Living historian Michael Sipes will be the featured speaker at the May 20, 2015, monthly meeting of the York Civil War Round Table. He will present a first-person impression of Confederate Brigadier General Jubal A. Early, who figured prominently in the Civil War history of York County when he led more than 6,600 soldiers into the region from June 27-30, 1863, during the Gettysburg Campaign.
Sipes’ presentation is entitled “The Army of Northern Virginia’s 1863 Campaign North into Pennsylvania: Viewpoints on the Movements of the Second Corps.” Early’s force was one of three divisions within Lt. General Richard S. Ewell’s Second Corps, the advance element of the Army of Northern Virginia. Early’s division headed east through Gettysburg and York on its way to the covered bridge at Wrightsville while Ewell led the other two divisions and a brigade of cavalry through Chambersburg and Carlisle toward Harrisburg. Sipes will discuss these respective movements.
The meeting is at 7:00 p.m. Wednesday the 20th at the York County Heritage Trust, 250 E. Market Street in downtown York. Free street parking is available, and there is no charge to attend this presentation. The public is welcome!
Micheal Sipes was born in Baltimore, Maryland, on January 13 1952, and lived there until his early twenties when he moved to the little town of Sharpsburg, MD, just minutes from the famous Sharpsburg battlefield.
His interest in the War for Southern Independence began at an early age when his father would take the family on day trips to such places as Gettysburg, Sharpsburg and Harper’s Ferry. Wanting to learn more about the war and the struggle for southern independence, Mike began to read and do research that would lead him to find his southern ancestors, one of which was a Capt. Nicholas Owings of Owings Mills, MD, who was the quartermaster of the 2nd Maryland Cavalry, C.S.A.
To honor his ancestor, Mike joined the Maryland division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. To also honor the memory of his ancestor, he joined a reenactment group that portrayed the 2nd Maryland Cavalry. Wanting to teach more and to talk to people about the “Late Unpleasantness”, Mike saw an opportunity to portray General Early, who his ancestor rode with in the general’s 1864 Valley Campaign.
Mike’s main goal is to keep alive the memory of the Southern soldier and make known the truth about the war as General Early did in his first book, A Memoir of the Last Year of the War for Independence in the Confederate States of America. Mike has moved to Hanover, Pennsylvania, and owns a business just a few miles from Gettysburg.