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Confederate Alamo: Bloodbath at Petersburgs Fort Gregg on April 2, 1865 1st Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0971195004
ISBN-10: 0971195005
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Fox's sweeping narrative, insightful analysis of events, and use of individual accounts personalizes combat during this very bloody battle at Petersburg. It is military history at its best"  --Civil War News, Michael Russert, January 2011

"[A] fine addition to 'drums and trumpets' Civil War scholarship." --America's Civil War, Ethan S. Rafuse, November 2010

"It is a well balanced presentation of the struggle, both inside and outside the fort, giving both the Confederate and Union points of view." --Jim Miller, Civil War Notebook Blog, February 27, 2011

"The battle action is well written, entertaining, and ties in nicely with the regimental maps scattered throughout the book." --Brett Schulte, Beyond the Crater Blog, February 1, 2011.

"[A] great example of the sort of polished, professionally done book that is coming out of some of the better small presses today." --Fred Ray, TOCWOC- A Civil War blog, July 23, 2010, and author of Shock Troops of the Confederacy.

“Thoroughly researched, Mr. Fox’s tome is an impressive scholarly achievement.  It is a well balanced presentation of the struggle, both inside and outside the fort, giving both the Confederate and Union points of view.” Jim Miller, Civil War Notebook Blog, February 27, 2011.



“The battle action is well written, entertaining, and ties in nicely with the regimental maps scattered throughout the book.”  “Chapters are broken down chronologically and by unit with the alternating views of the action between the Confederate and Union perspective. This creates a growing tension in a desperate situation as the fort’s defenders are slowly whittled down in strength and ammunition.”   “A well-told account of one of the most dramatic last stands in the entire Civil War.” Brett Schulte, Beyond the Crater Blog, February 1, 2011



“John Fox’s sweeping narrative, insightful analysis of events, and use of individual accounts personalizes combat during this very bloody battle at Petersburg. It is military history at its best.”  “This is the first full study of the attack and defense of Fort Gregg, and it will long remain the seminal portrait of this brief but bloody encounter.” Michael Russert, Civil War News, January 2011.



“While recounting the events surrounding the fight for Fort Gregg in exquisite detail, he also clearly explains the decisions of the commanders who shaped the engagement and vividly recounts the experiences of the soldiers who fought there.”  “[A] fine addition to ‘drums and trumpets’ Civil War scholarship.” Ethan S. Rafuse, America’s Civil War magazine, November 2010.

“Traces the history of one of the key battles that broke the siege of Petersburg and led to the fall of Richmond and the Union’s victory. The book includes several maps and many photos.” Richmond Times-Dispatch, October 24, 2010.

 



“This is a powerfully written story and will make you proud of the Americans that fought for the Blue and Gray.” The Lone Star Book Review, August 2010.

“Fox has done an excellent job tracking down quite a number of unpublished primary sources on both sides and alternates between a tactical overview and the soldiers-eye perspective.”  “This handsome volume is a great example of the sort of polished, professionally done book that is coming out of some of the better small presses today.” Fred Ray, TOCWOC- A Civil War blog, July 23, 2010, and author of  Shock Troops of the Confederacy.

 



“The end result is an hour-to-hour, sometimes minute-to-minute account of the battle that puts the reader in the middle of the chaos inside Fort Gregg. And while Fox uses different ‘voices’ in the narrative by extensively quoting the participants, the effect flows seamlessly.” C. L. Bragg, author of  Never for Want of Powder.



The Confederate Alamo is an impressive demonstration of author John Fox’s skill as a researcher and writer of Civil War tactical battle history. Every student captivated by the military historical aspects of the Petersburg Campaign will want a copy of this fine book. It is highly recommended.” Andrew Wagenhoffer, Civil War Books and Authors Blog, June 3, 2010.



“A riveting story of how 334 bedraggled and battle-weary Confederates stood fast against two Union corps on the morning and afternoon of April 2.”  “The result is a book meticulously researched, rich in detail and compelling story lines.” Adrian O’Connor, The Winchester Star, April 28, 2010.

From the Author

I found out about the Battle of Fort Gregg when I researched and wrote my first book, Red Clay to Richmond: Trail of the 35th Georgia Infantry Regiment. Some of these Georgians had the misfortune of defending Ft. Gregg. I was astounded at what happened there and I was even more amazed that so few few people knew about the fort and the strategic significance of that "last stand." I grew up in Richmond and have been a student of the War my whole life and I had never heard of this battle until my 35th Georgia research. I discovered only a handful of magazine articles over the last 25 years had been written about the battle, so I decided to begin digging in the fall of 2005 to find out more. I uncovered reams of primary material much of it never before in print. These items filled 2 boxes and they weighed about 50 pounds. When I found this much stuff I realized I had quite a story to tell. I still find it remarkable that I am the first historian to write about this epic fight that was filled with so much drama. My prayer is that The Confederate Alamo does justice to the courage and sacrifice of the brave Union and Confederate soldiers who fought at Fort Gregg on April 2, 1865.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 329 pages
  • Publisher: Angle Valley Press; 1 edition (April 3, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0971195005
  • ISBN-13: 978-0971195004
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #807,920 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Theodore C. Mahr on August 21, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Theodore C. Mahr, Dayton, OH: former National Park Service ranger / historian at Manassas and Fredericksburg-Spotsylvania National Military Parks. Author of: "Early's Valley Campaign: The Battle Go Cedar Creek: Showdown in the Shenandoah, October 1-30, 1864," 1992. (soon to be released in expanded, revised edition ).

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In the Fall of 1981, while coaching Track & Field at the University of Maryland, my wife and I took a drive south to see the Civil War sites in an around Richmond-Petersburg area. I had always been interested in the Civil War, and, though from Ohio originally, had focused my reading mostly upon the Eastern Theater of war. This was primarily a result of having numerous ancestors who had fought on both sides on the battlefields of Virginia and West Virginia.

I had spent much time already looking at the battlefields in the Shenandoah Valley, as that was where many of them had campaigned. Upon learning, however, that I had one great-grandfather, who had served with Sheridan's 2nd Cavalry Division ( and had been wounded near Petersburg ), I was determined to tour those battlefields south of the Confederate capital of Richmond. I wanted to see where he had been in action and to simply gain a better understanding of "what went on there" in that part of the war.

I found the spot near Burgess Mill, where my great-grandfather had been hit, but one place we visited on that gloomy, rainy and altogether eerie day on the National Park Service's standard Petersburg "tour," was a lone, squarish, earthen fort, now overgrown with brush and trees, sitting in the center of a large farm-field just off Interstate-85.
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Format: Hardcover
John Fox has done an outstanding job of telling a compelling story of one of the fiercest, but generally overlooked, battles of the Civil War - the Battle of Fort Gregg. A few hundred rag tag Confederate defenders, surrounded and trapped by an overwhelming Union force during the Federal breakthrough at Petersburg on April 2, 1865, fight to the end and buy enough time with their blood to allow Robert E. Lee's ragged army to narrowly escape from the city. Fox does a masterful job of taking the reader up to the events that led to the battle and then weaving in personal accounts from soldiers on both sides during the struggle. Excellent maps and period photographs help the reader follow this fascinating account of uncommon courage. This is definitely a five star book for the library.
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Format: Hardcover
One of the unfortunate realities of the closing days of the Civil War is the fact that so many events happened in such a short period of time that many of the smaller events are overshadowed by the much larger events of Robert E. Lee's surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia to Ulysses S. Grant, and the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. One such event was the fighting that took place at Fort Gregg after the Federal Army pierced the Confederate line of defenses to the southwest of Petersburg, Virginia on April 2, 1865, ending a ten month siege and leading to the immediate evacuations of Petersburg and Richmond Virginia.

Author John J. Fox III has written the first ever book length account of the chaotic and bloody battle at Fort Gregg, which would later become known as "The Confederate Alamo," where, like its namesake, 334 Confederate troops unsuccessfully defended the fort against an assault by 4,500 Federal soldiers.

Mr. Fox's narrative of the struggle over Fort Gregg is well written, and is easily read. Thoroughly researched, Mr. Fox's tome is an impressive scholarly achievement. It is a well balanced presentation of the struggle, both inside and outside the fort, giving both the Confederate and Union points of view. In its nearly minute by minute, chronological accounting of the events of battle that raged for nearly two hours, never does the weight of Mr. Fox's narrative tilt the scale to either side.

The most impressive part of Mr. Fox's book, however, is not the narrative of the battle but rather the book's appendices, and the obviously staggering amount of research that had to have been done to create them. The centerpiece of which is the roster of the 334 defenders of the fort.
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Format: Hardcover
Suspend disbelief for a moment--long enough to imagine that the year is 1865. You are a young man from Georgia, Louisiana, Maryland, Virginia, or perhaps the Carolinas. The month is April, a time for planting, courting, and parties. Instead, you are wearing tattered, vermin-infested butternut or gray--rags that hardly cover your emaciated limbs. And you've been in these trenches around Petersburg, Virginia, for almost a year. The blue-clad foe to your front possesses seemingly limitless numbers, ample provisions, and more than enough arms and ammunition to wipe you off the face of the earth.

The enemy suddenly pierces the center of your line and your panic-stricken comrades flee for their lives. You and 330 of your brothers-in-arms retreat to the safety of a nearby earthen fort named Fort Gregg. Or so you think. As the Yankees form their lines outside, an irresistible force against an immovable object, you receive your orders: "Men, the salvation of Lee's army is in your keeping; you must realize the responsibility, and your duty; don't surrender this fort...."

"A Homeric defense" and "one of the most dramatic incidents of an overwhelming day," is how Douglas Southall Freeman described defense of Fort Gregg on April 2, 1865. On that bloody day a small number of beleaguered Confederate soldiers stood on the fort's muddy parapets and defied odds of thirteen to one. The bravery, determination and, ultimately, the humanity of the nearly 4,500 Federal attackers that finally overran the Confederate stronghold also deserve remembrance. Strangely, when the battle's participants passed away, so did Fort Gregg's story of valor and heroism.
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