The 23rd annual Civil War Weekend marks the return of two former directors of the Virginia Center for Civil War Studies, and the inaugural event for new director Paul Quigley. The conference returns to Blacksburg and will be held at The Inn at Virginia Tech.

Quigley, who was named the first James I. Robertson Jr. Professor in Civil War Studies, welcomes back to Virginia Tech the man for whom his professorship was named.

Alumni Distinguished Professor Emeritus “Bud” Robertson, renowned Civil War historian and Civil War Weekend founder, will present “Whatever Happened to…?” on Saturday morning.

William C. “Jack” Davis, former director of the Virginia Center for Civil War Studies and author and editor of more than 50 books on the Civil War and Southern history, kicks off the conference on Friday evening.  Davis, who has also been the on-camera consultant for numerous episodes of the History Channel series “Civil War Journal,” will give a lecture titled, “Reflections on Grant and Lee – The Men We Don’t Know.”

April Danner, head interpreter and education outreach coordinator at Historic Smithfield Plantation and a graduate of the master’s program in history at Virginia Tech, will touch on local history with “In the Shadow of Cloyd’s Mountain." Also presenting Saturday are Barton Myers and Elizabeth Varon, scholars at Washington and Lee and the University of Virginia, respectively.

“In addition to a number of fantastic speakers,” said Quigley,”we also have a special Civil War photography event Saturday afternoon which involves the screening of a BBC documentary about a Scottish photographer who rose to prominence during the American Civil War, and a presentation from a history graduate student, Betsy Reed.” Reed of Nashville, Tenn., and her parents are living historians who specialize in Civil War photography, and she will give a presentation and a demonstration using period equipment.

Quigley will discuss “The Image of the Yankee in Confederate Culture” on Sunday morning followed by William Stringer’s talk entitled “Brigade Maelstrom: The Wheatfield.” Stringer retired from Virginia Tech as the deputy commandant of the Corps of Cadets.

The cost for the weekend, including meals, is $270. To attend Saturday events only (includes lunch), the cost is $100. To register for the Civil War Weekend, contact the conference registrar at 540-231-5182.