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254CIVIL WAR HISTORY It is this testimony that is the mostobvious innovation in Denney's work. The introduction of excerpts from letters and diaries makes this more than just a book one picks up for a quick answer to a perplexing question; it becomes a book to be read from cover to cover. While the inclusion of first-person accounts provides interesting reading, it is this uniqueness that detracts from its usefulness to the researcher. Denney relies heavily on a few particular sources, and while this is a nice touch that provides his text with a UveUer narrative than the one offered by Long, he might have improved on this technique by drawing his passages from a wider variety of sources. His description of the Atlanta campaign is a case in point. In May 1864, as WiUiam T. Sherman began his movement south, Denney uses almost daily selections from the writings of two soldiers, Pvt. John S. Jackman of the ist Kentucky and CpI. Lucius W. Barber of the 15th Illinois Volunteer Infantry. For the fighting in the East, Denney reUes heavUy on Pvt. D. L. Day, 25th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry. With the multitude of fine firsthand accounts available, it is unfortunate that Denney limits his to a handful. Nor do Denney's selections always coincide with the events mentioned for a particular day. For March 27, 1863, Denney highUghts only David Farragut's activities on the Mississippi River, but bis eyewitness report is from a Massachusetts soldier who describes camp Ufe in North CaroUna. Perhaps the most significant omission is that Denney fails to cite the sources of the passages he uses for illustration. In fact, a major weakness in his book is that he provides no bibliography at all. Nonetheless, Denney's work has an identity all its own. It is not as comprehensive as Long's nor Bowman's, and it wiU not replace either one, but it is a useful supplement to existing Civil War almanacs. Both scholars and general readers wiU find it useful, and the treasure trove of contemporary commentary is enjoyable reading. Anne J. Bailey University of Arkansas Saber and Scapegoat: J.KB. Stuart and the Gettysburg Controversy. By Mark Nesbitt. (Mechanicsburg, Pa.: Stackpole Books, 1994. Pp. xix, 227. $19.95.) "The Flower ofCavaUers" endures a faded reputation regarding the Gettysburg campaign. James Ewell Brown Stuart consumed himself, most of his cavalry command, and some precious days in a protracted "ride around" the Federal army. Consequently Stuart and his three brigades of horsemen arrived at the battle late in the day on July 2, the second of three days of combat. Moreover Stuart reached the field likely knowing less than anyone there aboutthe strength and disposition of the Union army. Charles Marshall, a member of Robert E. Lee's staff, claimed mat he wanted Stuart shot in the immediate aftermath ofthe battle. Michael Shaara made Stuart the antihero of his Pulitzer Prize-winning book reviews255 novel, The Killer Angeh (1975), and the film Gettysburg (1993), based on Shaara's work, faithfully reproduced the depiction of Stuart as the Confederate who contributed die most to Southern defeat. Between 1863 and 1993, Stuart has had his defenders. But now Mark Nesbitt attempts absolute exoneration in Saber and Scapegoat: J.E.B. Stuart and the Gettysburg Controversy. Stuart was following Lee's orders or at least attempting to foUow them. He was not "skylarking" on a frivolous quest for greater fame. Stuart did assign sufficient cavalry to ride north with Lee and perform reconnaissance for the army. He did not leave Lee helpless to blunder into a battle Lee did not want. Stuart was not "late" for die battle at Gettysburg. The several charges leveled against Stuart, Nesbitt asserts, "are patently false." Within the limits he estabUshes for the controversy, Nesbitt proves his case. Stuart did none of those misdeeds his accusers have alleged he did. If die questions at issue concern wrongful or extraneous acts Stuart committed before he arrived on the field atGettysburg, then Nesbitt establishes Stuart's innocence once and for all time. But as ever, the questions any historian asks of the past in large measure determine the answers to those questions...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1533-6271
Print ISSN
0009-8078
Pages
pp. 254-255
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-04
Open Access
No
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