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The Civil War and Reconstruction Paperback – December 14, 2000

ISBN-13: 978-0393974270 ISBN-10: 0393974278

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The Civil War and Reconstruction + Major Problems in the Civil War and Reconstruction: Documents and Essays (Major Problems in American History)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 800 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (December 14, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393974278
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393974270
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 5.6 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #320,390 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Jean Harvey Baker is the author of many books on nineteenth-century American history.  She is a professor of history at Goucher College in Baltimore, Maryland.

David Herbert Donald is Charles Warren Professor of American History Emeritus at Harvard University and the author of two Pulitzer Prize-winning works, including the acclaimed biography Lincoln.

Michael F. Holt is Langbourne M. Williams Professor of American History at the University of Virginia and the author, most recently, of The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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The work is accurate, comprehensive and concise.
Winfred S. Bounds
Having already read David Herbert Donald's Lincoln - which was EXCELLENT - I expected this to be written in the same style.
John N. Hanks
I commend this volume to anyone who wants to read a well-researched and reasoned account of the Civil War.
Interplanetary Funksmanship

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Winfred S. Bounds on June 23, 2001
Format: Paperback
Professor Donald provides insight into how the collective decisions of the past have led to so many of the problematic circumstances we face as a nation today. Professors Donald, Baker and Holt take the reader back to over twenty years before the beginning of the Civil War and continue through Reconstruction to examine the various factors and angles from which the entire history of the Civil War and Reconstruction is derived. The student of American History has everything needed in one concise volume to gain a working knowledge of the Civil war and Reconstruction era. This work is a well-documented, factual and detailed account of the most trying period of history our nation has seen to date. The work is accurate, comprehensive and concise. No doubt The Civil War and Reconstruction by David H. Donald will maintain a prominent place in any serious historical library for years to come.
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25 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Interplanetary Funksmanship on November 25, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Students of history would do well to begin their studies of the U.S. Civil War by reading this seminal historical text by renowned historian James Garfield Randall (1881-1953), University of Illinois professor and Lincoln biographer. Released in 1937, "The Civil War and Reconstruction" was revised by Randall's student David Herbert Donald in 1961. This is the book we are dealing with, not the further revised volume outlined in the product description.

What distinguishes this work is Randall's keen sense of historical accuracy: Although he had his own predilictions (Abraham Lincoln was his childhood hero and lifelong subject of his scholarship), he separated his early personal views from his assessment of the historical record. Anyone who has ever read books on the Civil War written before Randall's will find enough jingoism, hyperbole and finger pointing to suffice them a lifetime. What Randall aspired to, however, was a more objective and scientific analysis of history. In that, I believe, he has succeeded.

Written in an era before political correctness, this book deals with the issue of slavery honestly and forthrightly. Randall looks into the economics of slavery from Colonial times up to the Civil War, and gives a dispassionate sketch of its origins and practices. For example, consider these simple facts: That unlike the pale white indentured servants from the British Isles, who were generally physically ill equiped for working the soil in the hot and humid Southern states, African slaves were much better acclimated to the South's punishing climate, and, in fact, received better treatment than their European counterparts.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found this book very informative on all phases of the events leading to, during and follwing the Civil War. It is also number 34 on liat of 50 must read books on the Civil War.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While this is the most complete description and account of Reconstruction that I have read to date, it was written as a textbook and truly follows that purpose. Having already read David Herbert Donald's Lincoln - which was EXCELLENT - I expected this to be written in the same style. However, as it was written as a textbook it was much harder to really sit down and read multiple chapters at one time. Did finish it though.
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