Wednesday, May 19, 2021

13th Anniversary for


This year is the thirteenth anniversary for

This month, I paid another year's subscription to my web-host to keep The Thirteenth Massachusetts Volunteers website going, at least for another 12 months.  Time flies.

I must admit, I grow a bit weary of the constant work on the site.  I have never benefited from it monetarily, though I have greatly benefited from it in other ways over the years.  This, mostly from personal relationships formed, and doors being opened to me in places where they would otherwise be shut. 

It takes countless hours of time and dedication to build each page of my website.  The project began as a creative release born of my passion for story telling, and grew from there.  Much of that creativity and fun still exists as I build new pages for the site, but it coexists with hours of research, and work.  I have to divide this work between other interests.  

I am also having trouble getting transcripts of primary source materials for this later period in the regiments history. I have had setbacks.  With the pandemic, resources shut down just when I needed them most. And, several times now, CW dealers have refused me the privilege of getting transcripts of letter collections from this period in the war.  And, I tried hard to get copies of them.  These collections would have been  a great value to me in building new pages, as I would have a new unique and consistent source from the ranks of the 13th MA to quote from, in addition to my usual 4 sources, that are already widely available in print.  

I guess a sudden surge in this kind of source material would re-invigorate my enthusiasm, but it has not happened.

There was one very notable exception to this, and that was Seth Kaller auctions, who very generously shared with me a transcription of the Charles Conant Diary of 1863.  They should know I appreciate what they did for me very much.  Conant is heavily relied upon for the latest pages.

So along with the work, the source material grows thin and this kind of website format grows more obsolete.

Even Yahoo Groups shut down.  It was my primary means of promoting the site to descendants of 13th MA soldiers.

However, the next page is already well in progress and will eventually be posted to the site in the coming months.  It will cover the close of the Bristoe Campaign and the return of the Army of the Potomac to the line of the Rapphahannock in November, 1863.  I didn't wish to potentially end the project in mid-campaign.  A page for the forgotten Mine Run campaign would follow, followed by a page for the 1863-1864 Winter Encampment.  These are fascinating periods in the history of the regiment that I always wanted to cover.

I appreciate those who continue to support this project, there have been many.

Meantime, I still have come across several fascinating items that could occasionally be posted here on the blog. 

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