- Hardcover: 573 pages
- Publisher: Gloucester, Peter Smith; Abridged edition (June 1971)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0844600741
- ISBN-13: 978-0844600741
- Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 6 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #745,061 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government: Abridged for the Modern Reader Hardcover – June, 1971
"The Black Presidency"
Rated by Vanity Fair as one of our most lucid intellectuals writing on race and politics today, this book is a provocative and lively look into the meaning of America's first black presidency. Learn more
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Top Customer Reviews
And yet the Southern people chose this man above all others to be their President. He seems to have been enormously well respected in the South for his military career in the Mexican War and for his efficient administration of the War Department during Franklin Pierce's administration. As a Senator he was admired for his logic and oratory. Most Southerners who knew him spoke and wrote well of him. Those few who actively despised him were known for stirring up controversies themselves.
No question but that Davis was a complex character. He was no rabid Yankee-hater. He loved every inch of the United States, including the Northern States. Before the war he was one of the few Southerners cheered by Yankee crowds when he spoke in Northern cities like Boston and Portland. He urged patience with the Union at a time when many Southern hotheads were agitating for secession. Yet he also believed in State Sovereignty, the theory that any state had the unquestioned lawful right to leave the Union at any time that a majority of its people decided that the Federal Government no longer suited them. In the end State Sovereignty trumped Davis' unionism. When Davis became convinced that the majority of Mississippians desired to leave the Union he became a leader of the Secessionists.
Despite presiding over a lost war, Davis remained immensely popular in the South until the end of his days.Read more ›
Davis also spends a good deal of time defending his own record during the war, in particular the charges that he interfered with the decisions of his generals in ways; he gives the text of many letters written to, by, or about him. This is all quite interesting, though he does come across as almost being -too- defensive.
One very interesting section deals with the logistics issues the Confederacy faced, particularly in supplying arms and ammunition to its soldiers; the south started with almost nothing in the way of a munitions industry, and had to build it from the ground up and with the Union blockading much of its foreign trade. Its success in this area at least is something I think any American can feel proud about, not too dissimilar from the way our industrial based met the challenge of the second world war.
The book ends rather abruptly, however, in the middle of the war.Read more ›
Based on the book, I concluded that Davis was a whiner: It just was not his fault. He never asked to be President. Others did follow his orders. And, Lincoln did not fight fair. Davis seemed to remember every slight and blame cast his way. Davis did not accept the adage "The buck stops here." He also seemed to be unable to see events through the eyes of his enemy. I came away wondering if the south had a better leader that Lincoln would have had a tougher time.
I do recommend this book for civil war buffs. It was well written and Davis was obviously well educated.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting summary of the southern perspective of the events leading up to and "causing" the war of northern aggression. Learned a lot I didn't know before.Published 8 days ago by Charles R. Middlebrook
A sad and heartbreaking commentary on the Northern war of Aggression by a noble man.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States, reading his perspective that is no longer honestly taught in the US education system today !!Published 3 months ago by Alona
A must read by any true historian. History has tainted the truth over the years and these works will set the story straight since it is written not as an opinion, but actual fact. Read morePublished 5 months ago by G. A. Shell
Wow. He was unrepentant to the end.
You want the warped view from the other side? This is the book to read. Read more
I finally got through The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government by Jefferson Davis. I wanted to see what his excuse was, for secession. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Harriet J. Brown