Friday, July 12, 2019

Recent Acquisitions to My Library

As a way of both continuing to build my personal Petersburg Campaign library, and obtain secondary sources for my research project on prisoners captured in that campaign's fighting, I located and purchased a used copy of John Horn's The Siege of Petersburg: The Battles for the Weldon Railroad, August 1864. I can justify it by killing two birds with one stone, or something like that. I read this study a few years ago and remembered it being very helpful to understanding Grant's Fifth Petersburg Offensive, where numerous prisoners from both sides were captured.

Back at the end of May I learned that Tony Horwitz was going to be in Richmond for a talk on his new book, Spying on the South: An Odyssey Across the American Divide. I quickly signed up for the talk as I had enjoyed reading his Confederates in the Attic (can it really be 20 years old now), as well as his book on John Brown's Harper's Ferry Raid, Midnight Rising. A couple of hours later I received an email stating the the talk was canceled due to Horwitz's passing. His death was a significant loss to the history community. Our book club chose Spying on the South for its next selection. I look forward to reading Horwitz's insights and touch of humor.

Rated as one of the best selling Civil War books a couple of years ago, Tom McMillan's Gettysburg Rebels: Five Native Sons Who Came Home to Fight as Confederate Soldiers also consistently receives good reviews from readers. However, the title pretty much sold me the book. It sounds like a fascinating read.

Yet another Petersburg Campaign book! Often when I do customized tours, folks want to go to the area where then Col. Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain was grievously wounded through the hips on June 18, 1864. With Dennis A. Rashach's Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain and the Petersburg Campaign: His Supposed Charge from Fort Hell, his Near-Mortal Wounding, and a Civil War Myth Reconsidered, the title and subtitle pretty much speaks for itself. It argues the wounding incident didn't happen where it has long been believed. I'm currently reading this one and will have a review ready within the next week or so.

There are numerous incidents during the Civil War where prisoners of war were either not allowed to surrender or were abused or massacred after surrendering. I bought a copy of Lonnie R. Speer's War of Vengeance: Acts of Retaliation Against Civil War POWs as some background reading for my research. Published in 2002 War of Vendeance was a little ahead of it time in examining the war's "dark side." It appears that it will provide several examples where these tragic acts occurred.   

No comments:

Post a Comment