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Posted June 13, 2004
When their nation called . . . These men were the first to respond . . . Following the attack on Fort Sumter, President Abraham Lincoln, now faced the greatest crisis to ever befall the young American nation, issued a proclamation calling upon 75,000 Northern volunteers to suppress the hostile Southern rebellion. Throughout Northern towns and cities thousands of men, young and old, left home and family to begin their journey as American soldiers. Among the first to respond were five companies of volunteer militia from the Pennsylvania counties of Schuylkill, Berks, Lehigh, and Mifflin. Within a few days, these companies, numbering just over five hundred men, marched into Washington and into history as the very first troops to reach the capital following the start of the American Civil War. Now, for the first time since 1910, the story of these five ¿First Defender¿ companies is told. From their enlistment into service to their harrowing march through the city of Baltimore and through their three-month term of service, First in Defense of the Union traces the history of these companies by relying largely upon the soldiers¿ letters and diaries. With First in Defense of the Union, Hoptak dramatically brings the story of these five companies vividly to life, and commands attention to their distinguished and illustrious place in American History.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.