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battle building

June 12, 2011

I am beginning to unlock why the Civil War is so important to my thinking right now. It seems to be a turning point in the American Imagination. This essay from  The New York Times Civil War Blog by scholar Susan Schulten about a map of the first land battle of the Civil War illustrates an amazing storytelling condition. The Battle of Big Bethal is carefully documented but with detailed annotations about the heroic feats of the battle.  The notations on the map become almost gossipy; some 19th century “tweeting”.  The map is oriented south/north to denote the south’s supremacy in the conflict. The beginning of America’s political opinion counterpoint?

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