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

Tour Talk: A Reset of “A Weekend with Historian Dennis Frye, John Brown, and Stonewall Jackson”

In the game of baseball, an error by the first baseman is scored an E-3. In the world of BGES, a tour hosted by Dennis Frye is identified in the opposite way, 3-E, as in educational, entertaining, and energizing. This summer, Frye will be back at it with “A Weekend with Historian Dennis Frye, John … Read more

Tour Talk: “Custer’s Trail” with Neil Mangum

The life of a career National Park Service professional, seasonal or full-time, is a transient one, nomadic in nature. The novelist Nevada Barr, herself a former Park Service ranger, has made an alternative career of fictionally documenting the rootless odysseys of rangers, historians, and superintendents. Neil Mangum is one such Park Service denizen, who has … Read more

Tour Talk: All’s Fair in War, Streight’s Raid and Forrest’s Bluff, with Brian Steel Wills and Norm Dasinger

The life of Nathan Bedford Forrest has been the purview of many talented historians over the years. But no one has offered greater insight into the subject than Brian Steel Wills, a professor of history at Kennesaw State University and the director of the Center for the Study of the Civil War Era. Wills has … Read more

Tour Talk: Civil War 101 with Dave Collins and Len Riedel

When Dave Collins and BGES Executive Director Len Riedel present the new tour, Civil War 101: Gettysburg, on June 11-13 this year, they will be making a bit of BGES history. Indeed, for this first time, BGES is offering a tour aimed at Civil War “rookies,” as Collins, a big-time baseball fan, likes to call … Read more

Tour Talk: Three Decades on the Overland Campaign, with Gordon Rhea

The Overland Campaign, waged May through June 1864, encompassed an impressive swath of Virginia real estate. The Wilderness, Spotsylvania Courthouse, North Anna, Cold Harbor, and then the siege of Petersburg, all defined the battleground contested by two military titans, Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee. Historian Gordon Rhea has spent 26 years, since 1994, … Read more

Tour Talk: Greg Mertz and Shiloh

For a kid growing up on the outskirts of St. Louis in the 1960s, Americana was everywhere. You just had to decide which slice of it you wanted to grab. BGES member Greg Mertz, who is set to host “Shiloh, Bloody April” from April 8 to 11, 2021, made the most of the opportunity. For … Read more

Tour Talk: Tim Smith and the Real Horse Soldiers

For many historians, there is nothing more exciting than having a personal connection to their subject matter. BGES member Tim Smith knows this feeling very well. A native of Mississippi, he grew up a stone’s throw from the hills and valleys where Union Calvary general Benjamin Grierson famously led his troops on an attack in … Read more