Interpreting Sacred Ground
The Rhetoric of National Civil War Parks and Battlefields
Publication Year: 2013
Published by: The University of Alabama Press
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Title Page, Copyright
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List of Illustrations
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I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to the many people who helped me over the course of my research on national Civil War parks and battlefields. I am grateful to Dan Waterman at The University of Alabama Press for his expert editorial advice and consultation, as well as series editor...
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This book examines how the National Park Service (NPS), through its interpretive history exhibits, invites the American public to interpret the legacy of their most divisive and destructive national event: the Civil War. A rhetorical analysis of the artifacts that the NPS uses to interpret the war at...
I. Race and Memory
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1. “We Are Met on a Great Battle-Field”: Race, Memory, and the Gettysburg Address
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Gettysburg, a pivotal symbol of Civil War memory, is best known for two events: the battle itself, fought July 1–3, 1863, and Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, delivered at the Gettysburg National Cemetery dedication a little over four months after the battle. Although Civil War enthusiasts still revel...
2. Reviving Emancipationist Memory at Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
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The rhetorical dimensions of Civil War memory are most salient in struggles to assess the nature and extent of racial inclusion and equality in America.1 The popular “reconciliationist” memory became so dominant by century’s end that it seemed transcendent, creating feelings of...
II. Violence and Memory
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3. Savage and Heroic War Memories at Gettysburg National Military Park
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For over a century dominant public memory of the battle of Gettysburg has helped Americans imagine a battle full of resplendent drama and climactic narrative tension. Over time many have come to view the battle as a glorious struggle that foreshadowed ultimate Union victory and featured...
4. The Symbolic Landscape: Visualizing Violence at Gettysburg National Military Park
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How is battlefield injuring and killing represented visually at national Civil War battlefield parks such as Gettysburg National Military Park? This chapter addresses the visual representation of violence through the physical landscape, monuments, photographs, and vivid “word pictures” featured within the stops on...
5. “The Waters Ran Red”: Savage Interpretations of War at Cold Harbor Visitor Center
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The number of battlefield deaths rose significantly in the bloody spring of 1864, as Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, Lincoln’s choice as newly appointed general-in- chief of the Union armies, attempted an aggressive and coordinated strategy to destroy the dwindling Rebel forces and the Confederacy’s will...
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National Park Service Civil War historical parks and battlefields bring history to life for millions of Americans. By preserving and interpreting important national landscapes to reflect their appearance of years past, the Park Service stimulates our historical senses and enraptures the imagination. But if the history...
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Page Count: 184
Publication Year: 2013