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Ambrose Burnside

A graduate of the West Point class of 1847, General Ambrose Burnside commanded the Union Army of the Potomac during the disastrous Battle of Fredericksburg in December 1862. During the course of the Civil War, Burnside twice refused command of the army but finally accepted, although he considered himself ill equipped for such a high level of responsibility. Burnside was a likable individual, and his distinctive facial hair resulted in the word “sideburns” entering American lexicon. Burnside commanded Union troops at Antietam, during campaigns in East Tennessee, at the Battle of the Crater during the siege of Petersburg, and elsewhere. After the war, Burnside was elected to the U.S. Senate from the state of Rhode Island. He died in 1881 at the age of 57.

Gallant Charge at Antietam

Gallant Charge at Antietam

By William E. Welsh
The Union soldiers of Colonel Harrison Fairchild’s brigade prepared to attack uphill against a key Rebel position on the outskirts of Sharpsburg at 3 pm on September 17, 1862. Sensing their intention, Rebel gunners sent shot and shell in their direction. While waiting for the order to   More »



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A Hard Mutt’s Life: “Military Dogs” in World War II

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A Wehrmacht Pioneer Laid to Rest 70 Years After Operation Barbarossa

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Emperor Julian “The Apostate”

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American Writers Who Avoided the Civil War

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Mark Twain was not the only famous American writer to avoid fighting—and possibly dying—in the American Civil War.

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