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The Longest Night: A Military History of the Civil War


The Longest Night: A Military History of the Civil War Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In this compelling new account of the American Civil War, noted historian David Eicher gives us an authoritative history of battle from the first shots at Fort Sumter to Lee's surrender at Appomattox. As a strictly military history, andlt;Iandgt;The Longest Nightandlt;/Iandgt; covers hundreds of engagements, both well known and obscure, including the oft-neglected Western theater and naval actions along the coasts and rivers. The result is a gripping popular history that will fascinate anyone just learning about the Civil War while offering more than a few surprises for longtime students. andlt;BRandgt; Drawing on hundreds of sources and excerpts from correspondence by those who fought the war, andlt;Iandgt;The Longest Nightandlt;/Iandgt; conveys a real sense of life — and death — on the battlefield. In addition, Eicher analyzes each side's evolving strategy; examines the tactics of Lee, Grant, Johnston, and Sherman; and discusses significant topics such as prisons, railroads, shipbuilding, clandestine operations, and the role of African-Americans in the war. This is an indispensable chronicle of the war that James M. McPherson, in the Foreword, calls "the most dramatic, violent, and fateful experience in American history."


"The U. S. Civil War is one of most studied wars in the history of warfare. The extant literature covers all of the levels of war (from the lowest technical-tactical aspects of specific battles to the highest levels of grand strategy) in amazing detail. With so much written, and with so many sources available to the military historian, one would think that little more could be learned, that few narratives could be offered that are not merely repackaged presentation of old news. It is precisely because of this, however, that David J. Eicher's The Longest Night will stand as one of the triumphs of Civil War history. This single volume work (of 990 pages) was written as a companion piece to James M. McPherson's Pulitzer Prize winning Battle Cry of Freedom. Where McPherson's single volume work covers the social, political, and economic context of the war, Eicher's focus is strictly on the military aspects of the war. (It should be noted that McPherson wrote the forward to this work.) Eicher has written a book that is both a fully contained narrative and a reference work. This
work has an elegant style and is amazingly comprehensive. The Longest Night contains more than 80 maps and diagrams, is well documented, and highly accessible. This work will certainly become a classic of Civil War history. It should be read and consulted by scholars and buffs alike." Reviewed by Andrew Witmer, Virginia Quarterly Review (Copyright 2006 Virginia Quarterly Review)


Includes bibliographical references (p. [897]-938) and index.

About the Author

andlt;bandgt;David J. Eicherandlt;/bandgt; is an astronomer and Civil War historian. The managing editor of andlt;Iandgt;Astronomyandlt;/Iandgt; magazine, he is the author of several books on the Civil War, among them andlt;Iandgt;Mystic Chords of Memory: Civil War Battlefields and Historic Sites Recapturedandlt;/Iandgt; and andlt;Iandgt;The Civil War in Books: An Analytical Bibliography.andlt;/Iandgt; He lives with his wife and son in the Milwaukee suburbs.

Table of Contents


List of Maps

Foreword by James M. McPherson


Prologue: 1915

  1. The War Begins at Sumter

  2. Organizing the Struggle

  3. Southern Joy over First Bull Run

  4. A Massacre at Ball's Bluff

  5. An Unlikely Hero at Belmont

  6. Grant Moves into Tennessee

  7. Clash of the Ironclads

  8. A Bloodbath at Shiloh

  9. Jackson's Valley Campaign

  10. The Peninsular Campaign

  11. Confederate Triumph at Second Bull Run

  12. The War's Bloodiest Day

  13. Fredericksburg's Appalling Loss

  14. Stalemate at Stones River

  15. The Campaign for Vicksburg

  16. Lee's Master Stroke

  17. Three Days at Gettysburg

  18. Visiting the River of Death

  19. The Battles for Chattanooga

  20. Sherman Eyes the Deep South

  21. The Red River Campaign

  22. Grant Moves into the Wilderness

  23. Action at Atlanta and Petersburg

  24. Sheridan Raids the Valley

  25. Sherman's March to the Sea

  26. Fall of the Last Confederate Port

  27. Lee's Army Crumbles

  28. The End of the Civil War

Epilogue: 1865





Product Details

McPherson, James M.
Visse, Lee Vande
Visse, Lee Vande
Eicher, David J.
cher, David J
McPherson, James M.
Simon & Schuster
New York, NY
United states
United States - Civil War
United States - General
General History
United States / Civil War Period (1850-1877)
United States - History - Civil War, 1861-
US History-1800 to Civil War
Edition Number:
1st Touchstone ed.
Edition Description:
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
81 maps
9.25 x 6.12 in 41.58 oz

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Military » Civil War » General
History and Social Science » Politics » Peace and War
History and Social Science » US History » 1800 to Civil War
History and Social Science » US History » General

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Product details 992 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9780684849454 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Includes bibliographical references (p. [897]-938) and index.
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