What if you could be that proverbial fly on the wall for a single Civil War event?

Pete Longstreet

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If you were that fly on the wall, what single Civil War event would you want to witness? It could be anything, battles, Lee on horse riding by, Pickett's Charge...

For me, I would want to be in the McLean House on April 9th 1865. I would like to see and hear Grant and Lee discuss the terms of surrender. What they said, how they responded, body language, expressions and emotions. How the two men shook hands, their eye contact, etc.
 

Mark F. Jenkins

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Central Ohio
I would like to witness the debate over whether to send a gunboat past the Island No. 10 batteries. There's no record of it, but from all indications it was a bit heated. Although running a gunboat (or boats) past shore batteries would later become relatively common (though never entirely 'safe'), it had never actually been done before-- this was prior to Farragut at New Orleans.
 

Cycom

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Los Angeles, California
Virtually anything on the Texas coast, but I'd love to have witnessed the 'council of war' at Fort Donelson when Forrest stormed out when the decision was made to surrender to Grant.
That’s a good one. I’ve read about this event through two separate accounts. NBF was…upset, and rightly so imo. 2nd Battle of Galveston would be interesting too I think.
 

mjr251

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Near Port Arthur, Texas
2nd Battle of Galveston would be interesting too I think.

Definitely. That battle was quite the sh*tshow, lots of drama and weirdness compared to other ACW battles. I'm not sure why the quality of this photo is so poor, but anyway, this is me at the Hendley building in Galveston a few years ago. The damage to the pillar was caused by a shell from USS Owasco (I think) during the battle.


1623002214879.png
 

TSJ

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Feb 2, 2021
If you were that fly on the wall, what single Civil War event would you want to witness? It could be anything, battles, Lee on horse riding by, Pickett's Charge...

For me, I would want to be in the McLean House on April 9th 1865. I would like to see and hear Grant and Lee discuss the terms of surrender. What they said, how they responded, body language, expressions and emotions. How the two men shook hands, their eye contact, etc.
Stonewall and Lee’s discussion before Stonewall’s flank march
 

Cycom

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Feb 19, 2021
Location
Los Angeles, California
Definitely. That battle was quite the sh*tshow, lots of drama and weirdness compared to other ACW battles. I'm not sure why the quality of this photo is so poor, but anyway, this is me at the Hendley building in Galveston a few years ago. The damage to the pillar was caused by a shell from USS Owasco (I think) during the battle.


View attachment 403558
It was a strange battle. I just imagine the cotton clads coming out of nowhere, panicking the Federals and recapturing the port with almost non existent casualties. One of the most pain free victories of the war.

It’s cool that they didn’t try to patch up the damage to that pillar. History comes in different forms.
 

Cycom

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Feb 19, 2021
Location
Los Angeles, California
I would like to have been present when President Lincoln received word confirming that General Grant had accepted General Lee's surrender at Appomattox.
He tossed his top hat on his desk, took off his overcoat, and began breakdancing on the floor of the Oval Office. The history books don’t tell you that one.
 

J C J Barefoot

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Sep 10, 2019
It would have to be that remarkable meeting between Grant and Lee on the Richmond-Lynchburg Stage Road on April 10th at 10AM. The surrender having been signed the day previous and that, the first morning of peace in four years must have been a conversation for the ages. Lee who had lived a life of constant success was now a general without portfolio, no home to return to, no property and and no job. Grant, just five years prior was a clerk in his fathers store, having failed at everything he ever tried in civilian life, now was the greatest military leader in American History. He , the humble victor whose life was an astonishing turn around from dolt to champion. To have heard the full conversation and to see their faces the two leaders spoke to one another, on that morning after Palm Sunday would have been a blessing to the soul.
 
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