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Mr. Lincoln's Forts: A Guide to the Civil War Defenses of Washington

4.6 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0942597066
ISBN-10: 0942597060
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--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Amazon.com Review

At the start of the Civil War, federal troops constructed a ring of defensive fortifications around Washington, D.C. The forts saw limited military action, but many historians credit their deterring presence with saving the U.S. capital from a Confederate takeover. If the city wasn't impregnable, it was pretty close. This helpful book provides a full description of these forts--many of which have since been destroyed by farmers and suburban development. Several remain, however, such as Ft. Foote, Ft. Stevens, Ft. Ward, and Ft. Marcy (which became semi-famous in 1993 as the place where former White House deputy counsel Vincent Foster shot himself). Civil War buffs won't want to miss visiting these lesser-known but significant sites--and they won't want to miss this book, either. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

This is a very scholarly and beautifully made book that completely discusses all of the fortification defenses of Washington D.C. during our American Civil War.... Each individual fortification has a short history as to what has transpired from the day it was built up to today's protection by the United States National Park Service. These fortifications stand today as a real tribute to the ingenuity of the United States Army Engineers Corps in protecting Washington D.C. during our American Civil War. (The Lone Star)

This is a welcome contribution to the literature of the Civil War. . . . The thoroughness with which the authors treat the topic is truly impressive. . . . This volume is highly recommended for all libraries and individuals with an interest in the American Civil War. (American Reference Books Annual) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: White Mane Pub (March 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0942597060
  • ISBN-13: 978-0942597066
  • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 8.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,637,140 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Edward M. Lavin on January 13, 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is great for the Civil War or DC history buff. I am both. I also grew up very close to two of these forts as well as one of the cannon battery positions placed between the forts, so I particularly loved it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I collect, take photos of civil war markers, this book provides a wealth of information, not only about the sites, but also how to locate them.
I have read the book and am in the process of locating the sites. I am extremely happy with the results thus far.
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Format: Paperback
MR. LINCOLN'S FORTS: A GUIDE TO THE CIVIL WAR DEFENSES OF WASHINGTON-NEW EDITION
BENJAMIN F. COOLING III AND WALTON H. OWEN II
THE SCARECROW PRESS, 2009
QUALITY SOFTCOVER, $50.00, 334 PAGES, APPENDICES, NOTES, BIBLIOGRAPHY, INDEX, PHOTOGRAPHS, MAPS, ILLUSTRATIONS

At the outbreak of The War Between The States, the U.S. Government faced many daunting problems, but the one closest to home was the situation and character of the national capital. Maryland had donated the ten-square-mile tract designated as the District of Columbia in the 1790s, when plans were made to move the capital to a Southern location. Still new and raw when the government moved operations there at the turn of the 19th Century, it remained more a plan than a realization even at mid-century. Aside from its unfinished appearance, the most striking feature about the city was its Southern character. Some feared, and others hoped, that the characteristics would translate into Southern sympathies. After the attack on Fort Sumter and Lincoln had called for volunteers, local militia was bolstered by the arrival of the 6th Massachusetts Infantry-the same regiment harassed by a Baltimore mob while changing trains in that city-but effectiveness was still low considering the capital's defensive requirements. Colonel Charles P. Stone (the first organizer of the capital's defenses) proposed to General Winfield Scott that if Washington were invaded he would defend the Capitol, the Patent Office, Post Office, and the Executive buildings, including the president's house. Scott insisted that the plan was too ambitious for the numbers at Stone's disposal.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you buy only one book on the Defenses of Washington during the Civil War, this must be it. The authors have done an excellent job of putting this together.
I highly recommend it.
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