Monday, December 19, 2005

Civil War in North Carolina

In a blog posting today, historian Eric Wittenberg laments the comparative neglect of Civil War sites and battlefields in North Carolina. Eric has also helpfully provided a list of sites there complete with links. I have a great interest in the war in North Carolina and view the Union operations there post-Burnside Expedition as one of the great underexploited opportunities of the war. Luckily for us, the great overshadowing of sites in the Old North State by those in Virginia is compensated somewhat by a number of books that rank among the best of all Civil War military studies.

Mark L. Bradley
Last Stand in the Carolinas: The Battle of Bentonville.
This Astounding Close: The Road to Bennett Place.
(comments: Bradley's two-volume study of Sherman's Carolinas campaign is unmatched and augmented by brilliant maps.)

Richard Sauers
The Burnside Expedition in North Carolina: A Succession of Honorable Victories.
(comments: definitive story of the Burnside Expedition from beginning to end and a great tactical study of the campaign's many skirmishes and battles. I wish Sauers wrote more.)

Chris Fonvielle, Jr.

The Wilmington Campaign: Last Departing Rays of Hope.
Fort Anderson: Battle for Wilmington.
(comments: Fonvielle's work is highly underrated and I am baffled by the continual reference to Gragg's Fort Fisher book "Confederate Goliath" as the definitive treatment of the subject.)

Mark Moore
Moore's Historical Guide to the Battle of Bentonville.
(comments: a model map study and a great companion work to Bradley's Bentonville book. I believe Moore did the cartographic work for both of Bradley's books listed above.)


  1. Drew,

    I own all of them, though I haven't had time to read Fonvielle's book just yet. I've heard good things about it though.

    Brett S.

  2. Brett,
    In my mind, it certainly deserves top rank status. I wonder what he is working on now, if anything.



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