Museum Moments May 16 features Civil War Book centered on an overlooked Mississippi politician

NEMiss.News Michael J. Megelsh book on Adelbert Ames



Blue Mountain Christian University professor Dr. Michael J. Megelsh will give a book talk at the Union County Heritage Museum on May 16, 12 noon, on his recently published book about Mississippi’s Reconstruction Governor Adelbert Ames who was elected in 1874.

NEmiss.News Michael J. Megelsh

Dr. Michael J. Megelsh

A central figure in Reconstruction-era politics, Adelbert Ames and his contributions during a significant and uncertain time in American history are the focus of Megelsh’s book. Megelsh writes about Ames’s life, which took many compelling turns. Born on Maine’s rocky shore in 1835, he served as a Union general during the American Civil War and was heralded as one of the young stars whose leadership was integral in helping the Union to victory. He briefly remained in the army after the conflict, stationed in Mississippi, where he entered the political arena.

The book is titled “Adelbert Ames, the Civil War, and the Creation of Modern America.” During his four-year tenure as a Republican US senator representing Mississippi, Ames exhibited a growing commitment to civil rights and battled for the protection of freedmen in the halls of Congress, even when it drew ire and damnation from his colleagues. After Ames was elected governor of Mississippi, he worked to create a free and prosperous state rooted in protecting civil rights and promoting economic liberty.

The story follows Ames as his confidence fades when his political enemies sought to impeach him, culminating in a trial that captivated local and national media. This attempt led to his resignation from office.

The remarkable life of a noteworthy―yet overlooked―Union general turned Reconstruction-era politician is at the heart of this book. It carries the reader to Ames’s later years, which remained thrilling as he faces Jesse James and the James-Younger Gang in a gunfight. He was a soldier in the Spanish American War, where he served in Cuba.

A free sack lunch will be provided for this lunch and learn event. The museum is located at 114 Cleveland Street, New Albany, MS. For more information call 662-538-0014. The free event is sponsored by the museum Community Partners.

Jill Smith, Director
Union County Heritage Museum
114 Cleveland Street
New Albany, MS 38652


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