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"We Shall Meet Again": The First Battle of Manassas (Bull Run), July 18-21, 1861 Paperback


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"We Shall Meet Again": The First Battle of Manassas (Bull Run), July 18-21, 1861 + Return to Bull Run: The Campaign and Battle of Second Manassas
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA (January 18, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195139380
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195139389
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,413,898 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review


"A well-written, well-paced account."--The Rebel Rouser


"This reads like a novel with all the drama replete of fiction but is derived from source materials and observers of the time."--Reviewer's Bookwatch


About the Author


JoAnna M.McDonald has been a student of military history for sixteen years. She is also the author of several battlefield guides, including The World Will Long Remember: A Guide to the Battle of Gettysburg and The Liberation of Pointe-du-Hoc: The 2d Rangers at Normandy.

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Simon Jackson on July 18, 2000
Format: Hardcover
In September of 1999 I visited the battlefield of Manassas. Prior to that I'd done a little bit of research to give me a clearer idea of what I would be seeing and how it fitted into the wider picture that was the Civil War. JoAnna McDonald's book was a great help in piecing together the events that were to become know as the First Battle of Manassas (or Bull Run depending on your preference).
"We Shall Meet Again" certainly gives an excellent overview of the battle, breaking down the different troop movements into stages that the reader is able to clearly follow. However, before the account of the battle itself, McDonald presents a useful introduction entitled 'Ways and Means' covering such aspects as weapons, flags and uniforms and the initial strategies and battle plans of First Manassas. Although only giving selective and limited information this initial section of the book acts as a useful backdrop for the events that were to come.
"We Shall Meet Again" essentially provides a step by step account of the battle. It does not provide nor does it attempt to provide an in-depth history. However, it is not to the detriment of "We Shall Meet Again" that it's remit is one of focus on the battle itself and not historical analysis of it. For such an analysis I would direct the reader to "Battle at Bull Run" by William C. Davis.
The maps and illustrations in the book are limited and could have done with expansion and further detail. Certainly they offer enough clarity to allow the reader to visually follow the action but I would have appreciated a little more.
An aspect of the book I found interesting were the photographs/drawings and writings of some of those involved in the fighting.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mark Mosko on December 6, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This is a good book to become familar with the first battle of Manassas. It has a good overview of the actions of the battle in chronilogical order, as well as who the main commanders were and the obsticles they faced. It also does a good job with information about those who fought in the battle -- the privates, sergents, and how they felt. The vignettes are very good, and allow you to understand exactly what it must of felt like to be there. The only things I didnt like abot the book was the lacluster emphasis on the illustrations. The drawings of the uniforms and flags look like "napkin" sketches photocopied for the book. The maps can be somewhat confusing, trying to follow the faint arrows and hash marks. Better labeling of the maps would have really helped. The only other nuisance was the censoring of a couple of curse words. I think, as adults, that we can handle history, uncensored. Other than that, it is a fine, play by play account of the first major battle of the Civil War,
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Moody on August 5, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Joanna McDonald has created an excellent account of the first battle at Bull Run Creek...I've not read a more comprehensive and at the same time extremely readable Civil War battle summary anywhere. Ms. McDonald combines detailed battle tactics with short "vignette" diversions that make this book a real treasure...and I don't think that you'll read any better battle description that puts you right into the fray...I was exhausted by the time I got to the federal retreat from Henry Hill. Each stage of the battle is covered in detail, but not overkilled, and is expertly supplemented by an extensive number of maps...I was initially a bit overtaken with all the maps, but later came to depend on them to cover the latest maneuver being discussed. McDonald does an excellent job at covering troop movements and strategy and then, just at the right time, interjects these short vignettes (little stories about the "everyday" soldier or group) that adds just the right perspective to give a poignant vision of that stage in the battle. To top it all off, Ms. McDonald closes the book with an effective epilouge that places the battle in the proper military and political context. In the final analysis, I would have to place this book into the "essential" Civil War reading category...certainly essential to understanding what happened at First Bull Run. I'm told that books by William C. Davis and John Hennessy on First Bull Run are the gauge by which all accounts of the battle are measured...I haven't read either of these, but I would be amazed if these are any better than this book and I enthusiastically recommend it!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kevin M Quigg VINE VOICE on August 22, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I believe this is the first book of its kind that I read. It details the battle in a series of steps and shows the individuals and how they reacted. McDonald certainly put a lot of effort into showing how this battle developed. There are numerous maps in this book and the personalities involved are also pictured. Some of the pictures were repetitive, since they show the same person over and over again. Still, this is rather a unique way of detailing the order of battle.

I learned a lot of the history of this battle from the book. There is a lot of information here. The interest level was not heightened by reading through this book. It is a stage by stage development of the battle. There were some human interest stories in this book. Mainly it was the history of the battle.

Burnside is shown as bumbling even at the beginning of the war. Other than that, this is an OK history of the battle.
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