STONEWALL JACKSON & AMERICAN CIVIL WARby G.F.R. Henderson
Before the great Republic of the West had completed a century of independent national existence, its political fabric was subjected to the strain of a terrible internecine war. That the true cause of conflict was the antagonism between the spirit of Federalism and the theory of “States’ Rights” is very clearly explained in the following pages, and… See more details below
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Before the great Republic of the West had completed a century of independent national existence, its political fabric was subjected to the strain of a terrible internecine war. That the true cause of conflict was the antagonism between the spirit of Federalism and the theory of “States’ Rights” is very clearly explained in the following pages, and the author exactly expresses the feeling with which most Englishmen regard the question of Secession, when he implies that had he been a New Englander he would have fought to the death to preserve the Union, while had he been born in Virginia he would have done as much in defence of a right the South believed inalienable. The war thus brought about dragged on its weary length from the spring of 1861 to the same season of 1865. During its progress reputations were made that will live for ever in American history, and many remarkable men came to the front. Among these not the least prominent was “Stonewall Jackson,” who to the renown of a great soldier and unselfish patriot added the brighter fame of a Christian hero; and to those who would know what manner of man this Stonewall Jackson was, and why he was so universally revered, so beloved, so trusted by his men, I can cordially recommend Colonel Henderson’s delightful volumes. From their perusal I have derived real pleasure and sound instruction. They have taught me much; they have made me think still more; and I hope they may do the same for many others in the British Army. They are worth the closest study, for few military writers have possessed Colonel Henderson’s grasp of tactical and strategical principles, or his knowledge of the methods which have controlled their application by the most famous soldiers, from Hannibal to Von Moltke. Gifted with a rare power of describing not only great military events but the localities where they occurred, he places clearly before his readers, in logical sequence, the circumstances which brought them about. He has accomplished, too, the difficult task of combining with a brilliant and critical history of a great war the life-story of a great commander, of a most singular and remarkable man. The figure, the character, the idiosyncrasies of the famous Virginian, as well as the lofty motives which influenced him throughout, are most sympathetically portrayed.
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