When: May 11, 2011
Where: Ohio Health Medical Campus, 300 Polaris Parkway, Westerville Ohio 43082
Speaker: Jay W. Simson
Topic: Custer and the Front Royal Executions of 1864
On September 23, 1864, George Armstrong Custer participated in a skirmish with members of Lt. Col. John S. Mosby’s 43rd Virginia Battalion of Partizan Rangers in which six of the Rangers were captured and executed. Mosby accussed Custer of being in command of the Union troops that day and personally ordering the executions. As a reprisal in November 1864, Mosby selected seven Union POWs for execution. Two escaped; two were shot,wounded and escaped; and three were hanged. Our May speaker, Jay W. Simson, contends that Mosby was not in command, did not order any executions, and in all probability was not present when the executions occured. In his program, Simson will reveal who was in command, who likely issued the orders for the execution, and why.
Jay W. Simson, is a resident of Van Wert, Ohio, and has been a jounalist for thirty years. He was educated at the State University of New York at Morrisville. He and his wife, Lynn have four children and three grandchildren. He has been a member of the Western Ohio Civil War Roundtable in Celina for the past fifteen years.
Simson has authored three books on the Civil War: Naval Strategies of the Civil War, Crisis of Command in the Army of the Potomac, and Custer and the Front Royal Executions of 1864. He is also in the process of publishing a fourth book, tentatively titled Making War and Peace: Gordon and Chamberlain in the American Civil War. A review of the custer book is available at: http://www.civilwarnews.com/reviews/2010br/oct/custer-simson-b101019.html