Ms. Overhill

Adventures in 299
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What I Learned

Filed under: Uncategorized December 7, 2007 @ 2:49 pm

I have learned many things from 299.  First, I learned to do historical research.  In the past I have done research for science and there are some definite differences.  Secondly, I learned to control my fear of standing up in front of an audience.  The use of historical primary sources was also new to me.  When you research in science you do look to the past for clues.  But I did not learn the value of primary sources until 299.  I would also like to add that I learned the importance of taking the time to proof read.  Unfortunately, it took some time to get this into my head.  I am glad that I took 299.   It has improved my writing and my ability to analyze historical events.

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Henry Brown

Filed under: Uncategorized November 29, 2007 @ 7:38 pm

A young private, in the Union army, by the name of Henry Brown, wrote a letter home to his parents on December 26, 1862.  In his letter, he told his parents that he had “been sick for about a week” but was feeling better.  He tells his parents that he was “stationed on this side of the river [the Rappahannock] a little to the right of the city [
Fredericksburg].”  He told his parents how the started firing “on the city about daybreak.”  He also mentions how his battery “fired most of the day.”  His battery stayed in position “till after the pontoons were taken up.”  

Henry continues his letter on the next day.  He tells his parents how he has “had dreadful pains in my [his] head and at first all over my [his] body.”   He worries that “Stuart’s Cavalry will come and carry us off if our men are not a little bit sharper.  Four regiments of infantry and one of cavalry were captured by him, few days since.”


Henry had to deal with a lot of stress.  His body was probably already in a weak state from fighting in the battle.  His body might be able to recover from all this, if he had more to eat then standard rations.

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web sites with scurvy related pictures

Filed under: Uncategorized November 18, 2007 @ 9:23 pm

These are some web sites I investigated for pictures related to scurvy

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What was Thanksgiving like for the Civil War soldiers?

Filed under: Uncategorized November 15, 2007 @ 9:05 pm

What did the soldiers eat on Thanksgiving Day in 1862?  The soldiers at the Campaign of Fredericksburg enjoyed a wonderful meal of dried meat, hardtack and maybe some beans.  If they were really lucky they might have scrounged up a potato or two.  They had their fellow soldiers and their trusty rifle for guest at their Thanksgiving feast.  One would imagine that they were very thankful to still be alive in a country they were willing to die for.  Their Thanksgiving makes me even more thankful for mine.

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This week on Scurvy

Filed under: Uncategorized November 8, 2007 @ 8:29 pm

Soldiers during the Campaign of Fredericksburg, if they had the opportunity and knowledge, could have foraged the surrounding area for plants high in vitamin C.  These plants would help them to prevent scurvy.  The plants they needed to look for are new growth from fir, spurs or hemlock trees.  Chickweed, a common garden weed, is also high in vitamin C.  Most soldiers would not have thought of using these plants to prevent scurvy.  They would not have known that nature can provide cures for nutritional diseases.

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Chronology of My Life

Filed under: Uncategorized October 30, 2007 @ 8:03 pm

I was born in 1962 in Colorado.

I celebrated the nation’s bicentennial when I was 14.

Got my first job in 1977

Graduated from high school in Colorado in 1981

Moved to Phoenix Arizona in the summer of 1981

Enlisted with the Army National Guard 1981

Attended College at Arizona State 1982Moved back to Colorado in 1982
Attended college for the second time from 1984 to 1986
Got married in 1986My enlistment ended with the National Guard in1987Had my first son in 1988

Moved to Ft. McCleelan Alabama in 1991My second son was born in1991Moved back to Colorado in 1991
From 1994 – 2000 I was a teacher for the head start program and other preschoolsFrom 1998 to 2000 attended college for the third time (I was the oldest student in my class)Moved from Colorado to Fairfax Virginia in 2000

2002 I graduated with an associate degree in Science from
Northern Virginia

2003 moved to Stafford

2006 started school at UMW to get bachelors in history (I am still the oldest student in the class)

2007 my eldest graduated high school

I picked this chronology of my life because going to school and learning has been my favorite past time as well as teaching.  My marriage and my children have been very important events in my life.  My family encourages me to keep on learning. 

The role of chronology can help with research by listin in order events that have happened and the dates they occured.  So when you look at a chronology like mine, you can tell that I was fairly young when I got my first job.

My husband is in the Army National Guard.  That is part of the reason for the moves.

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Revealing Research on Scurvy

Filed under: Uncategorized October 25, 2007 @ 4:40 pm

When researching scurvy, I found that other medical topics that are included in the medical books distract me.  There was so much happening when it came to the field of medicine during the Civil War because of all the battle related injuries and illness brought on from poor living conditions.  When historians did research on Civil War medicine, they found that there were more deaths caused by disease than bullets.  This research proved invaluable to military medicine because the now focus on keeping the soldier healthy.

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My autobiography, which one is true?

Filed under: Uncategorized October 4, 2007 @ 5:20 pm

It was March when my classmates and I were ordered out of our boat intoCoronado
Bay.  The water in the bay was very cold.  It made us shiver within a few seconds after being in the water.  After we were all in the water, we were order to swim for shore.  The shore was a mile away from were we were put into the bay.  My classmates and I got into a semi-circle facing the ocean with our backs to the shore.  Since none of us were experienced in swimming in the ocean, the person who ordered us out suggested this was the best way we could all get to safety together.  When the first breaker hit us, many of my classmates as well as myself were pulled under the surf.  When I tried to come up for air something was pushing down on my shoulders and blocking me from surfacing.  That something was a classmate who was taller and wider than me.  After struggling to push him off my shoulders, I finally managed to surface.  My classmates were no longer in a semi-circle but scattered all around.  We were soon going to encounter another breaker.  I started giving orders and managed to get my classmates back together.  We then were able to swim as a group back to shore.

            I love to hike.  On one of my hikes, I came across an incredible sight.  There in front of me was a mountain goat.  She was giving birth.  I stood and watched her as she gave birth to a baby goat.  When it was born the mother goat licked it clean.  But suddenly she had a funny look on her face.  She didn’t move but looked like she was in pain.  A few minutes later, she gave birth to a second baby.  Only this one came out backwards.  She licked it off as well.  I decided I had better leave before she took notice to the fact that I was there.

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The New American History Chapter 12

Filed under: Uncategorized October 2, 2007 @ 7:36 pm

Estelle B Freedom in her essay on “The History on the Family and the History of Sexuality” explores the history of women in a chronological as well as a categorical manner.  Estelle takes different cultures of families and traces their sexual history from the colonial era to the twentieth century in
America.  The diversity of the families varies from European descent to Native Americans.  It is Estelle intent to convey that sex and family are “distinctive subjects” even though they “overlap” when it comes to the study of social history.

Estelle writes on how Native Americans dealt with sexuality and family and compares them with the ideals of European sexuality and family.  Then she writes how the sexuality and family of a slave was different from both the European settler and the Native American.  She writes how the colonial family was a “microcosm” that provides a “political function” as well as the basic economic unit for European settlers.”  She explains how these microcosms changed political and economically through the centuries.[2]

Estelle concludes that by “linking…family and sexual history to the political concerns…scholars can show how…private subjects are critical….”  Estelle is able to do this because she has invested much time on research on various aspects of sexuality including not only female and male sexuality but also that of homosexuality.  Her research covers all aspects of family life by referencing books on birth control methods as well as books on a variety of families from different cultures.[3]

[1] Freedman, Estelle B. “The History of Family and the History of Sexuality.” The New American History. ed. Eric Foner, 285. Philadelphia:Temple
University Press.

[2] IBID. 292-293.

[3] IBID. 305.

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Filed under: Uncategorized October 1, 2007 @ 5:53 am

Ira M. Rutkow, who wrote  Bleeding Blue and Gray, did his research at the National Museum of Civil War Medicine in Frederick Maryland, New York Academy of Medicine as well as consulted many books on the Civil War. Ira is a clinical Professor of surgery atUniversity of
Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.  He holds a doctorate of public health from

The Ira wrote this book because many books on the Civil War dramatize the war.  Ira wants to show the dynamics of medicine in the Civil War.

Ira’s methodology is chronological.  The thesis of this book is that Northern Medicine in the Civil War change medical car for all Americans.

This book was written in 2005.  I intend to use this book as a secondary source to help clarify the action the medical personal took towards dealing with scurvy.  A problem with using this source is that the author is using his point of view about medicine in the Civil War.