Steven Glazer, author of the recently released book Discover Your Community?s Civil War Heritage, will address the Westfield Historical Society on Friday, February 25 at 7:30 PM. Glazer is a member of the New Jersey Civil War 150th Committee which is leading the effort to recognize the role that New Jersey played in the great conflict. Glazer has uncovered many fascinating ties between the war and our area. He will relate information about Captain John McGowen of Elizabeth who was dispatched by President James Buchanan to relieve Fort Sumter in January 1861. His ship Star of the West was fired on by South Carolina troops, fully three months before the April 12 shelling which now officially marks the beginning of the Civil War.
Glazer will also relate the story of Lieutenant Charles W. Walker was the first officer from New Hampshire to die in the Civil War. He was injured in Westfield during the transport of his unit on Friday, June 21, 1861 and died in Plainfield the following day. Glazer will also provide information about former Westfield resident William Westervelt who helped foil an assassination plot against Abraham Lincoln just prior to his inauguration. He has gathered significant information about the life of Civil War General John Myrick who at one time lived on the Reeve House property at 314 Mountain Avenue where the Westfield Historical Society will be making its permanent home.
As we enter the sesquicentennial commemoration years of the American Civil War, uncovering the deeds of New Jerseyans of the era provides a way to honor their memory as well as establish local connections to the transformative national events of 150 years ago.
Glazer obtained his B.A., B.S.E.E. and J.D. degrees from Rutgers University, and an M.S. from Fairleigh Dickinson University. He retired from the U.S. Army Reserve as a lieutenant colonel after serving six years assigned to the Pentagon as an intelligence/electronic-warfare officer on the staff of the Secretary of the Army. He is a recently retired partner at the Manhattan law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, as well as an adjunct professor of law at Rutgers School of Law. For the past decade, he has studied and written about local history and the Civil War. He was a contributor to New Jersey Goes to War, an official publication of the New Jersey Civil War Heritage Association.
The program will be held in the Community Room in the Westfield Municipal Building at 425 East Broad Street. It is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, please contact the Westfield Historical Society at 908-654-1794.