and tour or to register, visit The McCormick Civil War Institute website
MCWI is pleased to offer a special student rate of $20 to any student with a valid ID. For additional information about the conference or student registration, please contact the director via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
154th Anniversary Commemoration of The Battle of Cool Spring
On Saturday, July 14, MCWI will commemorate the 154th anniversary of the Battle of Cool Spring. This event, which is FREE and open to the public, will include a series of talks, tours and presentations. A full schedule of the day’s activities is below:
10 a.m. Site opens, including exhibition in the Lodge
10:15 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. 1864 Shenandoah Valley Campaign in a Box with Shannon Moeck (NPS Ranger, Cedar Creek & Belle Grove National Historical Park)
11:15 a.m. to noon Artillery living history demonstration with Lamb’s Rhode Island Battery
12:15 p.m. to 1 p.m. Lunch with Hancock Civil War String Band. (Please be advised that there are no food vendors on site. Feel free to bring a picnic lunch, dine on the battlefield and enjoy Civil War-era music).
1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. Walking tour of Battle of Cool Spring with MCWI Director Jonathan Noyalas, including a hike into the bluffs to examine the important role Union artillery played at the battle.
3 p.m. Memorial wreath laying with descendants of those who fought at Cool Spring.
3:30 p.m. Unveiling of watercolor of crossing at Island Ford
4 p.m. Close
While we would love to see all of our friends and supporters on July 14, please know that if you can’t make the 154th anniversary commemoration there are other opportunities to experience Cool Spring and visit the expanded exhibition in the Lodge. In addition to being open on the following Saturdays: June 23, July 7, July 21, July 28, Aug. 11 and Aug. 25, MCWI has scheduled some additional interpretive programs throughout the summer. On Saturday, June 23 and Saturday, Aug. 25, MCWI’s director will lead a walking tour of the Battle of Cool Spring from 10:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.
Clarke County Department of Parks & Recreation Partners with MCWI to Offer Summer Program
This summer, for the first time, MCWI will team up with Clarke County’s Department of Parks & Recreation to offer a special one-day camp for children—“In History’s Footsteps at Cool Spring.” The camp, which will feature a wide variety of hands-on activities and immersive learning, will be conducted by MCWI’s director and is scheduled for Friday, July 20, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information, contact Tracey Pitcock at email@example.com.
Annual Spring Conference Largest in MCWI’s History
n Saturday, April 7, 104 individuals from nine states filled Hester Auditorium for MCWI’s annual spring conference featuring a distinguished faculty which included Allen Guelzo (Gettysburg College), James Broomall (Shepherd University), Frank O’Reilly (Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park), Eric Campbell (Cedar Creek & Belle Grove National Historical Park) and Jonathan A. Noyalas '01, M.A., (MCWI director). This was the largest conference in MCWI’s 26 years. It was also a pleasure to have Margaretta Barton Colt, author of the classic “Defend the Valley” in attendance. Planning is already underway for our spring 2019 conference “A House Divided…”: Dissent in the Civil War Era, tentatively slated for Saturday, April 6. Stay tuned for additional details.
Updates from Cool Spring
MCWI will implement a number of improvements to the interpretation at Cool Spring throughout the spring and into the early summer. Due to the generosity of our donors, MCWI will install a new sign at the kiosk which greets visitors at the beginning of the battlefield walking trail. Additionally, MCWI, working in concert with Virginia Civil War Trails, will install a new text panel in the existing frame at Island Ford and install a new interpretive marker in the bluffs. This new wayside marker will examine the role Union artillery played in the battle’s final phase. Additionally, stop markers will be installed to aid visitors as they tour the battlefield using the updated walking guide. Finally, new items—including high-quality scale replicas of artillery pieces, additional artifacts and a full-sized limber chest complete with various implements, will be added to the exhibition in the Lodge this summer.
Dr. Jennifer Murray Set to Speak at MCWI on Thursday, Nov. 1
MCWI will continue its “Perspectives in the Civil War Era” lecture series on Thursday, Nov. 1, featuring Jennifer Murray, Ph.D. of Oklahoma State University. Dr. Murray’s presentation, “On a Great Battlefield: The History of Gettysburg National Military Park, 1863-2016,” will be held in Henkel Hall, Hester Auditorium. The lecture, which begins at 7 p.m., is free and open to the public.
Many Thanks to Generous Donors
MCWI wishes to thank all of those who have made contributions to support the McCormick Civil War Institute. Since the publication of our last newsletter, the following individuals have made generous contributions which will support interpretive efforts at Cool Spring, public presentations, and a variety of unique opportunities for Shenandoah University students—Dr. Winston Cameron, Warren R. Hofstra, Ph.D., Mr. Alexander MacLeod, Dr. David and Mrs. Melanie Miles, Mr. Craig Stevens and Dr. Ed and Mrs. Prue Yelinek.
Volume Two of “Journal of Shenandoah Valley During the Civil War Era” Progressing Nicely
As sales continue to remain strong for the inaugural volume of the “Journal of the Shenandoah Valley During the Civil War Era
” our editorial staff continues to review and finalize content for volume two, which is slated for release near the end of this year. Remember that if you haven’t yet purchased your copy of the first volume, you can find it online
or at retailers in the Shenandoah Valley, including Winchester Book Gallery, Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, Shenandoah Valley Civil War Museum (Old Courthouse Civil War Museum in Winchester), Heritage Center in Dayton, Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park, Belle Grove Plantation, Cedar Creek Battlefield Foundation & Hupp’s Hill, Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, Kernstown Battlefield Association, Winchester-Frederick County Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Winchester-Frederick County Historical Society.
Cool Spring Volunteers
On Saturday, April 21, MCWI held a special training session for our volunteer corps who will staff the Lodge on select Saturdays throughout the summer: June 23, July 7, July 14 (battle anniversary commemoration), July 21, July 28, Aug. 11 and Aug. 25. Volunteers will assist visitors during those days from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. While our volunteer corps is fully staffed for this season, anyone interested in additional volunteer opportunities at Cool Spring should contact our volunteer coordinator Ms. Shelby Shrader at firstname.lastname@example.org
. Anyone with additional questions about volunteer responsibilities can contact MCWI’s director via email at email@example.com
or by phone at 540/665-4501.
Dr. David and Mrs. Melanie Miles Summer 2018 Fellows Named
History majors Jake Gabriele and Victor Herrera have been named recipients of the summer 2018 Dr. David and Mrs. Melanie Miles Summer McCormick Civil War Institute Fellowship. Gabriele and Herrera will assist MCWI’s director in researching the backgrounds of the 145 Union and Confederate soldiers who perished at the Battle of Cool Spring. Research conducted this summer will be used to develop new exhibitions and interpretive programs at Cool Spring. Additionally, a roster with biographies of each will be published in volume three of the Journal of the Shenandoah Valley During the Civil War Era. This fellowship is made possible through the continued generosity of Dr. David and Mrs. Melanie Miles.
Noyalas Receives Two Honors
n Thursday, April 26, MCWI’s director Jonathan Noyalas '01, M.A., received the Henry Kyd Douglas Award from the Hagerstown Civil War Roundtable. This prestigious recognition, given annually, recognizes historians who have made significant contributions to scholarship, education and preservation. Previous recipients included such notable historians as Edwin C. Bearss, Ted Alexander, Dennis Frye and Tom Clemens. Noyalas was also honored by his high school alma mater, North-Schuylkill Junior-Senior High School, on June 4, as an inductee in its inaugural “Wall of Fame.” The Wall of Fame celebrates Noyalas’ many achievements during his 16 years as a professor, author and scholar of the Civil War era.
The McCormick Civil War Institute Always Needs Your Help!
One of the reasons the McCormick Civil War Institute is able to offer more public programming and opportunities for students than ever before in its history is the generosity of those who have responded to the call for contributions. While those contributions are much appreciated and will allow CWI to do a great deal in the short term, MCWI appeals to your generosity, kindness, and love of Civil War-era history and graciously asks for your continued support.
If you would like to make a contribution to the Civil War Institute to support its various efforts—free public programming, offering unique learning opportunities for Shenandoah University’s history majors focused on Civil War-era studies, and various interpretive efforts at Cool Spring—we would be most appreciative. Any amount, however big or small, will go a long way to support the MCWI’s vision; one of the most significant elements of which is making certain that younger generations understand the Civil War's importance and its complexities.