Civil War Lecture Series Set for Fall at GCC
August 13, 2012
Batavia, NY - Was he a madman or a prophet, a brilliant strategist or a barbaric marauder? Somewhere among those extremes lies the true picture of General William Tecumseh Sherman, and leading the charge to try to get to the core of exactly who the Civil War hero really was, will be Genesee Community College history instructor Derek Maxfield. Maxfield will share his insights about the man hailed as a Union hero by some and as a barbarian by southerners who reviled his “scorched earth” philosophy of warfare. Sherman’s March to the Sea from November 15 to December 21, 1864, destroyed the south both physically and psychologically. The campaign, which began when troops left the besieged city of Atlanta, Georgia and ended with the capture of the port of Savannah, inflicted significant damage, not only to the south’s industry and infrastructure, but to civilian property, as well. Sherman is credited with designing a total war strategy that instituted strategic, economic, and psychological tools that forever changed the tactics of warfare.
Wednesday, September 5, Batavia Campus & Thursday, September 20, Medina Campus
GCC continues its ongoing look at the War Between the States when its lecture series begins anew this fall. Historian Maxfield kicks off the series on Wednesday, September 5, 2012 when he presents Man or Monster? Prophet or Madman? Reconsidering General William Tecumseh Sherman. The free lecture starts at 7:00 p.m. in the Conable Technology Building on GCC’s Batavia campus. Maxfield revisits the lecture at the Medina Campus Center on Thursday, September 20, 2012, also at 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, October 3, Batavia Campus
In October, the series takes a look at how climate and topography affected the war. Dr. Aaron Wheeler of Capital Community College will discuss how army commanders from both factions used the lay of the land to try to secure victories. He will cite specific examples of battles in which terrain was a key factor, and others in which no amount of planning could overcome the challenges posed by Mother Nature. The Search for Good Ground and Fair Weather: The Role of Climate and Topography in the Civil War is set for Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. in the Conable Technology Center at GCC’s Batavia campus.
Wednesday, October 10, Batavia Campus
Pulitzer Prize-winning author and Columbia University Professor Eric Foner will be on the Batavia campus for a special event on October 10. Dr. Foner will discuss the book with which he captured the prestigious Pulitzer in 2011—The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery. His lecture at 1:00 p.m. in the Stuart Steiner Theatre will be part of a month-long exhibit examining Lincoln’s influence in the college’s Alfred O’Connell Library, Abraham Lincoln: A Man of His Time, a Man for All Times. The travelling exhibit features oversized panels that take the viewer through Lincoln’s roots, his presidency and the Civil War. It was created by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and funded through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Foner will be signing copies of his book in the theatre lobby after his lecture.
Wednesday, November 7, Batavia Campus
The role and experiences of aboriginal Americans will be the focus on the final lecture this fall, Among the Many Fires: Trials, Opportunities and Experiences of Native Americans in the Civil War. GCC history instructor Dan Hamner explores the wide range of challenges the American Civil War produced for native individuals and communities. His lecture scheduled for November 7, 2012 in the Conable Technology Center starts at 7:00 p.m. and will also look at how American Indians capitalized on the war to advance their agendas within the broader American society.
All lectures are free and open to the public. More information on GCC’s ongoing initiative is available at the college’s Civil War blog: http://civilwaratgcc.wordpress.com/, which also contains photos from previous events.
For more information, contact Marketing Communications Associate Director Donna Rae Sutherland at (585) 343-0055 ext. 6616, or via email: email@example.com.
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