ECW Podcast: The Iron Dice of Battle

It’s been a banner year of book publishing for historian Timothy B. Smith. He returns to the Emerging Civil War Podcast to talk about his latest book, The Iron Dice of Battle: Albert Sidney Johnston and the Civil War in the West.

This episode of the Emerging Civil War Podcast is brought to you by Civil War Trails, the world’s largest open-air museum, offering more than 1,500 sites across six states. Request a brochure at to start planning your trip today.

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And speaking of Patreon, from the ECW Podcast Archives from January 2021:

“Johnston and Johnston in the Western Theater”—Albert Sidney Johnston and Joseph E. Johnston were both sent to command the Confederacy’s western theatre. ECW historians Greg Mertz, Angela Riotto, and Kris White join host Chris Mackowski to talk about the very different circumstances the Johnstons faced. Listen for free:

1 Response to ECW Podcast: The Iron Dice of Battle

  1. I just finished reading this book. It provides an excellent summary of A.S. Johnston’s antebellum life and a more thorough examination of his short life as a full general of the Confederacy. I have mixed feelings on the chess and poker/dice player analogies that are used to help explain Johnston’s vacillating between methodical general and reckless, gambling it all general, but to be fair these analogies can be drawn from Johnston’s own habits and words, as shown by Tim Smith. Dr. Smith also asks a lot of good “what if” questions about Johnston’s time in command especially in regards to to forts Henry and Donelson, and the possibility of Johnston not being mortally wounded at Shiloh.

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