Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


This work constitutes a case study of a historical paradigm, that during the course of the Civil War civilians came to view the concepts of valor and virtue very much differently than soldiers, and that this caused tension within communities, both during the war, and after, when civilians continued to judge returning soldiers by an outdated sense of values, while the soldiers themselves, disillusioned by war, only wanted to forget. As time dimmed the memories of war, many veterans began to once again see it in terms of valor and virtue, and thus they reshaped their visions of war and turned a horrible conflict into a celebration of courage and manhood. The object of this study is Charles Victor DeLand, a Jackson, Michigan, journalist and politician who served as a captain of the Ninth Michigan Infantry and as colonel of the First Michigan Sharpshooters. Judged and found wanting by his community during the war, afterwards DeLand went into a self-imposed exile in Saginaw, Michigan, where he sought to find some meaning in the bloodshed and destruction in which he had participated. In doing so he added to the mythology surrounding the war. Resources consulted include DeLand family papers, newspapers, and military correspondence and records.