Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Nathaniel Cheairs Hughes

I just read that historian Nathaniel Cheairs Hughes passed away last month at the age of 81. Hughes was one of those rare prolific Civil War authors that was a high achiever in a wide variety of categories -- biography, battle history, reference book, unit study, and editor. My personal favorites are The Battle of Belmont: Grant Strikes South and Yale's Confederates: A Biographical Dictionary, the former an inspiring force in my favorite arena of military history study, Civil War Missouri.


  1. Hello Drew

    I had heard that Mr. Hughes had passed away. I enjoyed many of this books and was fortunate to have him inscribe some of my copies. I really appreciated that his focus was on the western theater of the war and as you mentioned it was very diverse.

    Don Hallstrom

  2. I am really sorry to hear this. Nat was very helpful when I was researching George Rains and the Augusta Power Works in the early 1990s, and opened his home to me in Chattanooga. His wife Buckey was a wonderful hostess and they were a pair from the past--charming beyond delight. He did a lot of good work, but my favorite remains his biography on Hardee. God's speed, Nat.

    Theodore P. Savas

  3. Just read about this. He was one of the greats. I have almost all of his books that he wrote or edited that I can get my hands on.

    To me some of his classics were his books on the Washington Artillery in the Army of Tennessee, 'Jefferson Davis in Blue', his book on the Battle of Belmont, and the wonderful book he edited by Philip Stephenson of the Washington Artillery. His book on Hardee was a classic too and his version of 'Liddell's Record' really helped put that irascible man in a interesting light.

    What a great historian.


  4. Am just finishing his 5th Company Washington Artillery and tried to get in touch with him-several years too late. The Iowa Gold Star Military Museum has a captured Napoleon gun tube with a distinctive shell wound-have always been intrigued by it and Hughes' book appears to id it as their gun-struck at Peach Tree Creek and lost at Nashville-a probable case certainly not for sure but I think he would have enjoyed this possible link with his topic.


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