No one expected that Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, a bookish scholar and linguist before the war, would go on to play a crucial role on the field of battle, let alone win the Congressional Medal of Honor. As colonel of the 20th Maine and hero of Little Round Top, Chamberlain was a citizen-soldier of remarkable courage and ability. Had he not been where he was, when he was, the Confederacy might well have won the Civil War.
William F.B. Vodrey, a magistrate of Cleveland Municipal Court, is a former president of the Cleveland Civil War Roundtable. He has long been interested in the Civil War, and has spoken on the subject to such organizations as the Andersonville Society, the Cleveland Grays, the Tuscarawas County Historical Society, the Western Reserve Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution, and numerous Civil War roundtables. His essay “George Washington: Hero of the Confederacy?” appeared in American History magazine. A graduate of Oberlin College and Case Western Reserve University School of Law, Vodrey lives in Cleveland with his wife Susan and their three boys.