Monday, July 11, 2016

Booknotes: Renegade Texas Confederate & Union Surgeon Dr. William R. Robinson

New Arrival:
Renegade Texas Confederate & Union Surgeon Dr. William R. Robinson by Duane Helweg (Rimrock Writings, 2016).

"The book tells the life story of Dr. William Robert Robinson, including the most intriguing era, that of the American Civil War, whereby as a surgeon, he served on both the Confederate and Union sides before finally practicing in Newark, New Jersey until his death in 1889." Helwig tries to piece together Robinson's life, one that took some mysterious turns, through a scattering of existing documents (the photographs of many of these are reproduced in the book). The biography discusses Robinson's Civil War service, first as a Confederate regimental surgeon in Texas (in the areas around Hempstead, Galveston, and Columbus), then as Union contract surgeon at Ship Island, Mississippi. It also provides material on Robinson's life before and after the Civil War. Biographical sketches of Robinson collected from other sources (and often differing in details) are included as an appendix, as is a study of Confederate casualties in Colorado County, Texas written by the author.

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