Sunday, March 22, 2020

Booknotes: The War Went On

New Arrival:
The War Went On: Reconsidering the Lives of Civil War Veterans edited by Brian Matthew Jordan & Evan C. Rothera (LSU Press, 2020).

"Inspired by recent interest in memory studies and energized by the ongoing neorevisionist turn," Civil War veterans studies have received quite a boost in recent years. A major scholar in this corner of Civil War studies is Brian Matthew Jordan, so he's a natural choice (with Evan Rothera) to introduce, edit, and contribute to the new essay anthology The War Went On: Reconsidering the Lives of Civil War Veterans.

From the description: "Despite this flood of historical scholarship, fundamental questions about the essential character of Civil War veteranhood remain unanswered. Moreover, because work on veterans has often proceeded from a preoccupation with cultural memory, the Civil War’s ex­-soldiers have typically been analyzed as either symbols or producers of texts."

Often taking a different tack, the fifteen essays in The War Went On largely "approach Civil War veterans from oblique angles, including theater, political, and disability history, as well as borderlands and memory studies." I don't see any links online to the full table of contents, so I've transcribed it below from my print copy.

1. "Let Us Everywhere Charge the Enemy Home": Army of the Potomac Veterans and Public Partisanship, 1864-1880 by Zachery Fry.

2. The Men Are Understood to Have Been Generally Americans, in the Employ of the Liberal Government": Civil War Veterans and Mexico, 1865-1867 by Evan Rothera.

3. Civil War Veteran Colonies on the Western Frontier by Kurt Hackemer.

4. The Trials of Frank James: Guerrilla Veteranhood and the Double Edge of Wartime Notoriety by Matthew Hulbert.

5. Speaking for Themselves: Disabled Veterans and Civil War Medical Photography by Sarah Handley-Cousins.

6. Remembering "That Dark Episode": Union and Confederate Ex-Prisoners of War and Their Captivity Narratives by Angela Riotto.

7. "Exposing False History": The Voice of the Union Veteran in the Pages of the National Tribune by Steven Sodergren.

8. "It Is Natural That Each Comrade Should Think His Corps the Best": Sheridan's Veterans Refight the 1864 Shenandoah Valley Campaign by Jonathan Noyalas.

9. A Building Very Useful: The Grand Army Memorial Hall in US Civil Life, 1880-1920 by Jonathan Neu.

10. Veterans at the Footlights: Unionism and White Supremacy in the Theater of the Grand Army of the Republic by Tyler Sperrazza.

11. "Our Beloved Father Abraham": African American Civil War Veterans and Abraham Lincoln in War and Memory by Matthew Norman.

12. "The Colored Veteran Soldiers Should Receive the Same Tender Care": Soldiers' Homes, Race, and the Post-Civil War Midwest by Kelly Mezurek

13. Lost to the Lost Cause: Arkansas's Union Veterans by Rebecca Howard.

14. Loyal Deserters and the Veterans Who Werent: Pension Fund Fraud in Lost Cause Memory by Adam Domby.

15. Veterans in New Fields: Directions for Future Scholarship on Civil War Veterans by Brian Matthew Jordan.

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