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Yesterday's News • October 2006


In Remembrance – Margie Bearss

One of HistoryAmerica's dearest — and one of history's best — friends, Margie Riddle Bearss, passed on in Mississippi on October 7, 2006. She was two weeks shy of her 81st birthday. For nearly half a century she was married to Edwin Cole Bearss, the "pied piper" of history, the celebrated Historian Guide so well known to so many HistoryAmerica travelers. But Margie was far more than just the wife of that icon, who survives her. She was not only his partner in life — they shared two daughters and a son, Sara, Cole and Jenny — but she was also his partner in history. She edited his written works, and when he raised the Union ironclad gunboat, the Cairo, from the bottom of the Yazoo River in 1964, she cleaned, identified and catalogued every artifact he salvaged.

But neither was Margie just an indispensable helpmate in Ed's professional and private life. She was a formidable historian in her own right. She wrote an outstanding work on Sherman's Meridian Expedition of 1864. In the last two years of her life she was the co-editor with Rebecca B. Drake of two books, a collection of letters and a diary from the Civil War era.

She will be deeply missed by those of us who loved her.



Civil War on the Carolina Coast

Two spaces have become available on this previously sold-out tour, November 5–12. If you are interested in joining Jim McPherson on this fascinating journey, please contact us as soon as possible.



Recent Group Photos









News Bits From HistoryAmerica

The last years of Margie Bearss’ life were some of her best. Much of her happiness was due to her dear friend Marty Gane, who convinced Margie she could get out and travel. She saw the Hunley and did things she never dreamed of doing. Van Vanderwal was a caregiver par excellence. When Margie needed help, he was there to render it. And in the last two years, the constant and loving companion of Margie was Becky Drake, her co-author and confidant. We salute all three for being so important in the life of this memorable woman.

Jack Waugh and Pete Brown had the privilege of being a part of one of Margie’s important days when she and Becky unveiled their book, My Dear Wife: Letters to Matilda, at Champion Hill, Mississippi.

You might want to re-read the chapter relating to Margie in Jack Waugh’s biography of Ed Bearss. The full text is on the home page. Just click on the book at the bottom of the page.

The news from the new owners of HistoryAmerica in Rapid City, SD, is that the detailed listing of 2007 tours and cruises will be on its way to you next week. Don’t delay in signing up once the expanded newsletter gets to you, as many of the events will fill up quickly.



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Updated 02-Aug-2007