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Seminar Leaders

Fred Kiger -- "The Military Pendulum of America's Civil War"

Many regard the three-day battle at Gettysburg as "the turning point of the Civil War." Quite simply, in a conflict that included over 10,000 fights and spanned four years, there were several battles and events that turned and tipped this nation's greatest and most tragic event. This presentation will investigate them and their consequences in the quest to allow one to better understand the ebb and flow of the American Civil War.

Dr. Jonathan Sarris -- "The Reasons Why -- The Motivations of Civil War Soldiers"

Because the Civil War was fought mostly by volunteers, a vital question is what motivated millions of young men (and a few women) to endure four years of horrific combat? This presentation will examine the reasons why soldiers fought by examining their own words, exploring the true meaning of the war for those who bore its heaviest burden.

Dr. Cameron Matthews --"Politics of the Civil War Era"

The politics of the American Civil War are vast, complex and had a dramatic influence on national development. This presentation will focus on the major political developments that led to the war, important political events during the war and the war's effects on American politics. Topics include the Constitutional Convention, the Compromise of 1820, The Compromise of 1850, The Kansas-Nebraska Act, the elections of 1860 and 1864, the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments and several civil rights acts.

Roger Drake -- "Representing the Civil War in the Arts"

This presentation will examine and demonstrate the way in which the war is remembered and portrayed in contemporary theater and fine arts. It will feature a staged reading of a play written about the Civil War in Rocky Mount by North Carolina Wesleyan's Jefferson Pilot Professor, Roger Drake, performed by his students.