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106CIVIL WA R HISTORY servative Republican. ". . . It would be wrong," he writes, "to consider him as having belonged to that growing group of Radicals widiin the Republican party who were by the spring of 1862 beating the drum loudly in favor of such drastic measures as general emancipation and confiscation of enemy property" (p. 144). In his Lincoln and the Radicals (1941, 1960), T. Harry WiUiams, however, quoted Fessenden in Radical context frequently and on page 209 specifically listed him as being among the Radicals just after Fredericksburg. Abraham Lincoln, who doubtless gave some thought to such matters, is supposed to have termed Fessenden, "a Radical without the petulent [sic] and vicious fretfulness of many radicals," when he appointed him to the Treasury. James G. Randall and Richard N. Current included diis judgment in Lincoln the President: Last Full Measure (1955), p. 185. Mr. Jellison presents some evidence in support of his position; other writers have referred to Fessenden as a moderate; certainly the Senator's position on impeachment was a conservative one. Yet Fessenden's career may have offered Mr. Jellison a greater opportunity to reveal the changes and the shadings of conservatism and radicalism in the Senate during the Civil War than he was willing to accept. Some readers will conclude perhaps that this book lacks the speculative and analytical richness which characterizes much great biography. Professor Jellison suggests that "probably die predominant property of die Senator's mind" was "a strong sense of justice and a concomitant determination to do the right thing, regardless of expediency" (p. 162) . But intellectual, sectional, regional, and group pressures must have played upon Fessenden as diey did upon all of his colleagues. Deeper study of these influences might weU have been interesting and revealing. Only a few presidential administrations have left such a legacy of basic economic legislation as did die Lincoln administration . Few men were more closely involved in die shaping of these measures than Fessenden. But somehow this biography fails to provide us with new appreciation of the background and domestic significance of this economic legislation. If Dr. JeUison continues to use his considerable talents in writing biography we can hope that he will view his subject a little more broadly next time. Allan G. Bogue State University of Iowa CtctZ War Ironclads: the Dawn of Naval Armor. By Robert MacBride. (Philadelphia: Chilton Company, 1962. Pp. xi, 185. $7.50.) Commercial artist, designer, art director, erstwhile sculptor and gunner's mate, Robert MacBride turns writer and volunteers to place additional stress on the already sagging shelves marked "Civil War." Employing a lightweight bibliography, MacBride plunges into the story of coastal ironclads, monitors, river gunboats, tin-clads, torpedo boats, and seagoing behemoths. A scholarly study of the ironclads is sorely needed, but MacBride saUies forth to recite such things as the trite tale of Ericsson designing the Monitor and of her Book Reviews107 slugfest with die Virginia in Hampton Roads. The audior dutifuUy compdes the specifications of aU die ironclads, however, enumerates the careers of some, and recounts the battle highlights of others. Civil War Ironclads begins with die statement diat die conditions which gave rise to the ironclad warship paraueled diose which led to die development of the dreadnought, the aircraft carrier, and the nuclear submarine. Interspersed throughout the text are such generalizations as the "most wonderful thing which runs through the entire story" of the Southern navy "is an almost lunatic optimism and confidence on the part of aU Confederates, from the secretary of the navy to die landsmen at die guns. . . . And more often than not, diey expected die Yankees to be faindiearted and cowardly." MacBride concludes that die monitors' effect upon the war was not great. He omits an analysis of overaU ironclad policy and slights Gustavus Vasa Fox, highly significant in monitor budding and strategy, by briefly mentioning him only two times. Confusingly organized, each chapter seems separate with no narrative continuity. Minor errors, too, creep in. Worden commanded the Monitor, not "Warden"; Davis commanded at Memphis, not "Foote." To compensate for the reader's pains, MacBride interlaces his narrative with fine sketches, showing deck plans, side, bow and stern elevations, cross sections and traverse...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1533-6271
Print ISSN
0009-8078
Pages
pp. 106-107
Launched on MUSE
2013-01-02
Open Access
No
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