Friday, April 15, 2016

Kentucky Rebel Town

It's rare indeed to find a self-published book reworked for publication decades later by a highly regarded university press. Back in 1995, William A. Penn published Rattling Spurs and Broad-Brimmed Hats: The Civil War in Cynthiana and Harrison County, Kentucky. Long out of print by the time I discovered it, the volume has since maintained three figure prices on the secondary market (whether they're actually selling at that price is another matter entirely). The author has always planned on revising the book and he actually released a digital 2014 edition that anyone can freely download [here]. The better news is this fall University Press of Kentucky will release Kentucky Rebel Town: The Civil War Battles of Cynthiana and Harrison County (October '16). From the description:
"In this fascinating book, William A. Penn provides an impressively detailed account of the region that saw more major military action during the Civil War than anywhere else in Kentucky. Because of its political leanings and strategic position along the Kentucky Central Railroad, Harrison County became the target of multiple raids by Confederate general John Hunt Morgan. Conflict in the area culminated in the Second Battle of Cynthiana, in which Morgan's men clashed with Union troops led by Major General Stephen G. Burbridge (the 'Butcher of Kentucky'), resulting in the destruction of much of the town by fire.

Penn draws on dozens of period newspapers as well as personal journals, memoirs, and correspondence from citizens, slaves, soldiers, and witnesses to provide a vivid account of the war's impact on the region. Featuring new maps that clearly illustrate the combat strategies in the various engagements, Kentucky Rebel Town provides an illuminating look at divided loyalties and dissent in Union Kentucky."

1 comment:

  1. Cool! I've been through Cynthiana (and over the John Hunt Morgan Bridge) many times. I look forward to this


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