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North against South: The American Iliad, 1848-1877 3rd Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0962384202
ISBN-10: 0962384208
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Ludwell H. Johnson III is Professor Emeritus of History at the College of William and Mary and is the author of numerous articles, reviews, and books on the War Between the States and Reconstruction era. The original title of North Against South was Division and Reunion: America, 1848-1877.
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The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 326 pages
  • Publisher: The Foundation for American Education; 3rd edition (March 12, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0962384208
  • ISBN-13: 978-0962384202
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #933,072 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By R. Setliff on October 30, 2005
Format: Paperback
~North Against South: The American Iliad 1848-1877~ is provocative account of the road to disunion, the late War Between the States, and the short-lived Confederacy which was militarily extirpated in 1865. Ludwell Johnson presents basic objective historical facts from the beginning of the sectional crisis that afflicted antebellum America. The problem is that what passes for objectivity these days is biased scholarship. While it is admitted that a pro-Unionist could feasibly write an objective account, many spend their time obfuscating historical fact, rationalizing atrocities and downplaying abuses committed by the Lincoln regime. Johnson levels the playing field and presents information that other historians deny or gloss over. He offers an insightful social and political history from the sectionalism crisis that emerged in antebellum America to the post-Reconstruction era. Moreover, Johnson gives clarity to the various issues at stake, such as: the spread of slavery to the territories; federal funding for internal improvements; and exorbitant protectionist tariffs lobbied for by northern industrialists. This is not a military history per se, but a handy succinct companion volume covering a pivotal juncture in American history-the sectional crisis, the War Between the States, and Reconstruction. Yes, this is a perspective that would appeal to Southern partisans-because it doesn't obfuscate historical fact and as Clyde Wilson says, it "redeemed the honor of the Confederacy." John Mering, former Professor Emeritus of History at University of Arizona has called this "...the southern version..." Historians Clyde N. Wilson and James I. Robertson have also lavished praise on Johnson's book as well.Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
This a thought-provoking book. It does require a careful reading and critical mind. I have checked references and found those that I could locate in libraries to be accurate. I also checked the background of the references since so much was difficult to accept and found them credible. The source materials are good to excellent. If you have a closed mind, this book is not recommended. I have little faith in references on the net and perhaps this is an irrational prejudice but I see no sense in accepting any work as fact unless it is verifiable through multiple sources. Despite some original objections to the tenor of the work, I was persuaded to some degree by documented facts. Some is hard to "swallow" as it contradicts so much of what I was taught. The fact checking exercise made it easier to "swallow" though it is still not a pleasant thing to accept.
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Mr. Johnson has accomplished something extraordinary with this highly readable history of the Civil War. I've read all of the classic defenses of the Southern cause - Davis, Stephens, Bledsoe, Pollard, etc. - and while they're extremely profound and insightful, Johnson's history has the advantage of perspective. He effectively condenses a vast wealth of facts and insight into a captivating narrative. The only thing it lacks is a bibliography. There is an excellent bibliographical essay at the end, but it only whetted my appetite for an actual bibliography. I strongly recommend this book to anyone interested in the subject. If you're not interested, then I recommend it anyway; you will be by the time you're finished!
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A very well-written book loaded with a lot of information and verification. It will hold your interest and be a wonderful addition to your library or loan it to someone else for them to enjoy. Very satisfied with promptness of delivery, price, and it was well packaged.
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Written by a professor emeritus from William & Mary University. Gives unbiased facts that are ignored in textbooks.
I have been a fan of history since grade school. As an adult I found that actual US history has little in common with what is presented in textbooks.
He brings up how there were emancipation societies throughout the states. Many in the north did not oppose slavery, per se. But they opposed it because most slaves were black, and they did not want black people living in their states.
It is very evenly written and lays out the facts without bias toward either side.
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This book is so well written! Ludwell H. Johnson III brings together all of the important issues of the time from around the world, to explain what actually caused the War for Southern Independence. And, rather than rewrite the trite old story we are told in school about how all the southerners were evil slave masters who had to be stopped for the sake of the nation, we are given the political intrigues and power struggles, that permitted elements of the northern political machine to use the war to literally steal millions in goods and property, encourage the military to commit atrocities and finally, to force their political agenda on the people of the south. This is a Fantastic book for anyone who wants to see the whole picture of the Civil War!
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Ludwell Johnson has written a very readable, reasonably concise history of the causes, prosecution, and aftermath of the Civil War. This is a recommended read for anyone that is interested in getting a fuller account of the war; one that is honest about the shortcomings of both South but also the North. Highly recommended!
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