Meeting of November 19, 2013

Dr. John Edmonds Visits Redwood City’s Union Cemetery

Instead of a lecture in November, we had a walking tour of of the Union Cemetery in Redwood City, conducted by Dr. John Edmonds (our August speaker). John has been one of the leaders most responsible for the revitalization of the cemetery and has interesting stories to share about many of the residents.

Meeting of October 15, 2013

Jack Mather on “The Nation’s Toughest City (James McPherson)”

man reading a speech

Jack Mather

Jack presented a series of vignettes about San Francisco in the 1850s and 1860s.

The streets of San Francisco: a mass of Hounds, Ducks, Republicans, Chinese, Chivs, Know Nothings, Peruvians, Irish Politicians,

The population was young, primarily male, with ready access to weapons. A city governed by corrupt officials and living in a situation of semi-anarchy.

Meeting of September 17, 2013

Bob Hubbs on “Was Grant surprised at Shiloh?”

Battle of Shiloh by Thure de Thulstrup (Wikipedia)

Bob answered some provocative questions:

  • Shiloh – the horrible experience during which Grant became a general, and Lincoln is elevated to Commander-in–Chief – How so?
  • Grant and his trial by fire – What happened to him?
  • Shiloh, the never expected, the least understood, and the most painful experience of the American Civil War – Why?
  • Shiloh – the battle with more myths and less facts than any major killing of American soldiers – How can this be? Continue reading

Meeting of August 20, 2013

Dr. John Edmonds on “The Union Cemetery”

Meeting notes provided by Charlie Sweeny: Dr. Edmonds described not only the history of the cemetery and its connections to Civil War veterans, but also recounted the many contributions made by California Civil War volunteer soldiers.

John retired from 40 years in the Sheriff’s Office. He also retired from working as a psychologist and is presently writing books, including one on the topic of his talk. John has been very involved in the restoration of Redwood City’s Union Cemetery.

Meeting of July 16, 2013

Charles Sweeny on “The Short of the Long Division: A Capsule Version of North-South Enmity”

Charles is the Secretary of the PCWRT and a long-time student of the Civil War. He provided the following meeting summary.

In short, the South in 1860 was polarized with great consuming fear of the murderous black revolts on the order of Haiti and other instances of blacks slaughtering whites. The North was taken by the religio-political maelstrom fomented by the abolition movement. Such a climate of fear colliding with roaring righteousness from New England created such clamor that reason could not be heard. The division began in the 18th century and went on and on.

Meeting of June 18, 2013

Walter Day on “Camp John C. Fremont, Menlo Park, California”

man doing a presentation

Walter Day

Walter covered the history of this interesting military post, established to train men for fighting in the trenches of World War I, but eventually sending them to Siberia!

Walter Day is a microwave engineer who has worked in the Bay Area for 45 years.  He has served as President of the PCWRT and is presently the Program Chairman. He has studied the Civil War since he was a teen and has researched his Great-Grandfather’s service with the Army of Northern Virginia. Having served as an officer in the U.S.Navy he has a more than passing interest in Naval actions of the Civil War.

Meeting summary provided by Charlie Sweeny: Continue reading

Meeting of May 21, 2013

Major Arthur Henrick on “How I learned to Stop Worrying about Paying for the War and Love the Greenback”

Greenbacks and PistolArthur W. Henrick, a Civil War, Roman, and World War II reenactor, displayed and talked about Hard and Soft Money used in the American Civil War. He passed around coins and currency from the “Great Unpleasantness.”

He explained the economic situation and the coins issued in the 1850s as the US Economy exploded in rapid growth.

He explained how the Federal Government, after using every trick in the book to keep on a Gold Standard, had to resort to Fiat (faith) paper money in early 1862.

Major Henrick

Major Henrick

Since 1967 when the last Silver Certificates were no longer convertible to silver coin 1:1, the current currency we use today is exactly like Civil War “Greenbacks” and not payable in gold or silver.

Arthur Henrick of Sunnyvale works currently as an Quality Engineer at Cutera, a Medical Laser company.

Charlie Sweeny provided the following summary of the meeting: Continue reading

New Meeting Location in Redwood City

In the December 2012 meeting, our members voted to change our meeting site because of expenses associated with the golf course restaurant in San Mateo. The new meeting location, effective in January 2013 is Harry’s Hofbrau restaurant in Redwood City. Click on the MEETING INFO menu tab for the new meeting times and directions.