Question of the Week: 10/18-10/24/21

What Civil War book[s] are you reading this autumn?

28 Responses to Question of the Week: 10/18-10/24/21

  1. Right now, I am reading books on the battle of the Bulge, during World War 2, in anticipation of a trip to Europe for 2 weeks to study the battlefield.

    You would surprised to read how many references the authors make to the Civil War.

    The last Civil War related book I read was by Kent Masterson Brown, Meade at Gettysburg.

    1. Download, buy or borrow a copy of “If You Survive” by George Wilson. It covers his experiences from Normandy through the Battle of the Bulge to the end of the war. However, much of the book describes his horrific experiences as a junior officer in the Battle of the Hurtgen Forest in late 1944. In my opinion, it is an absolute “must read” for anyone reading about that time period of the war in Europe.

    1. Me too. I am up to the end, the race for Lee to break out after the fall of Petersburg and for Sheridan to stay ahead of the fleeing rebels. Foote’s work appears to contain almost every word Jefferson Davis published or spoke during the war. I am convinced Davis and Lee kept the war going after Lincoln’s re-election due to their fear of being executed as so many in the North advocated for Davis. Yet the Great Emancipator’s instructions to General Weitzel in Richmond on April 4th were “I’d let `em up easy. Let `em up easy.” Even when his wife said, “Davis must be hung,” Abe answered, “Judge not, lest ye be judged.”
      At the same time, I am reading General Horace Porter’s Campaigning With Grant. As a young man in the field with Grant and Sheridan, Porter’s memoir is thankfully light on
      Confederate political statements in the last weeks when there were so many needless casualties. If only they had surrendered after Lincoln’s election, when all hope was lost, so many would have avoided being killed or crippled for life.

  2. Reading books by John S Mosby and his rangers. These books were published in the post civil war era. I just finished reading Mosby’s war reminisinances. Reading Crawford’s book next.

  3. I just finished ECW books on Franklin, Chickamauga and Atlanta prior to starting the trip I’m on there. Just started Daniel’s book on Stone’s River. When I get back home I’ll go back to reading several works on the Valley Campaign of 64.

  4. I am reading two books now: a biography of “Grant” by William S. Mc Feely and William Herndon’s, “The Life of Lincoln”. I will be reading next a biography of “Stanton” by Walter Stahr and Chris Mackowski’s book: “The Great Battle Never Fought”, the story of the Mine Run Campaign.

  5. Robert E. Lee: A Life-Allen Guelzo
    To Rescue the Republic-Bret Bauer
    An American Marriage-M. Burlingame
    Summer of ‘63-C. Mackowski

  6. Several about the fall of New Orleans for my new Civil War novel. Also, I am looking for an expert on Mobile Bay and Mobile defenses early in the war.
    Anyone I could contact, please let me know.

    1. William Howard Russell, the British war correspondent, visited Mobile and Pensacola early in 1861. Toured many of the defences of both sides, and provided his impressions. “My Diary, North and South” published 1863 is available online via HathiTrust. Also available via HathiTrust: “J.O. Kerbey: Boy Spy in Dixie” (published 1889) reveals the state of defences in Montgomery, Mobile and Pensacola in April/ May 1861.

  7. Reading 3 books now: ‘A Slave in the white House’, by Elizabeth Taylor-with a online book group, Ron Chernows ‘Alexander Hamilton’, and Vol. 2 of ‘A Rebel War Clerk’s Diary” by John B. Jones.

  8. In the middle of Tim Smith’s book at the attacks at Vicksburg in May 1863 and waiting for the arrival of the Ed Bearss Vicksburg triology.

  9. Just finished- Armistead and Hancock, Summer of 63 Vicksburg and Tullahoma
    Reading now- The Enduring Civil War

  10. Currently reading “A Little Short Of Boats: The Battles of Ball’s Bluff and Edwards Ferry” by James Morgan, and Sam Watkins’ “Co. Aytch”

    I’m planning on reading through the Owen Parry “Abel Jones” series of Civil War novels next.

    1. I read “A Little Short of Boats” last year. Very good explanation of that battle. I also have yet to read “Co. Aytch” but have a copy I will get to in the near future.

  11. Currently reading “Meade and Lee at Rappahannock Station”, by Jeffrey Hunt. Next up is “Meade at Gettysburg”, by Kent Masterson Brown.

  12. My great-grandfather’s memoir of being a boy during the Civil War, “My Remembrance of the War, etc. 1861-1865” by George C. Maguire. (A plug.) Also, “The Person Memoirs of U.S. Grant”. History by a dying man. Molly Bloom mentions Grant in James Joyce’s “Ulysses”. Joyce was affected by Grant’s memoir that transcends history by becoming great literature. Like Thucydides’s “History of the Peloponnesian War”.

  13. Meade at Gettysburg by KMB. Also have Guelzo’s Lee book. Re-reading some Gettysburg and Antietam books since I will be visiting these places in November. I bought a bunch of the Emerging Civil War collections, and will be reading a few of those Gettysburg and Antietam books.

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