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Reading and Comprehension Questions for COBBLESTONE's Civil War Highlights Issue

THE VIEW FROM THE CROW'S NEST (page 4)
    1. How had the North and South grown apart?
    2. How did many northerners view the formation of the Confederate States of America?
    3. What act finally started the war?
    4. Why did both sides think it would be a short war?
    5. Make two lists comparing the assets of the North and the South when the war broke out.
    6. What ratio of soldiers were killed in the war? How does this compare to World Wars I and II?
    7. What instructions did General Sherman receive?
    8. How great were Ulysses S. Grant's losses at the Battle of Cold Harbor? If a general in the Vietnam War had lost that many men, what do you think would have happened?
    9. What issues were resolved by the war?
BRADY OF BROADWAY: FIRST PRESS PHOTOGRAPHER (page 8)
    1. Who were some of the famous people Mathew Brady photographed at his studio on Broadway?
    2. Who gave Brady permission to photograph the Civil War?
    3. Why do you think he left his profitable businesses in New York and Washington to photograph the war?
    4. Why did he need to haul his equipment around in big "What-is-it?" wagons?
    5. Why aren't there any action shots of the Civil War?
    6. How financially successful were Brady's Civil War photographs?
    7. What happened to many of his "wet plates"?
    8. Where is the Brady collection housed today?
    9. What kinds of things did Brady photograph? What image of war do you think he was trying to portray in his photographs?
CYCLONE IN CALICO (page 12)
    1. For what qualities did Civil War veterans remember Mary Ann Bickerdyke?
    2. Why did some men die even if they hadn't been in battle?
    3. Why didn't the men want to be sent to the hospital if they got sick? Who served as nurses at this time? Why were the sick men better off staying in camp?
    4. How did Mother Bickerdyke come to be a nurse for the army?
    5. Why did she warn the doctor not to get into a disagreement with her?
    6. What did Mother Bickerdyke do to stop people from stealing the special food she had prepared for her patients?
    7. How did she demonstrate her devotion to the wounded after the Battle of Fort Donelson?
    8. Why was clean water so important to her?
    9. How was she able to keep men from freezing to death in Tennessee?
    10. What qualities of Bickerdyke impress you most?
ROSE GREENHOW AND AUNT SALLY (page 18)
    1. How good a job did the Pinkerton detective agency do in following Greenhow?
    2. How effectively did the detectives guard her when they arrested her and searched her house?
    3. Why did they decide to let her out of prison?
CIVIL WAR ATLAS (page 24)
    Make four columns. Title them as follows: Union States, Border States That Chose the Union, Border States That Chose the Confederacy, Confederate States. Then place each state name in the appropriate column.
THE EAGLE THAT WENT TO WAR (page 26)
    1. How was Chief Sky able to capture the eagle?
    2. Why did the recruits want the eagle?
    3. How did Old Abe behave when they took him into battle? What did he come to symbolize to the soldiers of the regiment?
    4. How did Old Abe serve the country after the war was over?
WHEN GENERAL GRANT LOST HIS COOL (page 30)
    1. What two common customs among soldiers did General Ulysses S. Grant have an aversion to?
    2. What demonstrates how upset Grant was about the teamster who was flogging the horses?
    3. Why did Grant think swearing was a bad idea? How do we feel about swearing in today's society? What evidence could you give to show that swearing is more acceptable now than in Grant's time?
THE STORY MY GRANDMOTHER TOLD ME (page 32)
    1. Where did Laura Anne's grandmother live? What did they produce on their farm?
    2. What were they told General Sherman was doing?
    3. What few things was the family able to save? Why were they luckier than other families?
    4. Why do you think General Sherman was destroying the homes and farms of civilians?
FIRST PRISONER OF THE CIVIL WAR (page 37)
    1. What was Thaddeus Lowe's dream? Why did he plan to make his first flight over land?
    2. How did the crowd on the ground act when he tried to land the balloon?
    3. Why did the woman say he should consider himself a prisoner of the Confederate States of America?
    4. What good luck did Lowe have when the southerners took him to an inn to hold him prisoner?
    5. What did Lowe do for the Union as a spy? Why couldn't the Confederates shoot him down?
WHO'S WHO IN THE ARMY? (page 42)
    1. What was one of Abraham Lincoln's most important duties as commander in chief?
    2. Why was George B. McClellan relieved of his command?
    3. What did William Tecumseh Sherman do on his march through Georgia?
    4. What was Ulysses S. Grant famous for besides bringing the Civil War to an end?
    5. What two jobs did Jefferson Davis have? What experience did he have for each job?
    6. What difficult decision did Robert E. Lee have to make involving loyalty?
    7. What important job did J.E.B Stuart perform for the Confederacy?
    8. What is ironic about the death of 7quot;Stonewall" Jackson?
WRITING ASSIGNMENTS
    1. Do library research to locate Civil War books that have Mathew Brady photographs. You may find a book that is only Brady photographs. Choose two or three of the photographs and write what they convey to you.
    2. Do library research to find little-known stories of the Civil War, like the story of Mary Ann Bickerdyke. Retell two or three of the stories. You might look for stories of young men who served with the Union or the Confederacy.
    3. Research one of the key battles of the war, such as Gettysburg, and write a three- to four-page paper on it.
    4. Do some research on General Sherman's march through Georgia. Write an account of the march as seen through the eyes of one of Sherman's soldiers. Describe what he saw, did, and felt as he took part in this event.
FROM THE ARCHIVES

The following COBBLESTONE issues explore topics in some way related to this one:
    Black History Month: The Struggle for Rights (February 1983),
    The Art of Photography (April 1985),
    The Voice of Walt Whitman (May 1986),
    U.S. Involvement in World War I (June 1986),
    Aftermath of the Civil War: Reconstruction (May 1987),
    An Introduction to the War of 1812 (January 1988),
    The South As Perceived by Its Artists (February 1988),
    The Battle of Gettysburg (July 1988),
    Louisa May Alcott (December 1988),
    Frederick Douglass: Fighter for Freedom (February 1989),
    The Antislavery Movement (February 1993),
    Robert E. Lee (September 1993),
    Abraham Lincoln (May 1994).


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Updated: March 15, 2004