As the nation prepares for the sesquicentenary of the Civil War in 2011, interest will continue to surge. Millions of Americans have forbears who participated in that struggle, and many of them will undertake to find their own connections to the Blue and Gray. The veterans of that conflict were the most literate generation in our history. They corresponded from the front with family and friends back home. They maintained journals, and they wrote their reminiscences after the war. Government had perfected its record keeping bureaucracy. The result is an extensive paper trail to be explored for both official and unofficial documentary evidence.
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