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  #31  
Old 21 May 09, 12:11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeanotLee View Post
Battle Cry of Freedom stands alone in defining what brought the country to civil war. I'm currently reading it for the third time. The most amazing thing is how fractured this country was for decades leading up to the war!
Other books I would suggest;
"Thirty Years After" by Edwin Forbes
"Eye of the Storm" by Robert Knox Sneden
"In the arms of Providence" by Alice Rains Trulock
"Civil War Reminiscences of General Basil Duke" There are 2 versions of this. One he wrote just after the end of the war, the other in 1911. Both very interesting but I much prefer the first one.
"
A Scythe of Fire" by Warren Wilkinson"
"Killer Angels" , as dean said, is good a read but it IS a novel. I have a hard time enjoying a novel when there's so much reality to be had !
The watercolor drawings by Snedon in "Eye of the Storm" are incredible, especially the ones from Andersonville...............
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  #32  
Old 21 May 09, 15:56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardS View Post
What books do we consider the be the essentials of a good Civil War library?

1) Battle Cry of Freedom - James McPherson http://tinyurl.com/qtuehs
2) Generals in Blue - Ezra J. Warner http://tinyurl.com/qavuql
3) Generals in Gray - Ezra J. Warner http://tinyurl.com/p8u9lj
4) Co. Aytch - Sam Watkins http://tinyurl.com/pvh58q
5) Life of Billy Yank - Bell Irwin Wiley http://tinyurl.com/pp2n9s
6) Life of Johnny Reb - Bell Irwin Wiley http://tinyurl.com/obnm9n
7) Hardtack and Coffee - John D. Billings http://tinyurl.com/pmx8pw
8) Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant http://tinyurl.com/petulp
9) Lincoln's Cavalrymen - Edward Longacre http://tinyurl.com/puw4wl
10) Lee's Cavalrymen - Edward Longacre http://tinyurl.com/pqhbgh
11) Union Cavalry Comes of Age - Ed. Wittenberg http://tinyurl.com/odnl3s
12) Military Memoirs of a Confederate - E.P. Alexander http://tinyurl.com/onfgt5

13*) Fighting for the Confederacy -E.P. Alexander http://tinyurl.com/o7sq2p


* #12 is a critical analysis of the war by E.P. Alexander. #13 was written for his family and contains more personal anecdotes.

What other books should be in the essential civil war library?
Great idea!

Gordon Rhea's four (soon to be five) books on the Overland Campaign in 1864 are must reads.

I'd add the entire set of Army AND Navy ORs if it weren't so ridiculously expensive for everyday people to get complete sets of them.
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  #33  
Old 21 May 09, 19:10
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Lance, UR right on about Sneden's drawings-- they're fantastic, all of them. What's really unbelievable is the the story of the book being put together. His drawings were found in a bank vault in Connecticut and his journals were found in a storage locker in Arizona. That blows my mind !!!
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  #34  
Old 21 May 09, 19:45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CATO1948 View Post
I Rode with Stonewall by Henry Kid Douglas
More like Stonewall Rode with Me! But still enjoyable in some ways.

I'd add Sears' Landscape Turned Red on Antietam. Also Lincoln and His Generals.

Regards,
Dennis
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  #35  
Old 22 May 09, 11:53
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While perhaps not essential; one book I think that should be read by everybody is Rebels from West Point. It is a look at how the West Pointers in the Confederate States influenced the war both positively and negatively. Also how the entente cordial remained between the West Pointers both Blue and Gray. http://tinyurl.com/pnjfas
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  #36  
Old 22 May 09, 22:13
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essential books

I would agree that Rhea's books on the overland campaign are excellent. I would like to add that Grant's chief staff, I think he was, wrote a book Campaigning with Grant, that I found to be an excellent read.
I also think that Catton's trilogy and this Hallowed Ground are excellent books to read to get a great understanding of the war in the east.

I have never read Battle Cry Of Freedom. For some reason I always thought it was so-so history some fact some fiction. I guess I was way off.
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  #37  
Old 22 May 09, 22:31
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It's history at it's best. By all means READ IT !!!!!!
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  #38  
Old 23 May 09, 23:26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by
[I
Killer Angels[/I], by Michael Shaara, is a good read also. It does give flavor to the Gettysburg battle, but it's a novel. As for the other two novels that Shaara's son wrote, they're good, but IMO, not as good...
Jeff Shaara is a good writer his father was great. That book is what made me love history
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  #39  
Old 24 May 09, 09:59
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Originally Posted by caseyj View Post
Jeff Shaara is a good writer his father was great. That book is what made me love history
Jeff Shaara is a miserable hack of a writer wanna-be who can't hold his father's pen. It's a shame he even tries.

Eric
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  #40  
Old 24 May 09, 13:09
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Wittenberg View Post
Jeff Shaara is a miserable hack of a writer wanna-be who can't hold his father's pen. It's a shame he even tries.

Eric
Come on Eric, you're amongst friends...........you can tell us how you really feel.
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  #41  
Old 25 May 09, 22:09
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Wow, I'm really surprised no one has mentioned "The Impending Crisis, 1848-1861" by David Potter. One reviewer on Amazon said "Potter tells us of all the economic, social, and, especially, political causes of the sectional tensions. " But most importantly, he provides a tonn of references for everything he says. Its a great book that discusses a lot of the goings on that led to the war.
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  #42  
Old 31 May 09, 09:38
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"The Real Lincoln" by Thomas J. Dilorenzo
"Manhunt" by James L. Swanson
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  #43  
Old 31 May 09, 13:30
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"The Real Lincoln" by Thomas J. Dilorenzo
"Manhunt" by James L. Swanson
I despise Dilorenzo. An economist who plays at being a historian & does it badly. A Neo-Confederate whose lies & twisting of history is as appalling as his books.
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  #44  
Old 01 Jun 09, 00:35
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I second Hellboy's assessment of DiLorenzo's books and attitude towards Lincoln.
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Old 01 Jun 09, 00:40
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For a thorough examination of the political issues related to the war, I'd highly suggest Lincoln's Constitution by Daniel Farber
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