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258CIVIL WAR HISTORY The book has much to recommend it. The author has done a very good job of sifting through the various regulations issued by the Confederate government dealing with the issue of staffs and shows clearly how theory quickly parted company with actual practice. Bartholomees's organizational approach overthe book's first five chapters is well taken, as it gives us a clear picture of a staff's organization and the duties of each staff officer. This is particularly important when it comes to the major task each of these officers was to some degree engaged in, namely the day-to-day administering of the army's needs. In addition, the author covers staffs at every level, from the lowest (brigade) to the highest (army). The book does have its share of flaws, especially concerning the research. Bartholomees admits in the preface that he limited his research to printed sources and secondary works. Even a short trip to North Carolina, where the Southern Historical Collection at the University of North Carolina and the Duke University Library are conveniently located within driving distance ofeach other, would have yielded much useful material. Particularly important are Sandie Pendleton's letters and Francis Dawson's papers, to name but a few. A look at WilliamWhann Mackall's papers would have allowed some briefcomparisons with the Army of Tennessee. The flaws in the research impact the book most in the chapters on staff authority and relations with the commander and the staff in battle. Bartholomees may have underestimated the role that corps staffs played in Robert E. Lee's selection of corps commanders to replace first Jackson, then later Longstreet, Stuart, and Ewell. A speculative argument to this effect can be made plausibly from the contemporary evidence. As for the staff in battle, Bartholomees tends to rely heavily on some very dubious sources, especially Henry Kyd Douglas's memoirs and those of Heros von Borcke, who truly deserves the title of the Confederate Baron von Miinchhausen. Bartholomees opens his book with the caveat that this is not for the casual reader. For the well read student of the Army of Northern Virginia, however, this book is a must, despite its flaws. R. L. DiNardo Quantico, Virginia Pretense of Glory: The Life of General Nathaniel P. Banks. By James G. Hollandsworth Jr. (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1098. Pp. xiv, 292. $34-95) He did not have a formal education or family connections. He did not have a personal fortune. Yet he became a major politician, serving first in the Massachusetts legislature and then as governor before serving in the U.S. Congress for ten terms. In Congress Nathaniel P. Banks (18 16-1884), originally a Democrat , broke with his party over the issue of slavery and its expansion. Notably, he voted against the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1 854, even though Democratic party leaders insisted that all party members vote for the measure as a show of BOOK REVIEWS 259 loyalty. Banks did more than bolt the party; he endorsed the antislavery doctrine , later joining the Republican party. In a close vote, Banks became the speaker ofthe U.S. House in 1856 and thus was thrust into the national spotlight in the critical years just before the Civil War. His election signaled the first national victory for the Republican party. He considered a presidential run in 1856 but ultimately did not seek the top post; instead he threw his support to John C. Fremont, who lost to James Buchanan. Further, Banks's job as speaker was terminated, for the Democrats regained control of the House. Banks left the House to run for governor of Massachusetts, an election he won. However, he was getting a reputation as a man who placed expediency over principle. He waffled on too many issues. After accepting a lucrative offer from William H. Osborn, president ofthe Illinois Central Railroad, Banks moved to Chicago in i860, only to see the Civil War begin just months later. Wanting to gain political support for the war, President Abraham Lincoln offered Banks a commission as major general. Only three other Union generals outranked Banks, who even outranked Gen. U.S. Grant until...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1533-6271
Print ISSN
0009-8078
Pages
pp. 258-259
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-04
Open Access
No
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