Book reviews

Search title for
Limit the list to   articles

 

Appalachian Ohio and the Civil War 1862-1863

 

by Susan G Hall (pp 258, Jefferson, NC and London:McFarland).

Review by: Allan Paterson Milne

 

The civil war soldier did not exist in a vacuum. He had normally been a civilian before the war and, if he lived, would normally have reverted to being a civilian after it. Where he came from shaped him both as a man and soldier.

 

The chief, though not the only merit, of Susan Hall's study, is the way she skillfully intertwines the story of the men who marched off to war from Appalachian Ohio with the turbulent political history of the communities that sent them. Focusing mainly on Harrison County and its county seat, Cadiz, she demonstrates how divided these communities were.

 

See full article


 

Blockaders, Refugees, & Contrabands: Civil War on Florida's Gulf Coast, 1861-1865

 

By George E. Buker (Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 1993)

 

Reviewer: Michael J Herr, American Military University

 

The author chronicles the role of the East Gulf Blockading Squadron in creating civil strife and warfare along the West Coast of Florida during the American Civil War. Commander Buker, U.S. Navy, retired from active duty in 1963. After earning his BA from Jacksonville University and his MA and Ph.D. from the University of Florida, he was a professor of history at Jacksonville University until his retirement in 1987. Now a professor emeritus, his previous works include Swamp Sailors: Riverine Warfare in the Everglades, 1835-1842; Sun, Sand, and Water: A History of the Jacksonville District US. Army Corps of Engineers, 1821-1975; and Jacksonville: Riverport - Seaport.

 

 

See full article


 

Champion Hill - Decisive Battle for Vicksburg

 

by Timothy B Smith

 

(ISBN 1-932714-00-6) published by Savas Beatie. 411 pages + appendices

 

Review 1 by: Rees Taylor.

 

I do not recollect ever seeing a book devoted entirely to the battle at Champion's Hill, Mississippi. Mostly historians have tended to include Champions Hill as part of 'The Vicksburg Campaign' rather than concentrate on the battle itself. It looms large in volume II of Ed Bearss work on the Vicksburg campaign with 93 pages devoted to the battle and this seems to have set the pattern for the next generation of writers.

 

See full article


 

Circle of Fire -The Story of the USS Susquehanna in the War of the Rebellion

 

By Peter Barratt

 

(246pp, Paperback: Size 156 x 234mm. ISBN 0-9548664-0-1 12.00 Lulu Press. Also available via passaic@hotmail.com)

 

'Circle of Fire' is more than the story of a Union warship during the Civil War. It is a glimpse into the inner workings of the blockade of the Confederacy as told through the career of one of the Union Navy's longest serving workhorses, the USS Susquehanna. Whether it be the opening operations at Hatteras Inlet, the capture of the vital Port Royal Sound, the bowing up of the CSS Virginia, the blockade of Charleston and Mobile, or the capture of Fort Fisher and the closure of the South's last major port at Wilmington, the USS Susquehanna was there; exchanging shots with forts and shore batteries, overhauling blockade runners and struggling against mountainous seas and mechanical breakdowns.

 

 

 

See full article


 

Commanding Boston's Irish Ninth

 

The Civil War Letters of Colonel Patric R Guiney, Ninth Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry

 

Edited by Christian G Samito

 

(ISBN 0-8232-1813-9 Published by Fordham University Press New York 263 pages)

 

Reviewed By Rees Taylor

 

This is the sixth in the series of books published by Fordham entitled 'The Irish in the Civil War', and the first I have read. In relation to the subject of the Irish volunteer in the Civil war this book offers a different perspective to the normal portrayal of the social and political background of the Irish ex-pat. At the outset of the war Guiney had been a Democrat supporter, as most of the Irish community in the United States were and remained. The book is very strong on the reasons and logic behind this communal stance. However, unlike his community, Guiney moved from being a staunch Democrat to a Republican supporter in the early war years and he suffered for it, both in the community of the regiment and in the regiment's home town of Boston.

 

See full article