Weekly Recap: Jan 13

Weekly Recap: Jan 13

Here’s a recap of last week’s Civil War Podcast blog topics, and suggested readings for further study.


Post: Wisconsin in the Civil War
This Wicked Rebellion: Wisconsin Civil War Soldiers Write Home
From impressions of army life and the South to the hardships of disease and battle, these letters tell the story of the war through the eyes and pens of those who fought in it. This Wicked Rebellion brings to life the heroism and heartache, mayhem and misery of the Civil War, and the powerful role Wisconsin played in it.

Post: Sherman and the burning of Columbia
Sherman and the Burning of Columbia
Marion B. Lucas tackles one of the most debated questions about the Civil War: Who burned South Carolina’s capital city on February 17, 1865? Before the fires had finished smoldering, Confederates and Federals accused each other of starting the blaze, igniting a controversy that has raged for more than a century. To determine the actual origin of the fire, Lucas sifts through myriad official records, newspapers, and eyewitness accounts. The evidence he amasses allows him to debunk many of the myths surrounding the tragedy.

Post: Blacks at the White House levees
Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker
Mrs Keckley described the levees in her behind the scenes role as dressmaker to Mary Lincoln.
Chiaverini’s latest is based on the true story of Elizabeth Keckley, who bought freedom from slavery for herself and her son and went on to become a well-known modiste in Washington. Keckley had a front-row seat to history: she dressed Washington’s A-list, including Jefferson Davis’ wife before they left D.C., and, most intimately, Mary Todd Lincoln.

Post: Long Reach of Civil War Wounds
Learning from the Wounded: The Civil War and the Rise of American Medical Science (Civil War America)
Devine does a remarkable job of showing how wartime experience catalyzed and reconfigured the evolution of American medicine along scientific lines, stimulating vastly increased attention to pathological investigation, experimentation, specialization, and probing of the nature of disease.

Post: Lincoln’s War With the Press
Lincoln and the Power of the Press: The War for Public Opinion
Holzer shows us an activist Lincoln through journalists who covered him from his start through to the night of his assassination—when one reporter ran to the box where Lincoln was shot and emerged to write the story covered with blood. In a wholly original way, Holzer shows us politicized newspaper editors battling for power, and a masterly president using the press to speak directly to the people and shape the nation.

Post: Unfriendly Fires
Freedom by the Sword: The U.S. Colored Troops, 1862-1867
Known collectively as the United States Colored Troops and organized in segregated regiments led by white officers, some of these soldiers guarded army posts along major rivers; others fought Confederate raiders to protect Union supply trains, and still others took part in major operations like the Siege of Petersburg and the Battle of Nashville. After the war, many of the black regiments took up posts in the former Confederacy to enforce federal Reconstruction policy. Freedom by the Sword tells the story of these soldiers’ recruitment, organization, and service.

Post: King Cotton
Empire of Cotton: A Global History
The empire of cotton was, from the beginning, a fulcrum of constant global struggle between slaves and planters, merchants and statesmen, workers and factory owners. Beckert makes clear how these forces ushered in the world of modern capitalism, including the vast wealth and disturbing inequalities that are with us today. The result is a book as unsettling as it is enlightening: a book that brilliantly weaves together the story of cotton with how the present global world came to exist.

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