Saturday, February 23, 2008

"Firearms in American History: A Guide for Writers, Curators, and General Readers"

Confusion abounds in the Civil War literature when it comes to the detailed discussion of weaponry. While the pistols and long arms of the 1860s comprise only a segment of its coverage, Firearms in American History: A Guide for Writers, Curators, and General Readers [by Charles G. Worman (Westholme, 2007)] should serve as an excellent quick reference guide for Civil War writers.

I centered my own reading on the 1840-1865 period, and was impressed with the author's ability to effectively convey a great deal of detail (technological background, production info., weapon specs, strengths, weaknesses, etc.) in a small amount of space, while at the same time keeping broader trends in focus. Looked for information is also easy to find, a feature critically important for a good reference work. The volume also swarms with clearly reproduced B&W photographs, while sturdy binding and the use of a heavy weight, high gloss paper ensures durability. Firearms in American History is a top notch production overall, and Charles Worman's encyclopedic historical survey will undoubtedly be much referred to during my own inquiries.

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