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General Edmund Kirby Smith, C.S.A. (Southern Biography Series) Paperback – July 1, 1992
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About the Author
Joseph H. Parks, born in Lincoln County, Tennessee, taught for many years at Memphis State University, Birmingham Southern College, and the University of Georgia. He is the author of several books, including General Leonidas Polk, C.S.A.: The Fighting Bishop; John Bell of Tennessee; and Joseph E. Brown of Georgia.
Top Customer Reviews
Joseph Parks gives a solid if not particularly compelling account of Kirby Smith's career. Kirby Smith, a Floridian, served under Joseph Johnston at the First Battle of Bull Run and was seriously wounded. After recovering from the wound, Kirby Smith commanded Confederate forces in East Tennessee and showed some tactical ability in the invasion of Kentucky which culminated in the battle of Perryville. During that campaign, Kirby Smith feuded with Braxton Bragg who commanded the main wing of the Confederate invasion. Kirby Smith would later command the Trans Mississippi region and, while there were some successes such as the Red River campaign, all in all Kirby Smith was content on the defensive, much in the style of his mentor Johnston. Parks offers little on Kirby Smith's post war career which is fairly odd since Kirby Smith taught at the University of the South, an institution that Parks was affiliated with.
This is all well and good. However, the chief problem with the book is Parks' lack of interest in Kirby Smith's roles in politics and economics. Kirby Smith's role in the Confederacy was not simply that of a general. He was the highest ranking Confederate offical west of the river and was isolated after the fall of Vicksburg in 1863.Read more ›