Book picks similar to
The War Was You and Me: Civilians in the American Civil War by Joan E. Cashin
The Road to Disunion: Volume II: Secessionists Triumphant, 1854-1861
William W. Freehling - 2007
Freehling offers a new answer, in the final volume of his monumental history The Road to Disunion. Here is history in the grand manner, a powerful narrative peopled with dozens of memorable portraits, telling this important story with skill and relish. Freehling highlights all the key moments on the road to war, including the violence in Bleeding Kansas, Preston Brooks's beating of Charles Sumner in the Senate chambers, the Dred Scott Decision, John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry, and much more. As Freehling shows, the election of Abraham Lincoln sparked a political crisis, but at first most Southerners took a cautious approach, willing to wait and see what Lincoln would do--especially, whether he would take any antagonistic measures against the South. But at this moment, the extreme fringe in the South took charge, first in South Carolina and Mississippi, but then throughout the lower South, sounding the drum roll for secession. Indeed, The Road to Disunion is the first book to fully document how this decided minority of Southern hotspurs took hold of the secessionist issue and, aided by a series of fortuitous events, drove the South out of the Union. Freehling provides compelling profiles of the leaders of this movement--many of them members of the South Carolina elite. Throughout the narrative, he evokes a world of fascinating characters and places as he captures the drama of one of America's most important--and least understood--stories. The long-awaited sequel to the award-winning Secessionists at Bay, which was hailed as "the most important history of the Old South ever published," this volume concludes a major contribution to our understanding of the Civil War. A compelling, vivid portrait of the final years of the antebellum South, The Road to Disunion will stand as an important history of its subject.
The Civil War: The War That Divided The United States
Lance T. Stewart - 2016
Why did the southern states secede from the Union? What did the north hope to achieve by fighting against the south? Was Abraham Lincoln really an abolitionist? Why is Ulysses S. Grant the most famous Union general, when he didn’t take command of all the Union armies until near the very end of the war? How did Robert E. Lee end up having to deal with issues left unresolved by George Washington’s will, and was he a hero or a traitor?This book provides an exhaustive summary, not just of the major battles and major personalities of the Civil War, but of the political issues that brought the United States to the point of a terrible internal conflict. You’ll learn how the founding fathers predicted a great national conflict over slavery, and how Thomas Jefferson’s political philosophies influenced secessionist thinking in the south. From the history of the abolitionist movement to the election of 1860 and the creation of the Republican party, this book will give you all the facts you need to understand how the Civil War started, why Lincoln was so fed up with his generals, and how the war affects American society today.
The Cause of All Nations: An International History of the American Civil War
Don H. Doyle - 2014
Lincoln realized that the Civil War had taken on a wider significance—that all of Europe and Latin America was watching to see whether the United States, a beleaguered model of democracy, would indeed “perish from the earth.”In The Cause of All Nations, distinguished historian Don H. Doyle explains that the Civil War was viewed abroad as part of a much larger struggle for democracy that spanned the Atlantic Ocean, and had begun with the American and French Revolutions. While battles raged at Bull Run, Antietam, and Gettysburg, a parallel contest took place abroad, both in the marbled courts of power and in the public square. Foreign observers held widely divergent views on the war—from radicals such as Karl Marx and Giuseppe Garibaldi who called on the North to fight for liberty and equality, to aristocratic monarchists, who hoped that the collapse of the Union would strike a death blow against democratic movements on both sides of the Atlantic. Nowhere were these monarchist dreams more ominous than in Mexico, where Napoleon III sought to implement his Grand Design for a Latin Catholic empire that would thwart the spread of Anglo-Saxon democracy and use the Confederacy as a buffer state.Hoping to capitalize on public sympathies abroad, both the Union and the Confederacy sent diplomats and special agents overseas: the South to seek recognition and support, and the North to keep European powers from interfering. Confederate agents appealed to those conservative elements who wanted the South to serve as a bulwark against radical egalitarianism. Lincoln and his Union agents overseas learned to appeal to many foreigners by embracing emancipation and casting the Union as the embattled defender of universal republican ideals, the “last best hope of earth.”A bold account of the international dimensions of America's defining conflict, The Cause of All Nations frames the Civil War as a pivotal moment in a global struggle that would decide the survival of democracy.
The Civil War: A Visual History
D.K. Publishing - 2010
Produced with the Smithsonian Institution and released in conjunction with the 150th anniversary of the start of the war, "The Civil War" is the definitive visual history to one of the most defining moments in our country's history.Comprehensive timelines, revealing first-person accounts by soldiers and civilians, key political and military leaders, as well as examinations of broader topics, such as transportation, the economy, and the treatment of wounded soldiers, make "The Civil War" a must-have for anyone interested in the history of the Civil War.
The Destructive War: William Tecumseh Sherman, Stonewall Jackson, and the Americans
Charles Royster - 1991
And both sides found leaders who would oblige. In this vivid and fearfully persuasive book, Charles Royster looks at William Tecumseh Sherman and Stonewall Jackson, the men who came to embody the apocalyptic passions of North and South, and re-creates their characters, their strategies, and the feelings they inspired in their countrymen. At once an incisive dual biography, hypnotically engrossing military history, and a cautionary examination of the American penchant for patriotic bloodshed, The Destructive War is a work of enormous power.
Battle Cry of Freedom, Vol 2: The Civil War Era
James M. McPherson - 1998
McPherson, professor emeritus of U.S. history at Princeton, is one of the foremost scholars of the Civil War. In this informative and meticulously researched masterpiece, he clarifies the differing ways of life and philosophy that led to this shattering conflict. Abraham Lincoln wondered whether "in a free government the minority have the right to break up the government." Jefferson Davis felt "forced to take up arms" to guarantee his states' rights. McPherson merges the words of these men and other political luminaries, housewives, and soldiers from both armies with his own concise analysis of the war to create a story as compelling as any novel. Battle Cry of Freedom vividly traces how a new nation was forged when a war both sides were sure would amount to little dragged for four years and cost more American lives than all other wars combined."... of the 50,000 books written on the Civil War, the finest compression of that national paroxysm ever fitted between two covers."-Los Angeles Times Book Review
The Legacy of the Civil War
Robert Penn Warren - 1961
He confronts its costs, not only human (six hundred thousand men killed) and economic (beyond reckoning) but social and psychological. He touches on popular misconceptions, including some concerning Abraham Lincoln and the issue of slavery. The war in all its facets “grows in our consciousness,” arousing complex emotions and leaving “a gallery of great human images for our contemplation.”
The Promise of the New South: Life After Reconstruction
Edward L. Ayers - 1992
He eagerly listened as the soundman placed the needle down, only to find that through the tubes he held to his ears came the chilling sounds of a lynching. In this story, with its blend of new technology and old hatreds, genteel picnic and mob violence, Edward Ayers captures the history of the South in the years between Reconstruction and the turn of the century--a combination of progress and reaction that defined the contradictory promise of the New South. Ranging from the Georgia coast to the Tennessee mountains, from the power brokers to tenant farmers, Ayers depicts a land of startling contrasts--a time of progress and repression, of new industries and old ways. Ayers takes us from remote Southern towns, revolutionized by the spread of the railroads, to the statehouses where Democratic "Redeemers" swept away the legacy of Reconstruction; from the small farmers, trapped into growing nothing but cotton, to the new industries of Birmingham; from abuse and intimacy in the family to tumultuous public meetings of the prohibitionists. He explores every aspect of society, politics, and the economy, detailing the importance of each in the emerging New South. Here is the local Baptist congregation, the country store, the tobacco-stained second-class railroad car, the rise of Populism: the teeming, nineteenth-century South comes to life in these pages. And central to the entire story is the role of race relations, from alliances and friendships between blacks and whites to the spread of Jim Crow laws and disenfranchisement. Ayers weaves all these details into the contradictory story of the New South, showing how the region developed the patterns it was to follow for the next fifty years. When Edward Ayers published Vengeance and Justice, a landmark study of crime and punishment in the nineteenth-century South, he received wide acclaim. Now he provides an unforgettable account of the New South--a land with one foot in the future and the other in the past.
America Between the Wars: From 11/9 to 9/11: The Misunderstood Years Between the Fall of the Berlin Wall and the Start of the War on Terror
Derek Chollet - 2008
The finger-on-the-button tension that had defined a generation was over, and it seemed that peace was at hand. The next twelve years rolled by in a haze of self-congratulation— what some now call a "holiday from history. "When that complacency shattered on September 11, 2001, setting the U.S. on a new and contentious path, confused Americans asked themselves: How did we get here?In America Between The Wars, Derek Chollet and James Goldgeier examine how the decisions and debates of the years between the fall of the Wall on 11/9 and the collapse of the Twin Towers on 9/11 shaped the events, arguments, and politics of the world we live in today. Reflecting the authors' deep expertise and broad access to key players across the political spectrum, this book tells the story of a generation of leaders grappling with a moment of dramatic transformation—changing how we should think about the recent past, and uncovering important lessons for the future.
The Market Revolution: Jacksonian America, 1815-1846
Charles Grier Sellers - 1992
The author argues that, following the Industrial Revolution, two distinct societies were created in the USA: rich and poor, proprietors and labourers, city dwellers and farmers.
Pathfinder: John Charles Frémont and the Course of American Empire
Tom Chaffin - 2002
Tom Chaffin's important new biography demonstrates Frémont's vital importance to the history of American empire, and his role in shattering long-held myths about the ecology and habitability of the American West.As the most celebrated American explorer and mapper of his time, Frémont stood at the center of the vast federal project of Western exploration and conquest. His expeditions between 1838 and 1854 captured the public's imagination, inspired Americans to accept their nation's destiny as a vast continental empire, and earned him his enduring sobriquet, the Pathfinder. But Frémont was more than an explorer. Chaffin's dramatic narrative includes Frémont's varied experiences as an entrepreneur, abolitionist, Civil War general, husband to the remarkable Jessie Benton Frémont, two-time Republican presidential candidate, and Gilded Age aristocrat. Chaffin brings to life the personal and political experiences of a remarkable American whose saga offers compelling insight into the conflicts, tensions, and contradictions at the core of America's lust for empire and its conquest of the trans-Missouri West.
A Nation Among Nations: America's Place in World History
Thomas Bender - 2006
Thomas Bender asks us to rethink this "exceptionalism" and to reconsider the conventional narrative. He proposes that America has grappled with circumstances, doctrines, new developments, and events that other nations, too, have faced, and that we can only benefit from recognizing this.Bender's exciting argument begins with the discovery of the Americas at a time when peoples everywhere first felt the transforming effects of oceanic travel and trade. He then reconsiders our founding Revolution, occurring in an age of rebellion on many continents; the Civil War, happening when many countries were redefining their core beliefs about the nature of freedom and the meaning of nationhood; and the later imperialism that pitted the United States against Germany, Spain, France, and England. Industrialism and urbanization, laissez-faire economics, capitalism and socialism, and new technologies are other factors that Bender views in the light of global developments.A Nation Among Nations is a passionate, persuasive book that makes clear what damage is done when we let the old view of America alone in the world falsify our history. Bender boldly challenges us to think beyond our borders.
City of Sedition: The History of New York City during the Civil War
John Strausbaugh - 2016
No city was more of a help to Abraham Lincoln and the Union war effort, or more of a hindrance. No city raised more men, money, and materiel for the war, and no city raised more hell against it. It was a city of patriots, war heroes, and abolitionists, but simultaneously a city of antiwar protest, draft resistance, and sedition. Without his New York supporters, it's highly unlikely Lincoln would have made it to the White House. Yet, because of the city's vital and intimate business ties to the Cotton South, the majority of New Yorkers never voted for him and were openly hostile to him and his politics. Throughout the war New York City was a nest of antiwar "Copperheads" and a haven for deserters and draft dodgers. New Yorkers would react to Lincoln's wartime policies with the deadliest rioting in American history. The city's political leaders would create a bureaucracy solely devoted to helping New Yorkers evade service in Lincoln's army. Rampant war profiteering would create an entirely new class of New York millionaires, the "shoddy aristocracy." New York newspapers would be among the most vilely racist and vehemently antiwar in the country. Some editors would call on their readers to revolt and commit treason; a few New Yorkers would answer that call. They would assist Confederate terrorists in an attempt to burn their own city down, and collude with Lincoln's assassin. Here in CITY OF SEDITION, a gallery of fascinating New Yorkers comes to life, the likes of Horace Greeley, Walt Whitman, Julia Ward Howe, Boss Tweed, Thomas Nast, Matthew Brady, and Herman Melville. This book follows the fortunes of these figures and chronicles how many New Yorkers seized the opportunities the conflict presented to amass capital, create new industries, and expand their markets, laying the foundation for the city's-and the nation's-growth.
The Vineyard of Liberty (The American Experiment)
James MacGregor Burns - 1982
The first of a three-volume history of the United States of America, The Vineyard of Liberty covers the period from the framing of the Constitutions in 1787 to Lincoln's signing of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 & offers a brilliant interpretation of the American attempt to preserve liberty.