Frank A. O’Reilly will deliver the opening address for the 2016 Stonewall Jackson Symposium, sponsored by the Stonewall Jackson House, Friday May 27. The talk will take place at 7:30 p.m. in Jackson Memorial Hall at Virginia Military Institute.
O’Reilly’s address, “‘A Host Within Himself’: Stonewall as a Leader,” will reflect upon Jackson’s unparalleled mastery of the operational art of war. Although Jackson looked deceptively plain, his leadership inspired his generation and every generation of soldiers since. The title of the program is taken from the comment of a Confederate soldier who wrote in 1862, “He is a very plain man, but is a host within himself.”
Frank O’Reilly’s latest book, The Fredericksburg Campaign: Winter War on the Rappahannock (2002, LSU Press), received a 2003 nomination for the Pulitzer Prize in Letters. It received the 2002 Capital District (Albany, N.Y.) Book Award; the 2003 James I. Robertson Jr. Book Award; The 2004 Daniel Laney Book Award; and the 2004 Richard Barksdale Harwell Book Award. O’Reilly’s first book on the Fredericksburg Campaign, Stonewall Jackson at Fredericksburg, was released in 1993.
O’Reilly is the author of numerous articles on the Civil War and Mexican War for national and international journals, has appeared in documentaries and on CSPAN, and has lectured extensively on military history, including to conferences in the United Kingdom. He is currently researching a book on the Battle of Malvern Hill and the Seven Days’ Campaign around Richmond.
O’Reilly received both his bachelor and master of arts degrees in American history with a concentration in early American military history and Civil War studies. He earned his undergraduate degree from Washington and Lee University, before joining the National Park Service at Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park.
O’Reilly’s talk is the only Jackson Symposium event open to the public. Admission is free of charge. Registration for the symposium has closed.