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The Union Generals Speak: The Meade Hearings on the Battle of Gettysburg Hardcover – May 1, 2003

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 428 pages
  • Publisher: Louisiana State Univ Pr (May 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807125814
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807125816
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.7 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 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: #727,331 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Remembered now as a grand patriotic epic, the Battle of Gettysburg was a source of disappointment and controversy in the North because of the Union army's failure to head off and destroy Lee's army in the wake of the clash. This superbly edited collection of transcripts from the ensuing Congressional hearings sheds fascinating light on the conduct of the battle and the convoluted politics of the war in the North. The Radical Republicans in Congress used the hearings to attack their political enemies in the army, pressing allegations of faint-heartedness and pro-Southern sympathies on the part of Union commander George Meade and the Democrats and West Pointers in the officer corps. Meanwhile, the Union generals who testified brought their own faulty memories and hidden agendas to the hearings, using them to play up their roles in the battle and settle scores with rivals. The picture that emerges is of an army beset by personal vendettas, factional infighting, resentments between political appointees and professional soldiers and rancorous divisions over military policy. Hyde, an amateur Civil War historian, annotates the transcripts with engaging background material on the personalities, careers and machinations of the participants and a running commentary that corrects and analyzes the many errors, deceptions and obfuscations of the raw testimony. The result is a highly detailed, often vivid account of the high points of the battle and its aftermath, one that eschews the typical Gettysburg hagiography and points up the blunders, miscommunication and character flaws of the principals. Although a little arcane for casual readers, Civil War buffs will find it an engrossing supplement to Gettysburg lore.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Bill Hyde is a retired businessman who lives in Enid, Oklahoma.

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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By B. Morris on October 27, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is truly a unique look into the politics of Army of the Potomac as well as the thoughts of the men who commanded it at Gettysburg. It is a work that most Gettysburg enthusiasts will greatly enjoy and will also serve as a valuable reference tool.

The book in essence is the congressional testimony of some of the most important men involved in the battle of Gettysburg on the Federal side. The highlight of the book are the testimonies of Generals such as George Meade, Gouverneur Warren, Winfield Hancock, Henry Hunt and John Gibbon. Men whose testimony give us much insight into what their thoughts were during the battle and why it was fought the way it was.

Also included in the book are some not so honorable testimonies by men whose goal at the hearings were to settle political and personal scores with Meade. The testimony of Dan Sickles will make even the most novice Gettysburg enthusiast's blood boil. To say it is full of lies and falsehoods would be an understatement. The testimony of Dan Butterfield isn't much better. The two men set out to destroy the reputation of Meade but in the end only managed to tarnished their own names in history.

As important and interesting as these testimonies are, what really takes this book to the next level is the commentary by Bill Hyde. His comments put these testimonies in context and really help enhance the reader's understanding of what the men both testifying and on the committee were trying to accomplish.

If you hold a strong interest in the Battle of Gettysburg then you are really going to enjoy this book. It will be a valuable addition to your Civil War book collection.
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By Joseph A. Truglio on June 16, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you are a Meade fan or not, this is for you. a full text on the machinations of the participants of Gettysburg Campaign before this dubious committee. It is here you will learn of the political nature of the AOP and its Generals. Much to learn. You may not change your opinion but you will learn just what happened.
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1 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Toady on February 20, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A family member, who is an avid fan of US History and the Civil War requested a copy of this book on his wish list. He has very discriminating tastes, so if he requested this book it must be good!!
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