Tour Talk: Between the Fourths, with Gary Ecelbarger

Gary Ecelbarger, an award-winning author of several books about 19th-century American personalities and events, has also established himself as a leading authority on George Washington’s 1777–1778 campaign of the American Revolution. He has formally presented and led tours on the topic for over 15 years and has published several journal articles on the subject within … Read more

Tour Talk: Red River Campaign, with Parker Hills

BGES returns to Cajun Country in May 2022 to examine the last decisive Confederate victory of the Civil War. A major part of the discussion involves Union Maj. Gen. Nathaniel Banks, whom historians claim floundered. We are honored to be led by Parker Hills,a retired brigadier general who is an expert on Mississippi Battlefields. We caught … Read more

Tour Talk: The 1862 Peninsula and Seven Days Campaigns, with Len Riedel

It’s not often that BGES extraordinaire Len Riedel, Founder and Executive Director of the organization, steps out into the field as a tour leader. We have that honor with the upcoming tour, “The 1862 Peninsula and Seven Days Campaigns,” which he will be presenting with Paul Severance on March 20 to 26, 2022. Len, of … Read more

Tour Talk: America’s Greatest Warrior? General George Thomas in the West, with Brian Steel Wills

In the retelling of the Civil War, Maj. Gen. George H. Thomas pales in the shadows of Robert E. Lee, Ulysses S. Grant, and other famous leaders, and yet this mighty Union general played a pivotal role in shaping the war west of the Appalachians. Born into a slave-holding Virginia family, Thomas attended West Point, … Read more

Tour Talk: Unvexed to the Sea: The Mississippi Is Reopened, with Brig. Gen. Parker Hills

Parker Hills is an expert when it comes to military strategy. The Mississippi native and graduate of the U.S. Army War College served more than 30 years in the U.S. Army, retiring as brigadier general in 2001. He owns Battle Focus, a leadership training company that trains soldiers, airmen, and Marines, as well as corporate … Read more

Tour Talk: “Discover Alabama: A Frontier History to Star Wars,” with Mike Bunn and Norm Dasinger, Jr.

For Alabama natives Mike Bunn and Norm Dasinger, hosting a BGES tour on their home turf is a thrill that never gets old. Both men are experts on the Yellowhammer State, and nothing brings them more pleasure than sharing their knowledge with a rapt audience of history lovers. The fact that the longtime friends are … Read more

Tour Talk: Fortress Vicksburg, with Tim Smith

From the start of the Civil War, the Union knew its fortunes relied heavily on control of the Mississippi River. That, in turn, made Vicksburg of great strategic importance. As Federal forces descended on the city in 1863, there was a sense that the war was about to enter a new phase, one that would … Read more

Tour Talk: The Civil War in and Around New Orleans, with Len Riedel

[Editor’s Note: The tour has been postponed until 2023, but it’s never too soon to start getting excited about this amazing tour!] Throughout its history, New Orleans has experienced its fair share of struggle and hardship. Recent events, including Hurricane Ida, underscore this undeniable truth. Fortunately, resiliency is also part of the city’s legacy. As … Read more

Tour Talk: “Washington’s Desperate Gambit”

This coming October, longtime friends Gary Ecelbarger and Scott Patchan will team up once again for a BGES tour. But this time around, the duo will turn their attention to the Revolutionary War with “Washington’s Desperate Gambit,” slated for October 13–17, 2021. Ecelbarger sees it as a golden opportunity for BGES members. “I’m certain they … Read more

Tour Talk: Darryl Smith discusses “Civil War on the Ohio”

Darryl Smith may be new to BGES, but he’s a grizzled veteran when it comes to Civil War history in Ohio and Kentucky. The owner of Walking With History, Smith will host his first BGES tour later this summer, focusing on the often-overlooked battles waged along the Ohio River. “Civil War on the Ohio” runs … Read more