Top 7 Shiloh Books: Shiloh Discussion Group Member Manassas1

The recent Civil War Bloggers Top 10 Gettysburg Books list turned out well, so well that I immediately contacted the members of the Shiloh Discussion Group to see if they would join me in creating another combined list, this time of the Top 7 Shiloh books, which will appear this August at TOCWOC on a permanent page designed for this eventSDG members have been posting their lists of the Top 7 Shiloh books over the last month with a deadline of August 1.   The following is SDG group member Manassas1’s list of the Top 7 Shiloh Books.

My list of favoite Shiloh  books include:

1.  Shiloh:  Bloody April by Wiley Sword (1988).  Good account of the battle and easy for beginners, as well as long time civil war students, to read.

2.  This Great Battlefield of Shiloh:  History, Memory, and the Establishment of a Civil War National Military Park by Timothy B. Smith (2004)  As someone who enjoys the history of the momumentation of civil war battlefields and the civilians who lived in the area during the battle, this book ranks high on my list

3.  Shiloh and the Western Campaign of 1862 by O. Edward Cunningham ((2007) A very good dissertation on the battle.

4.  Shiloh:  A Novel by Shelby Foote (1952)  Who doesn’t like anything written by Shelby Foote?

5.  Shiloh:  In Hell before Night by James Lee McDonough (1977)  This book provided answers to some of my early questions on the battle.



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2 responses to “Top 7 Shiloh Books: Shiloh Discussion Group Member Manassas1”

  1. Dan Avatar

    One thing that seems evident about this particular Top 7 books discussion: there are far fewer Shiloh books compared to Gettysburg books. Granted, nearly everyone in the previous discussion named one or two of the same books (Coddington, Pfanz, etc.), but there seemed to be a greater variety of “other works”. Here…not so much.

    That may seem rather obvious, but I think it underscores the dominating presence that Gettysburg holds on ACW historical consciousness, even after the past 50 years of scholarship challenging that dominance.

  2. admin Avatar


    That’s a great point, and one that Drew Wagenhoffer and I discussed while we were filling out our choices. I strongly suspected, for instance, that Daniel, Sword, Cunningham, and Reed were going to make most lists. I was surprised by the inclusion of McDonough’s book, though. I’ve never really liked his style, which to me never goes into nearly enough detail. Even a battle like Shiloh or Antietam does not come close to comparing to Gettysburg in terms of the volume of literature. Gettysburg is on a whole other level.


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