The Civil War Fades

I live in the South and the last home of Confederate president Jefferson Davis is right down the road from me…..I was talking with a guy that works at the home which is now a museum and he complained that the tourist were not flocking to the site as they once did….

And then I read a news report on the Civil War…..

Museums and historical sites are making changes to appeal to a broader audience in the face of declining interest in the Civil War. Data from the National Park Service shows that its five major Civil War battlefield parks drew 3.1 million visitors in 2018, down from about 10.2 million in 1970. Gettysburg, the best-known battle site, had about 950,000 visitors last year; that was 14% of its draw in 1970 and the fewest visitors since 1959, the Wall Street Journal reports. In response, museums and sites are trying to present a fuller picture of history. Often, they focused on “who shot who where,” said one history teacher, “with no explanation of why people were there shooting each other.” The American Civil War Museum that just opened in Richmond includes information on slavery and the war’s effect on civilians. In response to the narrative that slavery wasn’t a core issue in the war, its director says the museum is taking the war’s history “back from the crazies.”

The number of Civil War re-enactors also appears to be dropping. Louis Varnell competed with several military-memorabilia shops when he opened his near Chickamauga Battlefield in Georgia in the 2000s; now, only his remains. People who were interested in reenacting Civil War battles in costume are now too old or are more interested in reenacting as Vietnam War troops or cowboys, he said. “Cowboy re-enacting is where bitter, jaded Civil War re-enactors go,” Varnell told the Journal. A Civil War reenactor in Georgia said, “The younger generations are not taught to respect history, and they lose interest in it.

This American war seem to be more popular in Europe than it is here at home where t was fought.

The younger generations find nothing romantic about this war…they see it as a time when the US was divided and the only way it could solve its division was with a war…..the perfect American answer.

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13 thoughts on “The Civil War Fades

  1. “was divided and the only way it could solve its division was with a war…..the perfect American answer.”

    You would expect slavery to be ended by compromise and negotiation and diplomacy ? At his trial John Brown warned the nation what the price would be for this evil stain. Or should Lincoln allowed the South secede ?

  2. For me, it can already be explained that the American Civil War is so popular in Europe. There have been no civil wars of this kind here. At the time of Martin Luther, the people once tried to rebel themselves. Otherwise it was only small war by warring nobiles. No claim to freedom. 😉 Michael – Dont worry at all, Europe will get his civil war very soon. As our politicans show, they have fear about, and try to do some survaillance against journalists.

  3. As you know, chuq, I have long been interested in the US Civil War. But then I am interested in civil wars generally, especially both the Spanish Civil War, and The English Civil War.
    But even my lifelong interest would not extend to wishing to see where Jeff Davis used to live! 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.

    1. I have seen the site of Picketts charge…..I do not think I could have walked across that open are with bullets flying…..chuq

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