In this one-of-a-kind atlas, scores of archival maps and dozens of newly created maps trace the battles, political turmoil, and great themes of America’s most violent and pivotal clash of arms. From the Antebellum South to Fort Sumter, the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, and the fitful peace of Reconstruction, National Geographic’s Atlas of the Civil War
displays eye-opening maps—and a gripping, self-contained story—on every spread.
Eighty-five rare period maps, many seen here for the first time, offer the cartographic history of a land at war with itself: from 19th-century campaign maps surveying whole regions and strategies to vintage battlefield charts used by Union and Confederate generals alike, along with commercial maps produced for a news-hungry public, and comprehensive Theater of War maps. In 35 innovative views created especially for this book, the key moments of major battles are pinpointed by National Geographic’s award-winning cartographers using satellite data to render the terrain with astonishing detail.
In addition, more than 320 documentary photographs, battlefield sketches, paintings, and artifacts bear eyewitness testimony to the war, history’s first to be widely captured on film. Look Inside Atlas of the Civil War
Click on thumbnails for larger images
|"Beaufort Harbor and Coastline" ||"Dismal Swamp" ||"Field of Gettysburg" |
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|"The Sear of War" ||"Sketch of the County occupied by the Federal & Confederate Armies, July 1861" || "Thomas's Stand" ||"View of Vicksburg" |
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*Starred Review* This atlas brings an understanding of the Civil War military campaigns in a graphic way. Not just military history buffs but anyone interested in the Civil War will find it captivating. The “About This Book” section is essential to understanding the maps. The introduction, “Mapping the War,” covers the unsung heroes, the mapmakers. The description of mapmaking tools, techniques, and even dangers adds a layer of understanding to the maps, which are a combination of around 85 rare period items (many published here for the first time) and 35 new views commissioned by the National Geographic Society. The atlas’s five chapters cover the five years of war and highlight the battles. Each chapter opens with a 2-page “The War at a Glance” presenting an overview, a map locating major events, a chronology, and a number of documentary photographs. Major battles and campaigns are then described. For each, there are a small locator map, a time line, and one or more larger maps (often from the Civil War era), with explanatory text keyed to map locations. The major battles, such as Antietam and Gettysburg, have multiple pages with different maps. For example, 12 pages and 6 maps are devoted to Gettysburg. More than 320 photographs, battlefield sketches, and other illustrations are scattered throughout the pages. Additional features include 8 biographical sidebars and 11 “Order of Battle” boxes. Three comprehensive maps of battles are contained in an appendix. A list of readings and an index complete the work. National Geographic has a high standard for atlases, and this one does not disappoint. It stands out from other Civil War atlases because of its use of archival maps, and the reproduction of the maps is amazing. The narrative is informative, and the photographs, illustrations, and other artwork add an important dimension. This is an essential purchase for all libraries with any interest in the Civil War. --Abbie Landry