- File Size: 10903 KB
- Print Length: 313 pages
- Publisher: Savas Beatie (July 19, 2013)
- Publication Date: February 20, 2019
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00E8HPLCI
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #825,580 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Digital List Price:||$18.99|
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General Grant and the Rewriting of History: How the Destruction of General William S. Rosecrans Influenced Our Understanding of the Civil War Kindle Edition
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Civil War News
"An invaluable addition to Civil War Studies and reference shelves . . . and a sharp caution against putting too much blind faith in any one person's testimony, memoir, or historical accounting. Highly Recommended."
Midwest Book Review
“I dropped everything and plunged into this book. Every page I read presented challenges to accepted views, including my own. General Grant and the Rewriting of History represents considerable ingenuity and independence of thought.”
John Y. Simon, editor of the Grant Papers --This text refers to the paperback edition.
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Rosecrans won the Battles of Iuka and Corinth, though Grant, who was not even involved in the fighting of either engagement, took credit for the victories of both, while criticizing Rosecrans in failing to pursue the enemy, when in fact, Rosecrans did pursue the enemy in each battle before Grant called off the pursuits.
Following another victory at Stones River, Rosecrans accomplished a stunning, near bloodless victory at Tullahoma, yet he was criticized by Halleck, Stanton and historians for taking too long to prepare. In fact, Rosecrans’ careful planning and refusal to be hurried resulted in a successful campaign without any adverse repercussions to the Union war effort being conducted elsewhere.
At Chickamauga, after the Confederate breakthrough, Rosecrans was criticized for panicking on the battlefield, leaving his men to fight while he fled the battlefield, allowing his army to be starved, losing the confidence of his troops, and intending to abandon Chattanooga. All of these criticisms were false and unfairly launched against Rosecrans by Grant, Stanton, and Dana. The criticisms had no basis in fact and were distortions of the truth. Yet many historians accepted them as true without ever doing any independent investigation, such as comparing Grant’s battlefield reports and Memoirs with the Original Records and other primary sources.
Varney readily admits Grant was a great general, but faulted him for manipulating the truth in his Memoirs and reports for the purpose of bringing down and undermining the reputation of Rosecrans, whom Grant did not like. According to Grant, he did not like Rosecrans because he “could not make him do as [he] wished.”
Varney emphasized throughout the book that historians should avoid the temptation of relying on a single source, such as Grant’s Memoirs, which might very well compromise the search for truth. Rather historians should always look at the Original Records (OR) of the War of the Rebellion, the primary sources, and the reports of other witnesses before arriving at a negative opinion or criticism of a great general such as William S. Rosecrans, or any general for that matter.
Throughout the book, Professor Varney never hesitated to place himself at loggerheads with many leading Civil War historians for the sake of advancing the truth and setting the historical record straight. Varney is indeed a frontiersman, and his book a must read!
Publisher: Savas Beatie (July 19, 2013)
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If Grant's Memoirs are essential reading so too is this book.
Top international reviews
Rosecrans' advance to Chattanooga that Varney praises so much was execrably slow. Armies manoeuvre to fight they don't (or shouldn't) manoeuvre for the sake of it. Varney also praises Rosecrans for how well he fought at Stones River. He certainly needed to fight well because it was his faulty initial disposition of his army that caused the problems.
I'm sorry Dr Varney but your book in Lincoln's words "doesn't scour".