Events Mission in Action Museum News The Impending Crisis

2024 Spring Lecture Series

Join us for our Spring Lecture Series as we delve into the causes, course, and consequences of the Civil War, from abolition through Reconstruction, as part of our extensive initiative “The Civil War & Remaking America” and prepare to open our newest exhibition, The Impending Crisis in Spring 2024!

Members of the ACWM can attend events for free with promo codes sent to their emails

march 21 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm | AcWM-Tredegar

In a captivating lecture by Dr. Elizabeth Leonard, discover the life and legacy of Benjamin Franklin Butler, a pivotal figure in the Civil War and Reconstruction periods. Explore Butler’s remarkable career trajectory, worker rights advocacy, and pivotal role as one of Abraham Lincoln’s foremost civilian generals. Delve into his contributions to wartime policy and emancipation efforts and his changing perceptions of race and slavery. Join us as we unravel the complexities of Butler’s life and assess his enduring impact on American history.

Elizabeth D. Leonard is Colby College’s Gibson Professor of History, Emerita. She earned her Ph.D. in U.S. history from the University of California, Riverside, in 1992 and is the author of several articles and seven books on the Civil War-era including: Yankee Women: Gender Battles in the Civil War; All the Daring of the Soldier: Women of the Civil War Armies; and Lincoln’s Forgotten Ally: Judge Advocate General Joseph Holt of Kentucky, which was named co-winner of the Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize in 2012. Her most recent book, Benjamin Franklin Butler: A Noisy, Fearless Life, also named a finalist for the 2023 Lincoln Prize, won the John L. Nau III Center for Civil War Studies 2023 book prize.

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April 25 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm | AcWM-Tredegar

Exclusive ACWM Member Reception at 5:30pm

Join us as David Blight sheds light on the extraordinary life of Frederick Douglass, offering a fresh perspective on his enduring impact on American society. Douglass’s journey is one of courage and resilience, as he escaped slavery and became a major literary figure and advocate for political abolitionism. David Blight’s groundbreaking biography unveils the untold story of Douglass’s complex personal life and intellectual prowess, cementing his legacy as a towering figure in American history. Don’t miss this exclusive opportunity to explore the life and legacy of one of America’s greatest icons, as told by one of today’s foremost historians.

David W. Blight is Sterling Professor of History and Director of the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at Yale University. He is the author or editor of a dozen books, including Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom; American: The Civil War in the Civil Rights Era; Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory; and annotated editions of Douglass’s first two autobiographies. He has worked on Douglass for much of his professional life and has been awarded the Pulitzer Prize, the Bancroft Prize, the Abraham Lincoln Prize, and the Frederick Douglass Prize, among others. Blight has always been a teacher first. At the beginning of his career, he spent seven years as a high school history teacher in his hometown of Flint, Michigan. Blight maintains a website, including information about public lectures, books, articles, and interviews at

Thank you for supporting our mission by purchasing through our online store.
Your contribution enables us to continue providing engaging events and experiences.

May 30 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm | AcWM-Tredegar

General Winfield Scott, who served as the General in Chief of the U.S. Army, is an often overlooked but important figure of the late antebellum period. He played a critical role in the American government for two decades prior to the Civil War. This raises the question of how his stance on slavery, abolition, and unionism influenced his decisions during the years 1860 and 1861. To explore his personal loyalty, we will examine his relationships with notable figures like James Buchanan, John B. Floyd, Abraham Lincoln, and Robert E. Lee, among others, during the sectional crisis. Join us for a discussion with Dr. Barton A. Myers of Washington and Lee University.

Barton A. Myers is Professor of History at Washington and Lee University and the author of the awarding winning Executing Daniel Bright: Race, Loyalty, and Guerrilla Violence in a Coastal Carolina Community, 1861-1865 (LSU Press, 2009), Rebels Against the Confederacy: North Carolina’s Unionists (Cambridge Univ. Press, 2014), and co-editor with Brian D. McKnight of The Guerrilla Hunters: Irregular Conflicts during the Civil War (LSU Press, 2017). Dr. Myers is a recipient of prestigious grants and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Gilder-Lehrman Institute of American History, the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Marine Corps Historical Center, the Filson Historical Society, the Virginia Historical Society, and the Jack Miller Center for Teaching America’s Founding Principles and History. He speaks widely to Civil War groups and roundtables around the United States. Dr. Myers’ work has been featured in the national media, including TimeLos Angeles Times, the Richmond, Sirius XM’s “The Michael Smerconish Program”, CSPAN’s “American History TV”, National Public Radio’s Virginia Insight, and the Civil War Monitor. He was featured in the acclaimed HISTORY Channel documentary series GRANT, produced by Leonardo DiCaprio and historian Ron Chernow, as well as the HISTORY Channel miniseries event ABRAHAM LINCOLN, featuring President Barack Obama and produced by historian Doris Kearns Goodwin. Most recently, he served as an expert in the HISTORY series “DARK MARVELS” on the world history of diabolical military technology.