Old Court House Civil War Museum

Winchester Virginia,
Winchester changed hands 70 times in the Civil War


Book signing:  Richard R. Duncan,
Winchester : A Virginia Community at War, 18611865.
July 14, 2007

Richard R. Duncan is professor emeritus of history at Georgetown University. He grew up in Winchester, Virginia, and now lives in Alexandria, VA.


During the Civil War, the strategically located town of Winchester, Virginia, suffered from the constant turmoil of military campaigning perhaps more than any other town. Occupied dozens of times by alternating Union and Confederate forces, Winchester suffered from three major battles including some seventy smaller skirmishes. In his voluminous community study of the town over the course of four tumultuous years, Richard R. Duncan shows that in many ways Winchester's history provides a paradigm of the changing nature of the war.

Indeed, Duncan reveals how the town offers a microcosm of the war: slavery collapsed, women assumed control in the absence of men, and civilians vied for authority alongside an assortment of revolving military commanders.

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