Abstract

This article examines the writings of Union soldiers who participated in the Civil War campaigns of Sherman’s March to the Sea and his Carolinas campaigns. I argue that amidst the more mundane descriptions of the daily routines of military life—miles marched, the conditions of the food and the weather—some soldiers also took a keen pleasure in viewing Georgia and the Carolinas as a tourist destination. The soldiers’ use of touristic rhetoric reflects the significant cultural influence that nineteenth-century tourism had in the United States; more importantly, touristic rhetoric creates opportunities for praising a Southern landscape and culture from which slavery has been largely excised. These rhetorical strategies allow Sherman’s soldiers to downplay the destructiveness of their actions and pave the way toward reconciliation with the South after the war’s end.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1542-4286
Print ISSN
0093-3139
Pages
pp. 173-195
Launched on MUSE
2016-01-14
Open Access
No
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