The Civil War at Sea

The Civil War at Sea

The Civil War at Sea

The Civil War at Sea

Synopsis

The first time American naval power was deployed to its full potential, with American warships playing essential roles in military campaigns, America was at war with itself. And by the end of the Civil War, the foundation of modern naval warfare-the ships, the weapons, the tactics-would be firmly established.

Excerpt

“Like Ol’ Man River,” the distinguished Civil War historian Peter J. Parish wrote in 1998, “Civil War historiography just keeps rolling along. It changes course occasionally, leaving behind bayous of stagnant argument, while it carves out new lines of inquiry and debate.”

Since Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s men stacked their guns at Appomattox Court House in April 1865, historians and partisans have been fighting a war of words over the causes, battles, results, and broad meaning of the internecine conflict that cost more than 620,000 American lives. Writers have contributed between 50,000 and 60,000 books and pamphlets on the topic. Viewed in terms of defining American freedom and nationalism, western expansion and economic development, the Civil War quite literally launched modern America. “The Civil War,” Kentucky poet, novelist, and literary critic Robert Penn Warren explained, “is for the American imagination, the great single event of our history. Without too much wrenching, it may, in fact, be said to be American history.”

The books in Praeger’s Reflections on the Civil War Era series examine pivotal aspects of the American Civil War. Topics range from examinations of military campaigns and local conditions, to analyses of institutional, intellectual, and social history. Questions of class, gender, and race run through each volume in the series. Authors, veteran experts in their respective fields, provide concise, informed . . .

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