Welcome new readers; I hope this little effort is helpful and stimulating without being too irritating.

These are exciting times for Civil War history. Consider:

* The stream of discovered and published primary material is constant and growing

* The number of independent scholars publishing their work has never been higher

* The number of ACW titles appearing annually has never been greater

At the same time, there is a consensus view of the war that persists. The consensus was slowly and painfully developed through the 1940s through the 1960s. It covers hundreds of individual points of American Civil War history (hence the slowness to build, the pain of achieving).

We know, common sense tells us, that a consensus covering hundreds of points and spanning thousands of published authors is contrived. It is simply not possible for active scholars in a vital field brimming with fresh infusions of primary materials to agree on so much, so vehemently. So something is wrong with our field. We need to fix it. Maybe this blog can help.