General Lee’s Army
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What to expect
This sweeping history of the Civil War and the Confederacy is told through the lens of its most crucial army, the Army of Northern Virginia commanded by Robert E. Lee.
General Lee’s Army takes listeners across the Rebel landscape, from campfires to battlefields to their homes, as it portrays a world of life, death, healing, and hardship. Detailing the feelings and conduct of officers and enlisted men throughout the course of the war, it demonstrates how effectively Lee’s men served their country and just how close the South came to winning the great war between the states—and why it ultimately lost. Glatthaar investigates the South’s commitment to the war and its gradual erosion, and he analyzes Lee’s army in triumph and defeat. Fourteen years in the making, this scholarly tour de force upends much of the conventional wisdom about the Civil War.
“The storied history of the Army of Northern Virginia has never had a better chronicler than Joseph Glatthaar. Like all armies, it reflected the strengths and weaknesses of the society from which it was recruited. Glatthaar has written its story as it should be written—a fast-paced narrative of campaigns and battles, to be sure, but also an analysis of the army’s socioeconomic makeup based on research more thorough and penetrating than has been done for any other Civil War army.”James M. McPherson, Pulitzer Prize–winning author
“This well-written work provides much food for thought for all Civil War buffs.”Publishers Weekly
“This is a splendid piece of work, buttressed by wondrously thorough research in a vast array of primary material, and destined to be a great classic.”Robert K. Krick, prize-winning author and Civil War historian
“Joseph T. Glatthaar brings a fresh and revealing perspective to the much-studied history of Robert E. Lee and the Army of Northern Virginia. Prodigious research, a meticulous use of statistical information, and analytical acuity mark this book, which abounds with surprising information about the makeup of the army, its casualties, and the quality of its leadership. This is now the indispensable first place to go for anyone interested in Lee, his army, and their storied campaigns.”Gary W. Gallagher, author of The Confederate War
“A unique, often controversial description of Lee’s soldiers, their background and the conditions under which they fought.”Kirkus Reviews (starred review)