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LUNCH WITH BOOKS LIVESTREAM: Railroads in Civil War Strategy with General Ulysses S. Grant

January 05, 2021
12:00pm - 1:00pm

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The successful military commander wins because he is able to adapt to changing situations. And so it was during the American Civil War with new developments in railroad technology and utility. General Grant enjoys a reputation as a fine horseman, but it’s not just flesh and blood horses, but also the "Iron Horse" that he understands and appreciates.

In this meeting with President Abraham Lincoln’s General In Chief, Grant will give some background on the development of railroads in America during his own formative years, and will describe how the nation and its railroads grew up together in those tumultuous years of the American Civil War, including here in the new state of West Virginia and in Wheeling, where railroad security was a key to victory. Through sharing stories and artifacts from the period, Gen. Grant will relate his own experiences with trains and railroading from his youth through the Union's victory during the war.

If you are a fan of U.S. history, whether the Civil War, America’s railroads, or just life in the 1800s, this encounter will engage and cross over to many areas of interest.

This program will be available to watch live on Facebook Live, on YouTube, and on the OCPL website's LWB Livestream page Log into your Facebook or YouTube account during the program to leave questions for General Grant in the comments box. He will answer your questions during the live broadcast. 

PRESENTER BIO: Gettysburg resident Kenneth Serfass, a retired U.S. Marine and living historian, portrays Union Commanding General Ulysses S. Grant. Serfass has portrayed Grant for a History Channel documentary and is the bandmaster for the Antebellum Marine Band. Serfass previously presented at Lunch With Books on July 28, 2015. Visit his website at

Lunch With Books Livestream starts at noon on Facebook and YouTube.

Subscribe to the Lunch With Books Youtube channel or like us on the Lunch With Books Facebook page or to receive notifications of our upcoming LWB broadcasts. To receive emails about our upcoming programs, visit our News page, click the "Subscribe" button to sign-up for our news blasts or download our free OCPL Connect app from your smartphone's app store. 

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"Lunch With Books" is the library’s flagship program for adult patrons. These lunchtime programs feature authors, poets, musicians, historians, and more every Tuesday at noon. Bring lunch (to your computer), feed your brain!

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