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Undaunted Heart: The True Story of a Southern Belle & a Yankee General Paperback – September 30, 2009


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 260 pages
  • Publisher: Eno Publishers; 1ST edition (September 30, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0982077114
  • ISBN-13: 978-0982077115
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #581,190 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"...a family history ...and an interesting look at Reconstruction through the eyes of some prominent North Carolinians. The author, Suzy Barile, is a decendent of the couple... and that gives the book a personal touch. But the book is not sentimental; it is well-researched and draws its material from the letters, diaries and documents of its central characters. Undaunted Heart is for your Civil War buff or for anyone interested in local history. --News & Record, Greensboro, NC

About the Author

After a 25-year career as a newspaper reporter and editor, Suzy Barile now teaches English and journalism at Wake Tech Community College in Raleigh, North Carolina. She is a graduate of the School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and earned a master's degree from North Carolina State University. She lives in Cary, North Carolina.

More About the Author

"Undaunted Heart: The True Story of a Southern Belle & a Yankee General" won a Silver Medal IPPY from Independent Publisher in the 2010 awards competition. It competed in the South East Region Non-Fiction category. It has also been recognized by the N.C. Press Club (1st Place - non-fiction) and the National Federation of Press Women (Honorable Mention - Non-fiction), as well as a Willie Peace Award from the N.C. Society of Historians.

SUZY BARILE

After a 25-year career as a newspaper reporter and editor, Suzy Barile is an Associate Professor of English at Wake Tech Community College in Raleigh, N.C. She is a graduate of the School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and earned a master's degree from North Carolina State University.

An award-winning writer, Suzy Barile has contributed to the North Carolina Encyclopedia (ed. William S. Powell) and the Book of American Traditions (ed. Emyl Jenkins). Her articles have appeared in the Cary (NC) News, Triangle (NC) Business Journal, News & Observer, among other publications.

In 2001, Suzy Barile won a Paul Green Multi-Media Award from the N.C. Society of Historians for her presentation of "The Governor's Daughter and The Yankee General." She is co-editor of the not-yet-published "The Papers of Richard Caswell," North Carolina's first Revolutionary War-era governor.

Suzy Barile is available for speaking engagements. Contact her at suzyb3@gmail.com

Read her blog at http://suzybarile.blogspot.com/

Customer Reviews

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This is one of the best books I have read over the past year.
William Sarine
Using Ella Swain's letters and other primary sources, author Suzy Barile tells a more complete story of one of the more controversial stories of the end of the 1860s.
Midwest Book Review
All my life I have heard the story of Ella and now to actually read it and to see so many pieces of information is quite exciting.
ellie6

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By James D. Miller on August 17, 2009
Format: Paperback
After four blood-soaked, war ravaged years, the end came; Robert E. Lee surrendered the Army of Northern Virginia to Ulysses S. Grant's victorious Army of the Potomac and within a month the rest of the armies of the Confederacy would follow Lee's example. The Civil War was at long last over and it was time for the nation to bind up its wounds and let the healing begin.

On Easter Sunday, 1865 a brigade of General Sherman's army entered the sleepy hamlet of Chapel Hill, home of the University of North Carolina. The next day David Swain, the former governor of North Carolina, and president of the university, met with Smith Dykins Atkins, the General in charge, to formally surrender the city, and in the process invited him to dinner. Neither Swain nor Atkins knew it at the time, but it was an evening that would change both of their lives, for it was on that night, the General would meet the woman who would become his wife, Governor Swain's daughter, Ella.

The author, Suzy Barile, great great granddaughter of Smith & Ella Atkins, has done an admirable job of telling their story. The star-crossed love affair between a Union General and a Southern Belle does carry with it an element or two from Romeo and Juliet. Relying heavily on family correspondence as well as journals and diaries of Chapel Hill locals Ms. Barile, gives her readers a nearly three dimensional view of her subjects, and their relationship that some found shocking and scandalous, and yet at the same time foreshadowed the reconciliation between the warring sections of the country that would ultimately take place many decades later.

If the Ms.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By ellie6 on August 21, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Being Eleanor Hope ("Ellie") the VI (my daughter is Hope VII), I heard stories Of Ella everytime we visited my grandmother (Hope iv) and have seen the feistiness of Ella straight down through the generations! My sister Suzy gives a fascinating presentation of this story quite often. She incorporates items of interest, one being Ella's diamond ring (on loan, sis, since I got the Eleanor name!!) We also have a delicate gold bracelet given to Ella by the General with her name engraved inside. Over the years, as each Eleanor married, her new last name was added. All my life I have heard the story of Ella and now to actually read it and to see so many pieces of information is quite exciting. One tidbit I learnd was how Pres. Swain saved Chapel Hill from the Yankees ravaging it by adding in the "fine print" of the treaty the town would be protected. Although this book is our family's personal story, it is still full of history of the war and UNC surviving it. I hope my children will carry on the tradition of telling their children the story of our family. Now they have the book to share. How do you say thank you to someone taking years out of her life (and time with sweetheart John) to put on paper our family legacy? Perhaps I can loan her my teenagers for awhile.....
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jessica James, historical fiction author on January 2, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I like this book because it's written by the great-great-granddaughter of Ella Swain and Smith Atkins. Ella was the daughter of the president of the University of North Carolina - and Smith Atkins was a Union general who came to Ella's father's house to inform him that the town was under Union occupation.

Against this unlikely backdrop began a passionate and controversial love story still vivid in town lore. When President Swain's daughter Ella met the Union general, life for these two young people who had spent the war on opposite sides was forever altered.

This famous courtship and marriage, needless to say, caused quite a stir. Interwoven throughout Undaunted Heart are excerpts from Ella's never-before-published letters to her parents that reveal a loving marriage that transcended differences and scandal.

Proves that truth can be stranger than fiction, as this unlikely couple forms a bond that withstands the test of time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jo Ann Mathews on September 23, 2009
Format: Paperback
SUZY BARILE's "Undaunted Heart: The True Story of a Southern Belle & a Yankee General" is a wonderfully crafted addition to the host of books surrounding the Civil War. The book tells a love story that involves prejudice, politics, family and values--topics in the news on a daily basis.
The Yankee general is Smith Dykins Atkins from Freeport, Illinois, and a volunteer for the Union cause. The southern belle is Eleanor "Ella" Hope Swain, daughter of David Lowry Swain, governor of North Carolina from 1832-1835 and president of University of North Carolina from 1835-1868.
BARILE writes, "Ella did the unthinkable: She married a Yankee general at the close of the Civil War." A North-South marriage was as offensive to the general public in 1865 as a black-white marriage was in the 1960s. The angle is unique to books concerning the Civil War, and BARILE does a fine job of recreating the attitudes of the times and capturing the spirit of Ella and the general. BARILE has an extraordinary perspective. While searching in her mother's attic, she found a box of Ella's letters. BARILE is the great, great granddaughter of Ella and the general. The book was even more meaningful to me because I grew up in Joliet, Illinois. I didn't know Freeport had such a distinguished native son.
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