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Conference at Boise State Features Prominent Civil War Historians

Conference at Boise State Features Prominent Civil War Historians

The American Civil War may well be the defining event in our nation’s history. Some have suggested that in many ways the bloody conflict that threatened to destroy the Union has never completely ended.

Some of the most prominent and respected historians of the American Civil War will be at Boise State University on Oct. 25 for a major, day-long conference titled, “Why the Civil War Still Matters.” The event is open to the public and will be held in the Student Union Simplot Ballroom.

The Andrus Center for Public Policy is sponsoring the seminar in cooperation with the Idaho Humanities Council and the Idaho Council for History Education.

Conference presenters include: 

  • Lisa Brady is an associate professor of history at Boise State and author of the recently published “War Upon the Land: Military Struggle and the Transformation of Southern Landscapes during the American Civil War.”
  • Gary Gallagher, professor of history at the University of Virginia, will keynote the conference. Gallagher is a prolific author of books and articles on the war and speaks frequently about the conflict, its causes, consequences and lasting importance.
  • Jeffry Wert is a widely published Civil War and military historian and the author of eight books on subjects ranging from George Armstrong Custer to the Battle of Gettysburg. 
  • Joan Waugh, a professor of history at UCLA, will give an evening lecture. She is the author of “U.S. Grant – American Hero, American Myth.” Waugh’s book is a fascinating study of the Civil War general and later president and his place in American history.
  • Matthew Pinsker is a professor of history at Dickinson College and author of “Lincoln’s Sanctuary: Abraham Lincoln and the Soldier’s Home.”  
  • David Adler, the director of the Andrus Center and the Cecil D. Andrus Professor of Public Affairs at Boise State, will draw upon his scholarship and writing to discuss Abraham Lincoln and the Constitution.

Teachers and students are particularly encouraged to attend the conference. The $25 registration fee, which includes lunch, will be waived for any current high school or college student.

Advance registration is required and can be done online at, where the full conference schedule also is posted. If you have questions, email or call 426-3777.

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