Cover image for The Civil War soldier : a historical reader
The Civil War soldier : a historical reader
Barton, Michael.
Publication Information:
New York : New York University Press, [2002]

Physical Description:
xi, 515 pages ; 23 cm
What manner of men / Bell Irvin Wiley -- Have social historians lost the Civil War? : some preliminary demographic speculations / Maris A. Vinovskis -- Who joined the Confederate Army? : soldiers, civilians, and communities in Mississippi / Larry M. Logue -- Yankee recruits, conscripts, and illegal evaders / James W. Geary -- To "don the breeches, and slay them with a will!" : a host of women soldiers / Elizabeth D. Leonard -- On the march / Carlton McCarthy -- The life of the common soldier in the Union Army, 1861-1865 / Fred A. Shannon -- From finery to tatters / Bell Irvin Wiley -- Fun, frolics, and firewater / James I. Robertson, Jr. -- The negro as a soldier / Thomas Wentworth Higginson -- Heroes and cowards / Bell Irvin Wiley -- The Confederate as a fighting man / David Donald -- The rebels are barbarians / Grady McWhiney and Perry D. Jamieson -- The infantry firefight / Paddy Griffith -- Leaving their mark on the battlefield / Joseph T. Glatthaar -- The nature of battle / Earl J. Hess -- Trials of soul / Bell Irvin Wiley -- A study of morale in Civil War soldiers / Pete Maslowski -- Christian soldiers : the meaning of revivalism in the Confederate Army / Drew Gilpin Faust -- From volunteer to soldier : the psychology of service / Reid Mitchell -- Emotional responses to combat / Joseph Allan Frank and George A. Reeves -- "Dangled over hell" : the trauma of the Civil War / Eric T. Dean, Jr. -- The values of Civil War soldiers / Michael Barton -- Embattled courage / Gerald F. Linderman -- On the altar of my country / James M. McPherson -- Holding on / Earl J. Hess -- The Civil War soldier and the art of dying / Drew Gilpin Faust.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
E607 .C58 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
E607 .C58 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



In 1943, Bell Wiley's groundbreaking book Johnny Reb launched a new area of study: the history of the common soldier in the U.S. Civil War. This anthology brings together landmark scholarship on the subject, from a 19th century account of life as a soldier to contemporary work on women who, disguised as men, joined the army.

One of the only available compilations on the subject, The Civil War Soldier answers a wide range of provocative questions: What were the differences between Union and Confederate soldiers? What were soldiers' motivations for joining the army--their "will to combat"? How can we evaluate the psychological impact of military service on individual morale? Is there a basis for comparison between the experiences of Civil War soldiers and those who fought in World War II or Vietnam? How did the experiences of black soldiers in the Union army differ from those of their white comrades? And why were southern soldiers especially drawn to evangelical preaching?

Offering a host of diverse perspectives on these issues, The Civil War Soldier is the perfect introduction to the topic, for the student and the Civil War enthusiast alike.

Contributors: Michael Barton, Eric T. Dean, David Donald, Drew Gilpin Faust, Joseph Allen Frank, James W. Geary, Joseph T. Glaatthaar, Paddy Griffith, Earl J. Hess, Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Perry D. Jamieson, Elizabeth D. Leonard, Gerald F. Linderman, Larry Logue, Pete Maslowski, Carlton McCarthy, James M. McPherson, Grady McWhiney, Reid Mitchell, George A. Reaves, Jr., James I. Robertson, Fred A. Shannon, Maris A. Vinovskis, and Bell Irvin Wiley.

Author Notes

Michael Barton is Associate Professor of American Studies and Social Science at Pennsylvania State University at Harrisburg
Larry M. Logue is Associate Professor of History and Political Science at Mississippi College

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

This anthology of 27 selections is divided into five themes: who the soldiers were, how they lived, how they fought, how they felt, and what they believed. The selections address such issues as who joined the two armies and why they joined; the problem of ill-clad Confederate troops; popular diversions such as letter-writing, drinking, and music when the soldiers were not fighting; and the misconceptions involving black soldiers and their conduct in combat. There are pieces on heroes and cowards, rebels as "barbarians," the horror of infantry firefights, the ecology of battle (terrain, fighting at night, and fortifications), morale and moral values, religion (especially evangelical preaching in the South), emotional reactions to combat, and the importance of courage and honor. Presenting a variety of viewpoints, the book will be of interest to all Civil War devotees. --George Cohen

Publisher's Weekly Review

From armaments to slang expressions to the religious revivals that periodically converted tens of thousands of fighters, Civil War Soldier: A Historical Reader probes the daily lives of the men in blue and gray. An anthology of landmark scholarly essays (most of them contemporary, but some from as far back as the 19th century), the book covers such subjects as morale and patriotism, methods of warfare and the composition of the armies. Editors Michael Barton, an American studies professor at Pennsylvania State University, and Larry Logue, history and political science professor at Mississippi College, include several pieces on the experiences of black soldiers and an article about women who fought disguised as men. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

This Civil War sampler combines 19th-century battlefield accounts with past and contemporary scholarship to offer a broad perspective on the historiographical issues scholars have raised concerning the soldiers' total experience: who the combatants were, how they survived, how they waged war, how they felt about their role in the conflict, the nature and depth of their convictions regarding the struggle, and how their ordeals contrasted with those of soldiers who fought in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. Although editors Barton (Pennsylvania State Univ.; An Illustrated History of Greater Harrisburg) and Logue (Mississippi Coll.; To Appomattox and Beyond) are interested in such specific issues as the influence of the South's military tradition on its fighting men and the still raging debate as to whether both sides fought for ideals or their comrades, the overarching question of the study remains the basic social, cultural, and psychological differences between Johnny Reb and Billy Yank. Additional essays on the participation of African American and female troopers and the soldiers' concept of a "good death" round out this provocative anthology. Recommended for upper-level Civil War courses, military collections, and most libraries. John Carver Edwards, Univ. of Georgia Libs., Cleveland (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Michael Barton and Larry M. LogueBell Irvin WileyMaris A. VinovskisLarry M. LogueJames W. GearyElizabeth D. LeonardCarlton McCarthyFred A. ShannonBell Irvin WileyJames I. Robertson, Jr.Thomas Wentworth HigginsonBell Irvin WileyDavid DonaldGrady McWhiney and Perry D. JamiesonPaddy GriffithJoseph T. GlatthaarEarl J. HessBell Irvin WileyPete MaslowskiDrew Gilpin FaustReid MitchellJoseph Allan Frank and George A. ReavesEric T. Dean, Jr.Michael BartonGerald F. LindermanJames M. McPhersonEarl J. HessDrew Gilpin Faust
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introduction: The Soldiers and the Scholarsp. 1
Part I Who Soldiers Werep. 7
1 What Manner of Menp. 9
2 Have Social Historians Lost the Civil War? Some Preliminary Demographic Speculationsp. 33
3 Who Joined the Confederate Army? Soldiers, Civilians, and Communities in Mississippip. 44
4 Yankee Recruits, Conscripts, and Illegal Evadersp. 57
5 To "Don the Breeches, and Slay Them with a Will!" A Host of Women Soldiersp. 69
Part II How Soldiers Livedp. 83
6 On the Marchp. 85
7 The Life of the Common Soldier in the Union Army, 1861-1865p. 92
8 From Finery to Tattersp. 108
9 Fun, Frolics, and Firewaterp. 122
Part III How Soldiers Foughtp. 141
10 The Negro as a Soldierp. 143
11 Heroes and Cowardsp. 155
12 The Confederate as a Fighting Manp. 176
13 The Rebels Are Barbariansp. 190
14 The Infantry Firefightp. 199
15 Leaving Their Mark on the Battlefieldp. 228
16 The Nature of Battlep. 260
Part IV How Soldiers Feltp. 281
17 Trials of Soulp. 283
18 A Study of Morale in Civil War Soldiersp. 312
19 Christian Soldiers The Meaning of Revivalism in the Confederate Armyp. 327
20 From Volunteer to Soldier The Psychology of Servicep. 354
21 Emotional Responses to Combatp. 386
22 "Dangled over Hell" The Trauma of the Civil Warp. 396
Part V What Soldiers Believedp. 423
23 The Values of Civil War Soldiersp. 425
24 Embattled Couragep. 436
25 On the Altar of My Countryp. 456
26 Holding Onp. 472
27 The Civil War Soldier and the Art of Dyingp. 485
Indexp. 513
About the Editorsp. 516