Thursday, July 26, 2007

The Battle of Natural Bridge, Florida

Our new pages on the Battle of Natural Bridge, Florida are now online at The battle was fought on the banks of the St. Marks River near Woodville south of Tallahassee and was one of the last significant Confederate victories of the Civil War. It preserved Tallahassee's status as the only Southern capital east of the Mississippi River not taken by Union troops during the war.

Key portions of the battlefield are preserved at Natural Bridge Battlefield State Historic Park, which offers monuments, interpretive signs and surviving Confederate earthworks.

To learn more, please go to:

Friday, July 20, 2007

Lake Providence, Louisiana

Lake Providence, Louisiana is a little corner of the South that most people never see or even think of visiting, but it may well be one of the most picturesque places in the entire United States. Only about an hour's drive away from the attractions, historic sites, hotels and restaurants of Vicksburg, Mississippi, Lake Providence is a small town nestled on a huge oxbow lake left behind centuries ago when the Mississippi River changed course.

The lake provides spectacular views. Lake Providence is also noted for its Civil War history. During the Vicksburg Campaign, General U.S. Grant first tried to bypass the Confederate batteries on the Mississippi by digging a canal from the river into Lake Providence. The project failed, but a portion of the canal can still be seen today at Grant's Canal Park in Lake Providence.

The community is also the home of the Louisiana State Cotton Museum, a very nice center that interprets the history and importance of cotton with restored buildings, agricultural displays and museum exhibits. Poverty Point State Historic Site, a major prehistoric Native American ceremonial and trade center, is just southwest of Lake Providence.

To learn more about this fascinating community, please visit:, scroll down the page, and click the link for Lake Providence under the Louisiana heading.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Hot Springs, Arkansas

Our pages on Hot Springs, Arkansas, are now updated and we will be expanding them more over the next few days. To visit them just go to:

This is one of my favorite places in the South. The sight of the natural hot water cascade pouring down the slopes of Hot Springs Mountain is really spectacular, especially during the winter when clouds of steam come off the water on cold days.

The restoration of historic Bathhouse Row at Hot Springs National Park is progressing nicely. These beautiful old buildings were originally constructed to serve as high-end bathhouses for people who came to Hot Springs to soak in the water. One of them, Buckstaff, still functions as a spa and another is the National Park Service visitor center. Others, however, are being restored to serve as galleries, shops, etc.

One note, if you are thinking about visiting Hot Springs for a weekend, I strongly suggest you reserve a room in advance. The hotels fill up quickly.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The Oklahoma Castle

This is one of my favorite Southern points of interest. Captain's or Reynolds' Castle in Cameron, Oklahoma, was built in 1890 by Captain J.E. Reynolds.

Constructed of native stone mined from a nearby quarry, the castle includes two stone towers and massive walls.

Captain Reynolds seems to have been quite a character. He later described himself as an "unreconstructed Confederate" and during World War I offered to raise a force of former Southern soldiers with Confederate "gray ghost" John Mosby to go and fight in Europe. His grave in Fort Smith, Arkansas, is marked by statuary of two women rescuing him from a Georgia battlefield.

To learn more about the Oklahoma Castle and see the other photographs, just go to:

Monday, July 9, 2007

William Barret Travis Home - Alabama

We've added a new page on one of Alabama's most unique historic landmarks. On U.S. Highway 84 in Perdue Hill, Alabama, stands a little cottage that was once the home of Lt. Col. William Barret Travis, the commander of the Alamo and a hero of the Texas Revolution.

Travis lived here with his wife and children prior to relocating to Texas in 1831. The home originally stood in nearby Claiborne where he practiced law, published a newspaper, served as adjutant of an Alabama militia company and was a member of the Masonic Lodge.

To read more and see additional views of the home, please visit

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Vicksburg, Mississippi

We have a nice section now up at about the wonderful city of Vicksburg, Mississippi.

Vicksburg is a history lover's paradise. There is, of course, the huge Civil War battlefield largely preserved at Vicksburg National Military Park. Highlights include Civil War fortifications and entrenchments, monuments, exhibits and the salvaged ironclad, U.S.S. Cairo.

Our pages also explore other sites around the city itself, including the beautiful Old Courthouse Museum.

To see more, just go to

Friday, July 6, 2007

New Top Story

We've added a new top story at

This month, our top story is the Battle of Marianna, Florida. Obviously, this is connected to the release of my new book on the battle. But, besides some blatant product promotion, if you check out the site you will find a ton of information on the battle along with photographs of the battlefield.

Coming up over the weekend, we'll also be adding or updating a number of pages on the site.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Fourth of July!

I hope you all have a good Independence Day celebration! Be careful! I'll start blogging full force tomorrow, so be sure to check in to see what we have.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007


Welcome to my new blog, Southern History & Highways!

The purpose is to give me a chance to share information I've gathered through the years on Southern historic sites, parks, museums, battlefields and more.

I hope you enjoy visiting and that you check in often!