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When Robert E. Lee's secret plan to capture Harpers Ferry fell into the hands of Gen. George B. McClellan, the annals of Civil War history were immediately scratched in stone. This book covers the time from the moment the plan reached McClellan's hands to the reunion of Lee's army hours later.
In September 1862, the Confederate army, under Gen. Robert E. Lee, invaded Maryland and headed for Pennsylvania. The Union army, under McClellan, took a blocking position between Lee and the cities of Washington and Baltimore. Lee decided that he could afford to take a major gamble. He divided his army by three and sent them to encircle and capture the large Union garrison at Harpers Ferry. Then they were to reunite with the remaining force before McClellan realized Lee's movements. By an extraordinary set of circumstances, the Confederates misplaced and the Union recovered a copy of the Confederate battle plan, Special Order 191. McClellan, upon reading it, said, "If I can't beat Bobby Lee with this piece of paper, I will be willing to go home."
This brief period of the Civil War provided perhaps the greatest drama and suspense of any episode and resulted in the Battle of Antietam, the bloodiest day ever seen on the North American continent. Antietam: The Lost Order concludes by analyzing what went wrong on the Union side, the lasting impact of finding the lost order, and finally, the fates of the major players.
Author Capt. Donald R. Jermann, USN, retired, lives in Maryland, where he works as a consultant for the Department of Defense. He served on active duty during World War II and the Korean and Vietnam wars and was a founding member of the Armed Forces Security Agency, the predecessor of the National Security Agency. In his postmilitary career, he has twice been awarded the Secretary of the Navy's Distinguished Service Medal.
Thanks to work such as this those of us who enjoy Civil War documentation appreciate the book. It had a personal ring for me since my ancestrory suffered the loss of three great,... Read morePublished 22 months ago by H H Caldwell
In September, 1862, Robert E. Lee led the Confederate Army into Maryland in what would be the South's first invasion of the North. Lincoln called upon General George B. Read morePublished on December 10, 2007 by Robin Friedman
This is a well thought out narrative of the Maryland Invasion of 1862, Special Order 191 and the impact it had on the campaign. Read morePublished on October 31, 2006 by James W. Durney