Shermans Horsemen by David Evans, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Sherman's Horsemen

Sherman's Horsemen

by David Evans
     
 

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Approaching Atlanta in July of 1864, William Tecumseh Sherman knew he was facing the most important campaign of his career. Lacking the troops and the desire to mount a long siege of the city, Sherman was eager for a quick, decisive victory. A change of tactics was in order. He decided to call on the cavalry.

Overview

Approaching Atlanta in July of 1864, William Tecumseh Sherman knew he was facing the most important campaign of his career. Lacking the troops and the desire to mount a long siege of the city, Sherman was eager for a quick, decisive victory. A change of tactics was in order. He decided to call on the cavalry.

Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Traces William Tecumseh Sherman's cavalry raids on Atlanta's supplies and railways during seven crucial weeks of the Civil War. After initial successes in isolating Atlanta, the author describes how the cavalry found themselves in daring and dangerous engagements, including a failed attempt to liberate Union prisoners at the Andersonville prison camp. Based largely on previously unpublished materials, the book meticulously recreates the day to day life of Union horse soldiers, and fills a gap in Civil War history, since most accounts focus on foot soldiers in the commonwealth of Virginia. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
Kirkus Reviews
A vivid account of the campaign that helped decide the outcome of the Civil War.

Evans provides a comprehensive study of the role of the cavalry in Sherman's coordinated assault on Atlanta in 1864, involving three federal armies that swept in from the west through Alabama and Georgia. Those armies left a horrible wake of damage in their path, and they suffered horribly as well. Evans writes of their work with a keen eye for detail, describing the confusion of the battlefield and the bloody aftermath of a cavalry engagement, with "horses sprawled glassy-eyed and still, the flies already swarming over torn bodies and protruding entrails." (He is also capable of humor, recounting the tale, for instance, of a Southern woman who protested that the raiders who had come to her farm couldn't possibly be Yankees because they didn't have horns. "We are young Yankees, our horns haven't sprouted yet," replied a Union soldier.) Along the way Evans provides portraits of individual cavalry officers, like Maj. Gen. George Stoneman, the hard-driving Lt. Col. Fielding James, and the "capable but unstable" Brig. Gen. Edward McCook. Evans paints a sympathetic portrait of Sherman, who wrote to his wife during the campaign, "I begin to regard the death and mangling of a couple thousand men as a small affair," and who confessed to a fellow officer, "Grant don't care a damn for what the enemy does out of his sight, but it scares me like hell!" Evans notes that Sherman broke with the usual strategic practice of using cavalry to support infantry assaults, instead launching his horsemen on lightning raids against the Southern armies. He also suggests, provocatively, that Sherman might have abandoned the Atlanta campaign after a series of defeats, had the city not surrendered.

A rich narrative that will delight students of the Civil War.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780253329639
Publisher:
Indiana University Press
Publication date:
09/06/1996
Pages:
688
Product dimensions:
6.42(w) x 9.49(h) x 1.68(d)

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