Stonewall Jackson’s Valley Campaign – III

Lead: In less than sixty amazing days in the wet spring of 1862, the foot cavalry of General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson transformed the strategy of both North and South in the Civil War.


                Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.


                Content: After an initial tactical defeat at Kernstown in March, Jackson re-organized his forces and relieved his best subordinate General Garnett for retreating unbidden when his brigade had been out-flanked and out of ammunition at Kernstown. This sent a chilling warning through the ranks. Retreat for Stonewall was a tactic to be employed as a prelude to attack. There would be no unauthorized retreat. Jackson also convinced Richmond that he could use re-enforcements and they sent General Richard Ewell’s division. In late April, Jackson began to demonstrate his two rules of engagement: Firstly, mystify, mislead and surprise the enemy, and Secondly, find only part, preferably the weakest part of your enemy, and crush it.

Young Man Hitler – II

Lead: Product of a domineering father and indulgent Mother, head-strong young Austrian Adolf Heilder entered school with an unusual gift for speaking and a desire to become an artist.


                Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.


                Content: Neither by his Mother’s permissiveness or Father’s uncontrolled anger was young Adolf given a structured environment in his home and he became a self-willed and stubborn child. He early on became fascinated with German history, particularly the glory days of the Franco-Prussian War in 1870-1871, and as a borderland resident adopted the Pan-German inclination to admire the German Kaiser.

Young Man Hitler – I

Lead: Six decades after he took his own life amid the rubble of the Third Empire, Adolf Hitler continues to hold the imagination of the world as it looks for clues in his childhood to the development of a monster.


                Intro. : A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.


                Content: Since he burst on the scene in a failed coup attempt in a Munich Beer Garden in 1923, Adolf Hitler seemed to understand Germany and the needs of his adopted home. His substantial rhetorical ability allowed him to speak for many Germans who were disappointed at the national defeat in 1918, sensed that Germany was being denied her appropriate place in the ranks of great nations, and longed to be challenged to national distinction. He took German to its moment of greatest triumph and down to terrible defeat. Many of the impulses that animated this tragically brilliant man can be traced to his childhood in Austria in the years before the turn of the 20th century.

Stonewall Jackson’s Valley Campaign – II

Lead: His name evoked witchery and profound admiration, but Thomas J. “Stonewall,” Jackson largely remains an enigma to students of his brilliant Valley Campaign of 1862.


                Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.


                Content: Stonewall Jackson has been called everything from a military genius to a blue-eyed assassin. His students at the Virginia Military Academy called him Tom Fool behind his back, but later came to regard him with near worship after his talent for strategy and leadership in desperate circumstances, help turn the tide for the South in the early months of the Civil War. He was an orphan who grew up in near poverty, passed from one set of relatives to the other. A chance opportunity landed him ill-prepared in the ranks of the United States Military Academy at West Point, but through sheer academic sweat he elevated his graduating class standing to number 17.


Stonewall Jackson’s Valley Campaign – I

Lead: In the annals of the Civil War no name is more renown than Stonewall. T. J. Jackson earned his reputation as a supreme strategist in the Shenandoah Valley Campaign of 1862.


                Intro. : A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.


                Content: Despite early victories, the prospects for the Confederacy in the Spring of 1862 were exceedingly bleak. New Orleans was in Federal hands as was most of Tennessee. General George McClellan had landed on the Virginia Peninsula and was pressing Richmond. Union troops in large numbers were moving south down the Shenandoah Valley to remove that breadbasket from rebel hands and come at Richmond from the west. All that stood in their way were 3500 troops thrown together by Major General Thomas Jonathan Jackson, an austere, rather eccentric former professor at the Virginia Military Academy, whose firmness in the face of Union assault at the First Battle of Manassas in June 1861 had earned him the nickname Stonewall.


Admiral Grace Hopper – Teaching Computers to Speak

Lead: When Grace Hopper got into the business in 1944, the number of people who had ever heard the word computer could not fill a small room. She stayed with it until she died.


                Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.


                Content:. When the United States was sucked into World War II, Vassar College Professor Grace Murray Hopper could have avoided military service. She had a Yale PhD and was in a vital profession, a college math teacher barred from military service, but Grace Hopper loved the U.S. Navy. Her great-grandfather had been a rear admiral, and she battered the doors down and finished first in her midshipman class. The Navy wanted her mind, specifically, her ability to calculate and help operate the new generation of mechanical calculators that would be required if modern weapons were to reach their destructive potential.

George Washington Rains and Confederate Gunpowder – II

Lead: During the Civil War, the Confederacy faced serious challenges, not the least of which was having no source of gunpowder. To solve that problem they turned to George Washington Rains.


                Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.


                Content: The key ingredient in gunpowder is saltpeter, the general name for three naturally occurring nitrates, the most common in North America being potassium nitrate. Called by some niter, it was combined with sulfur and charcoal, and together they were rolled, pressed crushed, granulated and dried in a process that was conducted almost nowhere in large quantities in the South prior to 1861. To defend itself the Confederacy would have to solve that problem. Ordinance chief Josiah Gorgas appointed Artillery major George Washington Rains, third in his West Point class, and who had served with distinction in the Mexican War.


George Washington Rains and Confederate Gunpowder – I

Lead: When it became clear that the Federal government would not permit the South to depart without a fight in 1861, one of the most pressing needs of the newly formed Confederacy was gunpowder.


Intro. : A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.


Content: Despite its wealth of leadership and agricultural resources, the South in the 1860s, was ill equipped to fight a war. What ordinance it had was confiscated from Federal arsenals in Confederate territory and was not nearly enough to prosecute the major campaigns that lay ahead. Few foundries could roll the iron that would be required.  The South had provided mostly raw agricultural products to the factories of the North and the industrial mills of Europe. That it was able to field numerous armies, a credible naval effort, and a war machine that held the North at bay for the better part of three full years is a testimony to the raw talent, dedication, and energy of its leaders, the many sacrifices of its white population, and, at least at first, the vigor of its free blacks and slaves. Yet in the end, the South had been bled dry, overwhelmed by the industrial might and superior numbers the North could bring to the conflict.