Available Reporter Beats

The Generals and Soldiers under their command and how they impacted the victory or loss:

  • Who are the men that serve in this regiment?
  • Are there any women who serve?
  • What is the role of the spectators or the city near the battle?

The conditions for/of the battle and how they affected the outcome:

  • The terrain
  • The actual weather
  • Weapons
  • Illnesses
  • Food and shelter

The politics associated with the battle and did they affect the outcome

  • Was the Confederacy started, strengthened, weakened?
  • What about the Union?
  • Did Washington DC politics factor into the battle? (As in delay of supplies, orders, new laws)

Prisoners of war (POWS)

  • Did either side take any?
  • How were they treated?
  • What were the conditions of the prison?
  • Were there any escapees and what happened to them if they were caught?
Link to Library Resources for Newspaper
download Rubric

Newspaper Templates

Click the appropriate newspaper to download the its template..


photo: http://www.soldierstudies.org/index.php?action=webquest_1

Reporters Needed for Battelfield!

Currently two Northern and two Southern Newspapers are looking for reporters who can find the facts and write the stories that will inform thousands of readers about what is happening on the battlefields of the war. With a publication date of November 19th, time is of the essence.

Pick a Newspaper

Working in teams of 4-5, you will be assigned to one of the newspapers in charge of investigating a specific battle.

Newspaper Civil War Battle to Cover N/S
The Richmond Daily Dispatch The First Battle of Bull Run (Manassas) North
The Atlanta Journal Battle of Chickamauga South
The Gettysburg Gazzette Battle of Gettysburg North
The Antietam Times Battle of Antietam South

Choose a "beat"

Once you have chosen or been assigned to a newspaper, you must then decide who will cover what on your team. The list of available reporting "beats" can be found on the left.

In addition to covering the items listed in your "beat," you need to keep in mind the following when writing your article:

  1. What was the result of the battle and what did that mean to both sides?
  2. Did it begin, end, prolong the war?
  3. Did it change the economics of the country?
  4. Did it bring about any new legislation or legislation reform?

To help you in your investigation, a resource link has been provided to SCC's Library, who has put together a series of web links to specific battles for you.


In addtion to your specific article, each reporter must also submit an editorial about a human interest piece you discovered during your research. This is something that is interesting and discussed in an emotional way. For example:

During the Battle of Antietam General Lee ordered his men to not pilfer from the nearby homes. One of his men saw a black servant returning from a foraging trip. He and his fellow soldiers motioned to the guy to hide the loot. The black man did so and later the soldiers enjoyed the butter the servant had snuck back in. They decided the prize was too valuable to part with in spite of the orders. 

This kind of story brings the soldiers to life. Find something that makes the Civil war more “real” to your readers.

Bringing It All Together

While each reporter is responsible for his beat all the articles must come together to form the paper. You can download the Word Template for your Newspaper to the left.

Each newspaper should adequately cover the assigned battle. Use the guidelines above and to the left to direct your research and make sure it is applicable to your “beat”. Remember, the best stories are those that go deeper. You are not limited to just the ideas covered above. Pictures should be included as well.

Feel free to download the Grading Rubric to serve as a guide for your writing.

Copies must be distributed to each reporter from the rival newspapers. Publication deadline is November 19th. Failure to meet this deadline will result in a 0 for the 5th exam of the course. Readings and discussions of the articles will take place on the 19th. This is mandatory.