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Abraham H. Galloway (1837-1870) was a fiery young slave rebel, radical abolitionist, and Union spy who rose out of bondage to become one of the most significant and stirring black leaders in the South during the Civil War. Throughout his brief, mercurial life, Galloway fought against slavery and injustice. He risked his life behind enemy lines, recruited black soldiers for the North, and fought racism in the Union army's ranks. He also stood at the forefront of an African American political movement that flourished in the Union-occupied parts of North Carolina, even leading a historic delegation of black southerners to the White House to meet with President Lincoln and to demand the full rights of citizenship. He later became one of the first black men elected to the North Carolina legislature. Long hidden from history, Galloway's story reveals a war unfamiliar to most of us. As David Cecelski writes, ""Galloway's Civil War was a slave insurgency, a war of liberation that was the culmination of generations of perseverance and faith."" This riveting portrait illuminates Galloway's life and deepens our insight into the Civil War and Reconstruction as experienced by African Americans in the South.
Explore the Civil War history of West Virginia's Coal River Valley.
A Broken Regiment recounts the tragic history of one of the Civil War's most ill-fated Union military units. organised in the late summer of 1862, the 16th Connecticut Volunteer Infantry was unprepared for battle a month later, when it entered the fight at Antietam. The results were catastrophic: nearly a quarter of the men were killed or wounded, and Connecticut's 16th panicked and fled the field. In the years that followed, the regiment participated in minor skirmishes before surrendering en masse in North Carolina in 1864. Most of its members spent months in southern prison camps, including the notorious Andersonville stockade, where disease and starvation took the lives of over one hundred members of the unit. The struggles of the 16th led survivors to reflect on the true nature of their military experience during and after the war, and questions of cowardice and courage, patriotism and purpose, were often foremost in their thoughts. Over time, competing stories emerged of who they were, why they endured what they did, and how they should be remembered. By the end of the century, their collective recollections reshaped this troubling and traumatic past, and the ""unfortunate regiment"" emerged as ""The Brave Sixteenth,"" their individual memories and accounts altered to fit the more heroic contours of the Union victory. The product of over a decade of research, Lesley J. Gordon's A Broken Regiment illuminates this unit's complex history amid the interplay of various, and often competing, voices. The result is a fascinating and heartrending story of one regiment's wartime and postwar struggles.
While most Americans count Abraham Lincoln among the most beloved and admired former presidents, a dedicated minority has long viewed him not only as the worst president in the country's history, but also as a criminal who defied the Constitution and advanced federal power and the idea of racial equality. In Loathing Lincoln, historian John McKee Barr surveys the broad array of criticisms about Abraham Lincoln that emerged when he stepped onto the national stage, expanded during the Civil War, and continued to evolve after his death and into the present.
The first panoramic study of Lincoln's critics, Barr's work offers an analysis of Lincoln in historical memory and an examination of how his critics -- on both the right and left -- have frequently reflected the anxiety and discontent Americans felt about their lives. From northern abolitionists troubled by the slow pace of emancipation, to Confederates who condemned him as a "black Republican" and despot, to Americans who blamed him for the civil rights movement, to, more recently, libertarians who accuse him of trampling the Constitution and creating the modern welfare state, Lincoln's detractors have always been a vocal minority, but not one without influence.
By meticulously exploring the most significant arguments against Lincoln, Barr traces the rise of the president's most strident critics and links most of them to a distinct right-wing or neo-Confederate political agenda. According to Barr, their hostility to a more egalitarian America and opposition to any use of federal power to bring about such goals led them to portray Lincoln as an imperialistic president who grossly overstepped the bounds of his office. In contrast, liberals criticized him for not doing enough to bring about emancipation or ensure lasting racial equality. Lincoln's conservative and libertarian foes, however, constituted the vast majority of his detractors. More recently, Lincoln's most vociferous critics have adamantly opposed Barack Obama and his policies, many of them referencing Lincoln in their attacks on the current president. In examining these individuals and groups, Barr's study provides a deeper understanding of American political life and the nation itself.
The American Civil War shaped the course of the country's history and its national identity. This is no less true for the state of Arkansas. Throughout the Natural State, people have paid homage and remembrance to those who fought and what was fought for in memorial celebrations and rituals. The memory of the war has been kept alive by reunions and preservationists, continuing to shape the way the War Between the States affects Arkansas and its people. Historian W. Stuart Towns expertly tells the story of Arkansas's Civil War heritage through its rituals of memorial, commemoration and celebration that continue today.
Nationalism in nineteenth-century America operated through a collection of symbols, signifiers citizens could invest with meaning and understanding. In Confederate Visions, Ian Binnington examines the roots of Confederate nationalism by analysing some of its most important symbols: Confederate constitutions, treasury notes, wartime literature, and the role of the military in symbolising the Confederate nation. Nationalisms tend to construct a glorified past, an idyllic picture of national strength, honor, and unity, with a past often based on a vision of what should be true rather than what actually was. Binnington considers here the ways in which the Confederacy was imagined by antebellum Southerners through a group of intertwined mythic concepts-the ""Worthy Southron,"" the ""Demon Yankee,"" the ""Silent Slave,"" and a sense of shared history deemed Confederate Americanism. These symbols were repeatedly invoked and entwined by the producers of Confederate nationalism. The Worthy Southron, the constructed Confederate self, was imagined as a champion of liberty, counterposed to the Demon Yankee other, a fanatical abolitionist and enemy of Liberty. The Silent Slave, meanwhile, was a companion to the vocal Confederate self, loyal and trusting, reliable and honest. The road to the creation of an American identity was fraught with struggle, political conflict, and ultimately bloody Civil War. Confederate Visions examines literature, newspapers and periodicals, visual imagery, and formal state documents to explore the origins and development of these symbols of wartime Confederate nationalism.
The initial confrontation between Union general Ulysses S. Grant and Confederate general Robert E. Lee in Virginia during the Overland Campaign has not until recently received the same degree of scrutiny as other Civil War battles. The first round of combat between the two renowned generals spanned about six weeks in May and early June 1864. The major skirmishes Wilderness, Spotsylvania, and Cold Harbor rivaled any other key engagement in the war. While the strength and casualties in Grant s army remain uncontested, historians know much less about Lee s army. Nonetheless, the prevailing narrative depicts Confederates as outstripped nearly two to one, and portrays Grant suffering losses at a rate nearly double that of Lee. As a result, most Civil War scholars contend that the campaign proved a clear numerical victory for Lee but a tactical triumph for Grant. Questions about the power of Lee s army stem mainly from poor record keeping by the Confederates as well as an inordinate number of missing or lost battle reports. The complexity of the Overland Campaign, which consisted of several smaller engagements in addition to the three main clashes, led to considerable historic uncertainty regarding Lee s army. Significant doubts persist about the army s capability at the commencement of the drive, the amount of reinforcements received, and the total of casualties sustained during the entire campaign and at each of the major battles. In Lee s Army during the Overland Campaign, Alfred C. Young III addresses this deficiency by providing for the first time accurate information regarding the Confederate side throughout the conflict. The results challenge prevailing assumptions, showing clearly that Lee s army stood far larger in strength and size and suffered considerably higher casualties than previously believed.
Based on years of exhaustive and meticulous research, David C. Keehn's study provides the first comprehensive analysis of the Knights of the Golden Circle, a secret southern society that initially sought to establish a slave-holding empire in the ""Golden Circle"" region of Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central America. Keehn reveals the origins, rituals, structure, and complex history of this mysterious group, including its later involvement in the secession movement. Members supported southern governors in precipitating disunion, filled the ranks of the nascent Confederate Army, and organised rearguard actions during the Civil War. The Knights of the Golden Circle emerged around 1858 when a secret society formed by a Cincinnati businessman merged with the pro-expansionist Order of the Lone Star, which already had 15,000 members. The following year, the Knights began publishing their own newspaper and established their headquarters in Washington, D. C. In 1860, during their first attempt to create the Golden Circle, several thousand Knights assembled in southern Texas to ""colonise"" northern Mexico. Due to insufficient resources and organisational shortfalls, however, that filibuster failed. Later, the Knights shifted their focus and began pushing for disunion, spearheading pro-secession rallies, and intimidating Unionists in the South. They appointed regional military commanders from the ranks of the South's major political and military figures, including men such as Elkanah Greer of Texas, Paul J. Semmes of Georgia, Robert C. Tyler of Maryland, and Virginius D. Groner of Virginia. Followers also established allies with the South's rabidly pro-secession ""fire-eaters,"" which included individuals such as Barnwell Rhett, Louis Wigfall, Henry Wise, and William Yancey. According to Keehn, the Knights likely carried out a variety of other clandestine actions before the Civil War, including attempts by insurgents to take over federal forts in Virginia and North Carolina, the activation of pro-southern militia around Washington, D. C. and a planned assassination of Abraham Lincoln as he passed through Baltimore in early 1861 on the way to his inauguration. Once the fighting began, the Knights helped build the emerging Confederate Army and assisted with the pro-Confederate Copperhead movement in northern states. With the war all but lost, various Knights supported one of their members, John Wilkes Booth, in his plot to abduct and assassinate President Lincoln. Keehn's fast-paced, engaging narrative demonstrates that the Knights proved more substantial than historians have traditionally assumed and provides a new perspective on southern secession and the outbreak of the Civil War.
"In Becoming Confederates," Gary W. Gallagher explores loyalty in
the era of the Civil War, focusing on Robert E. Lee, Stephen Dodson
Ramseur, and Jubal A. Early--three prominent officers in the Army
of Northern Virginia who became ardent Confederate nationalists.
Loyalty was tested and proved in many ways leading up to and during
the war. Looking at levels of allegiance to their native state, to
the slaveholding South, to the United States, and to the
Confederacy, Gallagher shows how these men represent responses to
the mid-nineteenth-century crisis.
In antebellum America, both North and South emerged as modernizing, capitalist societies. Work bells, clock towers, and personal timepieces increasingly instilled discipline on one's day, which already was ordered by religious custom and nature's rhythms. The Civil War changed that, argues Cheryl A. Wells. Overriding antebellum schedules, war played havoc with people's perception and use of time. For those closest to the fighting, the war's effect on time included disrupted patterns of sleep, extended hours of work, conflated hours of leisure, indefinite prison sentences, challenges to the gender order, and desecration of the Sabbath.
Wells calls this phenomenon "battle time." To create a modern war machine military officers tried to graft the antebellum authority of the clock onto the actual and mental terrain of the Civil War. However, as Wells's coverage of the Manassas and Gettysburg battles shows, military engagements followed their own logic, often without regard for the discipline imposed by clocks. Wells also looks at how battle time's effects spilled over into periods of inaction, and she covers not only the experiences of soldiers but also those of nurses, prisoners of war, slaves, and civilians.
After the war, women returned, essentially, to an antebellum temporal world, says Wells. Elsewhere, however, postwar temporalities were complicated as freedmen and planters, and workers and industrialists renegotiated terms of labor within parameters set by the clock and nature. A crucial juncture on America's path to an ordered relationship to time, the Civil War had an acute effect on the nation's progress toward a modernity marked by multiple, interpenetrating times largely based on the clock.
This sweeping new history recognizes that the Civil War was not just a military conflict but also a moment of profound transformation in Americans' relationship to the natural world. To be sure, environmental factors such as topography and weather powerfully shaped the outcomes of battles and campaigns, and the war could not have been fought without the horses, cattle, and other animals that were essential to both armies. But here Judkin Browning and Timothy Silver weave a far richer story, combining military and environmental history to forge a comprehensive new narrative of the war's significance and impact. As they reveal, the conflict created a new disease environment by fostering the spread of microbes among vulnerable soldiers, civilians, and animals; led to large-scale modifications of the landscape across several states; sparked new thinking about the human relationship to the natural world; and demanded a reckoning with disability and death on an ecological scale. And as the guns fell silent, the change continued; Browning and Silver show how the war influenced the future of weather forecasting, veterinary medicine, the birth of the conservation movement, and the establishment of the first national parks. In considering human efforts to find military and political advantage by reshaping the natural world, Browning and Silver show not only that the environment influenced the Civil War's outcome but also that the war was a watershed event in the history of the environment itself.
A powerful account of a surprisingly forgotten tragedy of the Civil War
A stunning wartime account of human endurance and adventure, and an exploration of just how much the human body and mind can take, "Sultana" follows several young Union soldiers through the Civil War and what was, for them, its unimaginably disastrous aftermath. We see them enlist and then almost immediately be plunged into a cascading series of wartime horrors: Battle, trauma, prison camp, and, finally, the sinking of the "Sultana," the steamboat that was taking them back home.
On an April night in 1865, the "Sultana" slowly moved up the dark Mississippi, its overtaxed engines straining under the weight of a human cargo that included an estimated twenty-four hundred passengers--more than six times the number it was designed to carry. Most were weak, emaciated Union soldiers, recently paroled from Confederate prison camps, on their way home after enduring the violence of war. At two a.m., three of "Sultana"'s four boilers exploded. Within twenty minutes, it went down in fire and water, taking an estimated seventeen hundred lives.
The sinking of the "Sultana" remains the worst maritime disaster in American history, yet due to a confluence of contemporary events (Lincoln had recently been assassinated and the war had ended), it soon faded into relative obscurity. Now Alan Huffman presents this harrowing story against the backdrop of the endless suffering already endured by its survivors. Using contemporary research as well as digging deep into archives and family keepsakes, Huffman paints a gripping portrait of the young men who made it home alive.
Desperate to seize control of Kentucky, the Confederate army launched an invasion into the commonwealth in the fall of 1862, viciously culminating at an otherwise quiet Bluegrass crossroads and forever altering the landscape of the war. The Battle of Perryville lasted just one day yet produced nearly eight thousand combined casualties and losses, and some say nary a victor. The Rebel army was forced to retreat, and the United States kept its imperative grasp on Kentucky throughout the war. Few know this hallowed ground like Christopher L. Kolakowski, former director of the Perryville Battlefield Preservation Association, who draws on letters, reports, memoirs and other primary sources to offer the most accessible and engaging account of the Kentucky Campaign yet, featuring over sixty historic images and maps.
Gordon Rhea's gripping fourth volume on the spring 1864 campaign-which pitted Ulysses S. Grant against Robert E. Lee for the first time in the Civil War-vividly re-creates the battles and maneuvers from the stalemate on the North Anna River through the Cold Harbor offensive. Cold Harbor: Grant and Lee, May 26-June 3, 1864 showcases Rhea's tenacious research which elicits stunning new facts from the records of a phase oddly ignored or mythologized by historians. In clear and profuse tactical detail, Rhea tracks the remarkable events of those nine days, giving a surprising new interpretation of the famous battle that left seven thousand Union casualties and only fifteen hundred Confederate dead or wounded. Here, Grant is not a callous butcher, and Lee does not wage a perfect fight. Within the pages of Cold Harbor, Rhea separates fact from fiction in a charged, evocative narrative. He leaves readers under a moonless sky, with Grant pondering the eastward course of the James River fifteen miles south of the encamped armies.
Few wartime cities in Virginia held more importance than Petersburg. Nonetheless, the city has, until now, lacked an adequate military history, let alone a history of the civilian home front. The noted Civil War historian A. Wilson Greene now provides an expertly researched, eloquently written study of the city that was second only to Richmond in size and strategic significance. Industrial, commercial, and extremely prosperous, Petersburg was also home to a large African American community, including the state's highest percentage of free blacks. On the eve of the Civil War, the city elected a conservative, pro-Union approach to the sectional crisis. Little more than a month before Virginia's secession did Petersburg finally express pro-Confederate sentiments, at which point the city threw itself wholeheartedly into the effort, with large numbers of both white and black men serving. Over the next four years, Petersburg's citizens watched their once-beautiful city become first a conduit for transient soldiers from the Deep South, then an armed camp, and finally the focus of one of the Civil War's most protracted and damaging campaigns. (The fall of Richmond and collapse of the Confederate war effort in Virginia followed close on Grant's ultimate success in Petersburg.) At war's end, Petersburg's antebellum prosperity evaporated under pressures from inflation, chronic shortages, and the extensive damage done by Union artillery shells. Greene's book tracks both Petersburg's civilian experience and the city's place in Confederate military strategy and administration. Employing scores of unpublished sources, the book weaves a uniquely personal story of thousands of citizens--free blacks, slaves and their holders, factory owners, merchants--all of whom shared a singular experience in Civil War Virginia.
With his third book, To the North Anna River, Gordon Rhea resumes his spectacular narrative of the initial campaign between Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee in the spring of 1864. May 13 to 25, a phase oddly ignored by historians, was critical in the clash between the Army of the Potomac and the Army of Northern Virginia. During those thirteen days -- an interlude bracketed by horrific battles that riveted the public's attention -- a game of guile and endurance between Grant and Lee escalated to a suspenseful draw on Virginia's North Anna River. Rhea skillfully sets the stage at dawn May 13 and from there lends every imaginable perspective -- from mental interiors to sweeping panoramas to scholarly retrospection -- on the ensuing hours.
From the bloodstained fields of the Mule Shoe to the North Anna River, with Meadow Bridge, Myers Hill, Harris Farm, Jericho Mills, Ox Ford, and Doswell Farm in between, grueling night marches, desperate attacks, and thundering cavalry charges became the norm for both Grant's and Lee's men. But the real story of May 13-25 lay in the two general's efforts to outfox each other, and Rhea charts their every step and misstep. Realizing that his bludgeoning tactics at the Bloody Angle were ineffective, Grant resorted to a fast-paced assault on Lee's vulnerable points. Lee, outnumbered two to one, abandoned the offensive and concentrated on anticipating Grant's maneuvers and shifting quickly enough to repel them. It was an amazingly equal match of wits that produced a gripping, high-stakes bout of warfare -- a test, ultimately, of improvisation for Lee and of perseverance for Grant.
From unprecedented research into more than 550 published and unpublishedsources, Rhea produces an exciting new take on this overlooked passage in the Civil War. He discovers a surprising similarity in military temperament between Lee and Grant, whom historians traditionally contrast. He also presents the first detailed recounting of Philip Sheridan's dramatic battle to save his cavalry corps in front of Richmond; the story of the novice New York and New England heavy artillerists drawn down from Washington; the specifics of Grant's forlorn attack of May 18 at Spotsylvania Court House; and the full picture of Lee's ingenious inverted V formation on the North Anna. The most accurate, not to mention enthralling, account to date of this next phase in Lee and Grant's opening match, To the North Anna River is a worthy sequel to Rhea's earlier acclaimed works.
An important story of one man's life, lived with courage and
During the decades of Bourbon ascendancy after 1874, Alabama institutions like those in other southern states were dominated by whites. Former slave and sharecropper Jack Turner refused to accept a society so structured. Highly intelligent, physically imposing, and an orator of persuasive talents, Turner was fearless before whites and emerged as a leader of his race. He helped to forge a political alliance between blacks and whites that defeated and humiliated the Bourbons in Choctaw County, the heart of the Black Belt, in the election of 1882. That summer, after a series of bogus charges and arrests, Turner was accused of planning to lead his private army of blacks in a general slaughter of the county whites. Justice was forgotten in the resultant fear and hysteria.
Part cookbook, part culinary history, part family history, this volume offers an intimate glimpse into life in the household of a mid-19th-century Virginia family, that of the author's great-grandparents, Robert E. Lee and his wife, Mary Anna Randolph Custis Lee. The collection of recipes, photographs, shopping lists and other domestic jottings act as a window on an earlier way of life. Filled with family stories and photographs, it features 70 recipes for breads, cakes, puddings, sweets, soups, main dishes, vegetables, drinks, and home remedies. Each historic recipes is accompanied by notes on ingredients and techinques and by tips for adapting the recipe in the modern kitchen.
Emory Upton (1839-1881) is widely recognized as one of America's most influential military thinkers. His works - The Armies of Asia and Europe and The Military Policy of the United States - fueled the army's intellectual ferment in the late nineteenth century and guided Secretary of War Elihu Root's reforms in the early 1900s. Yet as David J. Fitzpatrick contends, Upton is also widely misunderstood as an antidemocratic militaristic zealot whose ideas were ""too Prussian"" for America. In this first full biography in nearly half a century, Fitzpatrick, the leading authority on Upton, radically revises our view of this important figure in American military thought. A devout Methodist farm boy from upstate New York, Upton attended the United States Military Academy at West Point and served in the Civil War. His use of a mass infantry attack to break the Confederate lines at Spotsylvania Courthouse in 1864 identified him as a rising figure in the U.S. Army. Upton's subsequent work on military organizations in Asia and Europe, commissioned by Commanding General William T. Sherman, influenced the army's turn toward a European, largely German ideal of soldiering as a profession. Yet it was this same text, along with Upton's Military Policy of the United States, that also propelled the misinterpretations of Upton - first by some contemporaries, and more recently by noted historians Stephen Ambrose and Russell Weigley. By showing Upton's dedication to the ideal of the citizen-soldier and placing him within the context of contemporary military, political, and intellectual discourse, Fitzpatrick shows how Upton's ideas clearly grew out of an American military-political tradition. Emory Upton: Misunderstood Reformer clarifies Upton's influence on the army by offering a new and necessary understanding of the military's intellectual direction at a critical juncture in American history.
One of the most misunderstood periods in American history, Reconstruction remains relevant today because its central issue -- the role of the federal government in protecting citizens' rights and promoting economic and racial justice in a heterogeneous society -- is still unresolved. America's Reconstruction examines the origins of this crucial time, explores how black and white Southerners responded to the abolition of slavery, traces the political disputes between Congress and President Andrew Johnson, and analyzes the policies of the Reconstruction governments and the reasons for their demise.
America's Reconstruction was published in conjunction with a major exhibition on the era produced by the Valentine Museum in Richmond, Virginia, and the Virginia Historical Society. The exhibit included a remarkable collection of engravings from Harper's Weekly, lithographs, and political cartoons, as well as objects such as sculptures, rifles, flags, quilts, and other artifacts. An important tool for deepening the experience of those who visited the exhibit, America's Reconstruction also makes this rich assemblage of information and period art available to the wider audience of people unable to see the exhibit in its host cities. A work that stands along as well as in proud accompaniment to the temporary collection, it will appeal to general readers and assist instructors of both new and seasoned students of the Civil War and its tumultuous aftermath.
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