Wednesday, July 1, 2009

My Top 10 Gettysburg books

With the anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg upon us, Brett Schulte of TOCWOC recently asked a number of other Civil War bloggers if they would like to submit a list of Top 10 books about the battle (selection criteria deliberately undefined). For the most part, I chose a string of narrowly focused secondary works, that, taken together, provide the most detailed picture of the battle available.

*** MY (rather conventional) TOP TEN LIST: ***

1. The Gettysburg Campaign: A Study in Command by Edwin B. Coddington.

2. Retreat from Gettysburg: Lee, Logistics, and the Pennsylvania Campaign by Kent Masterson Brown.

3. Plenty of Blame to Go Around: Jeb Stuart's Controversial Ride to Gettysburg by Eric Wittenberg and J. David Petruzzi.

4. Pickett's Charge: The Last Attack at Gettysburg by Earl J. Hess.

5. Gettysburg: July 1 by David G. Martin.

6. Gettysburg: The Second Day by Harry W. Pfanz.

7. Gettysburg: Culp's Hill and Cemetery Hill by Harry W. Pfanz.

8. Pickett's Charge in History and Memory by Carol Reardon.

9. Gallagher (ed.) trilogy - The First Day at Gettysburg: Essays on Confederate and Union Leadership, The Second Day at Gettysburg: Essays on Confederate and Union Leadership, and The Third Day at Gettysburg and Beyond.

10. Regimental Strengths and Losses at Gettysburg by John W. Busey and David G. Martin.

*** Here's the link back to the aggregator page on Brett's site. ***


  1. Finally...after firing blanks on the first four lists, I have two in common with you, Drew.

  2. Drew,

    Thanks for agreeing to do this. Unsurprisingly since we share the same tastes in Civil War topics, you and I have 7 of the 10 in our lists in common. I've "Tweeted" a link to your list and I've also added a link back from the permanent page.

  3. Harry,
    I hope one of them wasn't the Busey and Martin book. I was going for originality there!

  4. Brett,
    It would be interesting to do this for many of the big battles. The problem is coming up with ten for many of the them!

  5. Great List Drew! I have Nine out of the Ten books in your list. Your list contains some of my favorite books in my collection. I was glad to see Hess and his wonderful book on Pickett's Charge at #4.

  6. Drew,

    True. If we all do something like this again, I see Top 5 or Top 3 lists.

  7. I know. For something like the Battle of Chickamauga the list could contain Glenn Tucker and Peter Cozzens' books. Plus, maybe Baumgartner's book on Wilder's Lightning brigade at the battle and from there the major modern works fall off quite a bit.

  8. It would also be interesting to see some top-ten Shiloh lists--especially regarding folks' opinions on the modern works by Cunningham, Daniel, etc.

  9. I read a great biography of General John F. Reynolds who was killed on the first day at Gettysburg.

    It was called Toward Gettysburg by Edward J Nichols. The book spent a large amount on Gettysburg.


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