American Civil War in the News is a edited review of American Civil War related news and articles, providing collection of hand-picked 1861-1865 era history.

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Remains of Civil War soldiers

Latest hand-picked Civil War news and articles.

Long-accepted death toll of 620,000 might actually be closer to 750,000
Nearly 150 years after the last battles of the Civil War, historians are still finding new topics to explore as the nation commemorates the sesquicentennial of America's bloodiest conflict. Even the long-accepted death toll of 620,000, cited by historians since 1900, is being reconsidered. In a study published late last year in Civil War History, Binghamton University history demographics professor J. David Hacker said the toll is closer to 750,000. "That number just sat there - 620,000 - for a century," said Lesley Gordon, a professor at the University of Akron and editor of the 57-year-old journal, considered the pre-eminent publication in its field.

Looting spurs U.S. to exhume Civil War-era bodies
Federal archaeologists have secretly dug up the remains of soldiers near a Civil War-era fort after tipped off about grave-looting. The exhumations removed 67 skeletons from the desert soil near Fort Craig. They also discovered empty graves and determined 20 had been looted. The government kept its exhumation of the unmarked cemetery near the historic New Mexico fort out of the public's eye to prevent more thefts. The probe began with a tip about amateur historian Dee Brecheisen who had displayed the mummified remains of a black soldier, draped in a Civil War-era uniform, in his house.

The town of Vance to relocate remains of Civil War cemetery
Vance is preparing to move a piece of history. Tucked away in the deep woods between U.S. Highway 11 and Wire Road, the small Evans Cemetery holds the remains of several Union and one unidentified Confederate soldier who were killed during the Battle of Trion. But now the town has purchased 40 acres, including the cemetery, with hopes of building a municipal park. To do so, the town will have to move the remains from the Evans Cemetery to Vance Cemetery. That will require a license from the Alabama Historical Commission and the hiring of a licensed funeral home or registered archeologist to unearth the remains and reinter them.

The largest mausoleum in America: General Grant National Memorial
The General Grant National Memorial, " Grant's Tomb", has adorned this spot since its commemoration 110 years ago. Here are held the remains of Ulysses S. Grant and his wife Julia Grant. It is the largest mausoleum in America with 8100 square feet. Recently, the Tomb celebrated Grant's 185th birthday and the 10th anniversary of its $1.8 million restoration completed in time for its centennial celebration. When he died, Grant had been elevated to the status of a national hero who had saved the nation from dissolution as commander of all Union armies, and as a president who ushered in an era of peace and equality.

Stealing Lincoln's Body - The odd reburials of Abraham Lincoln   (Article no longer available from the original source)
April 15,1865, Abraham Lincoln died. After ceremonies and public viewings, from Baltimore through New York to Chicago, he was buried on May 4, 1865, at Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield. His elaborate marble tomb became a tourist destination. And then on Nov. 7, 1876 a gang of counterfeiters tried to steal Lincoln's body. Their plan was to hold it for ransom and force the release of engraver Benjamin Boyd, but agents of the Secret Service had infiltrated the gang. The attempted body snatching so disturbed the cemetery's custodian that he removed Lincoln's coffin and buried it under the tomb.

Tales from the Crypt: A History of the Lincoln Tomb
Think you've seen everything at the Abraham Lincoln Museum in Springfield? The museum's got a new temporary exhibit that features an unusual topic: Lincoln's tomb. "Tales from the Crypt: A History of the Lincoln Tomb" recreates the events and decisions surrounding the creation of the tomb. It details stories around the martyred remains of the 16th president, including tomb raiders and plots to steal Lincoln's body. Some of the artifacts on display include the mourning sash worn by Ulysses S. Grant and burglary tools used during an 1876 attempt to steal Lincoln's body.

Dog tags created during Civil War
When did the United States armed services start issuing "dog tags?" Dog tags were first created by Civil War soldiers when heavy casualties and grim battle conditions made making body identification difficult. Until then, soldiers often printed their name and address on a handkerchief or a piece of paper and pinned it on their uniform before going into battle.