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BOOK REVIEWS 259 The Historical Atlas of the Congresses ofthe Confederate States ofAmerica: 1861-1865. By Kenneth C. Mariis. (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1994. Pp. xii, 157. $60.00.) Kenneth C. Mariis, a historical geographer, has provided students of the Civil War with the first poUtical atlas ofthe Confederate states' congresses. Excellent tables and appendixes make these vividly colored maps of congressional districts , elections, major roll-call votes, and comparison of the saliency of those votes, ofgreat value to tiiose who seek knowledge ofdie politics ofwarfare. The central theme contributes visual evidence to the standard interpretation of congressional support for the Davis administration's war effort—mainly, that the president gained most backing from those congressmen who lived in enemyoccupied states and districts. Among die many accomplishments ofthis volume is die author's geographical reconstruction of the Confederate congressional districts, which reveals die political strength of the slaveholding centers because of use of the three-fifths clause. Martis's visual depictions ofthe growth in Federal occupation showjust how beleagured the Confederacy had become by 1863. The tables on Confederate soldiers' absentee balloting reveal their primary importance to die Confederate cause. Too, the tables related to voter turnout, when compared to die maps depicting congressional turnover from the First to the Second Congresses , show how sensitive the electorate was to political activity in Richmond . The most brilliant and useful chapter for historians is on congressional special issue roll-call votes. When added to geographical voting patterns on strong and weak support for die Davis administration, the Confederate government 's war effort crumbles before one's eyes. Ofcourse, such an ambitious study invites a few criticisms and perhaps even suggests alternate interpretations of those political-military events. The author seems often to equate anti-administration with anti-Confederate, certainly a debatable assumption even after the miUtary disasters of 1863. For this reviewer , the section on land values reveals the potential for urban-rural economic divisions and should require some careful correlation with wartime congressional voting. There also exists much data on prewar party switching among the congressmen that, if used, might have influenced the author's evaluation of the relationship between party affiUation and support for die Davis administration. But these are only minor quibbles of this otherwise remarkable research tool. For Martis's use of the efforts of important and neglected works of scholars who have labored with the geography of die Confederate congresses shows the depth of the relationship between geographers and historians. Jon L. Wakelyn The CathoUc University of America ...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1533-6271
Print ISSN
0009-8078
Pages
p. 259
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-04
Open Access
No
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