Civil War Stories

Overview

Civil War Stories is Catherine Clinton's fresh look at some everyday and extraordinary people whose lives were forever transformed by the impact of war. Her multifaceted perspective includes the stories of sisters, children, and friends torn apart by the crisis of Confederate independence, as well as those to whom silence was a way to "keep the peace," although true peace would never again be restored.

Two sisters, one a staunch defender of the Union, the other a passionate ...

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Overview

Civil War Stories is Catherine Clinton's fresh look at some everyday and extraordinary people whose lives were forever transformed by the impact of war. Her multifaceted perspective includes the stories of sisters, children, and friends torn apart by the crisis of Confederate independence, as well as those to whom silence was a way to "keep the peace," although true peace would never again be restored.

Two sisters, one a staunch defender of the Union, the other a passionate advocate of the rebel cause, are traumatized by the divide the Civil War imposes. Thousands of orphans, scattered from Maine to New Orleans, learn the hard lessons of the war at an early age. Clinton urges us to reconsider this fatherless generation's devastating losses. The war's outcome was acrimoniously contested after Appomattox. The story of two South Carolina women, one black and one white, illuminates that fires of bitterness raged even after surrender.

Clinton suggests those on opposing sides sought to vindicate their losses and assert their rights by taking up the pen. The histories and memoirs she contrasts, the lives she reconstructs, and the stories she highlights provide appreciation of the cultural impact of the American Civil War, for those who endured it and for those of us who continue to be fascinated by its legacy.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In her effort to illustrate the human dimensions of the Civil War, Clinton, an authority on Southern history and American women's history, presents startling narrative essays on the everyday and extraordinary women, men, and children caught up in the turmoil. Throughout, she skillfully contrasts the perceptions of whites and blacks and offers insights into the social, cultural, political, and ideological aspects of the sectional conflict and its often divisive impact on families. These essays provide both a base and new directions for Civil War and Reconstruction historiographies and also raise new questions about tragic conflicts, real sufferings, human adjustments, and personal passions during the war. Helpful explanatory notes are included. This is an enlightening addition to works such as Gerda Lerner's The Grimke Sisters of South Carolina (Oxford Univ., 1998) and Divided Houses: Gender and the Civil War (Oxford Univ., 1992), edited by Clinton. Both scholars and informed lay readers will find it enjoyable, useful, and informative.--Edward G. McCormack, Univ. of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast Lib., Long Beach
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780783888422
  • Publisher: Gale Group
  • Publication date: 1/28/2000
  • Series: American History Series
  • Edition description: LARGEPRINT
  • Pages: 159
  • Product dimensions: 6.38 (w) x 9.46 (h) x 0.73 (d)

Meet the Author

Catherine Clinton is the Douglas Southall Freeman Visiting Professor of History at the University of Richmond. She is the author of several books, including Tara Revisited.

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Table of Contents

Foreword
Ch. 1 Sister against Sister: Fanny Kemble's Divided Daughters 1
Ch. 2 Orphans of the Storm: Steering a New Course 41
Ch. 3 Legendary Valor: South Carolina Women Reconstruct the War 81
Notes 113
Index 123
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