The 10 pieces of our history shown in this slideshow (see gallery below) call out to us from the past.
They invite us to take a closer look.
They invite us to understand what went into the creation — and the defense — of our country over the years.
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As we remember the courage and sacrifice of our military this weekend, as we celebrate their accomplishments, mourn their loss and honor their service — these pieces of war memorabilia provide a closer look at the history of America.
These are only a mere portion of what exists on this vast subject, of course — but click on the gallery buttons below for a powerful peek into our history.
(photo credit, homepage image: Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History)
This 1850 staff and field officer’s sword was worn by Union Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman in 1862 during the Battle of Shiloh, one of the fiercest and bloodiest battles of the Civil War. The battle was fought near the banks of the Tennessee River in Shiloh, Tennessee, in April 1862. Confederate forces made 11 attacks against the Union there; mustering 62 pieces of artillery against the Union’s “Hornet’s Nest,” the Confederate army hoped to secure victory — until well-organized men from Don Carlos Buell’s army and a division of Ulysses S. Grant’s army arrived on the night of April 6 and turned the tide. The Confederates were forced to retreat.