Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Committee Member

Michael Green

Second Committee Member

Elizabeth White Nelson

Third Committee Member

Deirdre Clemente

Fourth Committee Member

Gregory Borchard

Number of Pages



The story of the American Civil War is usually told though a chronological framework and the author typically selects an event or place for focus, but this dissertation uses the lens of uniforms, flags, and post-war badges to travel through chronology and highlight new negotiations of well-known stories. While uniforms might just seem to be articles of clothing to wear on the battlefield, both the Union and the Confederacy used uniforms and flags as specific representations of identity during and after the war to present their “true history.” Citizens and veterans from the former Union used the uniforms and the flag as a sign of the legitimacy of their victory over the Confederates. Once the rebels lost the physical war, their uniforms and flags became ambassadors of their “Lost Cause.” This dissertation seeks to showcase the importance of uniforms, flags, and badges during and after the war. It highlights their significance as tangible representations of identity and how those items assisted in the formation and solidification of Civil War memory today. Present-day battles over understandings of heritage and identity stem from the long life of these physical items and affect our ability to come to terms with the reasons for fighting the Civil War.


African American; Civil War Memory; Indigenous; Material Culture; Veterans; Women


History | Military History | United States History

File Format


File Size

13.8 MB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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