The Union War

The Union War

Book - 2011
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Even one hundred and fifty years later, we are haunted by the Civil War--by its division, its bloodshed, and perhaps, above all, by its origins. Today, many believe that the war was fought over slavery. This answer satisfies our contemporary sense of justice, but as Gary Gallagher shows in this brilliant revisionist history, it is an anachronistic judgment. In a searing analysis of the Civil War North as revealed in contemporary letters, diaries, and documents, Gallagher demonstrates that what motivated the North to go to war and persist in an increasingly bloody effort was primarily preservation of the Union. Devotion to the Union bonded nineteenth-century Americans in the North and West against a slaveholding aristocracy in the South and a Europe that seemed destined for oligarchy. Northerners believed they were fighting to save the republic, and with it the world's best hope for democracy. As Gallagher recovers why and how the Civil War was fought, we gain a more honest understanding of why and how it was won.
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2011, ©2011
ISBN: 9780674045620
Branch Call Number: 973.7 G135u 2011
Characteristics: 215 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm


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Aug 21, 2017

I highly recommend this book. For those new to the history of the era, it is not too difficult to follow. The author makes his points clearly and concisely, and it is not of overwhelming length. It is an example of how good history is written; the author's conclusions are derived from a study of primary source material--what was read, written and said during the Civil War; he is not looking at the past through the lens of contemporary socio-political concerns.

JWolf Nov 16, 2011

Extremely boring. Useful for my term paper, though.


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