Vicksburg, 1863

Vicksburg, 1863

Book - 2009
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A riveting history of the battle that permanently turned the tide of the Civil War. While Gettysburg is better known, Winston Groom makes clear in this engrossing narrative that Vicksburg was the more important battle from a strategic point of view. Re-creating the epic campaign that culminated at Vicksburg, he details the arduous struggle by the Union to gain control of the Mississippi River Valley and to divide the Confederacy in two. He takes us back to 1861, when Lincoln chooses Ulysses S. Grant--seen at the time as a mediocre general with a drinking problem--to take the Union army south from Illinois. We follow Grant and his troops as they fight one campaign after another--including the bloodbath at Shiloh--until, after almost a year, they close in on Vicksburg. And we witness the seven long months of battle with the determined Confederate army, during which thousands of soldiers on both sides would be buried and the fate of the Confederacy sealed. Embedded in the narrative are indelible portraits of the players: from Grant and William Tecumseh Sherman to Jefferson Davis, Joseph E. Johnston, and the Philadelphia-born Rebel who commanded at Vicksburg, General John C. Pemberton. A first-rate work of military history and an essential contribution to our understanding of the Civil War.
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2009.
ISBN: 9780307264251
Branch Call Number: 973.7344 GROOM W
Characteristics: x, 482 pages, [16] pages of plates : illustrations, maps, plans, portraits ; 25 cm.


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Apr 25, 2019

This is a good book and account. I have read better, especially in Ron Chernow’s Grant biography. I felt to much credit was given to Confederated bungling rather than to Union competency. I liked Groom’s use of diaries written by the Southern ladies in and around Vicksburg. They provided an excellent feel for the situation they faced. Groom uses the Vicksburg battle to give an insight of the whole war with the year 1863 as the pivot. He makes some good points. Groom includes a section about Grant going on a two day drunk and river trip during a lull. I am not sure how useful that was in the whole story, seemed just a way to throw mud. But, all in all a good book.

Aug 14, 2012

Quite readable title on the Vicksburg campaign.


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