Sunday, October 18, 2015

Booknotes: A Want of Vigilance

New Arrival:

A Want of Vigilance: The Bristoe Station Campaign, October 9-19, 1863 by Bill Backus and Robert Orrison (Savas Beatie, 2015).

The latest entry from the Emerging Civil War series, A Want of Vigilance covers the indecisive fall 1863 Bristoe Campaign that was fought in central Virginia. Squeezed between Gettysburg and the Overland Campaign and lacking a massive capstone battle to go along with all the maneuvering, the operation hasn't received a great deal of attention until recently, with a nice atlas history and a very good campaign study to improve upon the older H.E. Howard series volume. A Want of Vigilance incorporates a nine stop driving tour into a narrative centered on the October 14 Bristoe Station battle, with additional chapter length coverage of the clashes at Auburn and Buckland Mills. In addition to the series typical maps and illustrations, the many appendices address a variety of topics, including expanded discussion of the famous Bristoe Station exchange between Lee and A.P. Hill, short looks at the Rappahannock Station, Kelly's Ford, and First Bristoe Station battles, a preservation timeline, orders of battle, and more.

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