Selected Reading

Full disclosure: These links are brought to you in association with Amazon, and if you use them to buy things, I will get paid. These books are mostly ones I’ve read and loved. Some of them, Tink has chewed and enjoyed. All proceeds from this shameless mercenary behavior will be used to either a) buy more books or b) buy things for Tink to chew on that are not books.

Confederates in the Attic: Dispatches from the Unfinished Civil War by Tony Horwitz
I have given away more copies of this book than I care to think about. I’ve passed it off to foreigners in England and Australia. A great way to get a glimpse of how strange Southerners are about that war.

Soul by Soul: Life Inside the Antebellum Slave Market by Walter Johnson
A most excellent read on chattel slavery, specifically the slave trade as seen through the lens of antebellum slave markets in New Orleans.

What This Cruel War Was Over by Chandra Manning
A chronological look at the philosophies of the individual soldiers, North and South, who were fighting the war.

The Life of Johnny Reb: The Common Soldier of the Confederacy by Bell Wiley

Life of Billy Yank: The Common Soldier of the Union also by Bell Wiley
Seminal works on the common soldier of the Civil War, arranged by categories like “Camp Life.”

A Diary From Dixie
The diary of Mary Chestnut, wife of a South Carolina senator.

A Slave No More: Two Men Who Escaped to Freedom, Including Their Own Narratives of Emancipation ed. David Blight
Two books by men who escaped slavery, one of whom lived in my neck of the woods.

Gettysburg by Stephen Sears
If you’re interested in the minutiae of Gettysburg, here you go.

History Of The Great Rebellion V1: From Its Commencement To Its Close, Giving An Account Of Its Origin, The Secession Of The Southern States And The Formation Of The Confederate Government
History Of The Great Rebellion V2: From Its Commencement To Its Close, Giving An Account Of Its Origin, The Secession Of The Southern States And The Formation Of The Confederate Government
Thomas Kettell’s contemporaneously written history of the war. It’s good stuff. My copy is a single-volume edition published in 1865, but if you prefer something a little sturdier, these will serve you well. Also, the title is actually a lot longer than that.

The Peculiar Institution: Slavery in the Ante-Bellum South by Kenneth Stampp
A really, really good introduction to the institution of chattel slavery as it was practiced in the US. This is more broad-based than Soul by Soul and gives you a good platform for further reading.

Chancellorsville 1863: The Souls of the Brave by Ernest Furgurson
A good read on Chancellorsville, which happens to be one of my favorite battlefields.

This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War by Drew Gilpin Faust
A look at the concept of death in the US and how it was impacted by the Civil War.

Note: these novels are not selected for their fidelity to historical accuracy. They’re selected because they have some Civil War content and also I enjoyed the hell out of them.
Boneshaker by Cherie Priest.
An excellent tale set in The Clockwork Century. Featuring zombies, airships, the Civil War, and a strong female protagonist.

Guns of the South
Alt-history in which the Confederacy ends up with machine guns. No, really.

Published on 17 July, 2009 at 02:51  Leave a Comment  

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