It was the bloodiest four years in the Western Hemisphere.
Between 1861 and 1865, more than 620,000 men lost their lives in the War Between the States. They were mowed down by mini balls and mortar shells in places like Antietam, Cold Harbor, Petersburg and Gettysburg. Thousands more lost limbs. Many lost their souls to morphine.
Local Civil War scholar Jim Keib will recall the veterans of those military massacres when he speaks at Liverpool's annual Memorial Day Parade, hosted by American Legion Post 188, at a 9 a.m. service at Johnson Park, on Monday, May 30.
A former Salina town councilor, Keib is an active member of Onondaga County's Civil War Flag Committee which has been restoring flags from the war which started 150 years ago in Charleston, S.C.
Besides preserving military flags of the era, Keib has dedicated many hours of research into the Liverpool Cemetery Restoration project, helping to replace damaged, illegible and missing markers on the graves of Civil War veterans. In fact - while he works a day job as director of corporate business development and government relations for the C&S Companies - Keib is a founding member of the Liverpool Veterans Gravesite Committee.
Audio walking tour
His efforts alongside local historians and the American Legion at Liverpool Cemetery have borne solid successes. Keib helped raise money for headstones for 35 unmarked graves of Civil War veterans there. He and Liverpool Historian Dorianne Gutierrez have also developed an audio walking-tour program about the service and sacrifice of 60-plus Civil War veterans buried in the cemetery.
You can download an MP3 audio version of the walking tour at Liverpool Public Library's Web site, lpl.org. The veterans discussed on the recording served in battles from Bull Run to Appomattox Courthouse. They served in infantry regiments, light and heavy artillery regiments and cavalry brigades. Some were POWs, some were wounded in action and others gave their lives while serving in that costly War Between the States.