Mary Chesnut's Civil War

Front Cover
Yale University Press, Jan 1, 1983 - Biography & Autobiography - 886 pages
11 Reviews
An authorized account of the Civil War, drawn from the diaries of a Southern aristocrat, records the disintegration and final destruction of the Confederacy.
  

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Review: Mary Chesnut's Civil War

User Review  - Ken Wahe - Goodreads

See why it is an original source for civil war southern culture. Women detested slavery but what to do with the freedman. Indirectly see gulf between aristocracy and Poor whites. At least negro existed. If not constitutionally. A. Better diary is Kate stone s Brokenburn Read full review

Review: Mary Chesnut's Civil War

User Review  - J. Keck - Goodreads

Fascinating. A difficult and long read, but one that is of great value. To understand this great conflict between the Union and the Confederacy, it's different when the historian is a woman of her ... Read full review

Contents

Illustrations
ix
Acknowledgments
xi
Introduction Diary in FactDiary in Form
xv
Mary Boykin Chesnut 18231886
xxx
Of Heresy and Paradox
xlvi
Editorial Problems and Policies
liv
Civil
lvii
Road to Montgomery
3
In All This Death and Destruction
383
The Best and the Bravest
406
A World Kicked to PiecesMemoirs
425
In Spite of Blockade
484
Between War and Peace
495
Enjoy the Brief Hour
519
Buck and the Wounded Knight
547
How Hardened We Grow
577

Nation in the Making
6
Into the Black Cloud
35
The Home Front
63
Waiting for the Real War
79
First Sprightly Running
99
Who Killed Cock Robin?
123
I Am Always on the Womens Side
157
Witherspoon Murder Case
189
Fall of Port Royal
228
Provincial Sloth
248
xn The Politics of War
273
With Horror and Amazement
301
Nothing to Chronicle but Disasters
328
Fiction Is So Flat Comparatively
353
Blows Now Fall So Fast
599
Is Anything Worth It?
616
A President Pays a Call
637
Cassandra Wails
654
Listen for Shermans Bugles
670
Thermopylae Business
694
Refugees in Lubberland
715
Job Is My Comforter
733
Keeping Ahead of Sherman
753
The Game Is Up
771
The Smoking Ruins
791
Survivors
814
Index
837
Copyright

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About the author (1983)

Mary Chesnut was a Southern-aristocrat daughter of the governor of South Carolina and the wife of a U.S. senator who helped draft the South's secession ordinance and then served the Confederate government during the Civil War. Chesnut was also a gifted writer. She began her daily journal in 1860 and revised it after the Civil War. While the basis for A Diary from Dixie (1905) is her daily journal, her composition process was more akin to that of fiction. She willed her diary to her friend Isabella Martin, who cut it to a third of its original length before publishing it in 1905. Ben Ames Williams, a novelist, edited a more complete version in 1949, including much of the interesting gossip and rumors that had been cut from the first edition. The historian Vann Woodward edited yet another version from original manuscripts, Mary Chesnut's Civil War (1981). The Diary gives an invaluable record of Confederate society and war efforts, as well as a frank picture of the Chesnuts' marriage. Although her views on African Americans are far from enlightened by modern standards, Mary Chesnut hated slavery and the necessity for women to pretend innocence about the mulatto children in their households. Along with its engaging picture of Confederate life, Chesnut's Diary reveals the dilemma of women of wit and intelligence in a repressive society.

One of the world's most distinguished historians, C. Vann Woodward was born in Vanndale, Arkansas, and educated at Emory University and the University of North Carolina, where he received his Ph.D. in 1937. After teaching at Georgia Institute of Technology, the University of Florida, and Scripps College for a time, in 1946 he joined the faculty at The Johns Hopkins University, where he began producing the many young Ph.D.s who have followed him into the profession. In 1961 he became Sterling Professor at Yale University, where he remains today as emeritus professor. He has been the Jefferson Lecturer in the Humanities, Harmsworth Professor at Oxford University, and Commonwealth Lecturer at the University of London. Past president of all the major historical associations, he holds the Gold Medal of the National Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters and is a member of the British Academy and the Royal Historical Society. His honors also include a Bancroft Prize for Origins of the New South, 1876--1913 (1951) and a 1982 Pulitzer Prize for Mary Chesnut's Civil War (1981). A premier historian of the American South and of race relations in the United States, Woodward studies the South in a way that sheds light on the human condition everywhere. In recent years he has turned his attention increasingly to comparative history.

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