Description : Most Civil War generals were graduates of West Point, and many of them helped transform the U.S. Army from what was little better than an armed mob that performed poorly during the War of 1812 into the competent fighting force that won the Mexican War. Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh demonstrates how the "old army" transformed itself into a professional military force after 1814, and, more important, how "old army" methods profoundly shaped the conduct of the Civil War.
Description : An authorized military account of the Civil War combines the expertise of preeminent historians with images and maps from West Point archives to explain the tactics, decisions, and consequences of the military campaigns.
Description : During the Civil War, the outcome of many a battle or campaign hinged on the proper wording, dissemination and interpretation of battlefield orders. Early in the war, officers trained in small unit combat could suddenly find themselves commanding thousands of men and writing orders to subordinates with little experience in the practice. The inclusion of accurate origin information, up-to-date knowledge of the situation in the field, the amount of discretion given to recipients, and the speed and geographical acumen of couriers were critical. This innovative volume examines 13 cases in which the tide of battle turned on written orders, including Ball’s Bluff, Fredericksburg, Vicksburg, Gettysburg and Chickamauga. The importance of this seemingly clerical task, this work shows, equaled that of tactics, manpower, and supplies in determining the course of the Civil War.
Description : How the Civil War changed the face of war The Civil War represented a momentous change in the character of war. It combined the projection of military might across a continent on a scale never before seen with an unprecedented mass mobilization of peoples. Yet despite the revolutionizing aspects of the Civil War, its leaders faced the same uncertainties and vagaries of chance that have vexed combatants since the days of Thucydides and the Peloponnesian War. A Savage War sheds critical new light on this defining chapter in military history. In a masterful narrative that propels readers from the first shots fired at Fort Sumter to the surrender of Robert E. Lee's army at Appomattox, Williamson Murray and Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh bring every aspect of the battlefield vividly to life. They show how this new way of waging war was made possible by the powerful historical forces unleashed by the Industrial Revolution and the French Revolution, yet how the war was far from being simply a story of the triumph of superior machines. Despite the Union’s material superiority, a Union victory remained in doubt for most of the war. Murray and Hsieh paint indelible portraits of Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman, and other major figures whose leadership, judgment, and personal character played such decisive roles in the fate of a nation. They also examine how the Army of the Potomac, the Army of Northern Virginia, and the other major armies developed entirely different cultures that influenced the war’s outcome. A military history of breathtaking sweep and scope, A Savage War reveals how the Civil War ushered in the age of modern warfare.
Description : The Journal of the Civil War Era Volume 4, Number 4 December 2014 TABLE OF CONTENTS Articles Gary Gallagher & Kathryn Shively Meier Coming to Terms with Civil War Military History Peter C. Luebke "Equal to Any Minstrel Concert I Ever Attended at Home": Union Soldiers and Blackface Performance in the Civil War South John J. Hennessy Evangelizing for Union, 1863: The Army of the Potomac, Its Enemies at Home, and a New Solidarity Andrew F. Lang Republicanism, Race, and Reconstruction: The Ethos of Military Occupation in Civil War America Professional Notes Kevin M. Levin Black Confederates Out of the Attic and Into the Mainstream Book Reviews Books Received Notes on Contributors
Description : The Western theater of the Civil War, rich in agricultural resources and manpower and home to a large number of slaves, stretched 600 miles north to south and 450 miles east to west from the Appalachians to the Mississippi. If the South lost the West, there would be little hope of preserving the Confederacy. Earl J. Hess's comprehensive study of how Federal forces conquered and held the West examines the geographical difficulties of conducting campaigns in a vast land, as well as the toll irregular warfare took on soldiers and civilians alike. Hess balances a thorough knowledge of the battle lines with a deep understanding of what was happening within the occupied territories. In addition to a mastery of logistics, Union victory hinged on making use of black manpower and developing policies for controlling constant unrest while winning campaigns. Effective use of technology, superior resource management, and an aggressive confidence went hand in hand with Federal success on the battlefield. In the end, Confederates did not have the manpower, supplies, transportation potential, or leadership to counter Union initiatives in this critical arena.
Description : The first phase of the Civil War was fought west of the Mississippi River at least six years before the attack on Fort Sumter. Starting with the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act in 1854, Jay Monaghan traces the development of the conflict between the pro-slavery elements from Missouri and the New England abolitionists who migrated to Kansas. "Bleeding Kansas" provided a preview of the greater national struggle to come. The author allows a new look at Quantrill's sacking of Lawrence, organized bushwhackery, and border battles that cost thousands of lives. Not the least valuable are chapters on the American Indians’ part in the conflict. The record becomes devastatingly clear: the fighting in the West was the cruelest and most useless of the whole affair, and if men of vision had been in Washington in the 1850s it might have been avoided.
Description : When the Civil War began, Northern soldiers and civilians alike sought a framework to help make sense of the chaos that confronted them. Many turned first to the classic European military texts from the Napoleonic era, especially Antoine Henri Jomini's Summary of the Art of War. As Carol Reardon shows, Jomini's work was only one voice in what ultimately became a lively and contentious national discourse about how the North should conduct war at a time when warfare itself was rapidly changing. She argues that the absence of a strong intellectual foundation for the conduct of war at its start--or, indeed, any consensus on the need for such a foundation--ultimately contributed to the length and cost of the conflict. Reardon examines the great profusion of new or newly translated military texts of the Civil War years, intended to fill that intellectual void, and draws as well on the views of the soldiers and civilians who turned to them in the search for a winning strategy. In examining how debates over principles of military thought entered into the question of qualifications of officers entrusted to command the armies of Northern citizen soldiers, she explores the limitations of nineteenth-century military thought in dealing with the human elements of combat.
Description : Volumes 1 through 5 cover the major battles of the Civil War chronologically from 1861 to 1865. Volume 6 contains biographies of key figures in this conflict.
Description : Major General Joseph P. Franklin (ret.) believes almost everything that he is as an adult can be traced back to his days at West Point, where he was not only a cadet but an instructor, football coach, and eventually Commandant of Cadets. U.S. Military Academy graduates are found at the highest levels in every walk of life: military, education, business, medicine, law, and government. "But," says Franklin, "you don't have to graduate from the U.S. Military Academy to embrace its ideals or to benefit from the wisdom that is taught there. Competent, even inspiring, leadership is within the grasp of nearly everyone." The principles of leadership-including Duty, Honor, Faith, Courage, Perseverance, Confidence, Approachability, Adaptability, Compassion, and Vision-can be internalized and polished to one's own level of expertise and ambition. "I have known Joe Franklin, since the late 1970s, when I coached at West Point and he was the Commandant of Cadets. General Joe is well-known by the many people whose lives he has touched as a truly thoughtful, approachable, and compassionate human being. He has written a very readable book using examples drawn from his personal experience to illustrate key principles of leadership, a subject I have studied and practiced for most of my adult life. His simple, honest, easy to understand text is a welcome addition to the references available to leaders, young and old alike. This book will definitely help you become a better leader. The General is one of the best ever!" - Mike "Coach K" Kryzewski, Duke University Basketball Coach