Ellendale to host Civil War lecture

Published 9:00 am Saturday, August 18, 2018

County Historical Society will host a presentation, “Steele County in the Civil War,”  at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the library at NRHEG Elementary School. Author Barry D. Adams will discuss personal stories and interesting details of the book and signed copies of the book will be available for purchase.

According to a press release, more than 700 soldiers who served in the American Civil War called Steele County “home.” Most were young, some too young, to volunteer at age 15 and a few were older, in their 40s. They served in every rank, from private to general. Some were wounded in battle, some were captured, more than four dozen died in uniform and nearly all of them spent some time in army hospitals suffering from camp diseases.

Unlike soldiers from Pennsylvania or Georgia, many of the Steele County soldiers also fought in Minnesota’s own civil war, the US-Dakota Conflict of 1862.

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In the extensive account of their experiences, the reader will feel an intimate relationship with the Steele County residents — both soldiers and their loved ones — who experienced America’s worst self-inflicted crisis and who had a very real impact on the war’s outcome, the release said. From touching love letters to humorous stories to sad recollections of surgeons and chaplains, “Steele County in the Civil War” brings their story home and makes it personal.

Adams was a long-time educator in eastern Pennsylvania before he embarked on a second career as a licensed battlefield guide at Gettysburg National Military Park. With his wife, Joy, he moved to Minnesota in 2008 and lives in Owatonna.

Lecture admission is free to all community members. Copies of “Steele County in the Civil War” have been presented to all middle schools in Steele County.

The Steel County Historical Society webpage offers supplemental information online at steelehistorymuseum.org/civil-war, including an extensive database listing the civil war veterans of Steele County.