Cold Harbor: Grant and Lee, May 26 - June 3, 1864

Overview

In his gripping fourth volume on the spring 1864 Overland campaign ? which pitted Ulysses S. Grant against Robert E. Lee for the first time in the Civil War ? Gordon Rhea vividly re-creates the battles and maneuvers from the North Anna stalemate through the Cold Harbor offensive. Once again Rhea's tenacious research elicits stunning new facts from the records of a phase oddly ignored or mythologized by historians. The Cold Harbor of these pages differs sharply from the Cold ...

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Cold Harbor: Grant and Lee, May 26-June 3, 1864

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Overview

In his gripping fourth volume on the spring 1864 Overland campaign — which pitted Ulysses S. Grant against Robert E. Lee for the first time in the Civil War — Gordon Rhea vividly re-creates the battles and maneuvers from the North Anna stalemate through the Cold Harbor offensive. Once again Rhea's tenacious research elicits stunning new facts from the records of a phase oddly ignored or mythologized by historians. The Cold Harbor of these pages differs sharply from the Cold Harbor of popular lore.

We see Grant, in one of his most brilliant moves, pull his army across the North Anna River and steal a march on Lee. In response, Lee sets up a strong defensive line along Totopotomoy Creek, and the battles spark across woods and fields northeast of Richmond. Their back to the Chickahominy River and on their last legs, the rebel troops defiantly face an army-wide assault ordered by Grant that extends over three days.

Rhea gives a surprising new interpretation of the famous battle that left seven thousand Union casualties and only fifteen hundred Confederate dead or wounded. Here, Grant is not a callous butcher, and Lee does not wage a perfect fight. Every imaginable primary source has been exhausted to unravel the strategies, mistakes, gambles, and problems with subordinates that preoccupied two exquisitely matched minds.

In Cold Harbor, Rhea separates fact from fiction in a charged, evocative narrative. He leaves readers under a moonless sky, Grant pondering the eastward course of the James River fifteen miles south of the encamped armies.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807128039
  • Publisher: Louisiana State University Press
  • Publication date: 8/28/2002
  • Pages: 532
  • Product dimensions: 6.02 (w) x 9.42 (h) x 1.44 (d)

Meet the Author

Gordon Rhea i s the author of three previous books, a frequent lecturer throughout the country on military history, and a practicing attorney. A winner of the Fletcher Pratt Literary Award, he lives in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, and in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, with his wife and two sons.

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 23, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Good Read

    I enjyed this book about a bloody battle that has not been written much about, this book gets into the gritty detail of that fateful day when General Grant ordered those ftuitless attacks at Cold Harbor and thousands of Union troops died within only an hour of fighting. I also learned many things that I didn't know before about the campaign, I highly recommend this fine work.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2006

    Detailed Account of Cold Harbor

    'Cold Harbor: Grant and Lee' is an engaging book about the last major flanking movement of the Civil War. I think this book would be great for researchers studying individual troop movements, because it is goes into great detail in this area. The book vividly describes the horror of the battle, which was one of the worst in the war. The author points that the Union commanders were inept in carrying out the battle. Also, the author points out that the Union attack was piecemeal and not a massive assault with massive casualties as some historians claim. My only dissapointment was that the author went into very little detail of the aftermath of the battle where Union troops died needlessly between enemy lines as Grant and Lee worked out a truce. Overall, the book is a fine account of Cold Harbor. Although I have not read the author's other books about 1964 Civil War, this book would make a fine collection with to the series.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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