tv The Civil War Diary of Le Roy Wiley Gresham 1860-65 CSPAN November 19, 2018 10:38pm-11:34pm EST
on american artifacts, celebrating the first english thanksgiving at berkeley virginia near jamestown. on lectures and history, how the pilgrims became part of america's founding story. and sunday at 9 am, constitutional scholars philip bobbitt talks about how the u.s. constitution defines impeachable offenses for the president. things giving weekend on the c- span networks. next on the civil war we hear from the editor of the war outside my window, the civil war diary of leroy wiley gresham. he was a 12-year-old boy from a slaveholding family when he began keeping a diary is a civil war got started. despite health issues he
continued to keep a diary and capture a civilian perspective on events until 1865 when the war ended and he died of his ailments. the jimmy carter evidential library and museum in atlanta hosted this 50 minute talk. >> good evening i am tony clark from the carter library. and glad you are here. i find this interesting. i really like diaries. i didn't really start reading a lot until i was reading william scheiber's berlin diary. ever since, i have thought diaries are great way to learn about events as they happen. which is i think really wonderful. having janet here at the carter library is really cool because we are also a civil war historic site. many of you may know during the american civil war this was a plantation, and general sherman use this as his headquarters in
the battle of atlanta because it's on high ground here in atlanta. it's from this location that he led his troops to savannah and eventually brings an end to the civil war. is especially important with the book, the war outside of my window, because it's a georgia boy who is chronicling the civil war. janet kroon has a bachelors degree in political science, modern european history from the university of illinois. she has a masters degree in international studies from the university of daytona. i think the really neat thing is, she has taken this diary, which the library of congress calls a real treasure, and really made it available for all of us to enjoy and learn from. please join me in welcoming
janet kroon. >> thank you very much. i have been working with this young man in his diary for a little over a year. i have come to fall in love with this kid. i have been a high school teacher for almost 20 years. originally i saw the article about him and his diary on facebook. we look at him is like a blogger from the 19th century. with all of his entries. let's start with who he is. these are from the original journals. he was born into a prominent slaveholding family in macon, georgia. he kept a diary starting in 1860 and ending in 1865. he started writing when he was
12 and ended with his death when he was 17. he wrote nearly every single day. there were only during the war three or four days where he didn't write something. he was a prolific writer in his journal. it was very important for him. he was an invalid, i will tell you the story of how that happened in a little bit. he was very sickly. but wickedly funny. very smart. a bright kid. and there are passages that literally make you laugh out loud. his humor is incredible. as i mentioned, it was featured in the washington post, i saw a 2012 article that featured it because the library of congress had it out on display as part of the celebration of the american civil war. we found it had not been published and one year ago
started working hard on it. let's look at his parents. his father was john jones gresham. this is a photograph of him on his horse, prince, outside of his newly built home in 1840. the home still stands. it is known as the 1842 in -- ann -- inn in macon. we had the pleasure of staying there one night which was an amazing experience after reading about the home and to be inside it was incredible. john gresham was a lawyer, he didn't care for practicing law so he went into business and was involved in the macon manufacturing company. they owned approximately 100 slaves on two plantations side by side.
houston county. the math department helped us locate where they were. about 35 miles southeast of macon which meant a wagon driven by a slave could make it from the plantation to macon in one day. if they didn't have complications. there are couple of times where he describes they have trouble getting up in one day. this is his mother mary. the picture was taken in the 1870s. you can tell by her skirts this is no longer the hoop skirt era. it's a later photograph. she looks older. when we try to research as many of the people as he talks about is possible. and we can find next to nothing about mary except through the
words of her son. you can go on to ancestry.com, i have a family tree there for the gresham's. you can look and see when she was born, when she was died, her children, but you don't know a lot about her, but she liked. what kind of personality she had. what were her interests. but leroy tells us all of that. he brings his mother back to life for us which i think is a gift to get to know who this woman was. leroy was a favorite child. they were an incredibly close family. he had an older brother named thomas who did serve in the army in northern virginia. and assist the -- and a sister nicknamed many because her name was also mary. they were very close.
he writes a lot about their challenges and their successes. he goes to the academy in macon, incredibly proud of the academic achievements. he is beside himself and thomas goes off to war. until he arrives home and safe. but why the diary? why did he write it? this tells you more about the back story. and things he didn't know he was telling us. which is what, again, one of the very layered things about this work. this is the first page. we open up volume one out of seven, in 1856 when he was eight years old boys being boys they found out one of the
buildings in town have burned and they went to investigate to find out what was going on. we found an account of what had happened. they didn't know what had been happening to his left leg, they just knew it was damaged. we found another account by a man who was reminiscing on his younger life and wrote a paragraph about the incident. what had happened is the chimney started crumbling and the kids scattered. leroy ended up having his left leg crushed by falling brick. his left leg was broken. the only way he was able to get around town, you will come to know alan who is his servant for most of the book, he pulls him around town in a wagon. that's his way of getting about because he couldn't walk.
he develops a cough which the article also mentions. the author thinks the back abscesses are because he is laying down all the time. we found out that was not the case. in 1860 the cough and back abscesses have nothing to do with a broken leg were enough that his father took him to see a specialist in philadelphia. what his mother did was give him a small book, not a very big book to begin with, but he keeps writing which is why this grows to a collection of seven journals, you can see here she has written an inscription, a biblical inscription. a highly religious family. her signature is here. her sisters there and that is thomas and scribing him.
he is supposed to write down his journey. he writes like a typical 12- year-old. i saw a whale. i saw a flying fish. my father took me to the natural history museum and there are schools everywhere. that's what a 12-year-old would get into. the thing that bothered him is that the doctor didn't really say anything except it wasn't as bad as he imagined when he first heard about leroy's case. he describes continuing laying down. the came back home but he kept writing. he was highly educated and he read everything he could get his hands on from shakespeare to latin to dickens.
>> he and his father solved some the more difficult chess problems. i am not a chess player, the ones that was out there, and the two of them solve them together and they spent time with his kid and he loved science. he wants to know everything. he loves trains and there is one trip that he takes to visit his grandmother, and had one surviving grandparent, and he tells you about all of the engines that he sees. he is inquisitive and talkative. he doesn't have a mean thing to say about any the people that he comes across. he loves his pets. he has a series of dogs, and he loves them all.
he had a rabbit at one point and his family had a cat. he has a good relationship with everyone. everyone that he comes across. but he is opinionated. of talk a little bit more, you will see where his opinion start to come through. he is funny and if i said before, one of my favorites is when one of the local doctors gives him a new medication, and he goes through what i call pharmaceutical roulette, taking different compounds and different things and let's see what sticks and what helps them and what doesn't. he writes off the full name of it, and he writes that it has a name that could kill anything. the one that ted writes is that he already has a problem with his left leg, and the underlying condition which he doesn't know anything about starts to impact his right leg. if this continues soon, i will not have any leg to stand on at
all. with all of this trouble going on around him and watching his world outside of his window fall apart, he himself having serious medical issues, and you can see how serious they are in a minute, he still has a sense of humor. that is amazing. this is one of the reasons i fell in love with this kid. you cannot but not like him. he is an amazing young man and i worked with a lot of kids over the years. i started to imagine him interacting with my own contemporary students. you are going to learn when you read the book about this insider view of southern life in the mid-19th century because he will talk about everything that happens in the house. the food, the clothing, the conversations that they had. the interactions, and the interactions between other people in the other household. he goes out in a wagon one day
and comes back to find that two of the women had had an argument. the only time that you hear about discourse between them. visitors. visiting was very important, and date was at the level of society where people would make a point to come and call. one of the people who did come was again, they was a presbyterian family and his father with an elder in the local church, responsible for getting it built, the building built, and one of the visitors who comes to the home is the father of woodrow wilson's father and he was born in stanton virginia and they relocate when he was two years old to augusta. there is other political people who come through, and some of the conversations a very interesting like when the
publisher of the macon telegraph comes to call, and he said there has been another fight. he said i don't think it will matter very much because it is in a place called gettysburg. it mattered a lot. so you follow the gresham family from their peak in at their height, through the deceit of the confederacy, and there is a parallel that is remarkable as you watch not only the confederacy rise and fall, did you see the family also get to the point where there was questions in his a diary! his -- in his diary where he doesn't know if they are going to have a home in the year. he has's beautiful home and you can see it still today and it is gorgeous. we don't even know if we're going to have all this next year.
he does worry about the poor class and very aware of the distinction between the life that he leads and that there are poor people out there that don't have what he has. he is very aware of this. the book also includes a list of biographies of the major individuals in the life of leroy, and this book took a lot of time and there was 1700 people in the family tree. he knew which life he was visiting, and i didn't. there was over 50 women named elizabeth or eliza in the book. fortunately, i knew that the name sally was another name for the name sarah. i have a colleague at school who had the given name of sarah, but goes by sally. i did not have to puzzled that one out.
but to find some of the family members and attached them so that we are accurately depicting who is visiting who and whose children belong to who and how it all related as well as members of the community that are an important part of his life, some of his young friends. their families were significant as well. that took some time and was a lot of fun. i love researching. but we do have a list in the beginning where we outlined that for you. we tell you about the individual families and some connected to leroy through marriage. you have a sense when you read the beginning of the book that you can refer back to that when you read when you refresh own who an individual is. is very involved in politics and his father was mayor. you see confederate president jefferson davis, who leroy loved. he thought his speaking style and his writing was wonderful and prayed with him and toward the end of the war, maybe not
so much. he said i'm starting to sound a little defensive in that speech. he thinks the third and fourth term of joel brown is an embarrassment. he said he should not have done that and somebody else should have been governor. confederate vice president alexander stephens is a personal friend of his grandmother and would sometimes ring mailed to her because the postal service was not consistent. occasionally you have someone as high were drinking -- high- ranking in the political scheme as alexander stephens taking around mail for his grandmother. that is where his family stood politically. he was really young when he started writing and you can assume and i have seen this happen with children in my own classroom, that likely it was his father's political opinion that he was writing about. he automatically starts talking
about abolitionist, and in other terms referring to abraham lincoln and really dissing him. there is one section that is for me kind of interesting because i taught in virginia, but it was the the time the union army went through fairfax courthouse, and it is just a bunch of people from the bars. that was very, and you saw a lot of that. then you have the war and news. he is so interested in the news and his favored general was joe johnston. he met him at one point and didn't realize it until after, he tipped his hat, and then he said that was joe johnston. they spent four years recording the course of the war, the
battles, and the strategy. this is another layer of the book and you get a chronological listing of everything that happens from northern virginia to the army of tennessee to the trans- mississippi department all the way to the navy. the blockade runners, and they will say i cannot say which name of the boat it is, because they is not releasing it, that is what they brought into savannah. you get a lot of that information and if you are not familiar with the battles and all of that, we footnoted those. one battle again in my neck of the woods, and he called it this battle, and we make that footnote about who was involved and how many died and was missing. you have that with the footnotes. if you are a person who knows all of these things, this book will show you what the sicilians was going through at
home and how they are processing this news. the roy got this from his father -- leroy got this from his father and the paper and he would come to the house on a regular basis, and other adults that would run a letter, and he found out early on that fake news is something he had to deal with, it is not a new concept. again, mister crispy coming in and say this little ballot gettysburg is no big deal. a few days later they realize as the news comes in how massive it was. he starts to question the news. we haven't heard anything from generally.! general -- general lee. so you can see his process is slow and incorrect news and you
get to see their frustration. at one point he writes, everybody got a no who has been down to gettysburg has authority been killed or wounded. everybody that he knew who was in that fight was either killed or wounded. he does a marvelous job of keeping track of sherman and the georgia campaign to the point that when macon is threatened, and they come through as a calvary raised and it was a second engagement as well. his father was involved at 52 years old and leroy is the man at home. he is making decisions. he went up on the roof to go watch. he said he wanted to see and to not only hear it, he wanted to see it through his own eyes. it was as close to his window as he could get. he grew up with 93 slaves on the plantation and eight in the
macon household. we know based on the slave records and we have been able to pinpoint who is who as far as the ages go, and doing that at the plantation and he said there was two plantations and we don't know from which plantation that the diverse slaves come from, but he mentioned that everybody comes up and is concerned about them. this is an example of his handwriting. if he did not care, why put all of that effort into writing her name in just a regular journal entry? but all of a sudden one of his entries, he said that julianne has been sent down, and he didn't know why. it turns out that his sister was dying and his parents wanted her to get down there so he could see his sister before she passed. he listed many of them by name and had an affection for them. he used to watch how are you
was one of the males who spent most of the town at the house and would take the wagon back and forth to the plantation, and he will watch him as he did work in the yard. howard would bring little leroy puppies. he was born into this life so he did not know anything else. this is a way that life was, and he is realizing shortly that things are going to have to change and he talks about that, but only for a little bit. he describes how the plantation crops supported the family home. he would talk about when howard in the springtime would bring up a cow and a calf so they would have fresh milk and butter would be churned in the plantation. honey would arrive when the kids had a sweet tooth. he was a very happy young man when honey arrived. it shows the interdependence between his household and what was supplied 30 miles away. he had an
illness and as he said, he did not know he had a terminal illness. he thinks everything comes from his initial leg injury. that might be true, but what we found they had because ted and i talked about this and we talked a lot this past year, and there is no question, and his work turned out to be better than what we had anticipated, than i anticipated anyway. but we couldn't figure out what actually killed him at the end. one of the other authors and he is a medical doctor at john hopkins and is trained and distracted all of his medical records of leroy, and we sent it to him and he said i have your diagnosis. he had tuberculosis, but thought the that stack but not the stereo typical time were somebody calls into a
handkerchief and it is blood in the handkerchief. he doesn't have that is one of his symptoms. he coughs all of the time. they hear him constantly coughing, and that is one of his things. but his parents never told him that he had tuberculosis. he had a version called pots disease. 76% of people in this time period had tuberculosis in their bodies. but the immune system was strong enough to hold it all. it never became active and it is quite possible that the leg injury compromised his immune system and allowed the tuberculosis to become active. by the time refugee -- two years later, he has the sores on his back, which is actually,
the abscesses was on either side of his spine. that is the disease coming through his body. he tells you everything and tells you about the treatment, and they was horrific. it is not pretty at sometimes. he was a the doctor came to lance my abscess, and i was not ready at 12:00 p.m., and i ask him to come back and he comes back at 4:30 pm, and i said okay, we will get it done. he says a couple of weeks later i'm going to need to have the other one done because having last and train made him feel more comfortable. he went through the symptoms, remedy, and pain, and he listed it in great detail. can you imagine your child saying that. some of the
remedies that they tried, the medications, this kid is taking morphine, and all of it in increasing doses. he is drinking alcohol, which actually gives them calories, and that is why they would give it to him. there is one scene where the house, and his reaction is funny, and they spill sugar and flowers and essentials that he, which are in short supply. but they also took his wine, and he realizes his wife is gone, he said oh no, they took that! that was another one of his him using antidotes. it was essential to him because he had very little appetite. this is the only detail tuberculosis account by a patient in history. that person sits and writes
these are my symptoms and this is what the doctor is doing and this is how i feel. this is the reaction according to the doctor, who we consult with all this, and this is the only account by patient written like this in history. it is unknowingly, and he is given us a real gift in many different ways. his decline, he knows and noted long before policy showed a reaction to what was happening in the world, he knew they was in trouble to begin with. i thought that was rather remarkable for someone so young to say that this winter paul's they -- paul's -- pause is
really important in world history because the north is preparing themselves and we have no more soldiers to get. we don't have any factories to make anything over what we already have. they did have an arsenal and augustine had a powder work, but we have nothing more that we can do except steal ourselves for the coming fight. i thought that was pretty insightful for someone so young because of policies of the confederacy's were not showing his awareness. he took more and more morphine and grew weaker and the pain was horrendous and the symptoms start to change and they become much more severe than they had been. she wrote, his mother wrote his last entry and said he should not right by himself. is less entry himself! his last entry was may 29, and his mother starts writing for
him and the last entry was on june 9 of 1865, and it says i am, and it took us a while to figure out what it was because her handwriting did not allow the eat to really absorb into the paper. so we played with it with technology and came up with i and perhaps, but whatever he said to her after that, she could not bring herself to write . we they arise that it was -- they arise that's back think that it was dying -- think that it was dying. the author of the journal had died on the 18th, nine days later. she wrote a heartbreaking letter, and it will bring tears
to your eyes. seven pages to her only sister, that we put in as an appendix, and that feels in those last nine days. she talks about what he was saying and what they was feeling and what the process was. the lectures that they gave and they was in the room that he died and where they dressed him for burial. his mother is next to him and his father is on the other side, and two of his brothers who died in infancy at toddlers are in there as well. the parallels are striking, they really are. he perks up when things are good and things get bad, he starts to decline. so this gift to history, the
world outside of my window, the only teenage male not combat the -- noncombatant account of the civil war. i have have that's make a had -- have had many things that i've read, no say no, they are not right and it is not a good fit, because he is a teenager and he did not fight. he watched and he observed what was happening to his world. he really was an exceptional writer and expresses himself really well. it is the only insider view of a permanent southern family during the civil war. day today what they do. what happens when an aunt remarries less than a year after his uncle died? that is not acceptable because she is supposed to wait two
years and then she shows up on a visit. but she also married a baptist. he did not know what to call her or anything. he was quite troubled by that. as i said before, the only detail diary in the world about the treatment of tuberculosis in the 19th century. as a physician, i was telling you about this book and it has been my life for the past year, and telling him about it and he was from pakistan, and he set it exists they are. you can see people with tuberculosis there and in other parts of the world, but not here. this is something that other people still struggle with. this was a combat -- companion book, and this doctor was a great help on this. he writes in more detail about the medication and he does have a ford and an afterword and goes into much more detail if
you want to know more about the medical background of the different medications they drive, and the pharmaceutical roulette that leroy had to go through. it was an interesting work that goes along with that to wear that you can really understand what he was going through and what we know now as opposed to what they knew then. that will be out in paperback. leroy is a young boys of the southern confederacy. frank, an author in his own right, and he is literally hiding from the world to avoid been captured. in her young adolescents voice, she tells us what she is going through and what she is thinking and what she is feeling. he does the same thing from his window. he watches training and he watches the pows as there is an
officer pow camp in macon. they are playing just like the boys outside of the school. he can watch them from their front yard. today, we call it baseball as it was still in its infancy. he gives an incredible glimpse into his own life and multilayered also many different levels. so it has been an incredible expense and you know a bit about leroy, and i hope you enjoy taking the trip with him.[ applause ] >> let's take a few minutes for questions. if you have questions, just wait for the microphone to come to you. >> i would like to introduce a publisher here, and do you want to come up and help field
questions, this is ted savas. we bounce things back on her that's back back in -- back and forth on a regular basis. any questions? >> do you know what happened to his beautiful sister? >> we actually do. it is ironic because she ends up with one of her uncles who never married and was wealthy as he had wealth in the north and the south, and is able to send many and one of her cousins to college in baltimore. she stayed in the baltimore area and she meets a young man who owns property that is now a part in -- park in virginia. >> if anyone here from macon, georgia? do you recognize that?
have you been to macon? do you recognize this? >> i can't -- i cannot quite see it. >> i haven't read the book yet and i was told there was an account, and he went toward the fortifications to maybe assist in building or see the building of fortification on sanger's hill. i am told it is in the book and i'm looking forward to reading the book. i noticed somebody named jefferson davis is there in the corner, and he was admired by the young man and i noticed that jefferson davis is mentioned in the index. this is sanger's hill where the fortifications were located to defend a railroad that was coming from atlanta into macon. this was collected on the
birthday of jefferson davis. it must be years now. thank you for enlightening north macon about sanger seal. we drive up it every day and i do when i am there, and i grew up in that neighborhood and i never knew there was confederate for vacation on sanger seal until i was told by somebody who read your book. so thank you very much. >> thank you. if you want to see it, they would love that. >> he does talk about the slaves working on those fortifications. they also have to send slaves off to savannah to help with
those fortifications there as well, and they come back and most of them are sick. so he does write about that. some curiosity that you might know or appreciate, i am told that the little family is mentioned often and that's back often in the book -- often in the book. his house is somewhat category is back -- behind the store. lewis was one of the original founding trustees of the university of the south. he was an episcopalian was in the, the young man? >> no, they are presbyterian. >> congratulations to them.
but he was familiar with stephen elliott in the book, and stephen elliott was close to the family with more people. >> she played a mean game of chess too. >> what happened to the brother thomas and how did the family fair economically after the war? >> thomas became a lawyer and the book ends with him reading the blackstone commentary, and one of the first things you would read and you wanted to study law at that time. he married and his first wife believe it or not rise of tuberculosis. he was also very, and he ended up going to baltimore as well. many of his descendents settled in the roanoke virginia area and was also presbyterian ministers.
he does a photograph in the book with three generations of his descendents, two of them named leroy. >> talking about diaries and such, i have just finished reading a book by general sherman, who is the commander of the 88 illinois regiment, which was the regiment that my great-great-grandfather was in. i was really interested in this book because it told about all of the battles in georgia and my great-great-grandfather was already out on disability by that time, but francis sherman was involved with most of the battles in georgia, or before peachtree creek, because by
that time he had been captured, and i am interested in the officers pow camp. can you tell us anything more about that? >> leroy speaks about that and i have done extra reading on that. they moved the enlisted men south and west to a place called andersonville. he speaks about it again and they would go down there and take a look at what they was doing and they would be playing baseball, or they will be playing cards are doing things. they talk about an escape and some of them escape. he doesn't mention any of them by name and does mention funerals for them that they are given burials in the town when they do pass away. >> i am curious where leroy wiley gresham gets most of the information?
from the telegraph of the newspaper? >> a mix of everything. when he goes to visit his grandmother, there is no telegraph in athens. that makes them unhappy because he is not getting the telegraph information that he was used to getting. but they subscribe to several newspapers, and he would hear from people who would come to the house and speak about what they had seen and what they had her. he is getting it from multiple sources. >> he listen to everything, including slaves. he would think about things and think about them on paper, and you would see that he is actually thinking as he is writing out his thoughts about what does this mean, and are the newspapers lying to us? if we want the truth we will have to wait another week because i don't believe this story. he agrees with his dad early, and we went through this, and then you start seeing slight breaks and he is very close to
his dad and it is almost like he doesn't want to hurt his dad's feelings when he is riding in his diary and he begins to disagree with his dad. dad thinks that we can hold at orlando and we can go on the defensive and sherman will be stuck in north georgia and he would never come deeper. i am not sure that is true because look how far they have gotten already. i think my dad is wrong on that. you would see confederate soldiers come in the house and stay overnight, and the dad has to throw them out. leroy talk to them and they play chess and checkers and gets news about the front and what is going on. he had this white monopoly of information that he soaks in, and then he starts talking about it. >> he was a fan of joe johnson. >> they would say something and then the next day, something
totally different would come out. then you have well i like! what i like to call the embedded reporters of the era and the correspondence. >> thank you for your commitment to students as an educator, and i am curious that was you teaching during the past year while you was working on this book, and if so, what you able to involve your students in the process in any way? >> unfortunately not. i was on leave of absence, which is why we was able to do it in a year. >> we will tell you about a story that you will find very interesting. the fact that this had not been published shocked us. i called some of my friends and some other people in the civil war community, and they didn't even know about it. we figured, and we were thinking about publishing it,
so i asked janet to commit to it, and she said i am off work and she was wounded in one of the battles, and she had some surgery, and she said i have the time and i will transcribe it and i will do work on this 15 hours a day if we need to. i told her that we needed to because we did not want to do it on a 2-3 your time schedule and we wanted to move it quickly, and we did. about a year ago, we had almost nothing on paper, and now we have a book. that is because jan worked so hard seven days a week and wanted to get this done. >> i think you mentioned this a little at the beginning, but the diary covered all the lives of non-slaves, white, assistant farmers around the areas of making? >> he is concerned about something. when they are not having enough rain to when they're having too much rain.
he does talk about what is going to happen to these people when that is what they are depending on for everything. >> but he doesn't really named them. >> but he is concerned about these other groups of people because he is limited where he can go. he doesn't know them personally, but he knows of them and is concerned about them and expresses that concern. >> you mentioned the letter that his mother wrote after he died. do you have other letters from families or friend are just contemporary to could reflect some of the things that he did? >> some the things that we found out about the family comes from letters written by his father to the mother. for example, we know on the day that his leg was crushed, his father had mailed the letter obviously because he doesn't mention it. but he writes the letter to her and she is visiting with her mother, and he tells her he
wants her to come home for her consignment which means she is expecting. there is no baby that is ever mentioned. it is not an and stressed the -- ancestry, and leroy doesn't mention the two other brothers that passed as young children. that was found out from other sources outside of his journal. so i did some reading outside in the collection to find out this much. >> it was probably stillborn. we found some letters and we got some of the donated to us to read. we found some others at virginia tech i believe. those was extraordinarily helpful on what was going on down on the plantation because the father would write some and thomas would write some. there is a couple of letters from leroy to his brother and some more information.
there is a decent number of letters outside of the diary, but the diary itself is 90% of what the book is comprised of. >> the slave families, i do not know. the gresham family yes, they are. we hope to meet some of them later this week. >> they have a page on facebook, the gresham family page and they have become friends with with us and there is some on the side of thomas and i think there is a lot of collateral dissent. >> the first thing that i thought of when i heard about the book was cherry berry here in atlanta -- carrie barry here
in atlanta, and this is more extensive and if you are familiar with them, how would you compare and contrast the two? >> it is a lot more detailed and a lot longer. there is other women who wrote and again, they did not have the perspective that he had or going into all of the news and following the battle the way he does as well. it is different on that score, and then you had the illness on top of that. >> it is a very bare book and just about every date we talk about this. you read it through and you realize there is something else inside of that writing. it is the medical and how he gets his mom, and the social history, and you realize that he really means x when he wrote y and z. this journal is by a
very intelligent and educated young man. i think he only read one book because they said he couldn't finish. he reads everything. >> he reads it and returns it and starts reading another one. every sunday he reads something that is religious in nature. there it is. this is only one that he said is too hard for him. i am sure that you realize now just a fascinating story and a first- hand account of looking at the civil war. let's think janet and ted one more time.[ applause ] >> if you will join us in the lobby, jan is going to be signing copies of the book. thank you all very much.[ applause ]
>> coming up thanksgiving weekend on the c-span network. on c-span thursday at 8:00 p.m. eastern, supreme court justice elana kagan followed by chief justice john roberts. they discussed the opioid epidemic. on saturday at 8:00 p.m., photojournalist talk about their favorite photographs taken on the campaign trail. sunday at 6:30 pm, gun laws and self-defense. thursday at 8:30 pm, retired general family mcchrystal talks about 13 great leaders. political writer derek hunter here is on, then we have this
war photographer who talks about photos she has taken in the middle east. sunday at 9:00 p.m. on afterwards, jose vargas on american history tv. celebrating the first english thanksgiving at berkeley, virginia near jamestown in 1619. saturday at 8:00 p.m., on lectures and history and how the pilgrims became part of the founding story in america. sunday at 9:00 p.m., these constitutional scholars talk about how the u.s. constitution defines impeachable offenses for the president. thanksgiving weekend on the c- span network. >> next on the civil war, scholars discuss the memoirs of