A Side Show of the Big Show: Sam Watkins’ Civil War ac­counts of the Chat­tanooga Cam­paign

Walker County Messenger - - Front Page -

On Satur­day, Sept. 30, at 10 a.m., Chicka­mauga and Chat­tanooga Na­tional Mil­i­tary Park in­vites the pub­lic to par­tic­i­pate in a 1-hour pro­gram on the ex­pe­ri­ences of Pri­vate Sam Watkins dur­ing the Chat­tanooga Cam­paign. Par­tic­i­pants should meet at the Bragg Reser­va­tion on Mis­sion­ary Ridge, 169 South Crest Road, Chat­tanooga.

Sam Watkins’ book, “Co. Aytch,” pub­lished in 1882, is one of the most fa­mous Civil War mem­oirs ever writ­ten.

The book was not a his­tory of the war but a story of the ex­pe­ri­ences from the per­spec­tive of a com­mon sol­dier in the war’s west­ern the­ater. He ex­pe­ri­enced many life chang­ing events dur­ing his ser­vice, and his rec­ol­lec­tions are vividly ex­pressed as he brings them clearly to life on the pages of his book. How­ever, Watkins does not re­veal in any great de­tail how these haunt­ing ex­pe­ri­ences fol­lowed him the rest of life. Many sol­diers had an ex­tremely dif­fi­cult time bat­tling their past; could Sam have been one of these sol­diers?

As a re­minder, ap­pro­pri­ate cloth­ing for the weather, wa­ter, and chairs are rec­om­mended for this pro­gram.

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