A Frenchman, A Chaplain, A Rebel: The War Letters of Pere Louis-Hippolyte Gache, S.J., and: Acadian General: Alfred Mouton and the Civil War (review)
- Civil War History
- The Kent State University Press
- Volume 30, Number 1, March 1984
- pp. 91-93
- View Citation
- Additional Information
BOOK REVIEWS91 Tennessee Cavalier in the Missouri Cavalry: Major Henry Ewing, C.S.A., of the St. Louis Times. By William J. Crowley. (Columbia, Mo.: Kelly Press, 1978. Pp. xii, 231.) Tennessee Cavalier in the Missouri Cavalry by historian William J. Crowley is a result of the renewed interest in genealogy and family history that is symptomatic of the post-ñoofs TV era. The book centers on Henry Ewing, a member of one of the first families of the Nashville aristocracy. The early history of the family is traced but, as with many American families, the spelling of the family name and the repeated use of the identical first names, makes it difficult to follow. The main character is finally introduced on 23 December 1840 when Henry Ewing was bom, and his youth is then detailed. At the time of the secession crisis Henry was a student at the University of Virginia and a member of one of the student-organized military companies at the university. As a member of the "Southern Guard" Henry participated in the seizure of the arsenal at Harpers Ferry on 18 April 1861. On 14 June 1861 Henry enlisted in the 20th Tennessee and applied for a commission. Receiving a commission in the State Militia he served as General Felix K. Zollicoffer's aide. Eventually , Richmond also issued a commission to Henry. Before the war was over, Ewing participated in several battles including Shiloh, and served with Marmaduke's cavalry and with Sterling Price in his raid in Missouri, September-October 1864. Following the war, Ewing eventually settled in St. Louis and published the Sr. Louts Times. He died 13 June 1873. Crowley's work is a good example of a well-researched family history and how one should relate the minutia of family events to the broad tapestry of historical events. While this study will not rank with Freeman's Lee or Douglas's / Rode With Stonewall, it does shed some light on local history. Robert G. Mangrum Howard Payne University A Frenchman, A Chaphin, A Rebel: The War Letters of Pere LouisHippolyte Gache, S.J. By Cornelius M. Buckley, S.J. (Chicago: Loyola University Press, 1981. Pp. 288. $8.95.) Acadian General· Alfred Mouton and the Civil War. By William Arceneaux . (Lafayette: Center for Louisiana Studies, University of Southwestern Louisiana, 1981. Pp. xvi, 188. $10.95.) Bom in France in 1817, Louis-Hippolyte Gache attended Jesuit schools before entering the Society and being ordained to the priesthood. He left his native country in late 1846 to go to America and teach at Spring Hill College at Mobile, Alabama. For the next fifteen years, Gache 92civil war history taught and pastured not only at Spring Hill but also at Grand Coteau and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, as well. He went to Pensacola, Florida, when the Civil War began and volunteered his services as chaplain to the Confederate troops stationed there. In July 1861, the Confederate government appointed Gache as chaplain of the 10th Louisiana Infantry Regiment. The good father accompanied his unit to Virginia, where the men received their assignment to duty on the Peninsula below Richmond. The 10th Louisiana saw only a few skirmishes before being bloodied in the Seven Days' Battles. Gache witnessed his last battle in August 1862 at Cedar Mountain. By September he was serving on detached duty at an army hospital in Danville. From that time until the end of the conflict, Gache remained on detached service at Danville, Lynchburg, and Richmond. Seventeen letters written by Gache to fellow teachers at Spring Hill appear in A Frenchman, A Chaplain, A Rebel. Father Buckley has done an excellent job translating the letters and providing annotations on the people, places, and events mentioned in those letters. Gache wrote not so much about the battles and skirmishes he witnessed as about life behind the lines and the grim aftermath of battle. After his assignment to hospital duty, he spent most of his time describing his efforts to convert the sick and wounded soldiers to Catholicism. Gache's letters do present some good battle details and some interesting assessments of the personalities with whom he came in contact, especially Lee and Jackson. A few...