NOTE: Sorry for the delays in posting. I had strep throat for about a week and it really wreaked havoc with my day to day activities.
Book Purchases: September 2007 Books #21-31
Note: Those of you who followed my now defunct blog American Civil War Gaming & Reading will instantly recognize the format and reasons for this blog entry. For anyone new, my purpose is to post a list of books I’ve bought in the past month, provide information on and links to the books, and (hopefully) receive feedback from readers who have already read them.
This third set of books purchased in the month of September were all found on eBay. In many cases, I know very little about the books I purchased or I might know of other good books written by the same author. In any case, I’d love to hear from you if you’ve read any of the books below.
Thomas P. Lowry. Curmudgeons, Drunkards, and Outright Fools: The Courts-Martial of Civil War Union Colonels. Bison Books (September 1, 2003). I recognized Thomas Lowry’s name from an earlier book, The Story the Soldiers Wouldn’t Tell: Sex in the Civil War. This one looks fascinating just from the title. I was vaguely familiar with the premise for the book. From what I know, Lowry combed the National Archives to come up with this look at the various Courts-Martial of Union Colonels throughout the war. Reading the chapter titles makes one wonder just what kind of wild and crazy things these men in positions of power did! In any event, this should be a fun read…
Richard Nelson Current. Lincoln’s Loyalists: Union Soldiers From the Confederacy. Northeastern UP, Boston (1992). I do not know too much about this one at all, but it looked like an interesting book that might provide me with something a little different from my usual campaign and battle studies. Reading the back cover provides the tidbit that around 100,000 white men living in the Confederate states chose to fight for the Union. It should be interesting to see what motivated these men to choose the Federal government over their own state, especially in an area that valued States’ Rights so highly.
William B. Feis. Grant’s Secret Service: The Intelligence War from Belmont to Appomattox. University of Nebraska Press (2002). This title looked interesting, so I picked up the 2002 first edition hardback on eBay. Imagine my surprise when I saw this edition being sold for over $100 on Amazon! I took a look at Abebooks to see if this edition was similarly valued there, and it appears to be an aberration. There are numerous copies of the 2002 edition of this book available for reasonable prices at Abebooks. This subject interests me simply because I am more familiar with the intelligence efforts of Pinkerton and his men for George B. McClellan. It should be a worthwhile exercise seeing how the efforts of Grant’s intelligence sources differed from those of Pinkerton and his men.
Mark Nesbitt. Through Blood & Fire: Selected Civil War Papers of Major General Joshua Chamberlain. Stackpole Books; 1st ed edition (May 1996). I have been looking at this one for a LONG time on eBay. Someone either has multiple copies available or the one copy they were trying to sell wasn’t turning heads. Either way, I finally pulled the trigger and bought this one. Chamberlain played a role in the Petersburg Campaign, and that was the main reason I wanted to purchase the book. Chamberlain led his brigade in one of the final attacks during the Battle of Petersburg on June 18, 1864, and he was severely wounded. He returned to duty in November of that year after being promoted to Brigadier General for his gallantry in front of Petersburg. He led his brigade at the Battle of Lewis’ Farm on March 29, 1865 and was wounded again. This time, he received a promotion to brevet Major General. Chamberlain stayed with the Army of the Potomac and was in charge of the surrender ceremony at Appomattox Court House on April 12, 1865. I do not own too many diaries or “selected correspondence” books, so this should be an enlightening read.
William R. Scaife. The March to the Sea. William R. Scaife Publisher (December 1993). I was extremely excited to find this scarce book on eBay for just a little under $30. It is currently going for $175 on Amazon and isn’t even available over at Abebooks. I love eBay for this reason. Every once in awhile you score big and pick up a book you might otherwise never have found. This book is a tactical study of Sherman’s March, and the maps are definitely interesting from a wargamer’s perspective.
Richard Moe. The Last Full Measure: The Life and Death of the First Minnesota. Henry Holt and Company (1993). Most amateur Civil War historians have heard of the brave charge the 1st Minnesota made against an entire Confederate Brigade at Gettysburg on July 2, 1863 to buy time for the rest of the Army of the Potomac in the area. I have heard a lot of good things about Richard Moe’s regimental history of this famous fighting force. I finally was able to find a copy for a good price on eBay, and I jumped to purchase this one. Normally I restrict my unit histories to units which participated in the fighting around Petersburg, but I made an exception for this exceptional regiment.
Gary Gallagher. Stephen Dodson Ramseur: Lee’s Gallant General. University of North Carolina Press (1985). Many of you may know Gary Gallagher from his line of essay books on various eastern battles. Gallagher here chronicles the life of Confederate division commander Stephen Dodson Ramseur, who lost his life in the Shenandoah Valley at the Battle of Cedar Creek on October 19, 1864. I was particularly interested in Ramseur due to his position of responsibility within the Army of Northern Virginia (and the reconstituted Valley Army) in 1864. Early’s maneuvers in the Valley and northward tied in quite closely with what was going on around Petersburg at the same time. I saw this one on eBay and could not pass it up. I am a little disappointed in the condition of the dust jacket, so I might be upgrading this one at some point in the future.
Samuel Carter III. The Siege of Atlanta, 1864. Bonanza (1973). Believe it or not, I first ran into this book in my High School’s library. I was doing a research essay on the Atlanta Campaign for an English class, and in addition to using my own books on the Atlanta Campaign, I checked this one out as well. I know that Albert Castel’s Decision in the West is currently the best book on the Atlanta Campaign currently available, so I picked this one up more for nostalgia purposes than for any other reason.
Frank Cauble. Surrender Proceedings, April 9, 1865, Appomattox Court House (Virginia Civil War Battles and Leaders Series). H.E. Howard Inc.; 2nd edition (June 1987). I typically pick up books in this series whenever they are going for cheaper than the usual $25 list price, and this one was no exception. The title is pretty self-explanatory, but I really do not know too much about this one.
Christopher Martin. Damn The Torpedoes!: The Story of America’s First Admiral: David Glasgow Farragut. Abelard-Schuman (1970). I know next to nothing about this book. I picked this one up in my continuing efforts to add to my collection of biographies of Civil War personalities.
L. Vanloan Naisawald. The Battle of Lynchburg: Seize Lynchburg–If Only for a Single Day. Warwick House Publishing (2004). I could not find a link to this one on Amazon, so I added one from Abebooks. Other than the Virginia Battles& Leaders volume on Lynchburg, I do not know of any other books which cover David Hunter’s attempt to seize this key city in the Shenandoah Valley in June 1864. My interest in this battle is an offshoot of my studies of the Petersburg Campaign. Early’s Second Corps of the Army of Northern Virginia was detached and sent to Lynchburg to save the city and punish David Hunter and his method of burning everything in his path indiscriminately. Early not only saved Lynchburg; he also managed to drive Hunter so far away that he was able to launch an offensive that only subsided in front of Washington, D.C.