Saturday, April 25, 2015

Booknotes VI (Apr '15)

New Arrivals:

1. The 21st North Carolina Infantry: A Civil War History, With a Roster of Officers by Lee W. Sherrill, Jr. (McFarland, 2015).

"The 21st North Carolina Troops (11th North Carolina Volunteers) was one of only two Tar Heel Confederate regiments that in 1865 could boast "From Manassas to Appomattox." The 21st was the only North Carolina regiment with Stonewall Jackson during his 1862 Valley Campaign and remained with the same division throughout the war. It participated in every major battle fought by the Army of Northern Virginia except the 1864 Overland Campaign, when General Lee sent it to fight its own intense battles near New Bern and Plymouth." A smallish-print, double-columned, oversized book coming in at well over 500 pages in length, this is one huge regimental history. Heavy on primary sources (including a great deal of manuscript material), the depth of research appears to match that of the text, which is comprised of very detailed accounts of the 21st's campaigns. The description states that over 700 letters and memoirs were utilized. Battle maps are plentiful and always show the position of the regiment on the field and within the brigade line. The roster is limited to just officers and staff.

2. The Civil War Guerrilla: Unfolding the Black Flag in History, Memory, and Myth edited by Joseph M. Beilein, Jr. and Matthew C. Hulbert (UP of KY, 2015).

Together, the eight essays "discuss irregular combat as practiced by various communities in multiple contexts, including how it was used by Native Americans, the factors that motivated raiders in the border states, and the women who participated as messengers, informants, collaborators, and combatants. They also explore how the Civil War guerrilla has been mythologized in history, literature, and folklore."

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