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Jubal: The Life and Times of General Jubal A. Early, Csa, Defender of the Lost Cause Paperback – May, 1994

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--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This well-written, comprehensive biography comes as close as is perhaps possible to a sympathetic treatment of the controversial Confederate (1816-1894). While acknowledging Early's post-Civil War role in creating the mythology of the "lost cause," Time-Life Books editor Osborne focuses on his subject's military career. He depicts Early as an extremely competent brigade and division commander who proved only adequate at corps level and a failure as an independent commander in the Shenandoah Valley. Conceding that Union material superiority was so great by 1864 that no one was likely to have performed any more effectively than Early, Osborne stresses the general's egocentricity and bitter, sardonic personality, traits that increasingly sapped his confidence and diminished his capacity to work with both superiors and subordinates. Marred somewhat by an unconvincing conclusion--that Early's behavior was shaped by a "deep fear of his softer side"--this is nevertheless likely to remain the definitive study of "Old Jube."
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

In the spate of Civil War books that flood the market each year, it is a wonder that no one has produced a full-scale, modern biography of Early. Thanks to veteran journalist Osborne, we now have a well-written and balanced account of Early's life and career that will appeal to general readers and scholars alike. Osborne explains the source of Early's extraordinary ambition, describes his antebellum political career, including his antisecessionist vote in the 1861 Virginia convention, and traces his development throughout the war into the bitter and unreconstructed rebel he always remained. The bulk of the book consists of Osborne's careful campaign history, for Early fought with Lee and the Army of Northern Virginia until he received an independent command in 1864. All the controversies that surrounded Early--about Gettysburg, the raid on Washington, and Cedar Creek--are handled in a judicious manner. Perhaps the most intriguing part of the book is Early's postwar machinations to elevate Lee to secular sainthood and to create the myth of the Lost Cause. Osborne does justice to a fascinating life. For public and academic libraries.
- David B. Mattern, Univ. of Virginia, Charlottesville
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Louisiana State Univ Pr (May 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 080711913X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807119136
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,174,866 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Linda Early Kearney on July 29, 2010
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As an ancestor of the Early Line, Jubal's great-grandfather back to the 1700's and mine were brothers. I grew up with all the history of Jubal including his "drinking, whoring and illegitimate 4 children with a woman he never married" information.

I also know he was the right hand of Robert E. Lee when Stonewall Jackson died and thru Early, Lee had military things done, Early received no credit for ones well done and blamed for having done them if things went wrong.

He was a strong supporter of the South BUT he did NOT want war. When it came, he joined and fought for the South and always believed the South should have won and would have if the south had been industrialized as the North had been.

This book is a good one, some flaws but over all I found it well done.
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3 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Don Reed on August 17, 2009
Jubal, The Life & Times of General Jubal A. Early, CSA, Defender of The Lost Cause, Charles C. Osborne; Louisiana State University Press (1992)


Osborne apparently felt that his wife's capability to "read for grammar and sense" precluded the need for even a free-lance editor. The 478-page manuscript then was sent to Louisiana, where, apparently, no one looked at what was in the box before they published it.

There's a twenty-page, single-spaced list of notes in the To Pulp file detailing the reasons why this could be the worst-written history I'll ever have the misfortune of attempting to finish reading (amazingly, I made it to p. 438).

The list took an unanticipated four hours to compile from the margin notes - even after (in desperation), switching over entirely to the use of drastic abbreviations for:

"Overwriting," "verbose," "redundant," "wrong word," "non-sequiturs," "incoherent," "exact/even partial historical dates omitted," "confuses Sheridan for Wright," "adjective should be an adverb," "critical word omitted," "botched transition," "double-negative imbroglio," "italics unreadable," "wrong verb tense," "confuses Douglas Early with Jubal," "turgid; pedantic," "page needs mercy killing," etc.

There are commendable stretches of competent writing, particularly in the first 128 or so pages. And random, brilliant sentences sparkle: "His plan, to turn Lee's flank and force the Rapidan line, was sound enough, but it fell afoul of Lee's superior intelligence."

But like the still-formidable but vastly outnumbered Confederate military forces in 1865, they're reduced to irrelevancy by the sheer volume of what had been written badly.

Consult the excellent Civil War Almanac (Bison Books Corp.
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