Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era

Front Cover
Ballantine Books, 1988 - History - 904 pages
425 Reviews
Filled with fresh interpretations and information, puncturing old myths and challenging new ones, this fast-paced narrative fully integrates the political, social, and military events that crowded the two decades from the outbreak of one war in Mexico to the ending of another at Appomattox. Packed with drama and analytical insight, the book vividly recounts the momentous episodes that preceded the Civil War: the Dred Scott decision: the Lincoln-Douglas debates, John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry. It then moves into a chronicle of the war itself, the battles, the strategic maneuvering on both sides, the politics, and the personalities. Particularly notable are new views on such matters as the slavery expansion issue in the 1850s, the origins of the Republican Party, the causes of secession, internal dissent and anti-war opposition in the North and the South, and the reasons for the Union's victory. The book's title refers to the sentiments that informed both the Northern and Southern views of the conflict: the South seceded in the name of that freedom of self-determination and self-government for which their fathers had fought in 1776, while the North stood fast in defense of the Union founded by those fathers as the bulwark of American liberty. Eventually, the North had to grapple with the underlying cause of the war--slavery--and adopt a policy of emancipation as a second war aim. This "new birth of freedom," as Lincoln called it, constitutes the proudest legacy of America's bloodiest conflict. This volume makes sense of that vast and confusing "second American Revolution" we call the Civil War, a war that transformed a nation and expanded our heritage of liberty.

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Great insight and story telling. - Goodreads
Great coverage of the Civil War in one volume. - Goodreads
This book is well written and exceptionally researched. - Goodreads
Excellent overview of the Civil War - Goodreads
Very good overview of the war. - Goodreads
A great writer, and an fabulous researcher. - Goodreads

Review: Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (Oxford History of the United States #6)

User Review  - Ben Pharr - Goodreads

I found this book really interesting and easy to read for the most part. There were very few spots where I thought the author could have dispensed with a few details. This war redefined of nation and everyone should know why it was fought. Read full review

Review: Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (Oxford History of the United States #6)

User Review  - Paul Kapellas - Goodreads

This is should be on any Americans to-read list. A comprehensive, one volume, narrative of the US Civil War. Although McPherson falls into traps of describing many battles as "the most (insert ... Read full review

About the author (1988)

James M. McPherson is the author of Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era, which won a Pulitzer Prize in history, and For Cause and Comrades: Why Men Fought in the Civil War, a Lincoln Prize winner. He is the George Henry Davis Professor of American History at Princeton University in New Jersey, where he also lives. His newest book, entitled Abraham Lincoln, celebrates the 200th anniversary of Lincoln's birth with a short, but detailed look at this president's life.

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