October 19, 2017
Signing in Gettysburg introduces new book
by Chester County author Bruce Mowday
Howard Wert’s Gettysburg released by Schiffer Publishing
WEST CHESTER _ J. Howard Wert’s Gettysburg, detailing the largest private collection of artifacts from the Civil War battle and the family that collected historical items for more than a century, was released this month by Schiffer Publishing of Atglen.
Chester County co-author Bruce Mowday will be signing books at the Gettysburg Tour Center, 778 Baltimore Street, Gettysburg, on Saturday from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. Mowday wrote the book with G. Craig Caba, curator of the J. Howard Wert collection.
“The collection contains many significant pieces of American history, including the podium used by Abraham Lincoln during the Gettysburg Address and other items from the day Lincoln made his famous speech,” Mowday said. “I was honored to be asked by Craig to record the history of the artifacts and the amazing Wert family. Schiffer did its usual fantastic job in designing and printing the book.”
Mowday has a number of other talks and signings upcoming on the Wert book, including a talk in King of Prussia on October 25 before a group of retired workers from the Lockheed company. Mowday will also speak on Wert and his Gettysburg book Pickett’s Charge: The Untold Story, on November 6 at the Norristown Civil War Round Table at the Montgomery County Historical Society at 7:00 p.m. He will talk about the Wert book on November 21 at a Shriners’ meeting at Thorndale Inn at 6:00 p.m.
During Heritage weekend in Gettysburg celebrating Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, Mowday will have four signings in three days. On November 17 from 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. he’ll be at the Gettysburg Heritage Center, 297 Steinwehr Avenue, Gettysburg. He’ll join Caba on Saturday, November 18 at the Heritage Center from 4:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. and Mowday will again be at the Heritage Center on Sunday, November 19 from 10:00 a.m. until noon.
On Saturday, November 18 Mowday will be at the book store, For The Historian, 42 York St., Gettysburg from 10:00 until noon.
Mowday is also scheduled to give a talk on the Wert book on Tuesday, May 15, 2018, at the Uptown Knauer Performing Arts Center, 226 North High Street, West Chester, at 7 p.m.
“This book is more than just artifacts, it is the story of the Wert family,” Mowday said. “The family was active and took part in dangerous activities to help escaped slaves from the South. J. Howard was a spy during the battle of Gettysburg and was captured by the Confederates. Also, the family had many ties to the American Revolution and the French and Indian Wars.”
The Wert family knew abolitionist Congressman Thaddeus Stevens and many of the artifacts from Stevens, including his famous walking stick, are in the collection. A Chester County connection exists as a letter written by famous author Bayard Taylor of Kennett Square and a pipe used by his brother Charles, who was killed at Gettysburg are included.
“I have a personal connection to the collection,” Mowday said. “My relatives fought in a New York unit commanded by General Francis Barlow, who was severely wounded at Gettysburg. Barlow’s saddle is in the collection. I had a chance to touch that saddle. I assume my relatives saw the saddle but I wonder if they also touched it.”
Signed copies of the book can be obtained from Mowday by contacting him at firstname.lastname@example.org. The book costs $34.99 and included 127 color photographs. The book is also available through Schiffer Publishing and on the internet.
Mowday is an award-winning author and newspaper reporter. He has authored more than 15 books on history, sports, business and true crime. Mowday has appeared on the Discovery ID channel, C-SPAN, the Pennsylvania Cable Network, Hollywood and Beyond, and Philadelphia and local television shows. Mowday has hosted his own radio shows and was chairman of the Chester County Historical Society and president of the Brandywine Battlefield Park Associates. He is a board member of the Valley Forge Park Alliance and the Chester County Conference and Visitors Bureau. He is a frequent speaker at various civic and historical groups. For more information on Mowday, his books and his schedule of events, see www.mowday.com.
Mowday will have J. Howard Wert’s Gettysburg and many of his other books at various book signings and talks in the coming weeks. His schedule includes a talk on the Battle of Brandywine on October 24 at the Chadds Ford Civic Association at the Brandywine River Museum at 7:00 p.m.; a book signing on November 2 from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. at the Tel Hai Merchant Fair; a speaking engagement at the Lower Providence Historical Society breakfast fundraiser at 8:30 a.m. at Chadwick’s on Lafayette and the battle of Brandywine; and a talk on his first Civil War book, Unlikely Allies, at the Lancaster Civil War Round Table at the Lititz Public Library on November 9 at 7:00 p.m.
Mowday wrote a book on the infamous Johnston gang and he will talk about the book and also a showing of the movie At Close Range about the Johnstons will be held at Canvas at Valley Forge on November 13 at 6:30 p.m.
On November 14, Mowday will give a talk on Jim Herr and his Life With Flavor book at the Christ Memorial Lutheran Church, Malvern, at 7:00 p.m.
In December he’s be signing books at the Downingtown branch of Citadel F.C.U. from 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. He’ll also be conducting signings at the Exton location of Barnes & Noble from 11 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. on December 16 and 23 and also from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 on December 24.
Mowday will also give a talk on Unlikely Allies: Fort Delaware’s Prison Community During The Civil War on December 13 before the Jersey Shore Civil War Round Table in Toms River, N.J., at 7:00 p.m.