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12/30/13

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I am pleased to be associated with the SAIL (Seniors Active in Learning) program at Collin College in Plano, Texas.  Please click on the link to learn more about these classes.
Please check out my class for the 2013 Spring Semester:
bullet The Three Days of Gettysburg - This class will discuss the three-days of the Battle of Gettysburg. The class will uses the the film Gettysburg based on Michael Shaara's novel The Killer Angels.  The class will review battlefield animations and examine the events of this historic battle. [Spring 2013] 
Future classes:
bullet The Peninsular Campaign - The Peninsular Campaign, which includes the Seven Days Battles, was a contest between General Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia and General George McClellan's Army of the Potomac. The campaign includes Hampton Roads, Gaines' Mill, and Malvern Hill. [Fall 2012]
bullet Grant Moves to the East - The battles in near Chattanooga marked Grant's transition from the Western to Eastern theater of war.  The class will cover Chickamauga, GA (September 18-20, 1863) and Chattanooga, TN (November 23-25, 1863). [Fall 2013]
bullet The Overland Campaign - Grant engages Lee's Army of Northern Virginia in a series of battles in the Overland Campaign.  Among the battles discussed will be the Wilderness, VA (May5-7, 1864), Spotsylvania Court House, VA (May 8-21, 1864), and Cold Harbor, VA (June 3-12, 1864). [Spring 2014]
bullet Sheridan Triumphs and Hood Fails - This class will focus on Sheridan's Valley Campaign including the battles of Opequon, VA on September 19, 1864 and Cedar Creek, VA on October 19, 1864 and Hood's disastrous Franklin-Nashville Campaign including the battles of Franklin, TN on November 30, 1864 and Nashville, TN on December 15-16, 1864. [Fall 2014]
bullet April 1865 - This class will trace the last days of the Civil War using Jay Winik's book, April 1865.  The class will cover each day of the war during that historic month including the collapse of Confederate defenses around Petersburg, the flight of the Confederate government from Richmond, Lee's desperate retreat to and surrender at Appomattox Court House, Lincoln's assassination, and Booth's capture. [Spring 2015]
bulletFrom Fort Sumter to Appomattox Court House - This class is a continuation of the class from West Point to Fort Sumter.  We follow Union (Grant, McClellan, Sherman and Sheridan) and Confederate (Lee, Jackson, Longstreet, and Stuart) generals during the Civil War. [Unscheduled]
bulletAfter Appomattox Court House - The third class in the series on Union (Grant, McClellan, Sherman and Sheridan) and Confederate (Lee and Longstreet) generals.  This class traces the lives of the surviving generals following the end of the Civil War.  [Unscheduled]
Previous classes:
bullet Union Leadership Crises in the East -  Following the failure of the Peninsular Campaign, the command structure in the Eastern Theater underwent several changes. The leadership of George McClellan, John Pope and Ambrose Burnside is examined in the battles at Manassas (Second Bull Run) - August 28-30, 1862, Antietam, MD - September 16-18, 1862, and Fredericksburg, VA - December 11-15, 1862. [Fall 2012]
bullet Stonewall Jackson's Valley Campaign - The class covers Jackson's Shenandoah Valley Campaign from March through May.  The battles discussed will include Kernstown I, Winchester I, Cross Keys, Port Republic, and Front Royal. Evaluation:  3.8 out of 4.  Comments: "An excellent use of visual aids and power point." "Great presentation."
bullet Union Victories in the West Turn the Tide - The class discusses the battles at Fort Donelson, TN (February 11-16, 1862), New Madrid/Island No. 10, MO (February 28-April 8, 1862), Shiloh, TN (April 6-7, 1862), Glorieta Pass, NM (March 26-28, 1862), Forts Jackson & St. Philip, LA (April 16-28, 1862),  Pea Ridge, AR, and (March 7-8, 1862), and Hampton Roads, VA (March 8-9, 1862). Evaluation:  3.5 out of 4.  Comments: "Allen was great as always."  Another great job!  Allen has a real solid interest and knowledge of the Civil War." "The visuals were very well done and easily understood."
bullet The Armies Clash - First Bull Run and Wilson's Creek - The class covers the battles at Manassas (First Bull Run), VA on July 21, 1861 and Wilson's Creek, MO on August 10, 1861. Evaluation: 3.9 out 4. Comments: "The instructor was well prepared and made excellent use of the media.  I enjoyed his sense of humor." "Allen does an excellent job of teaching.  He knows the Civil War and having visited so many of the sites is able to give one the feeling of having been there."
bullet From Springfield to Fort Sumter - The class traces the events from Lincoln's election to the Union response to the capture of Fort Sumter.
bullet The Turning Point of the Civil War - An analysis of the turning point(s) of the American Civil War.  Using statistics to identify the battles and campaigns that changed the course of the Civil War. 
bullet The American Civil War - The American Civil War (18611865), also known as the War Between the States, was a civil war in the United States of America. Eleven Southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America, also known as "the Confederacy." Led by Jefferson Davis, the Confederacy fought against the United States (the Union), which was supported by all the free states (where slavery had been abolished) and by five slave states that became known as the border states. Comments: "An excellent, well prepared, and very interesting course.  One of the very best history courses I've taken."  "This was an outstanding course.  Mr. Mesch is very interesting to listen to.  I really appreciate his obvious enthusiasm on the subject."
bullet The War of 1812 - America's fragile neutrality between the British and French came to an end with the war of 1812.  The war was fought in three major theaters: on the oceans, along the American coast, and on the broad frontier along the Great Lakes and Saint Lawrence River. The conflict was fueled by America's efforts to gain world respect and expand its borders.  The war broke the confederation of Native Tribes, produced American heroes such as Andrew Jackson, and gave birth to our national anthem, "The Star-Spangled Banner."
bullet Voices of the Civil War - The speeches, writings and music of the Civil War. Comments: "Great information, interesting presentation." "Allen did a wonderful job presenting the facts and people. Questions he could not answer were research and answered the next week."
bullet Civil War Photography - The American Civil War created photojournalism through such photographers as Mathew Brady, Alexander Gardner and Timothy O'Sullivan.  Nearly every Civil War soldier had his photograph taken by one of the more than 5,000 American photographers.  The documentary photographers took thousands of images on the battlefields and in the army camps to bring the horror of battle to the home front. The class will examine the history of photography, and students will put on glasses to view a new exhibit of 3D images. Evaluation: 4 out 4. Comments: "Super research on his part." "Great content - both techniques, history of photography and photographs."
bullet From West Point to Fort Sumter - This class explores the development of future Union (Grant, McClellan, Sherman and Sheridan) and Confederate (Lee, Jackson, Longstreet, and Stuart) generals from plebes at West Point to the beginning of the Civil War.
bulletThe Next Fifty Years - Explore forecasts of future developments over the next fifty years.  The class presents forecasts by leading futurists concerning trends in business, technology, society and politics.

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This site was last updated 12/30/13