The Tennessee Valley Civil War Round Table, a non-profit educational organization, engages throughout the region to develop a deeper, informed understanding of the issues, personalities, and events of the American Civil War era. Our goal is to learn, understand, and communicate the history of the American Civil War.
We study and strive to stimulate interest in the American Civil War to better promote and understand this seminal event in American history.
The preservation of Civil War battlefields and structures is a pre-eminent consideration of our operations. We give priority to regional needs but are willing to contribute nationwide as needs warrant.
We are a non-partisan organization. Whatever our emotional allegiance to the particular side of an issue or topic, our activities and publications carefully examine the documents, the sites, and other sources in order to understand and present a well-rounded synopsis concerning the facts about any event, person, and locale.
We seek to create, strengthen, and expand a network of neighboring Round Tables and other, history-based area organizations with whom we can cooperate and synergize our efforts in order to accomplish more than if we worked individually (i.e., believing in that old adage of the total being greater than the sum of the parts).
We strive to expand our membership, both in total numbers and demographic diversity.
We seek to educate those in the broader Tennessee Valley area about the American Civil War. We do this through our monthly meetings (i.e., presentations), field trips, seminars, publications, public relations, and community outreach and events.
Our Board of Directors
Bill Goss, President
Bill Goss is a native of southern Missouri with some family ties to the Union Army during the Civil War. He grew up with a passion for history and gravitated to the Civil War early in school. His interest in the War Between the States blossomed after hiking Wilson’s Creek battlefield as a Boy Scout. Bill retired from the US Army as a LTC in 2017 with nearly 25 years of duty. He was commissioned as an Infantry officer from the US Military Academy at West Point in 1992 with a BS in Military History and spent nearly 17 years doing intelligence work in a variety of jobs and locations, mostly in Europe. He works on Redstone Arsenal as a contractor. He has been married for nearly 28 years to his wonderful wife, April, and they have 5 kids: Justin, Jeremy, Megan, Jared, and Joshua. Before anyone asks, he is a dyed in the wool Army fan (Go ARMY! Beat Navy!), his daughter went to Ole Miss (Hotty Toddy!) and his youngest son is at Auburn (War Eagle!) Jared will be a Cow (Junior) at West Point in the Fall of 2022. Justin and Jeremy are working in Huntsville and Nashville respectively.
His favorite book in the library was the American Heritage Civil War book, you know, the one with the impressively detailed art of the major battles that were marked with numbers and the description of the battle. Yeah, that one. He used to check that book out of the public library at least 2 or 3 times a year and just devour the book and stare at those battle scenes for hours, literally. Since that first visit to Wilson’s Creek, he has visited almost all the major battlefields in the Western Theater, and many of the major battlefields in the Eastern Theater. He has participated in battle staff rides with the US Army at Fort Donelson, Shiloh, and Vicksburg. Over 14 years in Europe allowed him to visit many of the great battlefields there as well. When he lived in France, he was less than 30 minutes from Ypres, Arras, Cambrai, and Vimy Ridge, and he has seen most of the major World War II battlefields. He was also fortunate to go to Monte Casino and Gallipoli during his time in a NATO HQ on staff rides.
He is a book-aholic, much to April’s chagrin. About half of his library is US Civil War, 40% of it World War II, and the other 10% on intelligence, denial and deception, and other esoteric military history topics. He also owns a rather extensive collection of Civil War prints, again much to her chagrin. Something about blood, guts, and men trying to kill each other does not really appeal to her sense of aesthetic look in a house, but he has softened it some with a few prints that appeal to her womanly side. He can have a wry sense of humor but tries to keep it in check most of the time. Thanks, and God
Robert Hennessee, Secretary
Robert Hennessee became interested in the Civil War when his family moved to the Richmond, VA area when he was six. They visited local battlefields and the Confederate White House. Later, they moved to Maryland and visited the Antietam and Gettysburg battlefields. As an adult, Bob lived in Charleston, SC where he visited Ft. Sumter. Later, he moved to Washington, DC area where he visited Bull Run, Chancellorsville and other Civil War sites. During that time, he joined the Stuart-Mosby Society. He is particularly knowledgeable about Stonewall Jackson, Mosby and Stuart. Bob joined the TVCWRT in 2014. He recently retired from the Army Corps of Engineers and operates an energy consulting business, Hennessee Associates.
Sallyanne Cos, Treasurer
Art Helms, Programs Officer
Arthur (Art) Helms is a retired aerospace/defense procurement specialist. Art is an army veteran, former police officer, criminal investigator, magistrate, high school history teacher, and business owner. Art has a BS in International Studies (Intelligence Operations), a BA in Logistics, and AS in History. Art is member of the Artist Preservation Group, Tennessee Valley Civil War Round Table, American Legion, Cold War Veterans Association, and Volunteer Docent at Pond Spring, The General Joe Wheeler Home. He is a former member of The Company of Military Historians, the Association for Intelligence Officers, Fraternal Order of Police, Virginia Defense Force, Alabama State Defense Force, and the Navy League. Art’s wife Robin is a former teacher and is currently a Senior Contracts Administrator for a defense contractor. They have been married for 41 years.
John Scales, Former President, Field Trip Coordinator
General John Scales attended the University of Alabama 1966-70, graduating in 1970 with a degree in physics and a commission as an infantry lieutenant in the U. S. Army. He graduated from infantry officer basic, airborne and Ranger schools before being assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division. Later he led a rifle platoon in combat in Vietnam and joined the 101st Airborne upon return to the US. Leaving active duty in 1975, he joined the 20th Special Forces Group of the Alabama National Guard while getting a master’s degree at the University and becoming Special Forces qualified. Over the years, while first teaching and later working as a scientist in Huntsville, he commanded a Special Forces A Detachment, company, battalion, and the 20th itself. He was selected for promotion to general and assignment to US Army Special Forces Command, where he was first deputy commander and later acting commander. After 9/11 he was assigned to the Joint Special Operations Command and led a Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force in Afghanistan. General Scales retired from the military in late 2002 and continued his career as a scientist in Huntsville, being granted five patents and publishing three military history books, the latest of which is on the military career of General Forrest. He is also a past president of the Tennessee Valley Civil War Round Table.
Kevin Rodriguez, Membership Officer
Kevin Rodriguez was born at Scott Air Force Base, IL and by age 12 had already spent half his life in Germany. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business and a Master’s Degree in Logistics. He has been a civil servant with the Department of Defense since 1986, having first worked with the Air Force’s Defense Mapping Agency in St. Louis, MO before going to work for the Army. He and his family moved to Madison, AL to work at Redstone Arsenal in 1997 when the Base Realignment and Closure Act closed the Army Troop Support Command in St. Louis, MO. For the last three years he has lead the Sustainment Logistics office for the PATRIOT missile system. Prior to that he held the same position for five years at the Apache Attack Helicopter office. He enjoys taking ranger led battlefield hikes and went on over 10 anniversary events at various National Military Parks during the 150thanniversary of the Civil War, starting with Shiloh and ending with Appomattox. He has been a member of the TVCWRT since 2010 and is currently serving as the TVCWRT Membership Chairman.
Arley McCormick, Newsletter Editor
Arley McCormick is originally from North Missouri. He has a Master’s Degree from George Washington University, Washington D.C. in Public Administration and he is a former soldier and consultant. His articles have appeared in the U.S. Army Military Review published at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, and the Old Tennessee Valley Magazine and Mercantile Advertiser and he contributed to the Tennessee Valley Civil War Round Table’s first book “13 Wore Gray and the Rest Blue”. He is currently serving on the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Civil War Round Table, the Board of Directors of the Huntsville-Madison County Historical Society as the Huntsville The Early Works Board of Directors, and is a member of the Huntsville-Madison County Alabama Bicentennial Committee. He and his wife, Lynda, a native of New Hope, Alabama, live in the Huntsville, Alabama area.
Michael Acosta, Technology Officer
Michael Acosta is originally from South Texas. He is a retired US Marine Corps Officer & Aviator who moved to Huntsville in the summer of 2017 to work at Redstone Arsenal. A 1998 graduate of the US Naval Academy, he holds a BS in History from there, as well as an MBA and an MS in Management from the University of Maryland. He has been married to the former Janet Murphy of Salisbury, MD, for over 25 years and has three kids. An avid Revolutionary War and Civil War buff, he thoroughly enjoys dragging his family to various battlefield and historical sites around the country. A member of the Tennessee Valley Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution, Michael also volunteers as a local Naval Academy Representative and with his kids’ Scouting units.
VACANT, Sergeant At Arms
Ed Kennedy, Former President
John A. Allen, Former President
Kent Wright, Former Programs Officer
Mark Hubbs, Former Preservation Officer and co-founder
April Harris, Former President