Wednesday, June 20, 2012


On Saturday, The Fayette County Museum hosted The Ulysses S. Grant Homestead Association to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War. Michael Miller's portrayal of Grant was amazing in likeness and stature. Miller lives in Georgetown, Ohio, where Grant lived until the age of 17, when he left to attend West Point. Miller has been re-enacting Grant for the past 15 years and is very familiar with his life before and after the Civil War.

The displays of historical weapons, and soldier's memorabilia of daily living, were shown and explained by re-enactor soldiers from the association. Other members of the association portray Grant's staff during the war. Their authentic woolen uniforms and speeches captivated the audience.

After Grant's talk, he took questions from the crowd seated on the lawn at the Museum. A friend and history-buff asked Grant about his General Orders #11 whereby he expelled the Jews from selling goods in his territory due to smuggling. Grant had no knowledge of that historical item and expressed his interest to the questioner.

As I later learned, it was the first time in 15 years Miller had been stumped by a historical question. Someone in his group must have gone inside the Museum or used his Smartphone to Google the answer, because soon the speaker began to talk about Order #11 and its significance and outcome. Thank goodness for Google!

I have taken much more of an interest in Civil War history since I learned that my maternal great-grandfather left Greenfield, Ohio to enlist in the Ohio Infantry and fought at the Battle of Chickamauga on the Tennessee/Georgia border in 1863.

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