Season recaps are always a way to thank everyone for the their support and work over the past few months. This season was no exception with friends coming to assist for a majority of the episodes. Elizabeth, Brian, Scott, Dawn, Olivia, Jessica, Eric, and Brett you all rock! Thank you!
I’ve always enjoyed visiting Shy’s Hill; it is only a few miles from my house tucked away in the Green Hills community. It is interesting to have such a key piece of Civil War history so close. During the planning phase for season 3 Shy’s Hill was originally going to be my season introduction episode. Tennessee has a rich history related to the Civil War and I had a lot of fun producing both the Mississippi episode and the Fort Negley Season 2 opener. Shy’s Hill would give me another opportunity to put on my Ken Burns hat.
The original intent was to just discuss the role the hill played in the Battle of Nashville, which was critical to the outcome. The battle is often overshadowed by the debacle two weeks prior at Franklin. That is unfortunate, because this battle is pretty much the final nail in the coffin for the Confederacy. Once I started researching a new story line emerged, the case of Colonel Shy. It became apparent I would have to spend more time on the Shy’s Hill episode so Harpeth Narrows was substituted in as a replacement. Ironically the Narrows area would reveal a lot more than originally expected and become an even more time-consuming shoot than this was.
The biggest challenge in writing this episode was condensing the Battle of Nashville down so it could still be understood. Two-day battles with thousands of men that are also the culmination of a major campaign can be overwhelming, even more so when it is a topic you enjoy researching. Several times I had to remind myself to just focus on the hill itself. As for the case of Colonel Shy, that was a lot more straightforward, and the story itself adds a nice coda to the hidden history theme of season 3.
As for filming, this was a one-day solo shoot. I had the site pretty much to myself, though it does sit in a well-developed suburban section of Nashville so there was some noise to consider with construction, barking dogs, and traffic. Overall everything went fairly smoothly.
Music-wise this episode uses four different pieces in the episode: Pride, Five Armies, End of an Era, Echoes in Time v2. Hopefully they help create the mood I wished to convey. All the pieces used were composed by Kevin MacLeod of incompetech.com. If you need music for your project please check him out.
Looking forward I’m happy to report that half of season 4 has already been filmed with the remaining episodes to be finished in the next three months. Also, there will be a few changes to the blog and channel. Expect more details soon.
If you enjoyed this season please consider subscribing on YouTube to the Rooftops of America channel. Also consider donating to the Rooftops of America GoFundMe Campaign so we can continue bringing you these episodes as we go highpointing across the USA. Thanks for watching!