Gangrene and Glory: Medical Care During the American Civil War / Edition 1

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This unusual, lavishly illustrated history of the Civil War takes a close look at the battlefield doctors in whose hands rested the lives of thousands of Union and Confederate soldiers and at the makeshift medicine they were forced to employ.

A medical doctor and a credentialed historian, Frank R. Freemon combines poignant, sometimes horrifying anecdotes of amputation, infection, and death with a clearheaded discussion of the state of medical knowledge, the effect of the military bureaucracy on medical supplies, and the members of the medical community who risked their lives, their health, and even their careers to provide appropriate care to the wounded. Freemon examines the impact on major campaigns--Manassas, Gettysburg, Vicksburg, Shiloh, Atlanta--of ignorance, understaffing, inexperience, overcrowded hospitals, insufficient access to ambulances, and inadequate supplies of essentials such as quinine.

Presenting the medical side of the war from a variety of perspectives--the Union, the Confederacy, the army, the navy, doctors, nurses, soldiers and their families--Gangrene and Glory achieves a peculiar immediacy by restricting its scope to the knowledge and perceptions available to its nineteenth-century subjects.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780252070105
  • Publisher: University of Illinois Press
  • Publication date: 6/28/2001
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 689,049
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

Prologue 7
Acknowledgments 9
Tables 11
Introduction 13
Abbreviations 15
1 American Medicine in the 1850s 19
2 Creating Confederate Medicine 28
3 Lincoln Finds a Surgeon General 35
4 Maggots and Minie Balls 41
5 The Introduction of Women Nurses 51
6 Union Hospital Ships along the Western Rivers 61
7 The Beginnings of the Letterman System 67
8 Confederate Medicine Organizing 77
9 Northern Medicine Organized 84
10 Medicine at Sea 92
11 Stonewall Jackson Struck by Friendly Fire 101
12 "Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory" 107
13 Northern versus Southern Medicine at Vicksburg 116
14 Confederate Medicine Deteriorating 124
15 Union Enclaves along the Confederate Coast 134
16 The Trial of William Hammond 142
17 Confederate Medical Support during the Atlanta Campaign 147
18 Preparing for the Final Union Campaigns 160
19 Union Medical Support for the Decisive Campaigns of 1864 166
20 The Last Full Measure of Devotion 181
21 Aftermath 190
22 The American Civil War as a Biological Phenomenon 205
23 Comparing Northern to Southern Medical Care 214
24 Did Medical Care Make a Difference? 221
Epilogue 229
Glossary 230
Notes 235
Index of Names 247
Subject Index 251
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2003

    A must read

    Civil war buffs will find this an interesting story. The hypothesis: better medical care helped the North win.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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