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I Rode with Stonewall Hardcover – 1968

4.8 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

. . . more interested in the human side of the war than the technical or military. . . . Indeed, Colonel Douglas strikes a modern note in his handling of his story. He focuses on the humor and pathos with a telling that would equal the camp fire candor of army life today. From John Brown's raid to the trial of Mary E. Surratt, it is a story of tender emotions, gallant riders, dashing young officers and their loyal soldiers.--Thomas Ripley in The Atlanta Journal



A thrilling story of the War of the Sixties.--Carroll Dulaney in The Baltimore News Post



A new mine of information about the immortal Stonewall. . . . The most interesting memoir of the Confederacy that has come out in a long time.--H. J. Eckenrode in The Richmond Times-Dispatch



I have read many novels about the war between the states, and some histories; never that I can recall, have I read any narrative that gave me a keener sense of what it was like, day by day, in the army than does Henry Kyd Douglas's I Rode with Stonewall.--Lewis Gannett, New York Herald Tribune



. . . deserved to see the light long ago.--The Nation



There are no heroics and unreconstructed-rebel sighs in the book; it is a simple and vivid record of day-by-day events. . . . For those who like to read about the war as it was instead of as it might have been, Douglas, born a hundred years ago this year, is this year's man.--Ralph Thompson in The New York Times



A fortunate addition to the works on the Confederacy's loved general, and a particularly readable and invigorating picture of the times . . . a colorful account, full of the youngness, the rawness, and the bravery of the Southern army. . . . He has written as he lived and fought, earnestly, actively; and with an honest brand of romanticism.--Malcolm Bell, Jr., in The Savannah News

From the Inside Flap

Here is one of the finest and most remarkable stories to come out of any war, written wholly firsthand from notes and diaries made on the battlefield. Henry Kyd Douglas was depended upon by Stonewall Jackson, admired by Union soldiers, and adored by women in Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania. During and shortly after the Civil War Douglas set down his experiences of great men and great days in a resonant prose almost unique among soldiers and rare among writers. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 414 pages
  • Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press (1968)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807803375
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807803370
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,197,501 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book, first published in 1940 - long after Douglas' death - is based on Douglas' war-time journal and personal papers. Douglas began to assemble them into book form several times, but never had them published; his relatives did......What emerges are wonderful portraits of Douglas, Jackson (for whom Douglas was a staff officer) and many other well-known (and not so well-known) soldiers and civilians caught in the Civil War. Douglas is decidedly pro-Jackson, but Douglas also shows us the real Jackson: a man who could be cruel to the extreme and then gentle and kind a few moments later. The book is fill with humorous anecdotes, which make it a "fun read" - I could not put it down. Yet there is an underlying sadness in the book, as one watches Douglas' many friends being killed off, sees the homes of his family and civilian friends burned or otherwise destroyed. Douglas never explicitly states it, but the reader can feel the anguish that Douglas - and many others - experienced....... One thing Douglas did not do was go into great detail about each battle. He reasoned that later historians, with a better overall view of things, would do a much better job. What he does do is "put you there" - whether in battle, in camp, or on some small adventure. This is one fantastic book! Along with the memoirs of Gen. E.P. Alexander, these memoirs are about the best I have ever read. Simply a great book!
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Format: Hardcover
"I Rode with Stonewall" is one of the finest personal narratives of the Civil War, America's most decisive and costly conflict. The author, Henry Kyd Douglas, began writing this memoir soon after the conclusion of the war, but put it aside for more than thirty years while he practiced law and raised a family. At his death, his book about the war had not been edited and it wasn't until a descendent discovered the transcript and found a publisher that it was finally released in 1940, on the even of another great martial struggle. I purchased my first copy on a visit to the Fredericksburg battlefield more than twenty years ago and after reading most of it on a flight back from Washington D.C. to California, left it on the plane and in the days before the Internet, it was hard to secure another. Fortunately, on another tour of Civil War battlefields and museums, I managed to bring a copy back for my library - it's that memorable a book. Henry Kyd Douglas was a native of Maryland and a dashing young officer who served on Stonewall Jackson's staff in the early stages of the Civil War. And, like many other Confederate officers and enlisted men, he was devoted to the stern, brilliant artilleryman. Douglas later had a field command and despite being wounded no less than six times, he survived four years of brutal war. Unfortunately, other young heroes of the Confederacy, friends of Douglas like John Pegram, Sandy Pendleton and John Pelham did not. Douglas was handsome, dashing, brave and outgoing and because of these qualities, he was popular with officers on both sides in the war and a favorite of the Southern belles. His account is peppered with fond encounters, but always chivalrous, he abbreviates the names of the women he flirted with.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
It appears that even HKD knows that slavery was a great evil on America. Nevertheless, his writing makes you understand the bonds that confederates formed in this awful war.

"While I cannot go back on the boy soldier of '61, whose hair was black as his coat is now and whose coat was as grey as his hair is now, I remember that in '99 he is wearing glasses, that few of his comrades are left, and that it behooves him to write soberly, discreetly, and fairly."

The writing speaks for itself.
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Format: Hardcover
On a trip to Gettyburg 20 years ago, I was killing time in the bookstore and happened to pick up "I Rode with Stonewall." I've read a ton of Civil War books, and this is hands down the best. It's an amazing account from the perspective of a 21-year-old general and wonderfully written. You won't be able to put it down. My only regret is that Douglas didn't write more.

Ken Johnson
Easton, Mass.
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Format: Paperback
Written by a man who was close to Jackson, but published over 75 years after the fact, this account may or may not be totally factual. Nevertheless, even if it contains a modicum of BS, it is still first-hand BS, and to me this is so much more interesting than accepting someone's perhaps biased "interpretation" of the same events well over a century later.
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Format: Hardcover
I'll start with a Henry Kyd Douglas-like disclaimer: This is not a serious historical study of the Civil War. It is basically the diary of a very young man who was thrust into close proximity of many historical events and figures. He had the good fortune to survive the carnage of the war, unlike the majority of his friends and fellow soldiers, and I thank him for orginizing and writing down his thoughts. The anecdotes are priceless, Douglas' viewpoints are insightful and the picture painted of Stonewall Jackson rings true with everything else I've read about him. Don't worry about Douglas' occasionally unreliable knowledge of the war's big picture. Just enjoy the book. It's fantastic. I read a lot about all aspects of the Civil War and I find first-hand accounts such as this to be extremely valuable and entertaining.
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