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Victims: A True Story Of The Civil War 1st Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1572333253
ISBN-10: 1572333251
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Univ Tennessee Press; 1 edition (November 12, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1572333251
  • ISBN-13: 978-1572333253
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #173,909 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
The book Victims: A True Story of the Civil War by Phillip Shaw Paludan is about the Shelton Laurel killings. Shelton Laurel is a remote Appalachian town in North Carolina. Despite its location in the Confederacy, there remained a strong tie to the Union and because of this it became a target for both Confederate and Union armies.

The people of Shelton Laurel and the Appalachian mountains were simple people. The area was home to related families and most people were very poor farmers. As in many small areas, what family you belong to and their actions affect everything. Paludan explained it best when he said, "juries in county seats could and did ignore the law and evidence to acquit or convict people they liked or disliked, people whose values or whose kin they did or did not respect," (Paludan, 24). The mountain people had a habit of using politics to satisfy personal vengeance. When the Civil War started, "the Unionism of Western North Carolina of which we heard so much during the war...was less a love for the Union than a personal hatred of those who went into the Rebellion. It was not so much an uprising for the government as against a certain ruling class," (Paludan, 62). The Civil War was an opportunity for people to use their new found power to gain personal revenge. People who were pro-confederate tended to be either rich farmers with slaves or "poor whites, profoundly hostile to blacks and most vulnerable to any change in the social and economic structure," (Paludan, 63). Pro-Unionists tended to be people who were poor farmers with no slaves or people who thought succession was treason. The people of the mountains used the "opportunity that the war brought to revenge old debts and to loot, plunder, and terrorize," (Paludan, 77).
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Format: Paperback
"Victims: A True Story of the Civil War," by Phillip Shaw Paludan, is an excellent book about the time period surrounding the Civil War. This book mainly focuses on the events leading up to the Shelton Laurel Massacre. Paludan gives a vivid description of what went on during this time and he gives the reader accurate details describing the massacre. The Shelton Laurel Massacre was a brutal killing of men and boys from the ages of 13-59 by the Confederate soldiers in Shelton Laurel, North Carolina. In this book, Laurel gives the reader a vivid picture of how it happened and what really went on.
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This was a true story of a mass murder and should have made for a fascinating story. Although Paludan tells the facts and gives you the environment that led to the event, it's told in a dry style.

The western NC mountains were sharply divided between the Union sympathizers and the Confederate supporters and both sides had troublemakers that made everyone's life miserable. No one could be "neutral" or live their life without taking one side of the other. You were forced into the conflict whether you wanted to be or not. Unionists came into the area to recruit and Lincoln even sent money and orders to take out 9 railroads in the mountains. They found many Union sympathizers to help them. In response the Confederates sent in contingents to protect the railroads and protect the loyal Confederates in the area. Both sides met with resistance and were attacked, fired at from snipers, men foreceably conscripted to one side or the other, etc. Both sides had men who abused their power. And the worst of humanity came out. Especially with the Marshall attack and the ensuing Shelton Laurel massacre. The 50 Unionist raiders who raged into Marshall to steal salt, clothing and blankets terrorized some of the population and shot a man. In response the Confederates made a sweep through Shelton Laurel and captured men and boys that they thought were involved. They even tortured women, elderly parents and children in order to get them to tell where their menfolk were. They hanged them by the neck until unconscious, whipped them, left them tied to trees so that they suffered from exposure. Of the 13 that they captured and killed only 5 were participants in the raid in Marshall.

I learned some things but I would have liked to learn more about the individuals that were killed.
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Am fascinated by the local Civil War History affecting backwoods communities. The detail written here kept my interest throughout its words. Great work!
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Format: Paperback
There were Southern sympathizers in the North and Northern sympathies in the South. The people were very suspicious of each other at this time. In Shelton Laurel of North Carolina it was no different. "Victims" is a true story of a mass murder in Shelton Laurel. Were these people divided because of state rights and slavery or their linage and personal feuds? There was trouble between the town of Marshall and Shelton Laurel. Thirteen of Shelton Laurel's people were killed. Did anyone get a fair trial?" I did not know this story and was glad to learn about the killings in Shelton Laurel. By Ruth Thompson author of "Natchez Above The River"
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Great product prompt service
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From all I have read about the War this just makes me sick on how we looked at other poeple whom were different in their own way. These poeple just wantede to be left a lone in their commutiy and were peaceful poeple. No has the right to tell someone to join any serves and to beat the women and hurt the children to find where their hubands, sons, brothers, and fathers were was very on call for. To gain status form the war was also dumb and killing as many Indians was also a crime to me. To me all involed shall have been a count able for their actions.
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