Co. Aytch: A Confederate Memoir of the Civil War [NOOK Book]

Overview

A classic Civil War memoir, Co. Aytch is the work of a natural storyteller who balances the horror of war with an irrepressible sense of humor and a sharp eye for the lighter side of battle. It is a testament to one man’s enduring humanity, courage, and wisdom in the midst of death and destruction.

Early in May 1861, twenty-one-year-old Sam R. Watkins of Columbia, Tennessee, joined the First Tennessee Regiment, Company H, to fight for the ...
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Co. Aytch: A Confederate Memoir of the Civil War

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Overview

A classic Civil War memoir, Co. Aytch is the work of a natural storyteller who balances the horror of war with an irrepressible sense of humor and a sharp eye for the lighter side of battle. It is a testament to one man’s enduring humanity, courage, and wisdom in the midst of death and destruction.

Early in May 1861, twenty-one-year-old Sam R. Watkins of Columbia, Tennessee, joined the First Tennessee Regiment, Company H, to fight for the Confederacy. Of the 120 original recruits in his company, Watkins was one of only seven to survive every one of its battles, from Shiloh to Nashville.

Twenty years later, with a “house full of young ‘rebels’ clustering around my knees and bumping about my elbows,” he wrote this remarkable account—a memoir of a humble soldier fighting in the American Civil War, replete with tales of the common foot soldiers, commanders, Yankee enemies, victories, defeats, and the South’s ultimate surrender on April 26, 1865.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Bell Irvin Wiley Author of The Life of Johnny Reb No memoir by a rebel participant is richer in intimate detail than this engaging story.

Margaret Mitchell From Gone With the Wind Letters A better book there never was.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781439104880
  • Publisher: Touchstone
  • Publication date: 6/30/2008
  • Sold by: SIMON & SCHUSTER
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 918,125
  • File size: 2 MB

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 8 of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 19, 2010

    A Must for the CW Buff

    The ultimate so far as memoirs of a private confederate soldier is concerned. Sam Watkins has received universal praise, well deserved, from numerous civil war historians. Watkins participated in virtually all of the major battles in the western theater, preceded by a brief time of service in the eastern theater. He frequently makes it a point to say he is writing after 20 years and is only writing about what he knew about. If you want to learn of tactics and strategy read the historians is Watkins advice. Ken Burns mad frequent reference to Watkins in his film "The Civil War." Highly recommended if you want to hear from someone who was there.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2010

    Sam Watkins, Company Aytch

    A very personal and sincerely honest account of a truly fascinating and bloody episode in US history. It never pretends to be anything more than its claim as one soldiers account of what happened to him during the war. I highly recommend this book for all interested in this period of history

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  • Posted June 3, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A very gripping journal

    This journal by Sam R. Watkins, a Confederate soldier, is breathtaking. Once I got done reading it I literally flipped it back to the beginning and started over again. This is an actual journal, not some piece of literature simply being written out to mimic one, so it is a first-hand, detailed, "say-it-like-it-was" account of Company H's Civil War expedition. A very good and compelling read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2005

    Watching the sparrows fall

    The now-famous 1990 documentary of the Civil War by Ken Burns put this book, as well as ¿All For The Union¿ by Elisha Rhodes, in front of thousands of readers who had never heard of either man. They are both fascinating, first-person accounts by very young civilian soldiers who, despite enormous odds, survived 4 full years of battles, skirmishes, wounds, and hardships of the field. Despite the obvious commonalities of subject and the fact that they were written in approximately the same 20-years-after time frame, the books are very different in style and tone. Sam Watkins tells his readers time and again that his book is not a history, only a memoir, and that other more competent, more knowledgeable writers must be consulted for history. Reasons why things happened are not his to give, he reminds us, and he often concedes his memory is but imperfect. ¿Company Aytch¿ is anecdotal, rambling, folksy, self-deprecating, full of quirky detail and eccentric humor, but a river of sadness runs deeply through it. It is easy to picture Watkins on the porch rocker recounting these tales and inevitably succumbing to the enormous dolor of a lost cause, lost hopes, lost friends, and lost youth. Evidently Watkins found religion after the war, undoubtedly to help him carry the burden of such a shattering experience, and he ends many of his appalling recollections with a comment like, ¿...but He who watcheth the sparrows fall does all things well¿. The juxtaposition of Watkins¿s courtly, warm, sentimental style to the horrors of battle and endless privations of a common soldier keeps a reader off-balance throughout the entire book. I expected some of the shocks Watkins brings, like the terrible destruction of the Army of Tennessee at the battles of Franklin and Nashville, but his descriptions about the treatment of deserters, the danger of scouting and picket duty, the deliberate starvation of the army under Gen. Braxton Bragg, and men 'left weltering in their blood' are unsettling despite the long passage of time. Watkins has a knack for depictions of casual brutality and the capriciously quick manner in which men lost their lives in every conceivable way during the conflict. When the Army of Tennessee surrenders in April 1865, Sam Watkins is one of seven surviving sparrows of the original 130-man flock of Company H, Maury Grays.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 30, 2005

    Superb story of survivial

    I cannot begin to improve on the review by rootus, but I will mention that this book is exceptional and perhaps the best first person account that I have ever read of this war, it veers away from a detailed and scholarly, after the fact examination by studious scholars of battle and gives one a birds eye view of the horror and suffering of war. The incredible odds that one faced in surviving four years of battle is like winning the lottery today. An incredible tale you will not soon forget.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2005

    Loved It

    Excellent recount of the Civil War experience. Easy reading.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 – 8 of 7 Customer Reviews

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