Founded in 1957, our Round Table is one of the oldest in the nation. We couldn't ask for a better location: four major battles of the Civil War were fought within 20 miles of Fredericksburg. Our group of about 100 members meets once each month for a catered dinner followed by the presentation of a Civil War topic by a guest speaker - frequently a nationally-known author.
Subject of this month's Round Table:
Major Eugene Blackford, CSA
We meet the fourth Wednesday of every month (except December, July and August) at the Washington Jepson Alumni Executive Center at 1119 Hanover Street in Fredericksburg, Virginia.
The bar opens at 5:45 pm. Social begins at 6 pm. Dinner is at 6:45 pm. The program starts around 7:30 pm and usually conclude by 9 pm.
Please make your reservations for our March 22nd meeting by Friday, March 17, 2017, by calling (540) 361-2105, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or responding to this newsletter by email. Late reservations can usually be accepted, but it can present difficulties in food preparation. Our caterer prepares our meals based on our expected attendance, and we do not want to be short of food. If you, subsequently, find that you cannot attend, please be sure to cancel your reservation in a timely manner so that the club does not have to assume the cost of that meal.
Coat and tie are not required; this has merely been a tradition. The dinner cost is $32.00 by cash or check at door. Last month's program by Greg Mertz, NPS Historian, entitled "Attack at Daylight and Whip Them – The Battle of Shiloh" related the words of the Union commander, Ulysses S. Grant, as the battle shifted from the Confederates' initial success to the Union counteroffensive. Confederate commander, Albert Sidney Johnston, had initially boasted "Tonight we will water our horses in the Tennessee River" only to lose his life on the battlefield.
March 2017 Newsletter
With our March program, we are well into our 2016-2017 Program Year, which runs from September 2016 through June 2017. Our theme of "Confederate Connections" continues with Fred L. Ray, our speaker for our March 22, 2017, meeting, whose talk is entitled "Sharpshooter: The Selected Letters and Papers of Maj. Eugene Blackford, C.S.A.".
Eugene Blackford was a native of Fredericksburg, and the family house still stands. Blackford has quite a bit to say about the Battle of Fredericksburg, damage to the town and about visiting local plantations (e.g. Santee Moss Neck, etc.), so this will be of special interest. A Virginia officer in an Alabama regiment and commander of the Army of Northern Virginia's elite sharpshooters, Blackford's correspondence spans nearly the entire war and allows the modern reader to see this turbulent era through the eyes of someone who lived it. The battles, however, are only part of the story. Blackford also wrote about camp life, food, foraging, the hardships of the picket line, as well as the marches. He makes candid comments on his leaders at all levels and prays for those he admires.
This should provide us with another fine, unique learning experience.
I look forward to seeing you all at the March 22 meeting.