Published 4/20/2018

The Best Civil War Books of 2017

By: The Civil War Monitor Category: Articles

The Books & Authors section of our Winter 2017 issue contained our annual roundup of the year's best Civil War titles. As usual, we enlisted the help of a handful of Civil War historians and enthusiasts, avid readers all, and asked them to pick their two favorite books published in 2017. Below are their picks.

Published 4/18/2018

POWELL: Battle Above the Clouds (2017)

By: Jonathan M. Steplyk Category: Book Reviews

Ulysses Grant famously described the Battle of Lookout Mountain as "all poetry."

Published 4/11/2018

BELCHER: The Cavalries at Stones River (2017)

By: David A. Powell Category: Book Reviews excellent addition to both western theater cavalry studies and the specifics of the battle of Stones River.

Published 4/6/2018

Beyond the White Man's Iliad

By: Mark Grimsley Category: American Iliad

The Confederate monument controversy that has exploded in recent months raises fundamental questions about the American Iliad. The removal of Robert E. Lee’s statue in Charlottesville, Virginia, is only the best known of several examples that place these questions before us.

Published 4/4/2018

FRAKER: Looking for Lincoln in Illinois (2017)

By: Frank J. Williams Category: Book Reviews

This is a delightful journey along the highways and byways of the circuit traveled by lawyer Lincoln...

Published 3/28/2018

CHERNOW: Grant (2017)

By: Todd Arrington Category: Book Reviews

...[I]f [Grant's] presidential ranking continues to rise, there is little question that Ron Chernow's exhaustive research and accessible writing style will be part of the reason.

Published 3/21/2018

KEATING: The Greatest Trials I Ever Had (2017)

By: George C. Rable Category: Book Reviews

Students of the war looking for insights into the connections between camp and home front will find the Cahills' letters to be quite rewarding.

Published 3/17/2018

St. Patrick's Day in the Army

By: Josiah Marshall Favill Category: In the First Person

On March 17, 1863, Josiah Marshall Favill, a young lieutenant in the 57th New York Infantry, was one of many soldiers in the Army of the Potomac to observe the elaborate St. Patrick's festivities being hosted by General Thomas Francis Meagher and the men of the Irish Brigade. When he returned to his regiment's camp later that day, Favill recorded the following observations in his diary: 

Published 3/16/2018

Extra Voices: Tobacco

By: The Civil War Monitor Category: Articles

In the Voices section of the Spring 2018 issue of The Civil War Monitor we highlighted first-person quotes from Union and Confederate troops about the use of tobacco among soldiers and civilians. Unfortunately, we didn't have room to include all that we found. Below are those that didn't make the cut.   

Published 3/14/2018

AYERS: The Thin Light of Freedom (2017)

By: Douglas R. Egerton Category: Book Reviews

Hindsight, Ayers understands, is often the enemy of understanding.

Published 3/9/2018

The Eisenhower Farm during the Battle of Gettysburg

By: Dennis Edward Flake Category: Articles

While not commonly looked upon as part of the battlefield, the Eisenhower Farm in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, played a significant role during the second and third days of the fighting at Gettysburg.

Published 3/7/2018

QUINT: Determined to Stand and Fight (2017)

By: Jared Frederick Category: Book Reviews

Early's daring raid is a colorful tale of retribution, diversion, anxiety, and shrewd political calculation.

Published 2/28/2018

SODERGREN: The Army of the Potomac in the Overland and Petersburg Campaigns (2017)

By: Briana Weaver Category: Book Reviews

Sodergren finds that the soldiers in the Army of the Potomac welcomed the change of pace afforded by the Petersburg trenches.

Published 2/23/2018

The West's Missing War

By: Megan Kate Nelson Category: Stereoscope

Why is the Civil War mostly absent in one of our most beloved film and television genres?

Published 2/21/2018

SCALES: The Battles and Campaigns of Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest (2017)

By: Gordon Berg Category: Book Reviews

Forrest might say that Scales, while not getting there first, certainly got there with the most....

Published 2/14/2018

PERRY: Bluff, Bluster, Lies and Spies (2016)

By: Don Doyle Category: Book Reviews

Often, the fate of separatist movements is decided not on the field of battle, but in the marble courts of diplomacy.

Published 2/7/2018

McKNIGHT & MYERS (eds.): The Guerrilla Hunters (2017)

By: John H. Matsui Category: Book Reviews

New studies of guerrilla conflict during the conflict only reinforce the indivisible relationship between slavery and the Civil War.

Published 2/2/2018

A Story from the Trenches

By: John Gardner Perry Category: In the First Person

During the early days of Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant's attempt to capture Petersburg, Virginia, in the summer of 1864, 24-year-old Harvard-educated Union surgeon John Gardner Perry wrote a letter in which he recorded the following incident involving a brave, but reckless, young lieutenant. 

Published 1/31/2018

BICKNELL: Lincoln's Pathfinder (2017)

By: Aaron Hyams Category: Book Reviews

While Fremont's fame up to 1856 outsized his actual exploits, he emerged in the tremors of Bleeding Kansas as a novel figure in American politics.