Intimate Strategies of the Civil War: Military Commanders and Their Wives available in Hardcover
- Pub. Date:
- Oxford University Press
From Robert E. and Mary Lee to Ulysses S. and Julia Grant, Intimate Strategies of the Civil War examines the marriages of twelve prominent military commanders, highlighting the impact wives had on their famous husbands' careers.
Carol K. Bleser and Lesley J. Gordon assemble an impressive array of leading scholars to explore the marriages of six Confederate and six Union commanders. Contributors reveal that, for many of these men, the matrimonial bond was the most important relationship in their lives, one that shaped (and was shaped by) their military experience. In some cases, the commanders' spouses proved relentless and skillful promoters of their husbands' careers. Jessie Frémont drew on all of her connections as the daughter of former Senator Thomas Hart Benton to aid her modestly talented husband John. Others bolstered their military spouses in less direct ways. For example, Ulysses S. Grant's relationship with Julia (a Southerner and former slave owner herself) kept him anchored in stormy times. Here, too, are tense and tempestuous pairings, such William Tecumseh Sherman and his wife Ellenhis foster sister before becoming his wifeand Jefferson Davis's fascinatingly complex bond with Varina, further complicated by the hostile rumors about the two in Richmond society. Throughout, these historians paint remarkably intimate portraits of their subjects. Readers will see these famed men in a way that they perhaps never considered: not merely as famous leaders, but as lovers, husbands and fathers.
About the Author
Carol K. Bleser is Kathryn and Calhoun Lemon Distinguished Professor of History Emerita at Clemson University and former president of the Southern Historical Association and the Southern Association of Women Historians. Her books include The Hammonds of Redcliffe, Tokens of Affection, Secret and Sacred, and In Joy and In Sorrow. Lesley J. Gordon is Associate Professor of History at the University of Akron, and is the author of General George E. Pickett in Life and Legend.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This collection of twelve essays explores the personal lives of prominent Civil War military commanders and their wives. The writers paint vivid pictures of how family life and the war were interwoven. The most striking thing to me is the great variation between the relationships of the various commanders and their wives, all within the Victorian societal structure. I think this book makes great reading for everyone, regardless of a person's interest in history.
Lesley Gordon and Carol K. Bleser writes an insightfull perspective into military leaders and their wives, by bring these two issues together, they were able not only to tell you about the Military Commanders but add to the already exisiting sources of information and knowledge. I would recomended this book to anyone with an interest in the American Civil War...