Civil War Period (1850-1877)
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Of the many fascinating people whose lives have been nearly lost to history, George Lee Gaskell was one of the most interesting. Gaskell was a Union lieutenant, world traveler, polyglot, and politician with a keen eye for his surroundings and the natural world. His letters highlight the very human realities of his Army service that go beyond the monumental battles he fought in: Antietam, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and others. Fiercely anti-slavery and disgusted by the attitudes of some of the slaveholding planters in the South, Gaskell encountered these prejudices firsthand when he was promoted to second lieutenant and transferred to the United States Colored Troops serving in Louisiana. His remarkable story ranges from a one-room schoolhouse in Connecticut to the thriving metropolis of Zanzibar to war, life, and love on the banks of the Mississippi. Gaskell’s experiences, told through his own words in letters to his cherished sister and to his hometown newspaper, speak of an exceptional man forged in an extraordinary time.
Lincoln was not assassinated—he was ordered executed by fellow politicians and military leaders because he wanted to welcome the Southern states back into the Union with their full constitutional rights restored. Threatened by this and other possibilities of clemency for the South, Vice-Pres. Andrew Johnson, Secretary of War Edwin Stanton, and the U.S. chief of the National Detective Police, Lafayette Baker, took action to ensure that this would not occur.
Antietam: The Lost Order explains why Harper’s Ferry was key to the Union victory in September 1862, the importance of the location and timing of the Battle of Antietam, and how its outcome influenced the future of our country. The book concludes by analyzing what went wrong on the Union side, the lasting impact of finding the lost order, and finally, the fates of the major players. With as much emphasis given to human foibles as to troop movements, this book will appeal to a wide audience beyond Civil War devotees.
The battle of Carthage, Missouri, was fought more than two weeks before First Bull Run and was the culmination of the first major land campaign of the Civil War. The Battle of Carthage is the first book devoted to this influential, early war battle. The book features detailed tactical coverage of the battle and in-depth biographical sketches, with critical evaluations of both sides’ major participants. Paperback.
The Union army’s bombardment of Charleston lasted 545 days, a record not exceeded until the siege of Leningrad (St. Petersburg) during World War II. First-time author W. Chris Phelps uses letters, diaries, and other primary documents to describe life inside the target city. By referencing military archives, he also supports the widely held contemporary belief that the shelling was prolonged by the North’s desire for terror and revenge against the civilian population, and had no military purpose once the initial strategy had failed.
Here, for the first time, Paul D. Walker reveals Robert E. Lee’s true plan for victory at Gettysburg: a simultaneous strike against the Union center from the front and rear—Pickett’s infantry to charge the front, while Stuart’s cavalry struck the rear. The frontal assault by Pickett went off as scheduled, but as Stuart’s forces approached from the rear, they encountered a Union cavalry contingent. As the forces joined, the Union cavalry leader was quickly killed, and command fell to one of the most dynamic figures in American history—George Armstrong Custer.
At the outbreak of the Civil War, Charleston, as the site where the Ordinance of Secession was signed, faced the full wrath of Union forces. In response, the Charleston Battalion, comprised of volunteers from all strata of local society, formed a loyal, effective fighting unit. They served with distinction in several campaigns in Virginia and North Carolina and defended their hometown against Union invaders.
One of the most complete collections of Civil War correspondence to appear in print, Charlotte’s Boys recounts the fate of Charlotte Branch, her three sons, and their extended family and friends from 1861 through 1866. John, Sanford, and Hamilton Branch’s enlistment in the Oglethorpe Light Infantry, Savannah’s militia, left their mother in Georgia with only letters to keep her company. The story of the Branch boys shows the Civil War’s impact on individual soldiers and their families.
This account of some of the conflicts between American Indians and whites from 1861-1865 depicts the struggles among disenfranchised native peoples on the frontier and expansion of a predominantly white culture into the West. While whites fought whites from the Atlantic seaboard to the prairies of Kansas, great nations in Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Montana, the Dakotas, Colorado, Nebraska, Kansas, Texas, Missouri, and Minnesota struck back at the incursion of white intruders.
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