I became interested in the ancestry of my family after retiring from a career as a hospital nursing executive. After tracking my roots back toward the Mayflower, which kept me occupied for a year or two, the next logical step was finding out more about my great-great grandfather, Peter Joseph Osterhaus, by far the most interesting figure I had encountered.
I knew bits and pieces of his story from family tales and documents, but the problem was that the information I could casually turn up on the web was full of contradictions. The more I dug the less sure I was of the facts, to the point that I decided to do a thorough job of researching his life. Look for my biography, Yankee Warhorse, published March 24, 2010.
Fortunately, I had a mentor through this discovery process who led me away from some of the mistakes of an amateur historian: Dr. Earl J. Hess, Stewart W. McClelland Chair in History at Lincoln Memorial University, Civil War historian, writer, and Osterhaus authority. He convinced me that there were other historians and Civil War enthusiasts that wanted to learn more about Osterhaus, just as I had.
So, if you are indeed out there, this site is for you. I hope you learn something that you didn't know before. I'd love to hear your comments and questions, and look forward to learning more from you.Mary Bobbitt Townsend