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What's New • July 2009
Greetings, Regulars and Other Friends


Opposing Cultures in Historic New Mexico

New Mexico

New Mexico, Land of Enchantment, is rich in tradition, geographical landscapes, cultural diversity, and historic complexity. From September 27 to October 4, 2009, HistoryAmericaTOURS will present New Mexico Through the Ages: Five Centuries of Conflict, led by acclaimed Western Historian Neil Mangum.

You will find that New Mexico history is worth remembering. To discover New Mexico is to discover long past cultures and their struggles for survival: pre-Columbian Pueblos, Spanish rule, Mexican rule, the Indian Wars, the Civil War, territorial days, and finally the Atomic Age. From rose-colored deserts to forested mountains, from America's first great trade routes to the tragic route of the Indians to Basque Redondo, this tour has something for everyone. With Neil's in-depth commentary and lively humor, he will take you on this unique learning vacation to experience timeless cultures, explore scenic byways and monuments, and enjoy fine Southwestern cuisine.


Vicksburg with Ed Bearss


Come relive the Battle of Vicksburg with Ed Bearss. Your historian guide wrote the Vicksburg Campaign (Vol. 1–3); located the ironclad gunboat USS Cairo, which was sunk in the Mississippi at Vicksburg; is the Chief Historian Emeritus of the National Park Service; and is the most famous and sought-after battlefield tour guide of all time. Visiting Vicksburg with Ed is simply an extraordinary experience that should not be missed.

On your tour The Vicksburg Campaign: Fighting for the "Gibraltar of the Confederacy," September 27 to October 4, you will start in Memphis, Tennessee, so that you can hear every aspect of this pivotal battle of the Civil War. You will begin with the Union's failed attempts to reach Vicksburg from the north, as well as the first effort to take the city by direct assault. From there you will follow Grant's landing below Grand Gulf, where, in order to accomplish the crossing, the United States Navy made a daring run through the batteries at both Vicksburg and Grand Gulf. You will learn about Grant's lightening moves and exceptional planning, which took his army inland from Grand Gulf and prevented the two Confederate armies in Mississippi from joining in opposition to the campaign. Finally, you will follow Grant's route leading to the siege of Vicksburg and victory at the city.


Kings Mountain: A Turning Point in the South


In September 1780 British Major Patrick Ferguson sent a letter to Colonel Isaac Shelby. Ferguson told Shelby that if he did not stop opposing British and loyalist forces, Ferguson would march over the mountains, hang the patriot leaders, and "lay the country waste with fire and sword."

This November you can travel with Ed Bearss, yes, the same wonderful battlefield guide described above, and HistoryAmerica TOURS to the site where Major Ferguson received the answer to his threat. On the tour, The Revolutionary War in the Southern Colonies: Wearing Down the British, November 2-10, 2009, Ed Bearss will take you to Kings Mountain where, in a little more than an hour, militia forces from South Carolina and Tennessee defeated Major Ferguson and his loyalist forces. Ferguson and 225 loyalists were killed, 163 wounded, and the rest taken prisoner. This action shattered the left wing of General Cornwallis's army's advance to Virginia, and he soon withdrew his army to Winnsboro, South Carolina.

Upon hearing of the defeat at Kings Mountain, British General Henry Clinton called Kings Mountain, "the first link of a chain of evils." He worried that Kings Mountain could be the beginning of the end for the British in their attempts to terminate the American Revolution in the South. His worries were well founded. In a little more than a year, Lord Cornwallis surrendered to General Washington at Yorktown, Virginia.


How to Register for a Tour

Registering for any of the three outstanding tours remaining on this year's schedule is easy.

  1. Email us at info@historyamerica.com and tell us what tour you would like to take.
  2. We will send you a 2009 Travel Guide, which contains the details of your tour and a registration form.
  3. You can mail in the registration form with a $200 deposit, which can be made by either credit card or check, or you can call our toll free number (800) 628-8542, and we will do a phone registration with you.
  4. If you move quickly, there is an early registration discount of $150 for first-time travelers, but you must register more than 75 days prior to the departure date of the tour. Be sure to mention this when you send your registration or call.


HistoryAmerica News Bits

The News from the Cat Box!

SydAbout my new coat; well, it's not all new. If you recall, I told you last May that a human doctor shaved off patches of my coat during an examination. Now I no longer look like a patchwork quilt with patches missing. Of course my fur is still a bit uneven, but I am satisfied with it because the unevenness may be helping me to blend in with the outdoor surroundings. I am pleased to announce that my last hunt resulted in a catch of two small rodents. Your old office kitty is back in full force! Meow for this month.

Staff Notes

We are thrilled for Molly O'Connor Dailey, but wondering how we will survive without our QuickBooks pro. In mid-August Molly will join the Rapid City Schools as the vocal instructor at Dakota Middle School. She is looking forward to her trek into education full time, but still plans to work with the Black Hills Community Theatre as music director on an occasional production. Her schedule won't leave much time for keeping HAT books.

What's the rest of the staff doing? Sharon McDermott is in her busiest time with Great American Tour Company, but she also will take on extra HAT duties for the next week and a half while Georgia and Michael O'Connor are on the Bozeman Trail tour. Bruce Airheart is busy making final plans for New Mexico Through the Ages; Pete Brown is getting ready to do the final scout for The Battle of Vicksburg; Phil Waldron is preparing for a final scout of Revolution in the Southern Colonies. Regardless of what tour you choose, we will be ready.


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Updated 18-Jul-2009