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Civil War History: Archive

March 2016, Volume 62, No. 1

Dec 10th, 2015

Civil War History cover 62.1


Memories of a Rooted Sorrow:  The Legacy of the Guerrilla War
by: Daniel E. Sutherland

 As the study of Civil War guerrillas has drawn more scholarly attention over the past decade, the number and variety of questions about them and the war they waged have multiplied.  Not surprisingly, one of those questions has to do with “memory,” and how guerrillas, especially Confederate guerrillas, were perceived after the war.  This article shows that many former rebel guerrillas, aware that their wartime motives and actions might well be misinterpreted, sought ways to defend their “legacy” and so be judged kindly by history.

Distinctions That Must Be Preserved:  On the Civil War, American Indians, and the West
by: Khal Schneider

This essay reconsiders the role of the Civil War in the formation of the Indian policies of the United States.  There is broad agreement among historians that the nineteenth-century West was a field of federal administration, if not federal domination, where imperial architects built a state that comported with the unrivaled northern vision of American society.  The conquest of Indian nations in the latter nineteenth century often seems the clearest expression of the policies of a vindicated federal government.  This essay argues, however, that the history of the West was not simply one of ascendant federal power, but persistent, and successful efforts by citizens to channel and even subvert federal authority.  These challenges, rooted in the politics of the 1850s, coalesced in Indian policies and patterns of violence against Indians that were often at odds with federal plans and influenced the redeployment of federal power in the West in the 1860s and after.  The Civil War did not represent the beginning of the imperial conquest of the West, then, but was a watershed between two national visions for the West and its native people. 

Teaching the Art of Civil War:  An Educators’ Forum 
featuring: Zachariah Dodson, Joe Foster, Eric Froese, Chris Lese, Kevin M. Levin, and Bob Reinhart

For this forum, we invited several middle and high school teachers from around the country to share their reflections on education the next generation of students about the role of the Civil War in shaping American history.  We asked them about how they approach teaching the war; the primary and secondary sources that have shaped their vision of the war; and what people, places, and events they give special emphasis.  Additionally, we were curious about what activities the teachers used to engage their students.  



 Zachariah Dodson teaches 8th Grade WAVE American History teacher at Washburn Rural Middle School and also serves as Assistant Coach for Cross Country and Women’s Basketball.   

Joe Foster lives in northwestern Ohio and is completing his fifteenth year teaching high school social studies at Waynesfield-Goshen Schools in Auglaize County. He has been named as both the Ohio History Teacher of the Year by the Gilder Lehrman Institute and Teacher of the Year by the Civil War trust at their National Teacher Institute in Atlanta, GA.

Eric Froese lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he teaches middle school social studies at Annunciation School.   

Chris Lese is a member of the Social Studies Department at Marquette University High School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 

Kevin M. Levin is an educator and historian based in Boston. He is the author of Remembering the Battle of the Crater: War as Murder (2012) and you can find him online at Civil War Memory [].

Bob Reinhart has been teaching for 19 years, which includes a few years at Edgewood Middle School and more than a decade at Southampton Middle School in Bel Air, Mearyland.  In 2004, he garnered the Preservationist Teacher of the Year award from the Civil War Trust and received the Chairman’s Award in 2010.  

Khal Schneider is Associate Professor of History at California State University, East Bay.   His scholarly articles have appeared in the Western Historical Quarterly and the Pacific Historical Review.  His 2010 article “Making Indian Land in the Allotment Era: Northern California’s Indian Rancherias,” received the Arrell M. Gibson Award from the Western History Association for the best essay of the year in Native American History.    

Daniel E. Sutherland is a Distinguished Professor of History at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. The author or editor of fifteen books on nineteenth-century U.S. history, his most important work on the guerrilla war is A Savage Conflict: The Decisive Role of Guerrillas in the American Civil War (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2009).  



Book Reviews:

Fetter-Vorm, Jonathan and Ari Kelman. Battle Lines:  A Graphic History of the Civil War. Reviewed by Catherine Clinton.

Landis, Michael Todd. Northern Men and Southern Loyalties:  The Democratic Party and the Sectional Crisis. Reviewed by Patrick J. Doyle.

Woods, Michael E. Emotional and Sectional Conflict in the Antebellum United States. Reviewed by Gregory A. Peek.

Morris, J. Brent. Oberlin, Hotbed of Abolitionism:  College, Community, and the Fight for Freedom and Equality in Antebellum America. Reviewed by Peter C. Luebke.

Craig, Berry. Kentucky Confederates:  Secession, Civil War, and the Jackson Purchase. Reviewed by Anne Marshall.

Davis, David Brion. The Problem of Slavery in the Age of Emancipation. Reviewed by Lisa Tendrich Frank.

Spurgeon, Ian Michael. Soldiers in the Army of Freedom:  The First Kansas Colored, the Civil War’s First African American Combat Unit. Reviewed by Tyler Sperrazza.

Luke, Bob and John David Smith. Soldiering for Freedom:  How the Union Army Recruited, Trained, and Deployed the U.S. Colored Troops. Reviewed by Katherine Brackett Fialka.

Escott, Paul D. Lincoln’s Dilemma:  Blair, Sumner, and the Republican Struggle over Racism and Equality in the Civil War Era. Reviewed by Andrew F. Lang.

Hodes, Martha. Mourning Lincoln. Reviewed by Mark S. Schantz.

Steers, Jr., Edward. Lincoln’s Assassination. Reviewed by Daniel W. Farrell.

Peatman, Jared. The Long Shadow of Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. Reviewed by Andrew Delbanco.

Barr, John McKee. Loathing Lincoln:  An American Tradition from the Civil War to the Present. Reviewed by Brian Dirck.

Cushman, Stephen. Belligerent Muse: Five Northern Writers and How They Shaped Our Understanding of the Civil War. Reviewed by Matthew C. Hulbert.

Kreiser, Jr., Lawrence A. and Randal Allred, eds. The Civil War in Popular Culture:  Memory and Meaning. Reviewed by Toby Glenn Bates.