Everyone is welcome at our monthly meetings

See list of meeting dates and speakers below for our 2017-2018 program year.

Copies of recorded meetings are available for a small charge. Click here for a printable list of recorded meetings. More current meetings can be viewed on Youtube.

Our meetings are held at:

Holiday Inn O'Hare
5615 N. Cumberland, Chicago, IL 60631
Parking at the Holiday Inn is FREE
Map and Directions

Dinner $40.00 Members and Non- Members
Cocktails at 5:30, Dinner at 6:30

Presentation only is $10 per person.
Payable at the door, cash or check. Be there by 7:15. For those attending the presentation only, your reservation is appreciated but not required.
Dinner reservations should be received by Sunday evening prior to the meeting.
Please make your reservation in advance by emailing DinnerReservations@ChicagoCWRT.org with the names of your party or by calling (630) 460-1865
Cancellations: email us at DinnerReservations@ChicagoCWRT.org  or call (630) 460-1865

Dinner choices. The CWRT has gone to a buffet style dinner for 2017-2018. The buffet will include caeser salad, pasta, garlic bread, two meats (grilled chicken, meat balls, or Italian sausage) and dessert.

Jan. 12, 2018
Bruce Allardice:

The Battle of Ezra Church

The Battle of Ezra Church was fought on July 28, 1864, near Atlanta, the third in a series of unsuccessful attacks by General John Bell Hood’s Confederate Army of Tennessee on General William T. Sherman’s Union army. After the July 22nd Battle of Atlanta, Sherman decided to cut off Atlanta’s railroad supply lines, thus forcing the Confederates to withdraw without a direct assault. To accomplish this goal, Sherman transferred his easternmost army, under Major General Oliver O. Howard, north and west around the rest of the Union lines to the south western side of Atlanta where the railroad entered the city. Anticipating Sherman’s maneuver, Hood moved his troops out to oppose the Union army. Hood planned to intercept them and then make a surprise flank attack.

The armies met on the afternoon of July 28 west of Atlanta, near Ezra Church. Hood’s plans for a flank attack quickly collapsed. His disjointed attacks hit Howard’s troops head on. The Confederate army suffered heavy losses assaulting the Union army’s improvised breastwork of logs and rails. The rebels were defeated, although they managed to stop Howard from reaching the railroad line. The discouraged Confederates blamed Hood for the defeat, lamenting that they “had just enough soldiers left for another killing.” One Confederate general complained that his men “had been butchered” by the high command.

On January 12, 2018, Bruce Allardice will discuss this battle, and in particular critique John Bell Hood’s management (or lack thereof) of the battle. A professor of history at South Suburban College, he has given numerous lectures and presentations for Civil War Round Tables, museums, and civic organizations, including several to this round table. Among his publications is “‘It was Perfect Murder’: Stephen D. Lee at Ezra Church,” an essay in Confederate Generals in the Western Theater (vol. 3), which inspired this presentation.

Professor Allardice received the CWRT of Chicago’s Nevins-Freeman Award for distinguished service in Civil War Scholarship and the CWRT movement. He is a former president of both the Chicago and Northern Illinois CWRTs. An avid sports historian, he heads the Civil War Baseball subcommittee for the Society of American Baseball Research.

For our 2017-18 program year, we proudly welcome these outstanding speakers:

Sept. 8th: Ed Bonekemper on False Remembrance of the Civil War, The Myth of the Lost Cause
Oct. 13th: Dave Powell on Chickamauga
Nov. 10th: Tom Clemens on Special Order 191 and the Maryland Campaign
Dec. 8th: David Dixon on The Lost Gettsyburg Address
Jan. 12th: Bruce Allardice on The Battle of Ezra Church
Feb. 9th: Larry Hewitt on Confederate General Richard Anderson
Mar. 9th: Robert Jenkins on Peach Tree Creek
Apr. 13th: John Marszalek, Nevins-Freeman Address
May 11th: Joseph Rose on Grant Under Fire
June 8th: Dennis Rasbach on Joshua Chamberlain and the Petersburg Campaign