Book Review: A Fierce Glory

17 October 2018

A Fierce Glory: Antietam – the Desperate Battle that Saved Lincoln and Doomed Slavery (Da Capo Press, September 2018) by Justin Martin.  Hardcover; 250 pages main text, 315 total; 3 basic maps, 36 photos, endnotes, index. ISBN: 978-0-306-82525-5 (hardcover), 978-0-306-82526-3 (e-book). $28.00

In A Fierce Glory Justin Martin has written a personal and approachable book about the great and terrible battle of Antietam. His narrative style is breezy and conversational, quite different from the usual voice on this subject, but with it he successfully interprets some important political and military themes for a general-reader audience.

This book is an excellent choice for anyone looking for an introduction to the battle of Antietam or for American Civil War history more generally. It offers a good way to learn about the battle itself and, perhaps more important, indelibly links the battle to its most enduring legacy, the Emancipation Proclamation. Those looking for a detailed tactical study of the battle should choose another volume.

On May 25th Damian Shiels gave a talk in Waterford, and today kindly shared the audio/slideshow of it on his website, Irish in the American Civil War.

Although mostly specific to Waterford & the American Civil War, the first 20 minutes contain a terrific, clear and concise overview of the role of the Irish in the ACW (and the War itself) generally.

The rest of the the talk is also superb, as Damian discusses his use of the extensive US federal pension data to learn about the life experiences of Irish veterans and their families in Ireland.  It is well worth your time!

Your AotW webmaster talked with Dr. Gerry Prokopowicz in an episode of his podcast Civil War Talk Radio, streamed live on 4 April 2018.  This is the show’s 14th year, now with 425 episodes broadcast, and I’m honored to be included among the luminaries of Civil War writing who have been his guests.

Each week since October 2004, host Gerald Prokopowicz and a guest have discussed various aspects of Civil War History. Each show consists of an hour long conversation with guests including very well known historians James McPherson, Doris Kearns Goodwin and Gary Gallagher, to mention a few. Gerry also speaks with artists such as Don Troiani, filmmakers like Ken Burns, re-enactors like Rob Hodge, and novelists such as Jeff Shaara; as well as curators, game designers, children’s authors, collectors, and others. In addition to well known names like the ones mentioned, the show often features first-time authors who are just starting to make their reputations.

And now, one web page guy.

The podcast audio is available from Gerry on his Impediments of War site, companion to the podcasts.  Or wherever you usually get your podcasts.  It’s Episode #1426.