The History of a Brigade of South Carolinians, Known First as "Gregg's" and Subsequently as "McGowan's Brigade".

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King & Baird, printers, 1866 - South Carolina - 247 pages

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I read this book while researching my ancestor who was a private along with his brother and brother-in-law, fighting in the South Carolina First Regiment of Rifles (aka Orr's rifles) They were one of the 5 regiments in this brigade. (Orr's, 1st SC Infantry, 12th SC, 13th SC and 14thSC Infantry Regiments ) The author, JFJ Caldwell was a Lieutenant in the 1st South Carolina Infantry Regiment and served as an aide-de-camp to General McGowan so I imagine he submitted battle reports to Richmond which was probably the basis of this book. In addition to intricate details about battle field maneuvers and the day to day life of Confederate soldiers, Caldwell also goes into great detail naming which officers were killed an wounded in each battle and he includes personal stories about each of them , including what he knew of them or learned about their lives before and during the war .
The biggest surprise to me was how well organized the Army of Northern Virginia was -and this book is another testament to Robert E Lee's skill as a commander. It is an amazing report of 3 years with moments of terror, moments of glory and extreme hardship. A must read for any fan of history and any descendant of a Civil War Soldier.

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Fascinating story from an eyewitness. Not only what the brigade did and what battles they fought, but what it looked like, felt like, and more from the man on the front lines. Captivating. Not hard to read. Recommended, especially if love history, wars, or the War of Northern Aggression. (Hey, if you're a Yankee, it will give you a good idea of what the southern boys were doing. It's a pretty good read, so don't turn it down:)You'll enjoy it. It takes you to where you can smell the sharp bite of gunpowder and see the shells raining down over your head. Amazing. 

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Page 238 - The result of the last week must convince you of the hopelessness of further resistance on the part of the Army of Northern Virginia in this struggle. I feel that it is so, and regard it as my duty to shift from myself the responsibility' of any further effusion of blood, by asking of you the surrender of that portion of the Confederate States army known as the Army of Northern Virginia.
Page 244 - By the terms of the agreement officers and men can return to their homes, and remain there until exchanged. You will take with you the satisfaction that proceeds from the consciousness of duty faithfully performed, and I earnestly pray that a merciful God will extend to you His blessing and protection.
Page 240 - AM to-day could lead to no good. I will state, however, general, that I am equally anxious for peace with yourself, and the whole North entertains the same feeling. The terms upon which peace can be had are well understood. By the South laying down their arms they will hasten that most desirable event, save thousands of human lives, and hundreds of millions of property not yet destroyed.
Page 239 - I cannot, therefore, meet you with a view to surrender the Army of Northern Virginia, but as far as your proposal may affect the Confederate States...
Page 239 - I received at a late hour your note of to-day. In mine of yesterday I did not intend to propose the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia, but to ask the terms of your proposition. To be frank, I do not think the emergency has arisen to call for the surrender of this army...
Page 238 - States army known as the Army of Northern Virginia." To this Lee replied : " Though not entertaining the opinion you express on the hopelessness of further resistance on the part of the Army of Northern Virginia...
Page 199 - Theirs not to make reply, Theirs not to reason why, Theirs but to do and die, Into the valley of Death Rode the six hundred.
Page 241 - This done, each officer and man will be allowed to return to their homes, not to be disturbed by United States authority so long as they observe their paroles and the laws in force where they may reside.
Page 243 - After four years of arduous service marked by unsurpassed courage and fortitude, the Army of Northern Virginia has been compelled to yield to overwhelming numbers and resources.
Page 239 - The officers to give their individual paroles not to take up arms against the Government of the United States until properly exchanged, and each company or regimental commander to sign a like parole for the men of their commands.

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