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Emancipation, the Union Army, and the Reelection of Abraham Lincoln (Conflicting Worlds: New Dimensions of the American Civil War) Hardcover – June 9, 2014

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Editorial Reviews

Review

''White has done what historians should strive to do by looking at what was merely implied and revealing facts instead of perpetuating presumptions. . . . An interesting study that merges political and cultural spheres, producing a highly readable new facet of Civil War history.'' --Journal of American History

About the Author

JONATHAN W. WHITE is assistant professor of American Studies at Christopher Newport University and the author of Abraham Lincoln and Treason in the Civil War: The Trials of John Merryman.
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Product Details

  • Series: Conflicting Worlds: New Dimensions of the American Civil War
  • Hardcover: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Louisiana State University Press (June 9, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807154571
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807154571
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #902,627 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Bartlett on July 25, 2014
Format: Hardcover
In the Union army, there seemed to be a peaceful realm of political opinions. At least, that is what history has made us feel sometimes when it came to the Election of 1864. In this book Emancipation, The Union Army and the Reelection of Abraham Lincoln, there is a showcase to the problems which the Union army faced during the time of the election in the wake of the Emancipation Proclamation. The problems created by giving soldiers the vote, the political issues throughout the army once the Proclamation was issued and the differences between the Republicans or Democrats, the army had its share of problems as 1864 reared its head during the time of the election.

Jonathan W. White is an assistant professor of American Studies at Christopher Newport University and has been enthralled with the political spectrum of the American Civil War. His other work is called Abraham Lincoln and Treason in the Civil War: The Trials of John Merryman.

This work is something quite different than the usual study of politics in the American Civil War. There have been many books on the politics throughout the country during the time of the war, but never before has a book presented the politics of the army during. The surprising part of the subject, which White presents with excellence, is the issues which they face. He separates the subjects in an easy to follow fashion starting with the issues of giving the soldiers the vote and the many arguments stemmed in state legislature and national legislature before they were given the vote. Some of them were sent back home to vote while others had to remain in camp to vote with specific colored paper to show the party they would vote for. The problem which occurred with that was the knowledge everyone else had on the person you voted for.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Bill on December 30, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There's a tidy feel-good narrative about the northern soldier's view of slavery and emancipation that is repeated in a many books written on the Civil War in the last several decades. It goes something like this: Most white northern soldiers went off to war in 1861 to preserve the Union. While many had generally negative feelings about slavery, only a tiny minority were abolitionists. Many, perhaps most, were quite racist in their views toward African-Americans, and rejected the idea of racial equality. But their experiences in war changed them. As they began to encounter African-Americans during war, men and women who helped support Union soldiers in the camps, helped dig fortifications and bury bodies, and eventually, after Lincoln approved the formation of African-American units, fought and died for the Union, the views of northern white soldiers changed, and many were transformed into abolitionists, even as many of their families back home continued to harbor more racist views. When Lincoln instituted emancipationist policies in January of 1863, and called for the formation of African-American units, some white northern soldiers grumbled and felt that the aims of the war had been changed on them, but most accepted these developments, in large part because their experiences in war were transforming their racial attitudes. One of the most common points of evidence presented to support this narrative is the result of the Election of 1864, when the soldier vote to re-elect Lincoln was much stronger than the support of civilian communities. In fact, almost 80% of the soldiers who cast a vote in 1864 voted for Lincoln.

There is certainly a great deal of anecdotal information to support this narrative, a narrative I confess to use every semester in my American History classes.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Albert M. Smith on January 28, 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very factual of Union administration
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