The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga’s Twentieth Annual Symposium on the 19th Century Press, the Civil War, and Free Expression will be held Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, November 8-10.  The conference will begin Thursday afternoon at the Sheraton Read House Hotel and continue Friday and Saturday at the UTC University Center.  All paper sessions are free and open to the public.  

The symposium will feature 44 speakers from across the nation including distinguished historians and communication scholars such as Donald L. Shaw of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Dwight Teeter of the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.

“We are delighted that so many of our old friends from across the nation will be joining us this year to celebrate our twentieth symposium,” said David B. Sachsman, the director of the conference and holder of the UTC West Chair of Excellence.

The Friday luncheon speaker will be Gregory A. Borchard, University of Nevada Las Vegas, whose topic is “The Campaign from Candidate to President: Abraham Lincoln and the Press, 1858-1861.” Borchard co-authored Journalism in the Civil War Era (2010) and wrote Abraham Lincoln and Horace Greeley (2011).

The purpose of the conference is to share current research and to develop a series of monographs on the 19th century press, the Civil War and the press, and 19th century concepts of free expression.

Papers from the first five conferences were published by Transaction Publishers in 2000 as a book of readings called The Civil War and the Press. More recently, Purdue University Press published papers from past conferences in three distinctly different books titled Memory and Myth: The Civil War in Fiction and Film from Uncle Tom’s Cabin to Cold Mountain (2007), Words at War: The Civil War and American Journalism (2008), and Seeking a Voice: Images of Race and Gender in the 19th Century Press (2009). A new book, Sensationalism: Murder, Mayhem, Mudslinging, Scandals, and Disasters in 19th Century Reporting, will be published by Transaction Publishers in 2013.

To view the complete list of presentations for the 2012 Civil War Press Symposium, please visit

http://www.utc.edu/Academic/WestChairOfExcellenceInCommunication/Symposium/  and click “2012 program.”

On Saturday afternoon the group visits Chattanooga’s historic Civil War sites in a tour led by James Ogden, historian of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park.

The symposium is sponsored by the West Chair of Excellence, the UTC communication and history departments, the Walter and Leona Schmitt Family Foundation Research Fund, and the Hazel Dicken-Garcia Fund for the Symposium.

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