Review: THE AMERICAN CIVIL WAR by John Keegan

Chèli’s Shelves reviewed The American Civil War:  A Military History by John Keegan for the U.S. Civil War Reading Challenge 2011. Here’s an excerpt:

In the past 18 months I have ready numerous books on the Civil War – mainly non-military – so I picked up this book to fill in all those blanks that were still empty. A few facts I hadn’t gathered from other books were:

  • recent developments of the time in food preservation, especially canning led to the Union soldiers being best fed military force on record up to that point in time.
  • Southern strategy was to deny access to union invaders. This was a major difficulty with such a large perimeter to defend.
  • At Antietam, McClellan did not use all the forces at his disposal. He also lacked the killer instinct and refused to augment hatreds by confiscating property, living off the land, or freeing slaves.
  • inadequacy of the southern railroads with their non-strategic routes hampered the Union efforts after their invasion

Read the full review.

**Attention participants: Remember to email us a link to your reviews, and we’ll post them here so we can see what everyone is reading!**

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