Synopses & Reviews
Robert E. Lee, a Virginian, was a classmate of Ulysses S. Grant, an Ohioan, at West Point, and a comrade in the "old army" during the Mexican War. With the onset of Civil War, they found themselves enemies. While Grant would fight for the side that eventually won, and would one day become President of the United States, Lee achieved rightful recognition as the greatest commander in U.S. History.
In his new book, Ron Field, a Fellow of the Company of Military Historians based in Washington DC, seeks to convey the character, outlook, bearing, leadership style, and military brilliance of the "Old Man" with the use of letters, newspapers and diaries. His narrative builds to Lee's "hour of destiny" during the Civil War when he outshone Union General McClellan during the Seven Days, and outwitted Pope at Second Manassas, Burnside at Fredericksburg, and Hooker at Chancellorsville. Field also explores the tragic side to Lee's legendary career: the loss of "Stonewall" Jackson to friendly fire at Chancellorsville; the aftermath of a heart attack and difficulties with fellow General Longstreet at Gettysburg; and the grinding impact of Grant's overland campaign - all of which contributed to his eventual defeat in 1865. An indispensible book for any Civil War buff.
Until his retirement in 2007, Ron Field was Head of History at the Cotswold School in Bourton-on-the-Water. He was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship in 1982 and taught history at Piedmont High School in California from 1982 to 1983. He was associate editor of the Confederate Historical Society of Great Britain, from 1983 to 1992. He is an internationally acknowledged expert on US military history, and was elected a Fellow of the Company of Military Historians, based in Washington, DC, in 2005.