Tuesday, April 27, 2010

New and Noteworthy---Civil War Campaigner, Number 1 April/May 2010

Civil War Campaigner is a new publication that is available in a print or digital edition that bears a striking resemblance in layout style and editorial content to Civil War Historian magazine which gave up the ghost late last year.

Covering a wide range of topics related to Civil War era cultures, the magazine benefits both military and civilian reenactors. Number 1 April/May articles cover the material, military, and political cultures of the era. Also, reenacting on and the preservation of historic sites is a focus. The magazine has photographs on nearly every page; there is a single page with text only. That's helpful when the article is how to load and fire a musket from a prone position, clay smoking pipes of the 1860s and Federal painted haversacks. Many of the photographs of textiles and the smoking pipes are large and the details are visible.

Unfortunately there are instances when references are incomplete or non-existent. In Setting forth information on Antietam battlefield farms, the articles' bibliography cites newspapers with no dates and an essay from a collection of essays. If a reader wished to locate Elise Manning-Sterling's essay on the cultural impact of the battle of Antietam battle on an agrarian landscape, there is no indication that her work appears in Archaeological Perspectives on the American Civil War edited by Clarence R. Geier and Stephen R. Potter (2000).

In its 105 pages there is little advertising. Several of the articles appear to be brief but are loaded with details. In particular the article on the 1860 Republican Convention in Chicago is allocated two pages of which about 1/3 is text. Reading the article, a reenactor will be able to gather and grasp the pertinent facts and be able have a brief conversation on the topic during a living history event. So though short the article seems satisfactory regarding the intent of the magazine.

Civil War Campaginer magazine's annual subscription for six issues is $14.95. Visit the website. CWL is a pleased subscriber.

Text by CWL.

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