"This well-written, thoroughly researched study should be of interest to readers who wish to expand their knowledge of the Civil War and American business history." Mark R. Wilson, author, The Business of Civil War
"Lincoln’s Labels tells how some businesses still operating contributed to, and were affected by, the Civil War. It does this quite well . . . But Lincoln’s Labels is also about one of the many ways which weAmericans of the early 21st centuryare linked inextricably to the great national epic. Al Nofi, author,A Civil War Treasury, from the foreword
"The author's well-written, highly original, and well-researched study fills a void in Civil War knowledge." Thomas P. Lowry, author, Confederate Heroines and The Story the Soldiers Wouldn’t Tell
"Readers will gain new insight." Sunday Tribune-Review and Pittsburg Sundy Tribune-Review
About the Author
James M. Schmidt is the author of more than 50 articles on American history. He has been featured in Chemical Heritage, Civil War News, Learning through History, North & South, and World War II. He lives near Houston, Texas.
Hi! My name is Jim Schmidt and thanks for visiting my amazon.com Author Page! I am a chemist by training and profession and currently work for a biotech company near Houston, TX.
But by night (and by lunch!) I am a writer!
I have always been interested in history, and have been especially interested in the Civil War for the past 20 years. My special interests are in Civil War medicine, Catholic chaplains and sister-nurses, and the intersection of business history and military history.
I have been writing historical pieces for magazines and newspapers for about 15 years. My work has been published in *North & South*, *The Artilleryman*, *Learning Through History*, *World War II*, *Chemical Heritage*, and *Today's Chemist* magazines. My column, "Medical Department," has appeared regularly in *The Civil War News* since September 2000.
My books include "Notre Dame and the Civil War: Marching Onward to Victory" (2010), "Years of Change and Suffering: Modern Perspectives on Civil War Medicine" (2009), and "Lincoln's Labels: America's Best Known Brands and the Civil War" (2008).
My latest book - released in September 2012 - is "Galveston and the Civil War: An Island City in the Maelstrom"!
You can learn more about my interests by visiting my "Civil War Medicine" or "Notre Dame in the Civil War" blogs or e-mailing me at schmidtjamesm at gmail dot com
Books on logistics tend to be about as much fun to read as watching the grass grow. The norm is a very very thick scholarly book with footnotes on every other sentence. Small print, multiple graphs and a large number of pages are required. This type of book cures insomnia. Outside of a small audience, readers are taking an advanced college course or desperate to improve their grade. The problem is the response of companies to the demands of a major war is important. This is a complex and compelling story of companies balancing government contracts with their normal customers. Worries over building excessive production capacity or unwanted inventory vie with real immediate requirements. All this occurs while losing skilled workers to enlistments or the draft. Until reading "Lincoln's Labels", I did not think it possible for a book about war production to be informative and fun. Each chapter covers a company that supplies the Union armies during the Civil War and is still in business. This forms an instant connection with the war and the reader. Borden, Brooks Brothers, Tiffany, Scientific America, Procter & Gamble are standard brand names we all know. The author links each of these companies to the American Civil War, how they responded and profited. In place of a lengthy dry tome, we have a lively history of the company during the war. Each company has a chapter. This allows the author to concentrate our attention in one industry with almost no distractions. Sufficient background information is provided for the reader to grasp the industry specific issues caused by the war. The balance of the chapter is an easy to read, informative history. The core of each story is people. These people are producers or users of the product and we see business in very human terms.Read more ›
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CWL---New: Lincoln's Labels---Best Known Brands of the Civil War Is Essential for Reenactors and Living Historians
Lincoln's Labels: America's Best Know Brands During the Civil War, James M. Schmidt, Edinborough Press, 208 pp., 19 illustrations, index, sources, notes, 2009, [...]
In this bicentennial year of Lincoln's birth readers are deluged with Lincoln books. James Schimdt has written one for the subscribers of Civil War Historian and Citizens' Companion magazines, who will enjoy and keep handy Lincoln's Labels as a ready reference. Members of Authenitic Campaigner will sit back and relax with this overview which explores the brand names that during the Civil War supplied food, medicine, clothing, and weapons. Civil War era soldiers and civilians used Du Pont's gunpowder, Brooks Brothers' uniforms, Procter & Gamble's soap and Borden's condensed milk.
James M. Schmidt relates a variety of rarely told stories of inventions, marketing and quartermaster purchasing. Linoln's Labels touches upon how each firm mirrors the war and how family and friendships were torn asunder, as well as how politicans and merchants conspired and crossed paths with Abraham Lincoln. Soldiers and civilians are also the focus of this book. In Chapter Five, Fire and Brimstone, the author begins the chapter on July 3 1863 on Culp's Hill with Henry J. Hunt, chief of artillery, inspecting federal artillery ammunition supplies. In Chapter Six, Medicine Man, Schmidt has uncovered and presents a truely harrowing first person account of an 11th Illinois soldier wounded in February 1862 in Tennessee.
CWL will keep his copy close by and also assign the library's copy to business majors who are CWL's U.S. history survey class.Read more ›
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As we go about our daily lives we seldom think about the origins or past of the companies that we do business with on a daily basis or whose products we regularly use. Jim Schmidt has written a book that provides an introduction to some of the major companies that proudly served their country and continue to be household names today.
If you own a Brooks Brothers suit you might find it interesting to know that this clothier supplies uniforms to many New York soldiers and also played a large part in the New York City draft riots of 1863 suffering approximately $70,000 in losses. In fact Brooks Brothers made the coat Abraham Lincoln was wearing on the night he was assassinated.
Prior to the start of the war Gail Borden created something he called the "meat biscuit". This failed product which was a concentrated food made of dehydrated meat and flour however led to his advances in in the dairy industry and the patent he received for advances in the concentration of milk. Despite costing soldiers up to a full days pay Borden's milk was considered a "great blessing" and was asked for in letters home.
Other companies Schmidt discusses include Tiffany and Co. who were known at the time for presentation swords, regimental flags and other symbolic items. Scientific American was a leading magazine for inventors and machinists rather than it's more general content of today. DuPont, who today may be best known for sponsoring Jeff Gordon in NASCAR, was the largest supplier of gunpowder to Union forces during the Civil War. Edward Squibb began his large pharmaceutical company and was a leader in providing standardized and effective anesthetics. Ether was the mainstay of his company at the time.Read more ›
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