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Virginia Division Speakers Bureau

 

The Virginia Division Speakers Bureau is intended to provide a list of program resources for your SCV camp meeting or other gathering. If you wish to make use of the services of someone on this list please contact the speaker directly for information on availablity, topics, travel compensation, etc.

If you know of someone who would be willing to speak at SCV events please email the Virginia Division Rebmaster and provide contact information. We will get in touch with the individual and obtain permission to list them on this page.


Arthur Candenquist -- Arthur has been a serious scholar and researcher of the WBTS for over 50 years. His research focus is on the more unusual and lesser-known aspects of the War. Arthur is a Life Member of the SCV and a Life Member of the Virginia Division. He is a member of the Turner Ashby Camp #1567 in Winchester and a Life Member of the Summers-Koontz Camp #490 in Luray. His contact info is: phone: 540-937-7444, FAX: 540-937-7443, and email: AC9725@cs.com. His slide presentations are 45 minutes long and include the following:

  • The War Between the Sheets (the seamier side of the War);
  • Relieve & Befriend Every Brother (Freemasonry during the War);
  • Jeff Davis Must Be Killed! (the Kilpatrick-Dahlgren Raid on Richmond in 1864);
  • If We Build It, Supplies Will Come (the world's first military RR, between Manassas & Centreville in 1861);
  • Did Anyone REALLY Know Waht Time It Was? (keeping time during the War, before Standard Time was established);
  • The Great Train Robbery (Stonewall Jackson's "appropriation" of the B&O RR equipment in 1861).

William Connery -- William Connery-- William has spoken in the past 10 years to SCV Camps throughout the Maryland and Virginia area. The History Press has recently published two of his books: Civil War Northern Virginia 1861 (for which he was awarded the Jefferson Davis Historical Gold Medal by the Fairfax Chapter of the UDC) and Mosby's Raids in Civil War Northern Virginia. He has spoken on 'Honoring President Robert E. Lee,' ‘The CSS Shenandoah and the Last Shot of the Civil War,’ ‘John Tyler and the Confederacy’ and ‘Fort McHenry During the War.’ Please feel free to contact the Commanders of the Camps concerning his talks. He can travel within a reasonable distance of his home in Alexandria, for a small fee and gasoline money. His contact info is: William Connery, 5777 Westchester Street, Alexandria, VA 22310, 703-719-6639, william.connery@verizon.net.


James G. Flanagan -- James G. Flanagan, Education Coordinator of the Liberty Heritage Society in Fauquier County. Jim has a B. S. degree in Biology, a M. S. degree from Randolph Macon WC (now Randolph University), and a M. ST. degree, 9 National Science Foundation Summer Institutes in Geology, Meteorology, Oceanography, and Astronomy. Jim completed his course work for the PHD at the U. of MD and still collecting data for the dissertation. Jim speaks in high schools, and is an adjunct professor of Biology at LFCC at the Fauquier Campus. He was the 2012 Sons of the American Revolution Culpeper Region Educator of the year. His slides need to be shared with any Civil War group which shares that heritage. His e-mail is SumerduckWood@aol.com. Jim is a retired school teacher and lives in Sumerduck, VA. He speaks on Kelly's Ford and has over 15 unpublished and authenticated pages from the Ledger Books from Kellysville (1861- 1884) showing some very interesting accounts and quartermaster purchases. He is well versed in the Civil War and has degrees in Science and education. Topics of interest include: The Horse in the Civil War; The Battle of Kelly's Ford; The Night Attack at Rappahannock Station, Nov. 7, 1863; and John Pelham, Lee's Gallant Artillerist. These programs are all Power Point supported and based on Primary Source Data.


John Fox -- John is the author of Red Clay to Richmond: Trail of the 35th Georgia Infantry Regiment, CSA . He is a member of Turner Ashby Camp #1567 in Winchester. He has given numerous talks to historical/civic groups about the Confederacy. Most recently he gave the keynote address for the 139th annual Confederate Memorial Day in Winchester. His current talk is titled "The Brutal Realities of War." He uses previously unpublished letters and diaries to detail in graphic fashion the difficult transition for Georgia soldiers coming to Virginia from the Deep South in 1861-1862. He has an 18 minute, 28 minute or 45 minute version depending on a camp's needs. More info is available at http://www.anglevalleypress.com. John's phone is 540-665-8567 and his email address is anglevalleypress@yahoo.com. John's bio may be found here.


Dave Goetz -- Compatriot Goetz currently serves as Commander of the Black Horse Camp in Warrenton, VA. He has been been leading tours in Mosby's Confederacy and giving presentations on "The Life & Times of John Singleton Mosby" and "The Postwar Relationship Between John Singleton Mosby and Ulysses S. Grant" since 2001. More information can be found at his Web site located at http://www.mosbystours.com.


Dana Jackson -- Dana speaks on "Confederates who served in the subsequent Indian Wars and in the Spanish-American War" and a "History of the Confederate Veterans Home in Richmond." His contact information is: 7506 Pepper's Ferry Blvd., Fairlawn, Va. 24141-8860, danac_jackson@hotmail.com.


Marc Leepson -- Marc has spoken on his newest book, Desperate Engagement, a history of the July 9, 1864, Battle of Monocacy and Jubal Early's subsequent raid on Washington, D.C., to many groups, including Civil War Roundtables, UDC, DAR and SAR Chapters, and SCV camps in Richmond, Winchester, Alexandria, Gaithersburg (Md.), Ellicott City (Md., May 13) and he is in the process of choosing a date for the Sharpsburg (Md.) Camp. Marc is the author of six books, including Desperate Engagement, a free-lance journalist for many publications (including Civil War Times and America's Civil War), and historian. He lives in Loudoun County, and teaches U.S. History at Lord Fairfax Community College in Warrenton on an adjunct basis. Contact info: Marc527psc@aol.com; 540-687-4131 or visit the Web site www.marcleepson.com.


Thomas D. Perry -- Thomas has three talks, see list below. He may be contacted at 4443 Ararat Hwy., P. O. Box 11, Ararat, VA 24053, freestateofpatrick@yahoo.com, 276.692.5300, www.freestateofpatrick.com

  • Jeb Stuart's Last Ride: The Battle of Yellow Tavern, a slide program about Stuart's life and death at Yellow Tavern.
  • George Stoneman's 1865 Raid.
  • A Tale of Two Great-Grandfathers: Jeb Stuart Ancestors in the American Revolution.

Mary Schaller -- Mary is the author of PAPA WAS A BOY IN GRAY (Thomas Publications of Gettysburg, PA), a member of the UDC, and an accomplished speaker. She has spoken to school groups, CWRTS, SCV camps, UDC chapters and was the featured speaker April 30th at the Confederate Memorial Day ceremony at Mount Olivet Cemetery, Frederick MD. Mary may be contacted at mnschaller@earthlink.net


Fred D. Taylor -- A native of the Tidewater region, Fred is a life member of the SCV, and has held numerous positions from the camp to the national levels of our organization. His education background includes a B.A. in History from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, and a J.D. from the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia. He may be contacted at: fred.taylor.va@gmail.com

Fred's topics include:

  • "The Last Battles at Appomattox" – An historical account of North Carolina's claim of being "Last at Appomattox," with an in-depth look at the final hours of the Army of Northern Virginia.
  • "A Walk Through Cedar Hill" - An entertaining story of unique Southern figures from the Suffolk and Nansemond County area during the War Between the States. This program includes fascinating personal stories about secession, the Confederate "secret service," Unionists during the war, and Brazil's Confederados.
  • "The Life of Richard Byrd Kennon" - A native of Norfolk, Kennon was the descendant of a distinguished Virginia family. Kennon spent his childhood in Powhatan County, and prior to the WBTS, married the daughter of Confederate Brig. Genl. Phillip St. George Cocke. During the war, Kennon served with distinction on the staffs of such noted Generals as J.E.B. Stuart, Thomas Rosser, James Dearing, and others. Following the war, Kennon lived with his family in Brunswick County, where his home today operates as the "Kennon House" restaurant in Gasburg, Virginia.
  • "Our Southern Heritage in the 21st Century" – A look at the Southern people as a distinct group, and the history of the movement to eradicate Southern symbolism.
  • "The History of Coleman's Company, Virginia Heavy Artillery" - Also known as "Neblett's Artillery" or the "Brunswick Rebel Artillery," this unit formed in the Brunswick County area of Virginia in 1861, and served with distinction at Craney Island until the fall of Norfolk, and for the remainder of the war at Drewry's Bluff, defending the Confederate Capital along the James River.
  • "Point Lookout POW Camp, Maryland" - A program that details the history of Point Lookout prison, with a special look at the legal and political aspects of the United States' prisoner and exchange policies.

H.V. "Bo" Traywick, JR. -- Mr Traywick will give a thirty minute presentation on his book Empire of the Owls: Reflections on the North's War Against Southern Secession. He has a projector and would only require a screen or a blank wall at the meeting venue for the presentation. The book's web site is www.empireoftheowls.com. A thumbnail sketch of his biography appears there. In addition, he has published a new book entitled Virginia Iliad: The Death and Destruction of "The Mother of States and of Statesmen." He has a 30 minute presentation on this book as well but it is purely a lecture dissertation, without props. Also, there is a web site for the publisher: http://www.hvtraywickjr.com/ with links to the same information, and for purchasing copies of the books. Contact information: H.V. "Bo" Traywick, Jr., P.O. Box 9086, Richmond, VA 23225, (804) 241-5415 (c). He has offered presentations in Virginia and the Carolinas, but for trips far afield, he would be grateful for some travel compensation.


Les Updike -- Les has spoken several times at the Jeff Davis ceremony and may be contacted at lupdike@comcast.net. Available programs for presentation include:

  • 10 Reasons for Secession, 1 Reason for War
  • Virginia and the 14th Amendment
  • The Confederate Constitution
  • West Virginia or Western Virginia
  • How Richmond Became the Confederate Capitol
  • Lincoln and the Constitution
  • The Embalmer Surgeon
  • The Battle of Lynchburg, Virginia

Michael Virts -- Michael is the Lt. Commander of Major General Fitzhugh Lee Camp # 1805 in Spotsylvania County, Virginia and is the 5th Brigade Commander of the Virginia Division. He has given a diverse variety of presentations throughout Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia to Civil War Round Tables, SCV Camps, UDC Chapters, Boy Scouts, public & private school history classes, city & county historical societies, genealogical societies, etc. Michael resides in Stafford County, Virginia and has a B.A. Degree in History from Mars Hill College in North Carolina. Some of his mid-nineteenth century ancestors served in the 4th Virginia Cavalry and the 30th Virginia Infantry during the war. His contact information is a cell phone at (301) 466-5803. Michael’s home e-mail address is virts.michael@yahoo.com and his mailing address is 6 Adam Ct., Falmouth, Virginia 22405.

Some presentations Michael has given include:

  • Religion in the War from 1861 to 1865: Chaplains, Protestants, Catholics, and Jews, damage to churches, clergy arrested, etc.
  • Montgomery County, Maryland during the War of 1861 to 1865: The war in the county boarding to the north of Washington, DC
  • Point Lookout Prisoner-of-War Camp in Scotland, Maryland: The story of the largest prison camp on either side during the war.
  • Assassination of Abraham Lincoln: Preceding the Assassination, Aftermath, the Accused, Reactions, etc.
  • Mosby’s Rangers in Maryland: Sites and stories of Mosby’s Rangers in Frederick & Montgomery Counties in Maryland
  • Women in the War from 1861 to 1865: Includes Mrs. Mary Elizabeth Surratt, Miss Kate Cumming, Mrs. Rose O’Neal Greenhow, etc.
  • Confederate Cherokees: General Stand Watie in Indian Territory (Oklahoma), Thomas’ Legion of the Cherokees in North Carolina, Federal Government actions against the Cherokee Nation preceding the War, e.g., “Trail of Tears”, war’s aftermath in Cherokee country, etc.

Mark Vogl – Mark Vogl is a Citadel graduate, former infantry officer, professor, political aide, and presently an author and speaker. Though living in Texas he enjoys travelling and speaking to camps across the Confederation. His contact information is: Mark Vogl, 2LT Cdr., Texas Division, 7082 Fm 1795, Big Sandy, TX 75755, (903) 725-3175, and his e-mail address is johnyreb43@yahoo.com. Contact Mark and he will send you an information flier with a more complete biography and a list of formal programs he has developed or click here to download a sample flier of some of the presentations that Mark has prepared. If you contact him in advance, he can develop a custom made presentation specifically for your camp. Mark accepts donations but does not ask a fee.


Randolph H. (Randy) Watkins – Randy is a member of the Diniwiddie Grays Camp #2220 and has spoken at numerous SCV Camps and Civil War Round Tables on a variety of subjects. He will retire from Petersburg National Park Service on 30 April 2015 and will be readily available after that. He has developed many presentations that may be of interest to SCV Camps and can research a particular topic to develop a program if desired. PowerPoint presentations are available for some programs and the presentation length can be adjusted to fit meeting agendas. Some programs available include:

  • Initial Attacks on Petersburg
  • Battle of Fort Stedman
  • Battle of the Crater
  • Battle of Second Weldon Railroad
  • Battle of Peeble's Farm
  • Battle of Five Forks
  • Battle of Sutherland Station
  • Battle of Fort Gregg
  • Provost Marshal Operations
  • Supply and Logistics at Petersburg
  • Fortifications in the Petersburg Campaign
  • Sin and Vice in Petersburg
  • The Great Beefsteak Raid
  • The Applejack Raid
  • Artillery at Petersburg
  • Soldier Life in the Trenches

Tours based on most of the above subjects can also be arranged. Cost: (Travel) If within 90 miles of Petersburg, no charge but contribution toward fuel costs is appreciated; Excess of 90 miles - Contribution toward fuel costs and one meal (if meal is not part of the normal meeting); Honorarium: Whatever you feel the program is worth. To arrange for a presentation, contact Randolph H. (Randy) Watkins, 24416 River Road, North Dinwiddie, VA 23803, 804-615-0107 or by e-mail at RangerWatkins74@gmail.com.


Beth White – Beth White has a MA in American History and is completing a second MA in Military History with a concentration in Civil War Studies. She has one lecture complete with PowerPoint on the subject of "Stonewall Jackson's early years and its impact upon his adult life" that she has presented at several locations. She is currently finishing her thesis on "The impact of Lynchburg, Virginia upon the Confederacy during the Civil War" and upon its completion she will begin researching and preparing for upcoming lectures in 2015. Beth currently serves as a Civil War tour guide/docent for Lynchburg's Presbyterian Cemetery, provides Civil War tours of Lynchburg, and is the incoming Vice-President of the Lynchburg Civil War Round Table. She was also a member of the Lynchburg Sesquicentennial Committee during the celebration of the 150th Anniversary of the Battle of Lynchburg in June 2014. Click here to send an e-mail to Beth White.


Richard G. Williams, Jr. – Richard G. Williams Jr. is a southern writer, relic hunter, autodidact and raconteur who specializes in Virginia history and the War Between the States. A former contributor to the Washington Times' Civil War column, he has also written for Homeschooling Today Magazine, Confederate Veteran, Western & Eastern Treasures Magazine and regularly contributes articles about the Civil War and Virginia history to various publications and websites. He has co-produced two history-related videos: the award-winning Institute on the Constitution and Still Standing: The Stonewall Jackson Story. His writing and historical research involving the Confederacy earned him the Jefferson Davis Historical Gold Medal from the United Daughters of the Confederacy and he is also a member of the SCV’s Bonnie Blue Society. Williams is the author of The Maxims of Robert E. Lee for Young Gentlemen, Stonewall Jackson, the Black Man’s Friend, and Lexington, Virginia and the Civil War. He serves on the Board of Trustees for the National Civil War Chaplains Museum in Lynchburg, Virginia. Williams was born and grew up on battlefields in Virginia's rural Shenandoah Valley where he still resides and is a direct descendant of three Confederate soldiers and a ninth-generation great-grandson of the Reverend Roger Williams. His topics include:

  • Stonewall Jackson’s Black Sunday School Class
  • Lexington, Virginia & the Civil War
  • The History of the “Shrine of the South” – Lee Chapel
  • Touching Civil War History Through Civil War Artifact Recovery
  • The Battle of Waynesboro, Virginia

Williams can be contacted at Stonewallbook@yahoo.com.


 

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