Book of the Week


Civil War Canon:
Sites of Confederate Memory in South Carolina

by Thomas J. Brown

"There is no place quite like South Carolina for Civil War and Confederate memory. Thomas J. Brown brings a sophisticated, critical eye and a witty pen to this enduring controversy, showing a host of ways over 150 years that the Confederacy has endured and changed as it collided with modernity on the artistic and civic landscapes of the first state to secede. This book is a brilliant new turn in our quest to know why that war and its results have never gone away."
--David W. Blight, Yale University, author of Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory

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Excerpt: Kennesaw Mountain, by Earl J. Hess

Kennesaw Mountain: Sherman, Johnston, and the Atlanta Campaign, by Earl J. Hess

The assault of June 27 was a significant departure from Sherman’s mode of operations during the Atlanta campaign. […]

Excerpt: Two Captains from Carolina, by Bland Simpson

In an excerpt from Bland Simpson’s nonfiction novel Two Captains from Carolina, we get a glimpse of Moses Grandy’s early career as a boatman—the freedom he felt on the water and the opportunities that lay ahead. […]

Excerpt: The Fire of Freedom, by David S. Cecelski

In years to come, he would gain a wider reputation as a moving, eloquent speaker and a fierce debater. But at no time of his life was he a more effective orator than in those first months of freedom on the North Carolina coast. The prodigal ex-slave was always at his best among other former slaves. […]

Excerpt: War on the Waters, by James M. McPherson

McPherson discusses the blockade on the Confederacy and how if affected the definition of the Confederacy as insurrectionist or a legitimate nation. […]

Excerpt: With a Sword in One Hand and Jomini in the Other, by Carol Reardon

Military theory is an intellectually sophisticated and complex form of cultural expression. At the start of the Civil War, the U.S. Army and the people it defended barely had begun to demonstrate an interest in developing a capacity to think about war as an element of national life. They had done little to institutionalize such study. As a consequence, when the Civil War broke out, Northerners had few resources to turn to for insights on an American way of war, and they had no choice but to look to the military classics from across a cultural divide for the intellectual authority they sought. […]