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MUSICAL BACKGROUND

"Seneca Square Dance" by Ry Cooder, from the film "The Long Riders"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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CONFEDERATE HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION OF BELGIUM

Due to the renovation works at the Communal Museum, the CHAB Club House has moved into temporary premises at Wolubilis, Woluwe-Saint-Lambert. Our monthly meetings will thus be held there until further notice. New Address: 1 place du Temps Libre - Local A300 - 3rd floor (right when leaving the elevator). The building is located along the Cours Paul-Henri Spaak, just opposite the Woluwe Shopping Center. The entrance is on the ground floor, left of the bookstore/restaurant Cook & Book. See access map

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NEXT MEETING    
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Saturday October 13, 2018, at 3 PM

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THE FRENCH IN THE CIVIL WAR

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At our temporary Club House, lecture by Farid Ameur: “The French in the Civil War”. Contrary to popular belief, the French were present in the Civil War, a major episode in the history of the United States. At the time of the call to arms, over a hundred thousand of them lived in the shade of the Stars and Stripes. Isolated or in small groups, some of their compatriots, such as the princes of Orleans and Camille de Polignac, did not hesitate to cross the Atlantic Ocean to offer their sword to the cause of their choice and try to renew the feat of La Fayette. Plunged willy-nilly in the adventure of a fratricidal struggle to seal the destinies of a nation of which Alexis de Tocqueville had just predicted the rise, the French were not mere spectators; like other immigrant groups, they were witnesses, actors and victims. In the midst of the clash of arms, the proclamation of neutrality of Napoleon III was hardly taken into account. Geographically dispersed, ideologically divided and hitherto refractory to the American amalgamation, the French gradually broke the ties that bound them to the motherland to give in to the rising tides of Americanization and became permanently attached to their country of adoption. The experience of the Civil War was a fertile ground for assimilation. Halfway between the independence of the United States and the First World War, the dramatic events that took place from 1861 to 1865 opened an unusual and totally unknown chapter in the history of French-American relations.

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PREVIOUS CHAB NEWS (Issued March 29, 2018)
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The great escape from Libby prison, by Lt Frank E. Moran, U.S.V.

Charles Augustus Hobart, blockade runner and Turkish admiral, by Charles Priestley

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CURRENT CHAB NEWS (Foreseen end September 2018)
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The Sons of Liberty, traitors or patriots?, by Dominique De Cleer

The Chattanooga campaign - Grant opens the gateway to the Deep South, by Jean-Claude Janssens

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LATEST PAINTINGS FROM JOHN PAUL STRAIN

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GOOSE CREEK BRIDGE

FIRE IN THE VALLEY

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General Robert E. Lee began what would be known as the Gettysburg campaign in the early days of June 1863. He carefully marched the Army of Northern Virginia across the Blue Ridge Mountains and into the Shenandoah Valley. Detection by the enemy was one of General Lee’s main concerns. He gave his Cavalry Commander, Major General JEB Stuart, the assignment of screening the army’s movements by operating on the eastern side of the Blue Ridge Mountains. General Stuart would need to keep Federal Cavalry from discovering the Army of Northern Virginia heading north into Maryland and on into Pennsylvania. At the same time, US Major General Joseph Hooker gave orders to his Cavalry Commander Brigadier General Alfred Pleasonton. “The commanding general relies upon you…to give him information of where the enemy is, his force, and his movements…It is better that we should lose men than to be without knowledge of the enemy, as we now seem to be.” The opposing cavalry forces found each other on June 17th, and the running battles from Aldie, Middleburg, and Upperville lasted through the 21st. Cavalry charges and counter charges were frequent. Engagements were fast and ferocious. General Stuart directed most of the fighting, employing lightning tactical charges and then giving ground to delay the larger federal force’s advance. This bought valuable time needed for General Lee’s army to march without being discovered. On June 21st, the Goose Creek bridge, located between the towns of Middleburg and Upperville on the Ashby Gap Turnpike, became a choke point that was a focus of the opposing forces. The four-arched stone bridge spanning the waterway was a perfect location for General Stuart to slow the federal advance. Facing 7000 Cavalry and infantry troops, Stuart, with the help of General Wade Hampton, strategically placed cannon on the west side of the bridge holding off the Federals for two hours until they in turn brought up their own cannon. A devastating artillery duel ensued until the Confederates retired to the next high ground to the west. General Stuart’s stand at the bridge gave him time to consolidate his force east of Upperville, where he again delayed the Federal advance. General Stuart’s skill succeeded in preventing General Pleasonton’s men from discovering the Army of Northern Virginia’s invasion north across the Potomac River. The battle of Gettysburg would begin just 10 days after the clash at Goose Creek. General Stuart’s next challenge would be to somehow get around the Federal forces and join General Lee somewhere to the north.

The 43rd Virginia Cavalry Battalion, better known as Mosby's Rangers, was one of the most feared and renowned combat units operating in northern Virginia and the Lower Shenandoah Valley. These rangers were an elite force of scouts and guerrilla fighters who were commanded by John Singleton Mosby. The adventures and exploits of Mosby's Rangers became legendary in American military history. In early August 1864, the Federal Army came under the command of a new leader, Major General Phillip H. Sheridan. Sheridan began to push his army southward down the valley and established his headquarters south of Winchester. Supplies for the Federal Army came from Harper's Ferry by wagon train. On August the 12th, Mosby gathered his men at Rectortown, intent on interrupting Sheridan's supply line. Mosby's force consisted of nearly 350 Rangers, bolstered by two cannons. Sheridan's 525-wagon train, supported by 3 regiments and a small cavalry force left Harper's Ferry loaded with supplies on the morning of the 12th. After traveling all day, the wagon train camped near Berryville at Buck Marsh Creek. Early the next morning as the fog lifted, Federal soldiers preparing for the day's travel were suddenly panicked by three rounds of cannon fire, followed by the rebel yell of charging Southern cavalry. Pandemonium ensued, and the Federals fled for life and limb, leaving the supply train. After burning many of the wagons, Mosby and his men captured 200 prisoners, 500 mules, 50 horses, 200 cattle, along with what spoils they could carry from the wagons. Left behind however, was a cash box of the 8th New York Cavalry containing $112,000. As the Rangers rode away in high spirits, a number were trying to play melodies on some captured fiddles, to the complaints of their friends. Later that evening the prizes from the raid were divided among the men, with the prisoners and most of the cattle sent off to the Army of Northern Virginia.

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For information or online orders:

www.johnpaulstrain.com

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