Even The Civil War Had Tourists

If it was 1861 and you knew there was a big land battle in the neighboring town of Manassas, VA, what would you do? You would grab your telescope, pack up the family carriage, and check it out, of course.

History podcaster Nate DiMeo tells the story of these Civil War tourists who traveled over 25 miles to watch the battle action unfold. It must have been a sight to see. About 50,000 soldiers took part in the First Battle of Bull Run and 4,700 lives were lost. The Confederates overtook the Union Army in what became the largest and bloodiest skirmish America had experienced to date.

Head over to Slate and listen to the tale of these adventurous bystanders in a new monthly audio series called Civil War Stories. [Slate]


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