The American Civil War: A Handbook of Literature and Research

Greenwood Publishing Group
Free sample

The single most important volume for anyone interested in the Civil War to own and consult. (From the foreword by James M. McPherson) The first guide to Civil War literature to appear in nearly 30 years, this book provides the most comprehensive, up-to-date, and informative survey and analysis of the vast body of Civil War literature. More than 40 essays, each by a specialist in a particular subfield of Civil War history, offer unmatched thoroughness and discerning assessments of each work's value. The essays cover every aspect of the war from strategy, tactics, and battles to logistics, intelligence, supply, and prisoner-of-war camps, from generals and admirals to the men in the ranks, from the Atlantic to the Far West, from fighting fronts to the home front. Some sections cover civilian leaders, the economy, and foreign policy, while others deal with the causes of war and aspects of Reconstruction, including the African-American experience during and after the war.

Breadth of topics is matched by breadth of genres covered. Essays discuss surveys of the war, general reference works, published and unpublished papers, diaries and letters, as well as the vast body of monographic literature, including books, dissertations, and articles. Genealogical sources, historical fiction, and video and audio recordings also receive attention. Students of the American Civil War will find this work an indispensable gateway and guide to the enormous body of information on America's pivotal experience.

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About the author

STEVEN E. WOODWORTH is Associate Professor of History at Toccoa Falls College in Georgia. He is the author of Jefferson Davis and His Generals: The Failure of Confederate Command in the West (1990), Davis and Lee at War (1995), and Leadership and Command in the American Civil War (1995).

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Additional Information

Publisher
Greenwood Publishing Group
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Published on
Dec 31, 1996
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Pages
754
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ISBN
9780313290190
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Language
English
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Genres
History / United States / Civil War Period (1850-1877)
Reference / Bibliographies & Indexes
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Tracing the origins and history of Missouri Confederate units that served during the Civil War is nearly as difficult as comprehending the diverse politics that produced them. Deeply torn by the issues that caused the conflict, some Missourians chose sides enthusiastically, others reluctantly, while a number had to choose out of sheer necessity, for fence straddling held no sway in the state after the fighting began. The several thousand that sided with the Confederacy formed a variety of military organizations, some earning reputations for hard fighting exceeded by few other states, North or South. Unfortunately, the records of Missouri's Confederate units have not been adequately preserved—officially or otherwise—until now. James E. McGhee is a highly respected and widely published authority on the Civil War in Missouri; the scope of this book is startling, the depth of detail gratifying, its reliability undeniable, and the unit narratives highly readable. McGhee presents accounts of the sixty-nine artillery, cavalry, and infantry units in the state, as well as their precedent units and those that failed to complete their organization. Relying heavily on primary sources, such as rosters, official reports, order books, letters, diaries, and memoirs, he weaves diverse materials into concise narratives of each of Missouri's Confederate organizations. He lists the field-grade officers for battalions and regiments, companies and company commanders, and places of origin for each company when known. In addition to listing all the commanding officers in each unit, he includes a bibliography germane to the unit, while a supplemental bibliography provides the other sources used in preparing this unique and comprehensive resource.
The team behind the New York Times bestseller The Book of General Ignorance turns conventional biography on its head—and shakes out the good stuff.
 
Following their Herculean—or is it Sisyphean?—efforts to save the living from ignorance, the two wittiest Johns in the English language turn their attention to the dead.
 
As the authors themselves say, “The first thing that strikes you about the Dead is just how many of them there are.” Helpfully, Lloyd and Mitchinson have employed a simple—but ruthless—criterion for inclusion: the dead person has to be interesting.
 
Here, then, is a dictionary of the dead, an encyclopedia of the embalmed. Ludicrous in scope, whimsical in its arrangement, this wildly entertaining tome presents pithy and provocative biographies of the no-longer-living from the famous to the undeservedly and—until now—permanently obscure. Spades in hand, Lloyd and Mitchinson have dug up everything embarrassing, fascinating, and downright weird about their subjects’ lives and added their own uniquely irreverent observations.
 
Organized by capricious categories—such as dead people who died virgins, who kept pet monkeys, who lost limbs, whose corpses refused to stay put—the dearly departed, from the inventor of the stove to a cross-dressing, bear-baiting female gangster finally receive the epitaphs they truly deserve.
 
Discover:

* Why Freud had a lifelong fear of trains
* The one thing that really made Isaac Newton laugh
* How Catherine the Great really died (no horse was involved)
 
Much like the country doctor who cured smallpox (he’s in here), Lloyd and Mitchinson have the perfect antidote for anyone out there dying of boredom. The Book of the Dead—like life itself—is hilarious, tragic, bizarre, and amazing. You may never pass a graveyard again without chuckling.
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