A big week for 'Onward Southern Soldiers'

Today is the beginning of a BIG week on the calendar for "Onward Southern Soldiers."

On Monday, we visit Fort Negley to speak to the Nashville Civil War Round Table, and on Wednesday, we travel to Clarksville to speak to the Clarksville Civil War Round Table. Both events start at 7pm and are open to the public. Click here for more information. We hope you will join us!

Also on Thursday, Nashville Public Television debuts the fifth in a series of documentaries about Tennessee and the Civil War. This episode, entitled "Crisis of Faith," features my wife, Traci Nichols-Belt, as one of the scholars interviewed for the program. We're very excited and honored to be a part of this important program. Here's a press release excerpt...

NPT's Justin Harvey interviews Traci Nichols-Belt
for "Crisis of Faith"
The vast majority of Americans in the first half of the 19th Century were highly religious, overwhelmingly Christian, and believed America was destined for greatness, in part because of their belief in God. This conviction was particularly strong in the heavily-protestant South. The belief among Southerners that they were ordained for greatness by God, though, was put to the ultimate test by The Civil War, making the war not only a crisis of country and conscience, but also a crisis of faith.

“Crisis of Faith,” the latest episode in Nashville Public Television’s “Tennessee Civil War 150” series, a joint production between NPT and the Renaissance Center, examines how positions on slavery and biblical interpretations on its morality divided religious denominations, and ultimately, the nation. Narrated by multiple Grammy and Dove award-winning singer and songwriter Amy Grant, and written and produced by NPT’s Justin Harvey (“Nashville: The 21st Century in Photographs ,” “Nashville World War II Stories ”), “Crisis of Faith” premieres Thursday, June 21 at 8:00 p.m., on NPT-Channel 8. It is the fifth episode in the “Tennessee Civil War 150” Series, a multi-part project coinciding with the Sesquicentennial anniversary of the Civil War. Previous installments include “Secession,” “Civil War Songs and Stories,” “No Going Back: Women and the War” and “Shiloh: The Devil's Own Day.”

With interviews from notable religion and history scholars, including Mark Noll, James Byrd, Dennis Dickerson and Traci Nichols-Belt, among others, “Crisis of Faith” tracks the argument over slavery from the American Revolution, through the division of the Methodist, Baptist and Presbyterian Churches into northern and southern factions before the Civil War, and how that eventually led to a divided nation.

We hope you'll tune in to NPT-Channel 8 on Thursday, June 21st to watch "Crisis of Faith." Here's a brief video preview of the documentary...

Traci Nichols-Belt is the author of Onward Southern Soldiers: Religion and the Army of Tennessee in the Civil War, published by The History Press. Traci holds a Master's degree in public history from Middle Tennessee State University and a Bachelor's degree in Political Science from Anderson University. Her principal research interest is the Civil War, with a particular focus on the impact of religion on the military. Traci has appeared on radio and television to speak about the role of religion in the Civil War, and she has had her writings published in the Tennessee Historical Quarterly and in The New York Times Civil War blog, Disunion.