“In Death Not Divided”

Civil War Tombstones and the Stories They Tell

November 12, 2012 to January 13, 2013
Rogers-Claussen Feature Gallery

The Civil War in East Tennessee was greeted by a flourish of speeches, bugles, and drums luring brave-spirited young men to march into war. But soon the glory and music faded, and these same young men were on the battlefield—bleeding, suffering, and dying.

The American Civil War resulted in an estimated 620,000 casualties. The Tennessee experience mirrored the national tragedy but on a smaller scale. Some 66,000 Confederates and 58,000 Federals were killed or wounded here, many more dying from disease and malnutrition. More battles were fought on Tennessee soil than in any state except Virginia.

Many of the best and brightest from an entire generation of young men were lost in the conflict or survived to face life with a missing limb. For too many families, there would always be ”an empty chair.”

Research introduces us to these young men. Through letters and diaries and other accounts, we come to know each as a person, not a statistic. We realize that these are not stories from a novel or movie but real people and real events.

This exhibition of “stories in stone” represents only a minute slice of the region’s Civil War experience.

Cherel Henderson

Exhibition design and installation:
Adam H. Alfrey, Michele MacDonald, Jessica Copeland, Denise Alfrey

Special thanks:
Becky Darrell, Namuni Hale Young, Duay O’Neil, Earl Hess, Stephanie Henry, Jessise Tipton, Matt Lakin, Gerald and Sandy Augustus, Paul Ogle, Doris Campbell, Caneta Gentry, Natasha Cass, Dot Kelly

Dan MacDonald, Scott MacDonald

“In Death Not Divided”—Civil War Tombstones and the Stories They Tell is a companion project of the East Tennessee Historical Society’s Tennessee Civil War Sesquicentennial legacy program, “Honor Be to Their Memory”—Burial Places of East Tennessee Civil War Soldiers.