GDG- Killing Lincoln

CWMHTours at CWMHTours at
Sat Jan 14 19:24:08 CST 2012

I stand by a long-held view that there was more that happened  in the Civil 
War than 1861.  I think he should have gone equally into the  years of 62, 
63 64 and 65 instead of only about just one year plus a little into  62.  
The topic is more complicated than that and deserves far more  examination 
than 1/4th of the war  and then you say it ended at  Appomattox.
Sorry-  I think he short-changed his reputation and  cheated us all.
Not impressed with the book nor the scholarship.
But I am not him.  He has  to go to bed with himself  at night.
I don't know why people like the book so much.
But here's an amusing thought for you....  I have to go  to bed with myself 
at nite....
Plus my cat...  
Your  Most Obedient Servant,

In a message dated 1/14/2012 7:56:30 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,  
joadx1 at writes:

Esteemed  GDG Member Contributes:

McPherson's explicit task was to reduce the  entire Civil War—both its 
military events and its socio-political contexts—to  a single volume.  His 
success in doing this is astonishing.  He  doesn't get all the battle details 
exactly correct (Chamberlain didn't order a  right wheel forward on LRT, but he 
sure as heck was there and participated  when the regiment charged down the 
hill, which is something that Foote leaves  out entirely in a much much 
longer treatment of the battle, and that's what  counts), and he has to give 
some battles short shrift to fit everything  in.  But McPherson's entirely 
documented contextualization of the  war—which happens to strongly indicate 
that even if Lincoln had behaved as  Buchanan had behaved, war was inevitable 
against an aggressive new southern  nation that wanted Cuba and just about 
everything south of the Rio Grande for  a new slave empire—is really all any 
reader needs to dispel the myths about  the war that we are still contending 

McPherson has also written  about his reception among academic historians 
for having written a  best-selling one volume history of the war.  That 
reception hasn't always  been flattering, but it doesn't bother him.  He is more 
concerned with  the importance of educating the public and he is proud to be 
a public  intellectual.

-----Original Message-----
From:  CWMHTours <CWMHTours at>
To: gettysburg  <gettysburg at>
Sent: Sat, Jan 14, 2012 4:00 pm
Subject:  Re: GDG- Killing Lincoln

Esteemed GDG Member Contributes:
I  wound up not liking " Battle Cry of Freedom" in that it  spends the 
80% of the war in narrative of the first year or two and  suddenly  ends 
rest abruptly.

As in, then the battle of Gettysburg was  fought,  then  the Siege of 
Petersburg was fought and then the  surrender of Appomattox and the  war 

It was like he  attempted to write a much longer work and  changed his mind 
abruptly  and short-changed the reader with his  conclusions.

First part was  great.  Where is the rest of the  trilogy?

Your  Most  Obedient Servant,

In a message dated 1/14/2012  6:51:11 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,  
mdblough at  writes:

Esteemed  GDG Member Contributes:
Dennis-James  McPherson proved, with "Battle Cry of  Freedom" that a work 
could be  both scholarly and highly readable at the same  time.  



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