My wife and I left Plano, TX early on March 23, 2016 on our first book tour for Teacher of Civil War Generals. We made it as far as Milan, TN that night.
The following day we drove to Paducah, KY and arrived at the Lloyd Tilghman House and Museum where we were met by curator Bill Baxter and his able assistant Baxter Baxter. Bill gave us a wonderful tour of the museum and its treasures. The Tilghman House is the site of the event that nearly resulted in C. F. Smith’s removal from command.
Following our tour, Bill and Patricia Baxter treated us to a lovely lunch in downtown Paducah. After lunch Patricia drove us back to the Tilghman House and Bill took us across the street to the McCracken County Library. We met our host for the evening, Bobbie Winkle, and dropped off some books.
John Cashon met us at the library for a Civil War tour of the city. John showed us where Smith’s headquarters was located and the place on the river where Smith built Fort Anderson. John is writing a Civil War history of Paducah and was a perfect choice to point out the places from the book. The tour concluded with a visit to the statue of General Tilghman.
Before we left Texas, Todd Hatton of WKMS did a radio interview about General Smith to advertise the program at the McCracken County Library.
That evening, I presented an overview of Maj. Gen. Smith’s life at the McCracken County Library. The talk emphasized his time in charge of the US forces in the city . I read several letters from the book including Smith’s version of events at the Tilghman House. The evening concluded with a Q&A session and book signing. Bobbie Winkle gave me several remembrances from the library and Bill Baxter presented me with a series of medals commemorating Gen. Nathan B. Forrest’s attack on the city.
I hope you will add Paducah to your Kentucky travel plans.
We left early the next morning to drive to Louisville, KY for an afternoon book signing at Barnes & Noble at The Shoppes at Plainview. We met a number of people at the book signings. Some purchased books, others asked about Gen. Smith, and a few just said hello and hurried to get a Starbuck’s Coffee.
We didn’t have much time to relax because we had a Saturday book signing at the Barnes & Noble at the Elizabethtown Mall in Elizabethtown, KY. That night we stopped in Bardstown, KY. The next day was Easter Sunday and the museums were closed for the holiday.
On Sunday March 27 we drove from Bardstown, KY to Morgantown, WV, the home of West Virginia University. On our way, we discovered a Civil War fort. The earthen works fort at Boonesboro was built to defend the Kentucky River.
On Monday, we did another book signing at Barnes & Noble at University Park Central in Morgantown, WV. We had a delightful dinner with Dave McGill, our daughter’s father-in-law.
Tuesday morning we traveled to Binghamton, NY to spend several days with my wife’s mother. On the way, we stopped at the U.S. Army Heritage & Education Center in Carlisle, PA. I began my research for Teacher of Civil War Generals at Carlisle and we wanted to present a copy of the book to the library. I just received notice that the Center has accepted my donation. I hope you will visit Carlisle and take a moment to honor the people who helped defend our freedom. The museum and library are excellent.
We schedule three events while in the Binghamton area. On Thursday night we had a reading at the RiverRead Bookstore in downtown Binghamton.
On Saturday, April 2 we drove down to the Barnes & Noble at the Arena Hub in Wilkes-Barre, PA.
On Sunday, April 3 I gave a presentation at the Vestal Historical Society in Vestal, NY.
Our trip was a success, not only for the number of books sold, but for the people we met and the opportunity to tell Maj. Gen. Smith’s story. Thanks to all of you who took the time to attend a talk, buy a book, or listen to the story of the Teacher of Civil War Generals.