Author Archives: Steve Davis

Book Review: The Encyclopedia of Confederate Generals

Reviewed by Stephen Davis The first thing that catches your eye about this impressively comprehensive volume is the number 426. Like most of you, I grew up on Ezra J. Warner’s number of 425 Confederate generals. But Mitcham alertly reminds … Continue reading

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Southerners Have Fun with McClellan’s “Change of Base”

At the end of the day, June 27, 1862, George McClellan knew he had been whipped. Fitz John Porter’s V Corps had been fiercely attacked. Its center had broken and Porter’s troops retreated, leaving behind twenty-two guns.1 Porter was north … Continue reading

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Book Review: The Oxford Handbook of the American Civil War

A good reference book bears several elements, beginning with its title: The Oxford Handbook of the American Civil War thus telegraphs its purpose. Another is heft: this one has 675 pages. Third is a big raft of contributors, and recognizable … Continue reading

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John Steele, Editor of the Atlanta Intelligencer

When asked by America’s Civil War to write about a little-known Atlantan, I chose John H. Steele, editor of the Atlanta Daily Intelligencer from March 1863 to his death in January 1871. (The paper folded three months later anyway, victim … Continue reading

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“A Piece of Bone,” Bishop Polk, and the National Tribune

Editor’s note: Stephen Davis’ forthcoming book, The National Tribune Remembers the Atlanta Campaign, will be published next year by Savas Beatie. The National Tribune, a weekly newspaper published in Washington from 1877 to 1943, was arguably the most comprehensive repository … Continue reading

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Reading Jeff Davis

“No major figure in the Civil War stands more in need of a thoroughly researched and judiciously presented biography than Jefferson Davis,” wrote James I. Robertson in Civil War Times Illustrated in August 1972. But that doesn’t mean that a … Continue reading

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Book Review: Ends of War: The Unfinished Fight of Lee’s Army after Appomattox

Caroline Janney is a rising star in the literature of Confederate war-memory. At UVA she wrote her dissertation, “The Ladies Memorial Associations of Virginia” under Gary Gallagher. She drew from it for an essay in Peter Wallenstein and Bertram Wyatt-Brown, … Continue reading

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Book Review: Day By Day through the Civil War in Georgia

Day By Day through the Civil War in Georgia By Michael K. Shaffer Mercer University Press    2022 $37 hardcover Reviewed by Stephen Davis For years—decades, really—the go-to source on Georgia in the war has been T. Conn Bryan’s Confederate Georgia … Continue reading

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Book Review: Matchless Organization

Matchless Organization: The Confederate Army Medical Department By Guy R. Hasegawa Southern Illinois University Press     2021     $26.50 paperback Reviewed by Stephen Davis In Doctors in Gray: The Confederate Medical Service (1958), H. H. Cunningham quotes a Southern physician as saying, … Continue reading

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Book Review: Port Hudson: The Most Significant Battlefield Photographs of the Civil War

Port Hudson: The Most Significant Battlefield Photographs of the Civil War By Lawrence Lee Hewitt University of Tennessee Press    2021    $49.95 hardcover Reviewed by Stephen Davis Compared to Vicksburg, a hundred-ten miles upriver, Port Hudson, Louisiana has a sparse … Continue reading

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