Pea Ridge: Civil War Campaign in the West

Pea Ridge: Civil War Campaign in the West

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by William L. Shea, Earl J. Hess
     
 

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Overview

Pea Ridge: Civil War Campaign in the West

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
With its exhaustive research and lively prose style, this military study is virtually a model work of its kind. Shea and Hess, who teach history at the University of Arkansas at Monticello and Lincoln Memorial University (Tenn.), respectively, convincingly argue that the 1862 campaign for Pea Ridge (Ark.) decisively changed the balance of power in the West, with the Union gaining effective control of Missouri. Samuel Curtis, commander of the Federal Army of the Southwest, understood the strategic requirements of his theater, according to the authors, and elicited the best performance from his troops, even though they were beset by internal tensions. The Southern commander, Earl van Dorn, the authors maintain, was a swashbuckler out of his depth--particularly in light of the administrative weaknesses of the trans-Mississippi Confederacy. Their detailed analysis of the climactic battle impressively conveys the difficulties of the improvised armies that groped for and grappled with each other in the Civil War West. Illustrations not seen by PW. BOMC and History Book Club selections. (Nov.)
Library Journal
The battle of Pea Ridge, fought in northwestern Arkansas in March 1862, was probably the most important trans-Mississippi battle of the Civil War. It was unusual in the use of Indian troops and in the Confederates' numerical superiority, better supplies, and inferior leadership. The battle ended any serious Confederate threat to Missouri and opened the Union's path into Arkansas. The book offers the rich tactical detail, maps, and order of battle that military scholars love but retains a very readable style combined with liberal use of recollections of the troops and leaders involved. Shea (history, Univ. of Arkansas) and Hess (history, Lincoln Memorial Univ.) do, however, suffer from a touch of logorrhea; the narrative rumbles along for nearly 100 pages after the battle ends. Nonetheless, this is an important book for academic libraries and for public libraries in the region. BOMC and History Book Club selections.-- Fritz Buckallew, Univ. of Central Oklahoma Lib., Edmond
From the Publisher
A model campaign history that merits recognition as a major contribution to the literature on Civil War military operations.

Journal of Military History

Shines welcome light on the war's largest battle west of the Mississippi.

USA Today

Pea Ridge is destined to become a Civil War classic and a model for writing military history.

Civil War History

A thoroughly researched and well-told account of an important but often neglected Civil War encounter.

Kirkus Reviews

[A]ssured of a place among the best of all studies that have been published on Civil War campaigns.

American Historical Review

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780807846698
Publisher:
The University of North Carolina Press
Publication date:
09/01/1997
Series:
Civil War America Series
Edition description:
1
Pages:
432
Sales rank:
1,162,131
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.18(h) x 1.33(d)

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
This book is assured of a place among the best of all studies that have been published on Civil War campaigns.—American Historical Review

A noteworthy achievement. There has long been a need for a detailed study of this complex campaign and battle. At last it has been done in a wonderfully researched and dramatically presented account.—Alvin M. Josephy, Jr., author of The Civil War in the American West

Pea Ridge is destined to become a Civil War classic and a model for writing military history.—Civil War History

Shines welcome light on the war's largest battle west of the Mississippi.—USA Today

Sets a new standard for campaign study. The quality of research is impeccable and the methodology most impressive. There is abundant evidence that the authors are intimately familiar with the sites and terrain about which they write, and that is a fine thing for those who would do first-rate battle history, as this book indeed is.—Herman M. Hattaway, University of Missouri-Kansas City

This is a wonderful book that fills a big gap in the literature. . . . This work is a gem that provides all the significant characteristics of a well-executed battle study.—David J. Eicher, Civil War in Books

A campaign study of a caliber that all should strive for and few will equal.—Journal of American History

With its exhaustive research and lively prose style, this military study is virtually a model work of its kind.—Publishers Weekly

An excellent and detailed book in all accounts, scholarly and readable, with both clear writing and excellent analysis. . . . Utterly essential . . . for any serious student of the Civil War.—Civil War News

A model campaign history that merits recognition as a major contribution to the literature on Civil War military operations.—Journal of Military History

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