Berry Benson's Civil War Book

Memoirs of a Confederate Scout and Sharpshooter
Author: Berry Benson
Publisher: University of Georgia Press
ISBN: 0820342254
Category: History
Page: 288
View: 6166

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Confederate scout and sharpshooter Berry Greenwood Benson witnessed the first shot fired on Fort Sumter, retreated with Lee's Army to its surrender at Appomattox Courthouse, and missed little of the action in between. This memoir of his service is a remarkable narrative, filled with the minutiae of the soldier's life and paced by a continual succession of battlefield anecdotes. Three main stories emerge from Benson's account: his reconnaissance exploits, his experiences in battle, and his escape from prison. Though not yet eighteen years old when he left his home in Augusta, Georgia, to join the army, Benson was soon singled out for the abilities that would serve him well as a scout. Not only was he a crack shot, a natural leader, and a fierce Southern partisan, but he had a kind of restless energy and curiosity, loved to take risks, and was an instant and infallible judge of human nature. His recollections of scouting take readers within arm's reach of Union trenches and encampments. Benson recalls that while eavesdropping he never failed to be shocked by the Yankees' foul language; he had never heard that kind of talk in a Confederate camp! Benson's descriptions of the many battles in which he fought--including Cold Harbor, The Seven Days, Manassas, Sharpsburg, Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania, and Petersburg--convey the desperation of a full frontal charge and the blind panic of a disorganized retreat. Yet in these accounts, Benson's own demeanor under fire is manifest in the coolly measured tone he employs. A natural writer, Benson captures the dark absurdities of war in such descriptions as those of hardened veterans delighting in the new shoes and other equipment they found on corpse-littered battlefields. His clothing often torn by bullets, Benson was also badly bruised a number of times by spent rounds. At one point, in May 1863, he was wounded seriously enough in the leg to be hospitalized, but he returned to the field before full recuperation. Benson was captured behind enemy lines in May 1864 while on a scouting mission for General Lee. Confined to Point Lookout Prison in Maryland, he escaped after only two days and swam the Potomac to get back into Virginia. Recaptured near Washington, D.C., he was briefly held in Old Capitol Prison, then sent to Elmira Prison in New York. There he joined a group of ten men who made the only successful tunnel escape in Elmira's history. After nearly six months in captivity or on the run, he rejoined his unit in Virginia. Even at Appomattox, Benson refused to surrender but stole off with his brother to North Carolina, where they planned to join General Johnston. Finding the roads choked with Union forces and surrendered Confederates, the brothers ultimately bore their unsurrendered rifles home to Augusta. Berry Benson first wrote his memoirs for his family and friends. Completed in 1878, they drew on his--and partially on his brother's--wartime diaries, as well as on letters that both brothers had written to family members during the war. The memoirs were first published in book form in 1962 but have long been unavailable. This edition, with a new foreword by the noted Civil War historian Herman Hattaway, will introduce this compelling story to a new generation of readers.


Death Camp of the North
Author: Michael Horigan
Publisher: Stackpole Books
ISBN: 9780811732765
Category: History
Page: 246
View: 8672

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"In this exhaustively researched study, Horigan points several fingers of guilt at Federal authorities for why 'Helmira' had a death rate almost equal to that at Andersonville. This is the definitive work on a Union prison compound that should never have been one of the worst in the Civil War"--Back cover.

An Irishman in the Iron Brigade

The Civil War Memoirs of James P. Sullivan, Sergt., Company K, 6th Wisconsin Volunteers
Author: William J. K. Beaudot,Lance J. Herdegen
Publisher: Fordham Univ Press
ISBN: 9780823215010
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 189
View: 7979

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No soldier went off to the Civil War with quicker step than 17-year-old James Patrick Sullivan. A hired man on a farm in Juneau County, Wisconsin, he was among the first to anwer Lincoln's call for volunteers in 1861. Sullivan fought in a score of major battles, was wounded five times, and was the only soldier of his regiment to enlist on three separate occasions. An Irishman in the Iron Brigade is a collection of Sullivan's writings about his hard days in President Lincoln's Army. Using war diaries and letters, the Irish immigrant composed nearly a dozen revealing accounts about the battles of his brigage-Brawner Farm, Second Bull Run, South Mountain, Chancellorsville and Gettysburg as well as the fighting of 1864. Using his old camp name, Mickey of Company K, Sullivan wrote not so much for family or for history, but to entertain his comrades of the old Iron Brigade. His stories-overlooked and forgotten for more than a century- are delightful accounts of rough-hewn Westernsoldiers in the Eastern Army of the Potomac. His Gettysburg account, for example, is one of the best recollections of that epic battle by a soldier in the ranks. He also left a from-the-ranks view of some of the Union's major soldiers such as George McClellan, Irvin McDowell, John Pope, and Ambrose Burnside. An Irishman in the Iron Brigade is in part the story of the great veterans' movement which shaped the nation's politics before the turn-of-the-century. Troubled by economic hardship, advancing age, and old war injuries, Sullivan turned to old comrades, his memories, and writing, to put the great experiences of his life in perspective.

If The South Had Won The Civil War

Author: MacKinlay Kantor
Publisher: Forge Books
ISBN: 9780312869496
Category: History
Page: 128
View: 3752

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The Past is a strange place indeed . . . everything could have been so different so easily. Just a touch here and a tweak there . . . . MacKinlay Kantor, Pulitzer Price-winning author and master storyteller, shows us how the South could have won the Civil War: how two small shifts in history (as we know it) in the summer of 1863 could have turned the tide for the Confederacy. What would have happened to the Union, to Abraham Lincoln, to the people of the North and South, to the world? If the South Had Won the Civil War originally appeared in Look magazine nearly half a century ago. It immediately inspired a deluge of letters and telegrams from astonished readers, and became an American Classic overnight. Published in book form soon after, Kantor's masterpiece has been unavailable for a decade. Now, this much requested classic is once again available for a new generation of readers, and features a stunning cover by acclaimed Civil War artist Don Troiani, a new introduction by award-winning alternate history author Harry Turtledove, and fifteen superb illustrations by the incomparable Dan Nance. It all begins on that fateful afternoon of Tuesday, May 12, 1863, when a deplorable equestrian accident claims the life of General Ulysses S. Grant . . . .

Shock Troops of the Confederacy: The Sharpshooter Battalions of the Army of Northern Virginia

Author: Fred L. Ray
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9780964958593
Category: History
Page: 442
View: 8027

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The term sharpshooter had a more general meaning in the mid-19th Century than it does today. Then it could mean either a roving precision shooter like the modern sniper (a term that did not come into use until late in the century) or a light infantryman who specialized in the petite guerre: scouting, picketing, and skirmishing. The modern sharpshooter (the term comes from the German scharfschutzen, not the use of Sharps rifles) appeared in Central Europe around 1700. At the beginning of the Civil War, thanks to Hiram Berdan, the Army of the Potomac had a definite advantage in sharpshooting and light infantry, and this came as a rude shock to the Confederates during the 1862 Peninsular campaign. In response the Confederates organized their own sharpshooters, beginning with those of an obscure Alabama colonel, Bristor Gayle. Confederate general Robert Rodes organized the first battalion of sharpshooters in his brigade in early 1863, and later in each brigade of his division. In early 1864 General Lee adopted the concept for the entire Army of Northern Virginia, mandating that each infantry brigade field a sharpshooter battalion. These units found ready employment in the Overland campaign, and later in the trenches of Petersburg and in the fast-moving Shenandoah campaign of 1864. Although little has been written about them (the last book, written by a former sharpshooter, appeared in 1899), they played an important and sometimes pivotal role in many battles and campaigns in 1864 and 1865. By the end of the war the sharpshooters were experimenting with tactics that would become standard practice fifty years later. Although most people think of Berdan's Sharpshooters when the subject comes up, the Confederate sharpshooter battalions had a far greater effect on the outcome of the conflict. Later in the war, in response to the Confederate dominance of the skirmish line, the Federals began to organize their own sharpshooter units at division level, though they never adopted an army-wide system. Making extensive use of unpublished source material, author Fred Ray has written Shock Troops of the Confederacy, which tells the complete story of the development of the Army of Northern Virginia's sharpshooter battalions, the weapons they used, how they trained with them, and their tactical use on the battlefield. It also tells the human story of the sharpshooters themselves, who describe in their own words what it was like to be in the thick of battle, on the skirmish line, and at their lonely picket posts.

The Fredericksburg Campaign

Winter War on the Rappahannock
Author: Francis Augustín O'Reilly
Publisher: LSU Press
ISBN: 0807158534
Category: History
Page: 630
View: 1221

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The battle at Fredericksburg, Virginia, in December 1862 involved hundreds of thousands of men; produced staggering, unequal casualties (13,000 Federal soldiers compared to 4,500 Confederates); ruined the career of Ambrose E. Burnside; embarrassed Abraham Lincoln; and distinguished Robert E. Lee as one of the greatest military strategists of his era. Francis Augustín O'Reilly draws upon his intimate knowledge of the battlegrounds to discuss the unprecedented nature of Fredericksburg's warfare. Lauded for its vivid description, trenchant analysis, and meticulous research, his award-winning book makes for compulsive reading.

My Face Is Black Is True

Callie House and the Struggle for Ex-Slave Reparations
Author: Mary Frances Berry
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 9780307538710
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 336
View: 483

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Acclaimed historian Mary Frances Berry resurrects the remarkable story of ex-slave Callie House who, seventy years before the civil-rights movement, demanded reparations for ex-slaves. A widowed Nashville washerwoman and mother of five, House (1861-1928) went on to fight for African American pensions based on those offered to Union soldiers, brilliantly targeting $68 million in taxes on seized rebel cotton and demanding it as repayment for centuries of unpaid labor. Here is the fascinating story of a forgotten civil rights crusader: a woman who emerges as a courageous pioneering activist, a forerunner of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr.

Fallen in Fredericksburg (Ghosts of War #4)

Author: Steve Watkins
Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
ISBN: 1338035150
Category: Juvenile Fiction
Page: 208
View: 4430

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After three ghosts, it looks like things might be going back to normal for Anderson and his friends Greg and Julie. It's been a while since any ghosts have shown up, and the most annoying things lately are the loud barking dogs at the Dogs and Suds pet-grooming shop next door to the Kitchen Sink. They've been barking nonstop for days, and it's making band practice impossible. But maybe the dogs know something the friends don't . . . Because suddenly a ghost does appear! From what Anderson can tell, it looks like the ghost is a teenage Union soldier from the Civil War, and he looks terrifying. But this ghost is different from the others: He's demanding to know what happened to his brother, who was also enlisted in the Union army. It's a mystery that's over a hundred and fifty years old, and there are very few clues. What will happen to Anderson, Greg, and Julie if they can't solve this one in time?


Author: James Reasoner
Publisher: Cumberland House Publishing
ISBN: 9781581822137
Category: Fiction
Page: 336
View: 3470

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As the Civil War sweeps across the country, it finds the most wayfaring member of the Brannon family of Culpeper County, Virginia, working as a wharf rat at the Mississippi River port of New Madrid, Missouri. Caught up in a bar fight he tried to avoid, Cory Brannon is rescued by Capt. Zeke Farrell of the riverboat Missouri Zephyr. Later, when a small party of men attempts to burn the boat, Cory sounds a timely warning and finds himself the newest member of the crew. The Zephyr makes the journey from New Madrid to New Orleans in late 1861. During this time, Cory matures and finds that he has an interest in the ways of the rivermen and in the captain's daughter, Lucille. Later, in early 1862, the Zephyr reaches Cairo, Illinois, and is greeted by Union gunboats. The war is now on the water, and there is little room for river commerce. When Farrell, his ship, and his cargo head down the Tennessee River to avoid Union harrassment, they are drawn into the battle lines around two strongpoints on the river: Confederate Forts Henry and Donelson. A Union force under Ulysses S. Grant is advancing toward the forts to claim the area for the North, and Cory and his crewmates join in the fight to see which side will control the river. Captain Farrell is killed when the Zephyr is destroyed by a Union gunboat. Taken prisoner, Cory loses contact with Lucille. When he learns that Grant is preparing to move farther south, he tries to alert Southern leaders of the danger growing in Western Tennessee. Again he takes up arms, this time at the battle of Shiloh, where the armies in the West collide to determine the fate of the war in the western theater.

How the North Won

A Military History of the Civil War
Author: Herman Hattaway,Archer Jones
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
ISBN: 9780252062100
Category: History
Page: 762
View: 1264

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A description of the military operations of the Civil War includes analyses of the leadership and strategies of both sides of the conflict

Breaking the Backbone of the Rebellion

The Final Battles of the Petersburg Campaign
Author: A. Wilson Greene
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Category: History
Page: 556
View: 6192

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This detailed account of the final battles of the Civil War siege of Petersburg covers leadership, supply, desertion, strategy and tactics, and was written by the director of the Pamplin Park Historic Site.


A Brief History of Humankind
Author: Yuval Noah Harari
Publisher: Harper Collins
ISBN: 0062316109
Category: Science
Page: 464
View: 9200

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New York Times Bestseller A Summer Reading Pick for President Barack Obama, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg From a renowned historian comes a groundbreaking narrative of humanity’s creation and evolution—a #1 international bestseller—that explores the ways in which biology and history have defined us and enhanced our understanding of what it means to be “human.” One hundred thousand years ago, at least six different species of humans inhabited Earth. Yet today there is only one—homo sapiens. What happened to the others? And what may happen to us? Most books about the history of humanity pursue either a historical or a biological approach, but Dr. Yuval Noah Harari breaks the mold with this highly original book that begins about 70,000 years ago with the appearance of modern cognition. From examining the role evolving humans have played in the global ecosystem to charting the rise of empires, Sapiens integrates history and science to reconsider accepted narratives, connect past developments with contemporary concerns, and examine specific events within the context of larger ideas. Dr. Harari also compels us to look ahead, because over the last few decades humans have begun to bend laws of natural selection that have governed life for the past four billion years. We are acquiring the ability to design not only the world around us, but also ourselves. Where is this leading us, and what do we want to become? Featuring 27 photographs, 6 maps, and 25 illustrations/diagrams, this provocative and insightful work is sure to spark debate and is essential reading for aficionados of Jared Diamond, James Gleick, Matt Ridley, Robert Wright, and Sharon Moalem.

In Meat We Trust

An Unexpected History of Carnivore America
Author: Maureen Ogle
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 0544103130
Category: Cooking
Page: 384
View: 3787

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The untold story of how meat made America: a tale of the self-made magnates, pragmatic farmers, and impassioned activists who shaped us into the greatest eaters and providers of meat in history "Ogle is a terrific writer, and she takes us on a brisk romp through two centuries of history, full of deft portraits of entrepreneurs, inventors, promoters and charlatans.... Ms. Ogle believes, all exceptions admitted, that [the food industry] has delivered Americans good value, and her book makes that case in fascinating detail." —Wall Street Journal The moment European settlers arrived in North America, they began transforming the land into a meat-eater’s paradise. Long before revolution turned colonies into nation, Americans were eating meat on a scale the Old World could neither imagine nor provide: an average European was lucky to see meat once a week, while even a poor American man put away about two hundred pounds a year. Maureen Ogle guides us from that colonial paradise to the urban meat-making factories of the nineteenth century to the hyperefficient packing plants of the late twentieth century. From Swift and Armour to Tyson, Cargill, and ConAgra. From the 1880s cattle bonanza to 1980s feedlots. From agribusiness to today’s “local” meat suppliers and organic countercuisine. Along the way, Ogle explains how Americans’ carnivorous demands shaped urban landscapes, midwestern prairies, and western ranges, and how the American system of meat making became a source of both pride and controversy.

Sounding the Shallows

A Confederate Companion for the Maryland Campaign of 1862
Author: Joseph L. Harsh
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9780873386401
Category: History
Page: 280
View: 2202

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A companion volume to Taken at the Flood, this work identifies areas of research and in-depth source material for studies of the Maryland Campaign of 1862.

Brothers' Fury

Author: Giles Kristian
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 1409043894
Category: Fiction
Page: 480
View: 5875

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Rebel Tom Rivers has been rejected by both his family and his commanding officer. But spymaster Captain Crafte sees in the young hothead a fearlessness that could be used to strike at the very heart of the Royalist cause. Renegade Raw with grief at the death of his father, Edmund Rivers has rejected the peace talks between Parliament and the King. Now he leads a band of ruthless marauders against the rebels. However, Prince Rupert, recognising a kindred spirit, has other, no less daring plans. Huntress Heart broken by the deaths that surround her, Bess Rivers bravely leaves her infant son and Sheer House to go in search of the one person who might help her douse the flames of her brothers’ fury. . . The second novel in Giles' acclaimed Bleeding Land series, Brothers’ Fury is a powerful and thrilling novel of family turmoil and civil war.

Borrowed Time

Reenacting the American Civil War in Indiana
Author: John Joseph Cash
Publisher: N.A
Category: Gettysburg, Battle of, Gettysburg, Pa., 1863
Page: 774
View: 9288

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A Chain of Thunder

A Novel of the Siege of Vicksburg
Author: Jeff Shaara
Publisher: Civil War in the West
ISBN: 0345527380
Category: Fiction
Page: 562
View: 6080

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The best-selling author of A Blaze of Glory presents a first installment in a new trilogy inspired by the Siege of Vicksburg that follows Ulysses S. Grant's successful cross of the Mississippi in May 1863 and his reluctant decision to surround Confederate soldiers and citizens in a ring of Federal entrenchments to starve them into surrendering.

General A.P. Hill

The Story of a Confederate Warrior
Author: James I. Robertson, Jr.
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307755347
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 416
View: 1027

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A Confederate general who ranks with Lee, Jeb Stuart, and Stonewall Jackson but whose achievements have been unfairly neglected until now, finally receives his due in this invaluable biography by a noted historian of the Civil War. Drawing extensively on newly unearthed documents, this work provides a gripping battle-by-battle assessment of Hill's role in Antietam, Fredericksburg, Gettysburg, and other battles. 8 pages of photographs. From the Trade Paperback edition.

And the Dead Shall Rise

The Murder of Mary Phagan and the Lynching of Leo Frank
Author: Steve Oney
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0679764232
Category: History
Page: 784
View: 4594

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Describes the 1913 murder of Atlanta factory worker Mary Phagan, the arrest of her Jewish supervisor, Leo Frank, and the abduction and lynching of Frank, offering an account of the crime, its aftermath, and long-term repercussions.

Book of Colours

Author: Robyn Cadwallader
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 1460707052
Category: Fiction
Page: 368
View: 7806

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From Robyn Cadwallader, author of the internationally acclaimed novel The Anchoress, comes a deeply profound and moving novel of the importance of creativity and the power of connection, told through the story of the commissioning of a gorgeously decorated medieval manuscript, a Book of Hours. London, 1321: In a small shop in Paternoster Row, three people are drawn together around the creation of a magnificent book, an illuminated manuscript of prayers, a book of hours. Even though the commission seems to answer the aspirations of each one of them, their own desires and ambitions threaten its completion. As each struggles to see the book come into being, it will change everything they have understood about their place in the world. In many ways, this is a story about power - it is also a novel about the place of women in the roiling and turbulent world of the early fourteenth century; what power they have, how they wield it, and just how temporary and conditional it is. Rich, deep, sensuous and full of life, Book of Colours is also, most movingly, a profoundly beautiful story about creativity and connection, and our instinctive need to understand our world and communicate with others through the pages of a book. 'Robyn Cadwallader fashions words with the same delicate, colourful intensity that her 14th century illuminators brought to their illustrated manuscripts. Book of Colours brings alive a harsh but rich past, filled with the fantasies, fears, sly wit and tender longings of the medieval imagination.' Sarah Dunant 'Book of Colours shows the depth of possibility a book might hold - all the while shimmering with the beauty and fragility of an ancient gilded page.' Eleanor Limprecht 'Extraordinary ... a real sensory experience ... suffused with colours' ABC Radio National The Bookshelf Praise for The Anchoress: 'So beautiful, so rich, so strange, unexpected and thoughtful - also suspenseful. I loved this book.' Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love 'Affecting ... finely drawn ... a considerable achievement.' Sarah Dunant, New York Times 'Elegant and eloquent' Irish Mail 'Cadwallader's writing evokes a heightened attention to the senses: you might never read a novel so sensuous yet unconcerned with romantic love. For this alone it is worth seeking out. But also because The Anchoress achieves what every historical novel attempts: reimagining the past while opening a new window - like a squint, perhaps - to our present lives.' Sydney Morning Herald 'A novel of page-turning grace' Newtown Review of Books