Sunday, March 3, 2019

10 Year Anniversary of Sharing My "Random Thoughts on History"

It is difficult to believe, but 10 years ago today, I jumped into the blogosphere with the idea of sharing my thoughts on various historical topics, but mostly related to the Civil War era. It all began when I lost my job due to repercussions from the economic recession of 2008-09. Being out of work, but actively looking for employment and reading voraciously still left me searching for ways to share my passion for the past. Interestingly, creating "Random Thoughts on History" proved to be a satisfying way to not only express my thinking, but also help develop my thinking.

Over the last 10 years I've made over 1,240 posts. As mentioned above, most have dealt with Civil War era topics. I've shared posts on my various research projects. In fact, within the last 10 years, I've had two articles published. A lot of those two articles appear in snippet form scattered across hundreds of posts made on this forum. During the last 10 years I've moved twice, once to Kentucky to work for the Kentucky Historical Society in May 2009, and six years later, my return to Petersburg, Virginia, and Pamplin Historical Park and the National Museum of the Civil War Soldier for a second tour of duty. Both moves brought me into contact with new colleagues, new networking contacts, new historical topics, new historical sites, and new lines of thinking. I've tried to take advantage of these opportunities and also impart things here that I've learned along the way.

The rewards of sharing my "Random Thoughts on History" have come in many forms. Sharing books that I've read and that made an impact on me (and thus hopefully on my readers) has been very satisfying. Exposing readers to multiple perspectives on historical events has also been fulfilling. Likewise, bringing light to forgotten or largely ignored people, topics, and events is one of the things I am most proud of. However, on the handful of occasions on which it has happened, probably the most gratifying aspect of maintaining this blog is helping readers make historical connections, usually with their ancestors. My posts titled "Dying Far From Home" which illuminate the life stories of soldiers who died during the Civil War, have elicited a number of kind remarks from reader-researchers. If I am able to create a spark of interest in someone that encourages them to dig into the past in order to understand it better then my mission with these 1,240+ posts is being accomplished.

I have no plan to end sharing my "Random Thoughts on History" anytime soon. There are a number of research projects that I've been rolling around in my head and that will hopefully come to fruition. So, be on the lookout for a number of themed posts in the coming months.

Whether you've been reading "Random Thoughts" since its inception, joined in along the way, or if this is your first contact, I appreciate you taking the time to peruse the posts. And, as always, I welcome your comments on posts. I only request that comments be kept on topic, civil, and conducive to learning.

Happy Anniversary! Happy reading! 


  1. Happy anniversary! Congratulations Tim. I stumbled upon your site for the first time today and am enjoying your posts.

  2. Thank you! I'm glad you're enjoying the posts.