A People at War: Civilians and Soldiers in Americas Civil War, 1854-1877

Paperback | December 1, 2007

byScott Reynolds Nelson, Carol Sheriff

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A People at War refutes the popular belief that during the American Civil War the citizenry bent to the will of the nation's great military and political leaders. Capturing how the war rocked the lives of all segments of society, it argues that conflicts off the battlefield splintered societyin the North and South, creating widespread chaos, guerrilla warfare, urban riots, and unprecedented public outcry which drove the actions of the leaders who now define the era: Abraham Lincoln, Jefferson Davis, Ulysses S. Grant, and Robert E. Lee. The book also brings to life the full humanity of the war's participants--from women behind their plows to their husbands in army camps; from refugees from slavery to their former masters; from Mayflower descendants to freshly recruited Irish sailors. It describes how people confronted their ownfeelings about the war itself, and how they coped with emotional challenges (uncertainty, exhaustion, fear, guilt, betrayal, grief) as well as physical ones (displacement, poverty, illness, disfigurement). In addition, the authors examine how the West--and the dreams the Easterners attached toit--played a crucial role in a supposedly North-South conflict. A People at War stresses the war years, but also casts an eye at the tumultuous decades that preceded and followed. It is an ideal resource for American History courses focusing on the Civil War and Reconstruction.

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A People at War refutes the popular belief that during the American Civil War the citizenry bent to the will of the nation's great military and political leaders. Capturing how the war rocked the lives of all segments of society, it argues that conflicts off the battlefield splintered societyin the North and South, creating widespread ...

Scott Nelson is Associate Professor of History at the College of William and Mary. He is the author of Iron Confederacies: Southern Railways, Klan Violence, and Reconstruction and Steel Drivin' Man: John Henry; The Untold Story of an American Legend. Carol Sheriff is Associate Professor of History at the College of William and Mar...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:368 pages, 6.1 × 9.09 × 0.91 inPublished:December 1, 2007Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195146557

ISBN - 13:9780195146554

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Table of Contents

Introduction: A People at WarFrom Compromise to Chaos: 1854-18611. The Road to Bleeding Kansas2. From Wigwam to WarThe Changing Faces of War: 1861-18633. Friends and Foes: Early Recruits and Freedom's Cause, 1861-18624. Union Occupation and Guerrila Warfare5. Facing DeathPolitical, Military, and Diplomatic Remedies: 1862-18656. Two Governments Go to War: Southern Democracy and Northern Republicanism7. Redefining the Rules of War: The Lieber Code8. Diplomacy in the Shadows: Cannons, Sailors, and SpiesThe War Hits Home: 1861-18659. We Need Men: Union Struggles over Manpower10. The Male World of the Camp: Domesticity and Discipline11. "Cair, Anxiety, and Tryals": Life in the Wartime Union12. War's Miseries: The Confederate Home FrontRebuilding the Nation: 1865-187713. A Region Reconstructed and Unreconstructed: The Postwar South14. A Nation Stitched Together: Westward Expansion and the Peace Treaty of 1877AcknowledgementsPolitical ChronologyMilitary ChronologySuggestions for Further ReadingIndex

Editorial Reviews

"Here at last is a lively and socially oriented history of the Civil War that sparkles with insights into the lives of those Americans excluded in traditional accounts of the conflict."--William L. Barney, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill