Readings

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Readings are also listed by session.

Required Readings

Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003. ISBN: 9780195168952.

Amazon logo Shaara, Michael. The Killer Angels. New York, NY: Ballantine, 1987, 1993. ISBN: 9780345348104.

Amazon logo Watkins, Sam R. Company Aytch: A Confederate’s Memoir of the Civil War, 1882. New York, NY: Touchstone, 1997, 2003. ISBN: 9780743255417.

Donald, David, ed. Why the North Won the Civil War. New York, NY: Collier, 1962.

In addition, we will be viewing Ken Burns’s renowned documentary The Civil War, a nine-part series that made television history when over 40 million viewers watched it in September 1990. Praised and criticized, The Civil War does one thing very well: it gives the viewer a vivid visual sense of what the times were like. And that’s why I’m using it – it puts a human face on the war. As you watch the series, think about how Burns’s presentation comports or departs with what James McPherson and other authors we’ll be reading have to say about the war. Differences in interpretation definitely exist. As the instructor, I am counting on you to pick up on these differences and bring them to the attention of the class during our discussions. The better your level of perception in these matters, the better will be your final grade!

Readings by Session


Lec # TOPICS READINGS
1 Introduction Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003. ISBN: 9780195168952.

Donald, David, ed. Why the North Won the Civil War. New York, NY: Collier, 1962.
2 Film: Ken Burns. The Civil War. Episode 1, "The Cause" Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003, pp. 3-275. ISBN: 9780195168952. (Pay close attention to pp. 3-46.)
3 Lecture: Why the War Came; How Well Were the Sides Prepared?
4 Reading Period
5 Class Discussion of Donald's Book (Discussion will be Framed Around Student Reflection Papers)
6 Film: The Civil War. Episode 2, "1862 - A Very Bloody Affair" Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003, pp. 276-427. ISBN: 9780195168952.
7 Lecture: Dr. Brendan Foley. "The Civil War at Sea"
8 Film: The Civil War. Episode 3, "Forever Free, 1862" Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003, pp. 428-567. ISBN: 9780195168952.
9 Discussion (Framed Around Reflection Papers)
10 Film: The Civil War. Episode 4, "Simply Murder, 1863" Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003, pp. 568-665. ISBN: 9780195168952.

Amazon logo Shaara, Michael. The Killer Angels. New York, NY: Ballantine, 1987, 1993. ISBN: 9780345348104.
11 Lecture: "The Impact of New Weapons Technologies"
12 Film: The Civil War. Episode 5, "The Universe of Battle, 1863"
13 Discussion (Framed Around Reflection Papers)
14 Lecture: "Roads, Rails, and Waterways: Their Significance in the Civil War" Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003, pp. 666-717. ISBN: 9780195168952.
15 Reading Period (Watkins, Sam. Company Aytch) Amazon logo Watkins, Sam R. Company Aytch: A Confederate’s Memoir of the Civil War, 1882. New York, NY: Touchstone, 1997, 2003. ISBN: 9780743255417.
16 Discussion of Watkins and Life in the Ranks (Framed Around Reflection Papers)
17 Film: The Civil War. Episode 6, "The Valley of the Shadow of Death, 1864" Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003, pp. 718-50. ISBN: 9780195168952.
18 Film: The Civil War. Episode 7, "Most Hallowed Ground, 1864" Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003, pp. 751-806. ISBN: 9780195168952.
19 Lecture: "Was the Civil War America's 'Defining Moment'?"
20 Film: The Civil War. Episode 8, "War is All Hell, 1865" Amazon logo McPherson, James. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, 2003, pp. 807-862. ISBN: 9780195168952.
21 Discussion: "Who Got it Right?"
22 Film: The Civil War. Episode 9, "The Better Angels of Our Nature, 1865"

Wrap-up

Supplementary Readings by Theme

Note: An asterisk (*) indicates that the work is required reading.

General Histories of the Civil War

Donald, David H. Liberty and Union. Boston, MA: Little, Brown and Co., 1978.

Donald, David H. et al. The Civil War and Reconstruction. New York, NY: Norton, 2001.

Foote, Shelby. The Civil War: A Narrative. 3 vols. New York, NY: Random House, 1958-74.

Hattaway, Herman. Shades of Blue and Gray: An Introductory Military History of the Civil War. Columbia, MS: University of Missouri Press, 1997.

Nevins, Allan. The War for the Union. 5 vols. New York, NY: Scribner, 1959-71.

Amazon logo *McPherson, James M. Battle Cry of Freedom. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988. ISBN: 9780195038637.

Paludan, Philip S. A People's Contest: the Union and Civil War 1861-1865. New York, NY: Harper and Row, 1988.

Thomas, Emory M. The Confederate Nation 1861-1865. New York, NY: Harper and Row, 1979.

Ward, Geoffrey C., Ric, and Ken Burns. The Civil War: an illustrated history. New York, NY: Knopf, 1990.

Weigley, Russell F. A Great Civil War. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2000.

Biographies

Boritt, Gabor S., ed. Lincoln, The War President. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1992.

Davis, William C. Jefferson Davis. New York, NY: Harper Collins, 1991.

Donald, David H. Lincoln. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster, 1995.

Freeman, Douglas S. R. E. Lee. 4 vols. New York, NY: Scribner's Sons, 1934-35.

———. Lee's Lieutenants. 3 vols. New York, NY: Scribner's Sons, 1942-1944. (Also see the excellent one volume abridgement by Stephen Sears, 1998)

Marszalek, John F. Sherman: A Soldier's Passion for Order. New York, NY: Free Press, 1993.

Piston, William G. Lee's Tarnished Lieutenant: James Longstreet and His Place in Southern History. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1987.

Robertson, James I. Stonewall Jackson. New York, NY: Macmillan Publishers, 1997.

Simpson, Brooks D. Ulysses S. Grant. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 2000.

Thomas, Benjamin P., and Harold M. Hyman. Stanton: the life and times of Lincoln's Secretary of War. New York, NY: Knopf, 1962.

Thomas, Emory M. Robert E. Lee. New York, NY: W.W. Norton, 1995. (Best one volume account.)

Vandiver, Frank E. Ploughshares into Swords: Josiah Gorgas and Confederate Ordnance. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press, 1952.

Waugh, John G. The Class of 1846: From West Point to Appomattox. New York, NY: Warner Books, 1994.

Weigley, Russell F. Quartermaster General of the Union Army: A Biography of Montgomery C. Meigs. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 1959.

The Common Soldier

Hess, Earl J. The Union Soldier in Battle. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 1997.

Linderman, Gerald. Embattled Courage: The Experience of Combat in the American Civil War. New York, NY: Free Press, 1987.

McPherson, James. For Cause and Comrade: Why Men Fought in the Civil War. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1997.

Trudeau, Noah A. Like Men of War: Black Troops in the Civil War, 1862-1865. Boston, MA: Little, Brown, 1998.

Wiley, Bell I. The Life of Johnny Reb. Indianapolis, IN: Bobbs-Merrill, 1943.

———. The Life of Billy Yank. Indianapolis, IN: Bobbs-Merrill, 1952.

Military Aspects of the War

Ballard, Michael B. Vicksburg. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2004.

Browning, Robert M. From Cape Charles to Cape Fear: The North Atlantic Blockading Squadron During the Civil War. Tuscaloosa, AL: University of Alabama Press, 1993.

Castel, Albert. Decision in the West: The Atlanta Campaign of 1864. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 1992.

Cooling, Benjamin F. Forts Henry and Donelson. Knoxville, TN: University of Tennessee Press, 1987.

Coddington, Edwin B. The Gettysburg Campaign. New York, NY: Scribner's, 1968.

Connolly, Thomas L., and Archer Jones. The Politics of Command. Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University Press, 1973.

Fowler, William M., Jr. Under Two Flags: The American Navy in the Civil War. New York, NY: Norton, 1990.

Gallagher, Gary W. Lee and His Army in Confederate History. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina, 2001.

Glatthaar, Joseph T. The March to the Sea and Beyond. New York, NY: New York University Press, 1985.

Hess, Earl J. Field Armies and Fortifications in the Civil War. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina, 2005.

Jones, Archer. Confederate Strategy from Shiloh to Vicksburg. Baton Rouge, Louisiana State University, 1961.

Luraghi, Raimondo. A History of the Confederate Navy. Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1996.

McMurray, Richard M. Two Great Rebel Armies. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina, 1989.

Mindell, David A. War, Technology, and Experience Aboard the USS 'Monitor'. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000.

Nosworthy, Brent. The Bloody Crucible of War: Fighting Methods and Combat Experience of the Civil War. New York, NY: Carroll and Graf, 2003.

Rable, George C. Fredericksburg! Fredericksburg! Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina, 2002.

Rafuse, Ethan S. A Single Grand Victory: The First Campaign and Battle of Manassas. Wilmington, DE: SR Books, 2002.

Reardon, Carol. Pickett's Charge in History and Memory. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina, 1997.

Royster, Charles. The Destructive War. New York, NY: Knopf, 1991.

Sears, Stephen W. Landscape Turned Red: The Battle of Antietam. New Haven, CT: Ticknor and Fields, 1983.

———. Gettysburg. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 2003.

Williams, T. Harry. Lincoln and His Generals. New York, NY: Vintage Books, 1952.

Woodworth, Steven E. Jefferson Davis and His Generals. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 1985.

———. Nothing But Victory: The Army of the Tennessee, 1861-1865. New York, NY: Alfred A. Knopf, 2005.

Armaments and Logistics

Abdill, George B. Civil War Railroads. Seattle, WA: Superior Publishing Co., 1989.

Black, Robert C. The Railroads of the Confederacy. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina, 1998.

Bruce, Robert V. Lincoln and the Tools of War. Indianapolis, IN: Bobbs-Merrill, 1956.

Clark, John C., Jr. Railroads in the Civil War. Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University Press, 2001.

Davis, Carl L. Arming the Union. Port Washington, NY: Kennikat Press, 1973.

Hagerman, Edward. The American Civil War and the Origins of Modern Warfare. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1988.

Nosworthy, Brent. The Bloody Crucible of War. New York, NY: Carroll and Graf, 2003.

Vandiver, Frank E. Ploughshares into Swords: Josiah Gorgas and Confederate Ordnance. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press, 1952.

———. Rebel Brass Baton Rouge. LA: Louisiana State University Press, 1956.

Weigley, Russell. Quartermaster General of the Union Army: A Biography Of Montgomery C. Meigs. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 1959.

Wise, Stephen R. Lifeline of the Confederacy: Blockade Running During The Civil War. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 1988.

Social and Political Aspects of the War (including public health and battlefield medicine)

Andreano, Ralph, ed. The Economic Impact of the American Civil War. Cambridge, MA: Schenkman Pub. Co., 1962.

Bollet, Alfred J. Civil War Medicine. Tucson, AZ: Galen Press, 2002.

Burgess, Lauren C. An Uncommon Soldier: The Civil War Letters of Sarah Rosetta Wakeman alias Pvt. Lyons Wakeman. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1994, 1995.

Clinton, Catherine, and Nina Silber, eds. Divided Houses: Gender and the Civil War. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1992.

Curry, Leonard P. Blueprint for Modern America. Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University Press, 1968.

Denney, Robert E. Civil War Medicine. New York, NY: Sterling Publications, 1994.

Faust, Drew Gilpin. Mothers of Invention. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1996.

Fredrickson, George M. The Inner Civil War. New York, NY: Harper & Row, 1965.

Freemon, Frank R. Gangrene and Glory: Medical Care during the Civil War. Madison, NJ: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press ; London, UK: Associated University Presses, 1998. 2001.

Gilchrist, David T., and W. David Lewis, eds. Economic Change in the Civil War Era. Greenville, DE: Eleutherian Mills-Hagley Foundation, 1965.

Leonard, Elizabeth D. Yankee Women. New York, NY: W.W. Norton 1994.

———. All the Daring of a Soldier: Women of the Civil War Armies. New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Co., 1999.

Paludan, Philip S. A People's Contest. New York, NY: Harper & Row, 1988.

Richardson, Heather C. The Greatest Nation of the Earth: Republican Economic Policies During the Civil War. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1997.

Rutkow, Ira M. Bleeding Blue and Gray: Civil War Surgery and the Evolution of American Medicine. New York, NY: Random House, 2005.

Schultz, Jane E. Women at the Front: Hospital Workers in Civil War America. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2004.

Woodworth, Steven E. While God is Marching On: The Religious World of Civil War Soldiers. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 2001.

Why the North Won

Berringer, Richard, et al. Why the South Lost the Civil War. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1986.

Boritt, Gabor S., ed. Why the Confederacy Lost. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1992.

*Donald, David H., ed. Why the North Won the Civil War. Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University Press, 1960.

Gallagher, Gary W. The Confederate War. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1997.

Grimsley, Mark, and Brooks D. Simpson, eds. The Collapse of the Confederacy. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press, 2001.

Wiley, Bell I. The Road to Appomattox. Memphis, TN: Memphis State College Press 1956.

Reconstruction

Benedict, Michael Les. A Compromise of Principle. New York, NY: Norton 1974.

Blight, David W. Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2001.

Foner, Eric. Reconstruction: America's Unfinished Revolution 1863-1877. New York, NY: Harper & Row, 1988.

Keller, Morton. Affairs of State. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1977.

Litwack, Leon F. Been in the Storm So Long: The Aftermath of Slavery. New York, NY: Vintage Books, 1980.

Perman, Michael. Emancipation and Reconstruction, 1862-1879. Arlington Heights, IL: Harlan Davidson, 1987.

Richardson, Heather Coxe. The Death of Reconstruction. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2001.

Stampp, Kenneth M. The Era of Reconstruction. New York, NY: Knopf, 1965.

Memoirs and Autobiographies

Grant, Ulysses S. Memoirs and Selected Letters McFeeley. Edited by Mary Drake, and William S. McFeely. New York, NY: Library of America, 1990.

Jones, John B. A Rebel War Clerk's Diary. 2 vols. New York, NY: Time-Life Books, 1982.

Nevins, Allan, and Milton H. Thomas, eds. The Diary of George Templeton Strong. 4 vols. New York, NY: Octagon Books, 1974, 1952.

Rhodes, Robert Hunt, ed. All for the Union: The Civil War Diary of Elisha Hunt Rhodes. New York, NY: Orion Books, 1991.

Amazon logo *Watkins, Sam R. Co. Aytch. New York, NY: Touchstone, 1990, 1997. ISBN: 9780684833248.

Woodward, C. Vann, ed. Mary Chestnut's Civil War. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1981.

Novels

Crane, Stephen. The Red Badge of Courage. New York, NY: Penugin Books,1895, 2005. (A version of the Red Badge of Courage is available at Project Gutenberg.)

Amazon logo *Shaara, Michael. The Killer Angels. New York, NY: Ballantine Books, 1975, 1987. ISBN: 9780345322289.

Films

Griffith, D. W. Birth of a Nation. 1915.

* Burns, Ken. The Civil War. 1990.

Bruckma, Clyde, and Buster Keaton. The General. 1927.

Maxwell, Ronald F. Gettysburg. 1993.

Zwick, Edward. Glory. 1989.

Maxwell, Ronald F. Gods and Generals. 2003.

Guides to Civil War Literature

Eicher, David J. The Civil War in Books: An Analytical Bibliography. Urbana, IL: University Of Illinois Press, 1997.

McPherson, James M., and William J. Cooper. Writing the Civil War: The Quest to Understand. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 1998.

Wilson, Edmund. Patriotic Gore: Studies in the Literature of the American Civil War. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1962.