Today in Civil War history – “Remember Ellsworth!”

Today is the 158th anniversary of the death of Colonel Elmer Ellsworth, the first Union officer to die in the Civil War.  His death is also notable because he was a national celebrity and a personal friend of President Abraham Lincoln.

Ellsworth had become famous before the Civil War when he toured the country in the summer of 1860 with his drill team, the National Guard Cadets of Chicago, more famously known as the United States Zouave Cadets.  The unit was famous for its spectacular drill sequences and helped inspire many Zouave units that would appear during the Civil War.

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