Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Booknotes: Death, Disease, and Life at War

New Arrival:
Death, Disease, and Life at War: The Civil War Letters of Surgeon James D. Benton, 111th and 98th New York Infantry Regiments, 1862-1865 by Christopher E. Loperfido
(Savas Beatie, 2018).

Death, Disease, and Life at War is the edited 1862-65 Civil War correspondence of Dr. James Dana Benton. "A native of New York, Dr. Benton penned a series of letters throughout the war to his family relating his experiences with the 111th New York Infantry as an assistant surgeon, and later with the 98th New York as surgeon."

More from the description: "Dr. Benton was present for some of the war’s most gruesome and important battles, including Gettysburg, Cold Harbor, and the siege of Petersburg. He was also present at Harpers Ferry, Second Battle of Auburn, Battle of Morton’s Ford, and Abraham Lincoln’s second Inaugural address."

Editor Christopher Loperfido supplements Benton's letters with a lengthy introduction, footnotes, and bridging narrative throughout. Informative appendices discuss the battlefield care innovations of Dr. Jonathan Letterman, the U.S. Sanitary Commission, the development of the army ambulance corps, limb amputation, and wound dressing.

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