Biographical Information:
Dates in Ridgefield: 1984-

nonfiction, history
business executive, historian

Charles Pankenier, author of Ridgefield Fights the Civil War, is a retiree from IBM whose interest in America’s bloodiest armed conflict began nearly 60 years ago. His book--written in preparation for the 150th anniversary of the start of the war--chronicles “how one town fought the war,” says the author in a Foreword. Drawing on primary and secondary sources–as well as visits to over 50 Civil War battlefields east of the Rockies–Pankenier recounts “the histories of particular individuals, organizations, and events to represent how Ridgefield... soldiers and their loved ones on the home front experienced the 1861-65 struggle that defined our country.” In a talk given at the Keller Tavern, Pankenier tells of one such soldier, Edwin D. Pickett, who was killed in the Battle of Gettysburg at age 28 and is buried in Ridgefield. Pickett was one of 11 Ridgefielders who died or were wounded that day.

Ridgefield Fights the Civil War, 2011

--Sources: Ridgefield Press; RidgefieldPatch, April 4, 2011; Danbury NewsTimes, April 12, 2011; Barnes & Noble