For this assignment, I chose decided to use the bull run marker as my historical highway marker. The bull run battle happened on July 21, 1861, and it was the first large-scale battle with the Union and confederacy, in the US civil war. It ended in the confederate’s victory, the battle was important due to the fact that everyone thought the war wasn’t going to last too long even the south was unsure of their chances at victory, the reason being that the Union had a larger population and a large industrial complex. It was even the battle where Jackson got his nickname stonewall Jackson for standing his ground in the battle. The Union was planning on marching straight to Richmond, the capital of the confederacy, and ending this before the civil war got too out of hand. People from the Union even came to watch the battle because they were so sure of victory, even congressmen and their families came. However, the battle ended in a decisive Confederate victory showing everyone this war would not end so easily. The reason I chose this is that honestly, the whole civil war interested me, the reason I chose this battle is that it was the one that stuck out the most to me, this is due to my past history class drilling the information into me, it was one of the most important battles in the civil war and had the confederates been a bit better off they might have been able to siege Washington, and maybe even force a peace. Looking at this after reading Silencing the Past: Power and the Production of History by Michel-Rolph Trouillot, People nowadays see the war as an inevitable victory for the Union when even the first battle showed that it wouldn’t be. If the goal of the confederates was to beat the Union then yes perhaps it would have been impossible but the goal was to force the Union to give up and recognize their independence. Another thing is the fact that the Union side generals are often only focused on a few of them like Sherman and Grant. There were many other generals who were just terrible for the war effort. Trouillot said that “The value of a historical product cannot be debated without taking into account both the context of its production and the context of its consumption” this means that both sides of the story must be looked at to get a better picture of the truth, rather than who we think is right.

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