User talk:TheVirginiaHistorian

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For you[edit]

Looking for an appropriate barnstar I instead found this page.

BoNM USA Hires.png The USA Barnstar of National Merit
Louisiana Purchase7 1903 Issue-10c-crop.jpg
For your enduring efforts in creating, building and composing the Territories of the United States on stamps article.
-- Gwillhickers (talk) 16:03, 13 April 2014 (UTC)

Keep up the good work. - Gwillhickers (talk) 16:07, 13 April 2014 (UTC)

Thanks, I took a lead from your airmail contribution, and added statehood airmails for Alaska and Hawaii. With Arago links for the original 13 ratifiers to the Constitution and Utah statehood, (Utah does have a territory commemorative), all 50 states and five territories (links) are accounted for. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 08:59, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

Philatelic E'books -- galore[edit]

For a wealth of philatelic information now in the public domain you might want to check out this list of Philatelic E'books. -- Gwillhickers (talk) 00:44, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

Good fun. In the guideline for commemoratives in 1957, published by the USPD, it notes that commemoratives no longer required specific legislation for initiation, although there is evidence of subsequent joint resolutions elsewhere. The American journal of philately dated 1868 looked at stamps world wide. Interestingly, if there was a pencil mark by a particular intro paragraph, you were delinquent in the return of stamps sent "on approval". Learn something new every day. Thanks. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 08:57, 26 May 2014 (UTC)
  • If you're into historic postmarks and cancellations you might want to check this E'book. Cancellations and Killers of the Banknote Era, 1870-1894. It's filled with many illustrations of cancels and such. On page 3 there's various illustrations of hand stamping devices and cancels, and on page 9 there are a good number of war time cancellations. I'm in the process of downloading (a few at a time, selectively) a fair number of these E'books. Excellent sources! -- Gwillhickers (talk) 16:20, 26 May 2014 (UTC)
I really enjoyed U.S. Parcel Post stamps of 1912-13. Parcel post looks like a source to explore for my U.S. transportation collection. The more I think about it the more it looks like a sandbox-only project...though I added a couple stamps to make up a Space category the other day... it's a nice safe place to go when wiki-fencing descends into crazy-making I-can't-hear-you non-sequitur.
I re-read an exchange from a year ago and I was happy with my sourcing for including islanders as a part of the U.S., disappointed in its utter absence on the part of the opposition, their relying on ad hominem attack, mis quoting sources, failing to read to the conclusion of sources, denying the need for sources beyond their own POV...which I called out as unethical, given WP ground rules --- but that now seems pointless to me, labeling seems fruitless here, however justified it may be. I failed to press for dispute resolution, because I do not see contention as a principle source of psychic income for this hobby, which puts me at a disadvantage when up against those who do enjoy haranguing as a past time. In the event, an administrator softened the article's exclusion of islanders in a related paragraph further down the narrative ---
And recently, I am encouraged at two weeks work at RfC for USPS stamps seems to have brought about acceptance for three NFC stamps in the same topically philately article for two weeks since. Masem believes the 2% of the article scope can be supported, passes the "feels right" test for no more than three in this case, including Virginia ratification and two modern African-Americans of note, Carter G. Woodson, the father of Black History Month, and sports star Arthur Ashe, a symbol of racial reconciliation. Once Masem conceded that an article organization might justify as many as five, but he does not want to make it a numbers game, but he sees a balance to be struck between "contextual significance" and "limited use", not only for each stamp, but for the article as a whole. Which I view as progress for the topical philately article at the English WP and more in line with my understanding of the governing NFCC and related policy. Thanks again for your support.
On another front, I'd like to learn how to use Word to write a chapter book with automatic chapter endnotes...take the text of my first draft of a History of Virginia and reformat it...there are several monographs on growth of American democracy and expansion of suffrage in the U.S. which include references to Virginia in context, which I would like to integrate into the usual 400-year narrative. As I parse through it I add as I can to Thomas Jefferson, History of Virginia, Virginia in the American Civil War, American Civil War, Confederate States of America, etc. ... which is where I get my main satisfaction here at WP. Happy Memorial Day; especially honor those who gave their lives in service to country. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 17:45, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

Puerto Rican Stamps[edit]

You know it is a pity that many were deleted as "orphaned". If I were you I would upload them once more with a rational of usage. Hey, my friend, in the article of Puerto Ricans on US Stamps, you should add Felicitas Mendez. She is Puerto Rican and her likeness and that of her husband are in the Mendez v . Westminster Commemorative Stamp. [1] Tony the Marine (talk) 20:17, 27 May 2014 (UTC)


What I would suggest is collecting the works in a bibliography. Then you need only cite as <ref>Adams, p. 12</ref> Incidentally, I enjoyed your philatelic history of Virginia article.--Wehwalt (talk) 00:05, 1 June 2014 (UTC)

Thanks. --- I was amazed at how many commemorative stamps hit the U.S. and Virginia History 11th grade Standards of Learning (SOLs). There was quite a learning curve to get not just one (Va ratification) but three USPS stamps since 1978, to include Carter G. Woodson and Arthur Ashe.
I have a little hope for developing a rationale to get a few more -- a couple in the Landmark section might be nice if I can persuade that (1) NFCC #3 "limited use" means not only "just a few, one or none", but also "limited for the purpose" ... of illustrating the stamp itself and (2) NFCC #8 "contextual significance" means not only "critical commentary", but also "historical analysis" of placing an important event in a significant context. However, as it is said, that is not how the policy has been administered for the last six years.
My health requires that I take the project as a hobby, not as a crusade, and having achieved something of a breakthrough with an article containing more than one-only USPS stamp per article, I am watching for a while to see how long it can last, as some fear a) it opens the door to publish "every stamp in the world", and WP will just become a stamp album, and b) the Foundation may "remove all NFC images of every kind" from the English WP if proper limits are not self-imposed by the gate-keepers. But of course I want neither of those outcomes from my little topical philately article, just the satisfaction of publishing an interesting article about Virginia History on stamps. Thanks. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 07:07, 1 June 2014 (UTC)
While the stamps post-1978 were certainly copyrighted, I wonder how efficient the USPS was at registering copyrights on its various publications that depicted stamps. The flyers, for example that were put up in post offices with details of the latest issues, and from time to time the catalogs they put out. Additionally, first day covers might be a useful means of attack, I doubt many cachet makers properly copyrighted (perhaps the large ones like Artcraft and Artmaster, but the smaller ones most likely not). Why would, say, a FDC of the Virginia Birds and Flowers stamp of 1982 be a problem? The stamp takes up a relatively small portion of the design, and so is incidental to the display of the FDC. If you could show it was not copyrighted at the time nor registered for copyright within five years. That would get you up to 1990, anyway.--Wehwalt (talk) 12:52, 1 June 2014 (UTC)
Promising idea, thanks. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 19:27, 1 June 2014 (UTC)

The 'new' media viewer[edit]

Are you happy with the the 'Media viewer' that's now used when you click on an image? Not me. I resolved my problem, but you may want to check this out. -- Gwillhickers (talk) 04:36, 4 June 2014 (UTC)

RfC for Media Viewer[edit]

Opinions are needed at RfC about Media Viewer being the default image viewer. Please help in the effort and pass this notice on. -- Gwillhickers (talk) 19:36, 7 June 2014 (UTC)


-- Gwillhickers (talk) 04:24, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

Amazing, just a quick glance at Pony Express, and the name "John Hockaday" pops up, --- you can't make up this stuff.
In the Google book, interesting that it was speculated that the restriction on envelope use bearing the old stamps was not adhered to during the "turbulence of the time". TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 14:41, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

New category[edit]

We now have a category for U.S. Presidents on stamps which I created the other day. If you see any such stamps in your travels you might want to include them. -- Gwillhickers (talk) 19:31, 24 June 2014 (UTC)

Thanks, I will. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 11:25, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

Quoating you on war[edit]

I am writing just to bother you a bit and let you know that I like your words here: "a good war is hard to find." Historian (talk) 14:37, 27 June 2014 (UTC)

Thanks. I'm not a peace-at-any-price sort, but I would like a thoughtful, persuasive case for both the justness of a war and how it can be waged justly, before the onset, and periodically during its prosecution. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 23:14, 29 June 2014 (UTC)

U.S.Stamp locator[edit]

Here's something that hopefully will assist you in locating existing U.S. (and perhaps other) stamps, fresh off the press. If you know of any other categories to help in this effort bring them to my attention and I will add/edit them into the template.

-- Gwillhickers (talk) 19:49, 27 June 2014 (UTC)

Great good fun. picked up three horses, three wagons, three airplanes, one train for my sandbox transportation (trains). I aim to add Cherokee Strip commemorative to Horses on stamps category. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 12:47, 2 July 2014 (UTC)

New category[edit]

U.S. historical landmarks on stamps -- Gwillhickers (talk) 05:18, 1 July 2014 (UTC)

New category[edit]

The Signpost: 09 July 2014[edit]

For your e'Library[edit]

-- Gwillhickers (talk) 18:52, 17 July 2014 (UTC)

Thanks. Interestingly, some of these out of copyright 19th century accounts of Smith hiding in the bulrushes, etc., are lifted with little or no alternation by 20th century authors. Ambrose was not alone in the method. The colorful prose is worth preserving. I would be more forgiving if credit were given. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 11:16, 18 July 2014 (UTC)

The Signpost: 16 July 2014[edit]


You do excellent work and this includes your attempt to be fully correct with Virginia's Nicknames. However, they were removed because they were already "adequate" -- "adequate" it was stated, not totally shown or even known -- just "adequate".

I wrote, "know that I am not going to write any more articles for Wikipedia. I started or worked on many of them long ago. Too often they get deleted. ..."

"Adequate" is good enough on the nicknames but not so in other articles where all details are desired.

Any history left out is missing history, it is cast-aside history, and that is never "adequate" although it is "adequate" on Wikipedia when material with sources are left out. This is why some nicknames and other histories in other areas are forgotten history to some generations -- it was never known because it was always "adequate". If someone deems history as "adequate" then they are burying some of history as has been done in the past which is why you and others never knew of it. kind regards, Maury (talk) 23:42, 22 July 2014 (UTC)

Okay, but I placed a note on Talk saying what I was doing, and when the editor deleted my contribution, I put it back, then deleted the now redundant paragraph in State symbols, with another comment at Talk. Now there should be some discussion, and when two or three other editors side with the other fella, I will give in. If the other fella is a bully, I let it go.
I do not like edit wars, it is not why I use Wikipedia as a hobby. When I make a substantial contribution in an article, such as the United States Constitution a couple years ago, I print out a copy for my kids, which I keep in a notebook. Your edits are still written up in the edit history of the articles you contributed to, so you can go back and recover the article as you left it for a print out.
Since my effort, much of my work is preserved in an expanded History of the United States Constitution article so as to shorten the U.S. Constitution article. My work was not wrong, just too historical for the lawyers, and really, the article got too long. Bit by bit, the historical context is removed from the Constitution article over time. But I still have my copy printed out for my family. Among other things, I found four founding fathers to picture on virtually every major debate, showing four aspects in each debate with the captions, and elaborating their contributions in the text. Much of the text was saved in the transfer to the History of the United States Constitution, but most of the pictures were taken out, I guess editors didn't want to look at the losers. But after all Madison won only 30 of the 70 motions he made from the floor. But I ramble.
The point of my hobby is to exercise my mind, recalling, researching, thinking through issues I have not had the time to do earlier, so I win -- even if the material I research is deleted. I had the activity, I have my drafts, I have my copy of the article. At some level, the online encyclopedia collaboratively written cannot ever be everything I want it to be because of its very nature, so I am prepared to let it go. You can always leave copies of your drafts in your sandbox articles. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 09:40, 23 July 2014 (UTC)


You may have seen my further comment on "invasion" by now. I suppose the summary is that I concluded that your interpretation may be technically correct. However, except in some instances, use of "invasion" is now so common, as a substitute for raid or other words or even phrases, even by reputable historians, that it should not be a problem. Unless, of course, it is totally misused or misinterpreted in context. Now I see that a POV pusher has been editing and stating he will restore delete edits, with slight revision, with that misinterpretation given some weight. I feel like I put my foot in my mouth on this. It may have been better simply stayed quiet or even supported the more technically accurate use, or non-use, of the word. I hope it was apparent that I had no strong feelings but simply wanted to contribute to the conversation by showing how McPherson used the word. I should have known by now that something like this would be seized on by a POV pusher. It appears this has come up before but the discussion must have been archived. So I did not realize that the current discussion might be more than a sort of academic discussion on whether use of a word was ok or POV in context. You were more perceptive. Donner60 (talk) 01:39, 23 July 2014 (UTC)

Thank you. You commented, "Now I see that a POV pusher has been editing and stating he will restore deleted edits, with slight revision," but there are still only five uses of "invasion" in the CSA article. Is this happening elsewhere? I have a somewhat nuanced view of the usage.
NPOV use of "invasion" would apply wherever the actor believed themselves crossing into, or receiving an attack from, a foreign nation. So in the editorial voice or in the Union voice, it should not be used to describe Union operations. The English military historian Keegan in his "American Civil War: a military history", is careful on this point, Lee "invades" Pennsylvania from Lee's viewpoint, Sherman takes the offensive with "operations" into Georgia as Keegan describes it.
The use of "invasion" seems to me permissible when the narrative takes the Confederate voice or viewpoint, for example it would be proper to write, "Confederate initial strategy was defensive to repel anticipated invasion (from the United States, perceived by Confederates as a foreign nation), so Davis called up 100,000 militia; Lincoln responded with a call up of 75,000 to secure federally owned property." Every appearance of "invasion" need not be beaten back, it just needs to be clear that it is the Confederate viewpoint, not the Union's, not the editor's. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 09:08, 23 July 2014 (UTC)

I wanted to say, regarding your recent contribution to Talk:Confederate States of America ("Houstan's awaited...") that I thought it was a calm, concise and exactly on point response on the question of amnesty. My knowledge of the Civil War is not sufficiently detailed for me to add anything substantive to your remarks on the Talk page, but given my pleasure at seeing your response to TexasReb's neo-confedarism, I thought I should leave a note of my appreciation here. Scipio Edina (talk) 10:38, 23 July 2014 (UTC)

I have seen non-neutral POVs on this topic in the past and in other articles such as Confederate States Army. I did not have another current instance in mind. Thank you for your further explanation. I have learned or been reminded of some things from it. Among other things, context and nuance are important.
A writer must be very careful in using words that are not appropriate in context or can be distorted by POV pushers. Also, I suppose one ought not to go so far in the other direction that one only writes with circumlocutions that can be awkward and tedious for fear of provoking someone. We also have to be concerned about trying to write in our own words here, as well. We have several points to keep in mind.
I also want to add my appreciation for your excellent reply to TexasReb. I try to maintain a neutral and factual point of view, as you do. People need to realize that the Lost Cause POV is a distortion. That does not mean the courage and military accomplishments of so many have to be demeaned or understated. Nor does it necessarily mean that the common soldier necessarily fought either to abolish or keep slavery. Yet, the actions and motives of many proponents of secession and leaders of the Confederacy can not be justified by after the fact rationalizations. Allowing such points of view to be stated as if they are correct or even equally accepted by reputable historians is of no benefit to the reader of an encyclopedia. Donner60 (talk) 22:04, 23 July 2014 (UTC)

ACW Names[edit]

A side note to the discussion at the article talk page, based on your username: the Confederate muster rolls collected by veterans' organizations after the war and archived in Virginia courthouses are on pre-printed roll-books, headed "Roster of ___________ in the War in Defense of Virginia". That may be a new one for you. I added it to the article a dozen years ago, and once standards developed, it was edited out (correctly, in my opinion). -Ben (talk) 02:20, 26 July 2014 (UTC)

It is my view, reading over some literature on the subject, especially considering the no-secession votes at first in the Secessionist Convention, that "War in Defense of Virginia" phrasing explains why most Virginians were in grey. It was vain to hope for neutrality, the secessionist fire-eaters misled the state, the term for the war I like best is tragedy. I also like Brother's War as named in Coulter, -- it was so in Virginia as it was in Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri, Maryland. There were regiments in blue from every state declaring secession, as I recall. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 06:50, 26 July 2014 (UTC)

The Signpost: 23 July 2014[edit]

Scholarship, Patience[edit]

Your scholarship, clear writing and patience are extraordinary. Thank you. Donner60 (talk) 21:16, 26 July 2014 (UTC)

Barnstar of Diligence[edit]

Barnstar of Diligence.png The Barnstar of Diligence
You have a long record of diligent scholarship, editing, writing and patient contributions to sometimes trying discussions. Thank you. Donner60 (talk) 21:23, 26 July 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 17:14, 27 July 2014 (UTC)

Not a dig at you[edit]


Just wanted to tell you/reaffirm that my last post on talk was not directed as you, but more of a thread section guidance shot for TexasReb, once-removed. I don't see any point in responding to that individual directly in the future, as nothing is gained by either party in the exchange. He ignores the message at the top of the talk page: "This is not a forum for general discussion about Confederate States of America," and I have to bite my tongue/walk away from the keyboard not to go at it point-by-point. I figure we will soon be looking at some sort of NPOV review where the his own admissions of POV pushing will settle the matter. Anyway, I'm going to attempt to use a "don't feed the troll" approach and ignore his irrelevant/uncivil postings. His edit summaries are problematic as well... You can respond to him point-by-point if you like, I admire your patience in doing so, but I don't see the point doing so myself, since he is on a self-confessed crusade to sway the uninformed. Warmest regards, Red Harvest (talk) 06:44, 28 July 2014 (UTC)

Thanks. Well, the discussion did remind me that the Confederate Congress declared war on individual northern states, so I am rereading some sources trying to find the citation for a contribution to the article. In a way, the extended discussion has so much misdirection, that it could be taken as a checklist for fact checking the article.
For example, as I remember, most of the U.S. revenues in the first half of the 19th century were from sales of western lands, not from tariff collection which declined after Jackson's time (the Congressional deal was, declining tariff for the North to protect new industry, state banks without a national bank for the South to develop locally controlled finance--tariffs came down, but the national bank was not restored, another win for the South), --- so the impression that cotton interests payed taxes on luxury imports of foreign shoes etc. to protect northern shoe industry etc. and so financed 80% of the country will not stand inspection. This in a country where 85% of the population was engaged in agricultural production, North and South. It may be that cotton interests paid 80% of import taxes collected, but I doubt it. The majority of New Orleans imports supplied the Ohio Valley farmers of northern states, for instance, causing the Confederate Congress to declare it an open port for Ohio Valley commerce from Northern states. Most of the early Confederate war supplies came through trade connections with northern Ohio Valley suppliers. That Confederate commerce did substantially end in Spring 1862 after the fall of Island Number Ten, and Grant taking to the field slowed the overland supplies. TheVirginiaHistorian (talk) 07:42, 28 July 2014 (UTC)
The discussion got me looking at the weakness of the wiki statements about causes in the ordinances. Most egregious is the AL one. AL skipped the separate declarations and instead put their cause right in the ordinance. This is the opposite of the implication in the original wording. I'm not sure why AL has been treated as if it didn't declare a cause when it seceded. Rather than putting some sort of spin on it, it seems most straightforward and just to quote the sentence. All that is lacking to be more accessible to all readers is an historical definition of what they meant by "domestic institutions."
The share of the tariff argument has always been weak. (This is especially true considering the 1857 tariff had been historically low and the Morrill Tariff could not obtain passage until 1861 after Southern states seceded.) Most of the basis appears to be assuming a section's exports were equivalent to its imports. There were many sections/markets in the U.S. so it is hard to say who bought what and how much more they paid for the goods vs. no tariff. This makes it fertile ground for fabricating an argument from dubious assumptions, while simultaneously making it difficult to refute any argument. If the Southern ports were such massive consumers...why didn't the importers sail directly to them? Why pay unneeded middle men and freight charges when they could have carried finished goods directly to, and cotton from Southern ports? This was already happening in New Orleans due to its great distance from Northern seaports and access to the nation's vast interior. Now, perhaps the reason for preferring northern ports had to do with trade winds or such, but it warrants some explanation.
Of interest to you: In the LA secession convention journal there is an ordinance declaring that transportation up and down the Mississippi will not be obstructed as long as there is no war in progress (I came across that the other day.)
About the western lands/expansion, I was reading a very interesting synopsis in a book recently of the sectional political strife (can't remember where at the moment, I've been doing far too much reading lately). It stated something I had already worked out, but not necessarily read in print: Southern leaders did not want land opened up cheaply to settlement by small holders. They wanted to restrain expansion by the Northern masses and allow large holders to buy up large sections of the most fertile land for plantation ag, as had happened throughout the Deep South. Northern interests were the opposite. I've also been reading a bit on the post-war Confederate Mexican colony effort and one of the issues was that even there Southern speculators bought up the parcels provided by Maximilian, making it hard for later arrivals to even make a start. Red Harvest (talk) 20:43, 28 July 2014 (UTC)

The Signpost: 30 July 2014[edit]

The Signpost: 06 August 2014[edit]

The Bugle: Issue CI, August 2014[edit]

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The Signpost: 13 August 2014[edit]