- Hardcover: 630 pages
- Publisher: Gramercy (April 11, 1994)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0517385562
- ISBN-13: 978-0517385562
- Product Dimensions: 1.8 x 9 x 11.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4.4 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (105 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #325,296 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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American Heritage Picture History of the Civil War Hardcover – April 11, 1994
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Top Customer Reviews
This book serves as a fine outline of the beginning, prosecution and conclusion of the war. It is a slim volume so do not expect a extensive economic analysis of the conditions prior to the war, political events leading up to the war or during it; but as a brief overview of the war it is as good as it gets.
Catton is lyrical and easy to read as usual; a fine preview to his Army of the Potomac Trilogy.
Bruce Catton is one of the best Civil War writers of the last fifty years. His detailed studies of aspects and campaigns of the war set the standard for CW writing for many who take more than a casual interest in the subject. This book displays his easy writing that mixes interesting facts with a style that never bores or bogs down in academic prose.
For the student or curious who want the broad sweep of the war explained in a couple of hundred pages this book is excellent. Its all here: the orignis, major campaigns in the East and West and the politics that often defined the conflict. Strictly an overview, it is not for the serious CW reader, but would serve as an excellent starting point for someone looking to begin an affiliation with America's most significant conflict.
There is only one reason for not making this your first book. As its title implies, it focuses on the pictures of the Civil War, and as such it has little room for more than an overview of the events in the words accompanying the pictures. However, there truly is only one failing of this book, and that is that it is out of print as I write this; a fault that will probably be remedied soon.
You see, I hail from the small south american country of Bolivia. Why the connection you will ask? Because when I was 8 my father returned from post-graduate studies in the USA. One of the many things he brought back was this book. At first, my only interest was the gorgeous overview illustrations of the most important battles. They captured my imagination completely as I tried to recreate them in my own drawings. I do remember reading some strange sounding names such as Shiloh, Antietam among many others. But it was the pictures that captivated me. Time and time again I would pull it out of my father's study and spent countless hours with it.
My father had meant the book to be an introduction not only to American history but to the whole northern culture as well. And by northern I mean all of the USA. A culture, my father would say, that would not hesitate to trade blood for time when it came to solving difficult issues such as national unity, slavery and later, civil rights.
Many years later, by then a resident of the US, I found this book at a used book store in Memphis, TN. Was I elated!!! It was like going back in time. Except this time, the experience was different. This time I read the book completely intent on understanding the content. Needless to say I purchased the book and literally ran home to start devouring it. It was the start of a 20 year quest to understand the ACW.
Many countries have had internecine wars, but none captures the essence of the human struggle like the American Civil War. And as such, this book should be obligatory reading, in my honest opinion, even if the word obligatory may have un-democratic overtones.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
“Here was the greatest and most moving chapter in American history, a blending of meanness and greatness, an ending and a beginning. Read morePublished 14 days ago by Kristi Richardson
This book is well worth the money. Bruce Catton is not as engaging a writer as Shelby Foote, but his work is clear, concise and unbiased. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Chris Rhetts
If one has never read a book about the Civil War it is hard to imagine a better introduction to the subject. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Stuart Shapiro
Bruce Catton wrote in detail on the civil war, winning a Pulitzer Prize for A Stillness at Appomattox. Here he wrote a easy to read general history of that conflict.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
The most interesting, attention holding, thought provoking read on the Civil War!! I've watched the PBS specials several times but it's nothing like reading this book and being... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Easy read for anyone interested in the American Civil War. An excellent account from beginning to end of the conflict, weaving in political issues and provides insights into the... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Terry Sweitzer