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Third National Flag of the Confederate States of America
Third National Flag of the
Confederate States of America
P. A. Stonemann, CSS Dixieland
P. A. Stonemann, CSS Dixieland
National Jack of the Confederate States Navy
National Jack of the
Confederate States Navy

CSS Dixieland

Probing the depths of knowledge

These essays by P. A. Stonemann, CSS Dixieland, cover a wide range of historical, philosophical, scientifical and technical subjects. Each page deals with a particular topic, divided into sections and explained by itself. Every page shows at its top hyper links to every other page. The Start page also has short descriptions of the other pages. CSS Dixieland expresses gratitude to the readers that make this work meaningful.

This Web document has been tested with KDE Konqueror, graphic HTML interpreter for Linux. It may not be rendered correctly by other graphic HTML interpreters. It will probably be correct when rendered by text-only HTML interpreters (visual, aural, or Braille tactile interpreters), but if feasible, please use KDE Konqueror. Uniform Resource Locator:
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Confederate Victory page

Counter factual history of a
Confederate Victory in the war of 1861
Alternate future of the World after a Confederate Victory The Charge of Colonel R. E. Patrick. Painting by Don Troiani
The Charge of Colonel R. E. Patrick
Painting by Don Troiani

Such as with the regiment of Confederate Colonel R. E. Patrick, all regiments under command of Confederate General William J. Hardee, Army of Tennessee, proudly displayed the Tennessee Moon Flag, designed in 1862 as a white circle on an azur field, and which saw frequent action in several battles and many skirmishes West of the Appalachian Mountains.

Sections in this page

  Victory
  Squire
  Moore
  Turtledove
  Alexander
  Richards
  Means
  Kantor
  Thomsen - Greenberg
  Gingrich - Forstchen
  Tsouras
  Ransom
  Conclusion of the review
  Hyper links

Technical note: In languages other than English or Latin, but which use mainly Latin characters, some characters are taken from other alphabets, or some Latin characters are modified with diacritic marks for representing different phonemic sounds or other orthographic conventions of those languages. Those characters, when used in this document, have been encoded as entities of Hyper Text Mark-up Language or sometimes in Unicode UTF-8. Therefore computers using other character encodings may render some characters inaccurately, but hopefully, it will still be possible to read non-English words without too much difficulty.

 

What might have been (or what still may be):
History of the World after a Confederate Victory

Dixieland: the Birth of a Nation

In the year 1607 a group of colonists crossed the Atlantic and landed at a desolate spot on the shores of North America. They named the place Jamestown, in honour to their Scottish King, James I Stuart. It was the commencement of the first permanent British colony, Virginia, cradle of the Dixie Nation. In 1649 the Cavaliers arrived, carrying with them the Aristocratic Tradition that was to become a permanent Dixie characteristic. New colonies were also founded, and later transformed into independent states. In 1861 these independent Dixie states formed the Confederate States of America. At once, an evil foreign empire of dubious military quality, but of enormous industrial power, launched a war onto us for no reason. The enemy lost more soldiers than the soldiers that we had, but it managed to steal our land in 1865. Not surprisingly, the name of that evil empire is the United States of America. Since then, we are fighting to restore our lost Independence.

The Consequences of our Victory

By P. A. Stonemann, CSS Dixieland, CSN

...the remnants of the United States Army still holding their ground in some areas, although their effort was clearly doomed. Once the Treaty of Peace had been in a preliminary form agreed between the two powers, and the hostilities had nearly come to an end, the goals of President Davis policy could then be pursued without further delay. One of the first was diplomatic recognition by foreign governments, and in fulfilment of this aim a body of polyglot and learned gentlemen was mustered in Richmond, where the Secretary of State issued them with instructions on their mission abroad. It was not long before the interchange of ambassadors began, the first ones being those of France and of Great Britain, shortly followed by other nations...

From "A Century in the History of the Confederate States of America, 1861-1961", chapter on "A Hundred Years of International Relations: Foreign Policy of the Confederacy and its Position Regarding World Conflicts". Official Reports of the C. S. A. Government, Department of State, Richmond 1961.

...many years later, in another time line...

The above lines never were published in the world that we know. They have been invented by P. A. Stonemann as an appropriate introduction to the present essay. They are an example of the wording of official reports or the tenet of scholar books that we could be reading today, had the mysterious paths of Destiny not driven our Glorious Confederate Cause into the dark shadows of defeat, doomed to unavoidable sinking into the cold depths of oblivion, with which our epic struggle is today regarded by most of those individuals who were born four or five generations after our heroic War for Confederate Independence. Or perhaps those introductory lines were really published by a P. A. Stonemann, commissioned officer of the Confederate Navy, in a parallel universe in which the Confederacy had been victorious. Who knows...

Serious historians have contemplated the enigmatic turns of "what might have been" since Tito Livy, who in his "History of Rome", Book IX, sections 17-19, speculates on the possibility of Alexander the Great having attacked not Persia, but Rome, in the IV century before Jesus Christ. These two diverging lines of History have been conventionally labelled as, on one hand, "Our Time Line" (Alexander attacking Persia, which he victoriously did), and on the other hand, "Alternative Time Line" (Alexander attacking Rome, which he never did in the World History that we know).

Hence, the name for this most interesting genre of historical fiction is commonly that of "alternate History", though modern historians prefer the expressions "counter-factual History" or "virtual History", emphasising that it is an historical exercise written by a knowledgeable author, but that it is contrary to the facts as we know them in our "real world" (if we could at all define what we understand by "reality", without entangling ourselves into the wraps of metaphysical Solipsism). There is considerable debate within the community of historians about the validity and purpose of this kind of speculation.

Seen as a variant of Scientific Fiction, we may also define alternate or counter-factual History as a chain of events that happened in a "parallel universe" that is not in direct contact with "our universe". The Viking colonisation of the Americas from Vinland (New Foundland) all the way to the Amazonian jungle and to the South American pampas... a victorious Confederacy... a Boer White South Africa that controls half of the continent... a German Victory in the First World War or else in the Second (not in both, if Germany had won the First World War, there would not have been a second one as we know it)...

The points of possible divergence between "Our Time Line" and the "Alternative Time Line" are uncountable, because even apparently small causes may potentially provoke disastrous effects. If we further reason that inside each chosen point of divergence a whole chain of possible variables enter the equation, then we must conclude that as far as our minds can reach we may as well consider the whole range of parallel universes as extending ad infinitum. This is known as the "multiverse" hypothesis, like in an interactive story where the reader can choose amid a number of possible continuations: after only a few of those choices have been made, the tree branching becomes surprisingly big. This will also be readily understood by chess players who have sometime tried to analyse the many different ways in which a game may begin: 20 possibilities for the first white move, amounting to 20 X 20 = 400 possible games for the first black move, 400 X ~30 (because more moves are possible now that other chessmen enjoy greater mobility with open paths on the board) = 12000, 12000 X ~30 = 360000... and so we reach astounding huge numbers in very few moves. Nobody can really say what could have been in History if it had happened otherwise, of course, but the game of alternative History speculation is a fascinating one nonetheless, in spite of that limitation.

Sir John Squire

The earliest attempt at remaking our History

In 1932, British historian Sir John Squire collected a series of fourteen essays written by some of the leading historians of the period. Many of those essays could be considered fictional stories, published under the common title of "If It Had Happened Otherwise". In this work, Oxford and Cambridge scholars turned their attention to such questions as "If the Moors in Spain Had Won" or "If Louis XVI of France Had Had an Atom of Firmness." Four of the fourteen pieces examined the two most popular themes in alternate History prior to the Second World War: Napoleon's total Victory in Europe and Confederate Victory in North America. One of the entries in Squire's volume was Winston Churchill's "If Lee Had Not Won the Battle of Gettysburg", written from the point of view of an historian living in a world where the Confederacy had won the War, considering what would have happened if the Union had been victorious. This kind of speculative work that posts from the point of view of an alternate History is variously known as "recursive alternate History", "double-blind what-if", or "alternative-alternative History". Other authors appearing in Squire's book included Hilaire Belloc and André Maurois.

The key change between our History and the alternative History is known as the "Point of Divergence". In Philip K. Dick's "The Man in the High Castle", that point is the attempted assassination of Franklin Delano Roosevelt in Miami, in 1933. In our reality, that attempt was a failure. In Dick's novel, and in other Germany-wins-the-war scenarios, Roosevelt's death results in the United States wracked by the Great Depression of 1929 and holding tight to their neutrality, thus causing Britain to lose the War. In real History, F. D. Roosevelt was the President of the United States for most of the Second World War. In 1941 he took the decision of involving his nation in the conflict. Some variants of the hypothesis of the multiverse posit that Points of Divergence occur at every instant, springing off parallel universes for each instance.

Even main stream Scientific Fiction stories are known to have Points of Divergence. The Star Trek series, for example, diverts from our reality in that several key space disasters never occurred, therefore resulting in a much faster and smoother development of rocketry and Astronautics than it has happened in Our Time Line. The original television series 'Star Trek', with 79 episodes of 50 minutes each, produced by Gene Roddenberry in the years 1966 to 1969 (starring Leonard Nimoy and William Shatner), has one episode about a planet visited by the Starship Enterprise, of the Federation of Planets, where the Confederacy had won the War and the Union was reduced to a group of stubborn underground resistance. A kind of "League of the North" organisation, which in the early XXI century may even have had a publication entitled "The Northern Patriot" and a Web site located at http://www.leagueofthenorth.net/ or at http://www.yankeenet.org/
(Please excuse that little bit of good humour, do not follow those fictional hyper links or You may be put in communication with another universe).

In 1995 the Sidewise Award for alternate History was established to recognise best long form (novels and series) and best short form (stories) within the genre. The award is named for Murray Leinster's story "Sidewise in Time". Either winners of that prestigious award or not, some of the works dealing with a world in which the Confederacy had been victorious are listed hence forward. The list is not at all complete, because the number of literary pieces on the subject may be much greater than what is known, and an amount of them may remain inedit (never published), but it is a good selection that will invite interested readers to perform a research by themselves.

Ward Moore

The classic approach at recounting a Confederate Victory

"Bring the Jubilee", by Ward Moore, published in 1953.

First reader review: It absorbs the reader, in spite of some historical errors, partiality, and rather nasty episodes.

By P. A. Stonemann, CSS Dixieland

One of the most researched periods in alternate History is that of the Confederate War, and one of the most famous books on the subject is Ward Moore's "Bring the Jubilee", in which the Confederacy was not defeated in the War, because it had won the Battle of Gettysburg. Though Ward Moore knew well the military side of the conflict, there are some errors in the story that reveal that he did not know the political side so well. For instance, the time in office of a Confederate president is given as of four years. This is a mistake, in the Confederate Constitution of 1861 (in Our Time Line, our real World), the legal time is of six years. Because Jefferson Davis was nominated President of the Provisional Government on 18th February 1861 and formal President of the Confederate States on 22nd February 1862, the election for the next Confederate presidential term of office would have happened six years later, in late 1867 for presidential inauguration in early 1868. Ward Moore mistakenly places the next election only four years later. Probably an influence of the United States Constitution (a presidential term is of four years in that country), that Moore may have known better than he knew our own Constitution. Ward Moore's story reads well in spite of errors like that, although he is clearly more pro-Union than pro-Confederacy. He presents the Confederate States in the XX century as a well-to-do aristocratic nation that keeps hold of venerable Traditions and conforms to strict racial separation (although blacks are fairly treated), and the United States in the XX century as a third world country that never had recovered from its defeat at the hands of the Confederacy: full of economical troubles, social tensions, and strikes organised by the labour unions that mobilise many thousands of rioting workers (but there is no racial strife).

Both, Confederacy and Union (particularly the Union), remain backward in scientific research and in technical development, the Confederacy because it has no need of it, and the Union because it cannot pursue researching endeavours. The First World War happened, with the name of "War of the Emperors". It ended with a German Victory and, obviously, there was no Second World War. The relations between the Confederate States and the German Reich are peaceful, the first power commands influence in the American continents and the second in Europe. Both powers compete for World influence, but no violent clash occurs between them. Spain still has Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Philippines, the Marianas, and other overseas possessions (the war of 1898 between the United States and Spain never happened in that Alternative Time Line). The book is written from the personal perspective of an historian from that alternate World, who builds a time travelling machine and goes back to the Battle of Gettysburg. The Point Of Divergence is George Pickett's Charge: in that World the heroic Confederate General charged against Union lines and was victorious, he did not perform a suicidal charge against unbreakable Union positions. In fact, his victory permitted Generals Lee, Longstreet and Stuart to chase a destroyed Union Army and force its surrender at the town of Reading, to occupy Washington City, and thus to force the Union Government to recognise the Confederacy as a separate nation (including Delaware, Maryland -with Washington City-, all of Virginia, Kentucky, Missouri, the Territories of the West and Upper South California) and to foster international recognition as well. In sum, in spite of its shortcomings, the book is not only entertaining but also highly informative.

The following is a collection of reader reviews, copied almost verbatim. Orthography, vocabulary and grammar have all been changed line by line over more than a thousand lines, for conforming to the British Standard used by the League of the South. Certain wrong expressions such as "Civil War" have been carefully avoided, except when appearing as titles of literary works (because a war between two nations is never a "civil war", and the Confederate States are a nation even today, although under foreign military occupation). Those reviews are not authored by P. A. Stonemann, but shown in this essay for illustrating how readers react to the whole business of alternate or counter-factual History depicting a Confederate Victory. Being at present located in Brazil, P. A. Stonemann has understandable difficulties in keeping pace with current information about publications released in North America or in other continents, but the best efforts have been made to keep the readers of the League of the South abreast of what it may keenly interest them, verbi gratia, everything related to the Confederate States, and most in particular our Victory.

Confederate scientists and warriors

Confederate Militia Soldier Edmund Ruffin in April 1861
Confederate Militia Soldier
Edmund Ruffin in April 1861
Confederate Navy Commander Matthew Fontaine Maury
Confederate Navy Commander
Matthew Fontaine Maury
Confederate Marine Lieutenant Frances Cameron in 1864
Confederate Marine Lieutenant
Frances Cameron in 1864

When various States seceded from the United States and shortly later joined the Confederate States in 1861, there were some Federal garrisons in Confederate territory that had to be removed, as by International Law those troops were now in foreign land and without authorisation to stay. Most Federal garrisons in Confederate territory were peacefully occupied by Confederate troops or by troops from its States: Fort Moultrie, Fort Johnson, Castle Pinckney (Charleston, South Carolina), Fort Pulaski (Savannah, Georgia), Fort Morgan (Alabama), and others. Confederate Representatives in Washington made efforts to negotiate compensations for the removal of Federal garrisons from Fort Sumter (Charleston, South Carolina), Fort Pickens (Santa Rosa Island, Pensacola, Florida), Fort Taylor (Key West, Florida), and Fort Jefferson (Dry Tortugas, Florida). Unfortunately, United States President James Buchanan was hesitant, and just wanted to end his mandate "without troubles". The new President, Lincoln, was clearly dishonest and tried to win time by giving vague hopes to the Confederate Representatives.

However, after MONTHS of negotiations, the Confederates saw that the Federals did not really want to remove their garrisons. The foul play of the Federals was fully confirmed when a Federal fleet was put to sea with the purpose of carrying plenty of reenforcement, weapons, ammunition and many other supplies to Fort Sumter. Shortly before the arrival of the fleet the Confederate Commander in Charleston, General Beauregard, intimated the Federal Commander of the Fort, Major Anderson, to immediate surrender. Not as prisoners of war, which had not begun yet, but for being repatriated to the United States by land or by water. Major Anderson replied that Military Honour did not allow him to surrender except in the last extreme or by order from his superiors, but that given his situation, he would accept to surrender some days later "if not having received supplies by then". He obviously knew that the relief fleet was on its way. It was impossible to wait any longer, the Fort had to be taken by force. President Jefferson Davis gave authorisation by telegraph, and General Beauregard sent message to Major Anderson that the attack would begin in one hour. Punctually, the General ordered to open fire.

Soldier Edmund Ruffin

Militia Soldier Edmund Ruffin was a veteran member of the South Carolina State Guard. With strong self-discipline, he kept himself almost PERMANENTLY ready for action, and when General Beauregard gave the order, Soldier Ruffin was the first to shoot at Fort Sumter. For this, he is remembered as 'the man who started the War'. More correctly must be said that the unwillingness of the United States to take their garrisons out, and their dishonesty to say so sincerely, REALLY started the War. The Federal relief fleet arrived on that day, but was unable to approach the Fort. After only three dead (two of them by accidental explosion of a Federal cannon), Fort Sumter surrendered. The Federal garrison was received with full Military Honours, and repatriated to their country.

Commander Matthew Fontaine Maury

Navy Commander Matthew Fontaine Maury was a scientist of international renown, the Father of Oceanography and creator of the United States Naval Observatory. In 1861 he resigned his high rank in the United States and offered his valuable services to the Confederate States. He was the inventor of the contact torpedo, one of the new Confederate weapons that wreaked havoc among United States ships. He worked in Confederate and British laboratories and industrial facilities, perfecting his inventions and causing serious trouble to Federal shipping.

Lieutenant Frances Cameron

Marine Lieutenant Frances Cameron was a condecorated hero, who fought bravely in several combats. The Confederate Marine Corps saw its first naval action aboard the CSS Virginia ironclad off Hampton Roads, Virginia, on 8 th and 9 th March 1862, in battle against the USS Monitor ironclad. Marine detachments served on major war ships and for special operations, such as the captures of the USS Underwriter and USS Water Witch, and an attack to free Confederate prisoners of war being held at Point Lookout, Maryland. Marine sea-based amphibious operations included the CSS Savannah shore party at Fort Beauregard in Phillips Island, South Carolina, to evacuate the garrison under attack. Marines under command of Commodore Josiah Tattnall manned the shore batteries that turned back Union war ships at Richmond, Virginia, and at Savannah, Georgia. Marines in the Naval Brigade, a part of General Richard Ewell's Corps, fought with distinction at the Battle of Sayler's Creek, Virginia, in April 1865.

 

Seal of the Confederate Navy
Seal of the Confederate Navy
Flag of the Confederate Marine Corps
Flag of the Confederate Marine Corps

The Seal of the Navy and the Flag of the Marine Corps represent two creations of Secretary of the Navy Stephen Mallory. His intelligence, experience, and untiring devotion to our Cause, created in only four years a Naval Force to be reckoned with, having started in 1861 from just a few boats that were under his direction rebuilt and armed. Mister Mallory coordinated the construction, in the Confederate States and abroad, of surface war ships, ironclads (precursors ot the battle ship), semi-submersibles, submersibles, torpedos, and other naval weapons.

Harry Turtledove

Time travellers from the early XXI century save our Cause

Harry Turtledove has also used Science-fictional devices to examine alternate histories: in his "The Guns of the South" (1992), it is the meddling of time travellers that brings on the victory of the Confederacy in the War. Harry Turtledove has since then examined this same concept (executed quite differently, of course) in "How Few Remain", set twenty years after a Confederate Victory established the Confederate States of America. This novel is followed by "Days Of Infamy", by the Great War trilogy, set in the 1910's, the American Empire trilogy, taking the time line up through the 1920's and 1930's, and the Settling Accounts trilogy, detailing an alternate Second World War. In the late 1990's and early 2000's, Harry Turtledove has been among the most prolific practitioners of alternate History. His books include a series in which the Confederacy had won the War and another in which aliens invade Earth during the Second World War. Other stories by this author include one with the premise that the Americas had not been colonised from Asia during the last ice age. As a result, the American continents still have living mammoths and pre-human species.

"The Guns of the South", by Harry Turtledove, Published in 1992 by Ballantine Books (ISBN: 0345376757).

First reader review: An Interesting Story.

I found this to be a fun book to read. In alternate History speak, General Lee has a major Alien Space Bat Attack (a highly improbable or also illogical occurrence). While minding his business commanding the Army of Northern Virginia, a strange and shady fellow from a strange and shady organisation comes to him with an offer that the General cannot refuse. The stranger has crates and crates of automatic weapons (our modern day AK-47) that will practically give just one of the Confederate regiments enough fire power to hold its ground against an entire Union army. Lee takes up this offer and the results are predictable: the Confederacy wins. Then things get curiouser. The stranger and his cohorts wind up being members of a White organisation from a XXI Century South Africa, trying to change the course of History and not let kaffirs get control of the richest and most advanced African nation. These Whites are not happy with the plans that the Confederacy has after victory: emancipation of slaves. Critics dislike this story because of this reason. They think that there is no basis for this. I think that Turtledove rushes the issue. I do not think that slavery would have been ended in a victorious Confederacy within ten years or so of independence. Still, I think that the gradual emancipation that the author shows in the book is a reasonable possibility, although a bit premature as he presents it.

Normally, I do not like alternate history books that are so implausible. It seems like cheating to me. Also, most such stories are not particularly well written. This one seems to be an exception. Harry Turtledove has an excellent grasp of military forces during the War era, and it shines through the book. He also has a pretty decent idea of the political forces competing with each other in this time frame. These facts managed to get me through a story that normally I would not even have picked off a book shelf ! This is a decent story. One word of caution for military aficionados. The second half of this novel focuses on political and social issues, and it can be boring if you do not like that stuff. If you want action from start to finish you may be somewhat disappointed.

Second reader review: Still one of the best Confederate War counter-factuals round.

Harry Turtledove likes to relate the unlikely event that inspired "Guns Of The South": a letter from fantasy writer Judith Tarr. She complained to Turtledove that the proposed cover art for her latest book looked "as anachronistic as Robert E. Lee holding an Uzi gun". The rest is History, or at least an alternate version of it. Turtledove has built a burgeoning career as an alternative History maven, but so far he rightly remains best known for his 1992 best seller "Guns Of The South", a work which has achieved a singular status in the growing genre of alternate History. Even so noted an historian as James M. McPherson has lauded it as "without question the most fascinating War novel that I have ever read". This scholar also wrote a fictional story that speculates about Robert E. Lee's famous "lost order", that actually brought on the Battle of Sharpsburg. If Lee's courier had been less careless, could then Lee have induced and won a Battle of Gettysburg in 1863 ? McPherson's speculative scenario typifies these riveting excursions into the unknowable. As for Turtledove, "Guns Of The South" is regularly cited as the best work of its kind in counter-factual History, or certainly the best of recent vintage, and not without justification.

Instead of an Uzi, Robert E. Lee finds Confederate Victory by another famous modern gun: the AK-47 so strikingly depicted on the cover of all editions of the book. One must admit that the very idea is a tremendously scintillating one: what adolescent (or adult, for that matter) War buff has not wondered in some idle fancy what Robert Lee could have done with some modern military wizardry? (presuming, of course, that his opponents had no such wizardry too). In Turtledove's fantasy, the adolescents turn out to be a group of South African Whites of the AWB, who manage to pilfer a time machine in 2013, and proceed to use it to ship a massive arsenal (and themselves) back to Rivington, North Carolina, in late 1863, in hopes of changing the outcome of the War. Before long, a mysterious man attired in a strange outfit of mottled green and brown, an unplaceable accent, and a truly marvellous rifle shows up to make a sales pitch at the winter headquarters of the Army of Northern Virginia. One can only imagine how a Confederate Army equipped with a supply of AK-47, might have wreak havoc on Grant's planned Overland Campaign of 1864, but Turtledove ensures that one has no need to imagine it by himself. In vivid and well researched strokes, Turtledove unfolds Lee's bloody repulses of Grant, and his eventual capture of Washington City, almost solely through the eyes of two protagonists: Lee himself, and (for a grunt's eye view) one First Sergeant Nate Caudell of the 47 th Regiment of North Carolina. A captive Lincoln is forced to sue for peace: Union armies are withdrawn from Dixie in exchange for the return of the Union's capital city.

All of which makes for a fascinating tale, yet it only provides the first half of the book. It is in the second half that Turtledove takes what would otherwise have been just another fantasy and turns it into a vehicle for examining the issues which brought on the War: principally, the place of blacks in North American society, Dixie or Yankee. The AWB has its own plan for a free Confederacy, and it proves increasingly unpalatable even for many Confederate leaders. The mounting conflict comes to a head when a reluctant Lee agrees to run to succeed Jefferson Davis as Confederate President. In the balance lies not only the AWB's role in the Confederacy, but that of slavery as well. The strengths of "Guns Of The South" are manifold: the research is impeccable. War aficionados and historians will recognise many clever asides. Turtledove even goes so far as to append detailed results of the 1864 Union presidential election in alternate History (after Union's defeat), as well as of the fictional Confederate presidential election of 1867. Inauguration of President is done in the first months of the following year. The presidential term of office is of four years in the Union and six years in the Confederacy, Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated as President of the United States of America in Washington City on 4 th March 1861, Jefferson Davis was inaugurated as President of the Permanent Government of the Confederate States of America in Richmond on 22 nd February 1862. Turtledove offers a fair reasonable explanation of how he arrived at the fictional electoral results of 1864 in the Union and 1867 in the Confederacy, for the presidential inaugurations of 1865 in the Union and 1868 in the Confederacy. All of which is impressive enough, so that one is able to forgive the frequently laboured prose and stilted dialogue which is usually a trademark of Turtledove's alternate History work (and, in fairness, that of most alternative History fiction), or the sluggish pacing of most of the second, postwar part of the book. Such weaknesses are forgiveable when one ponder how powerful a work Turtledove has managed to spin out of what it is at first glance such a fantastical premise.

Turtledove has rolled out several unrelated works assuming a Confederate Victory: "How Few Remain", "The Great War" and the "American Empire" series, but none of them provides as crisp a tale as "Guns Of The South" even if their turning points be more pedestrian (and credible) than Andries Rhoodie and his time travelling South African Whites. If you enjoy alternate History, or if you love War History, make it a point to add "Guns Of The South" to your reading list. You will not regret it.

Third reader review: Reflection on "Guns of the South". A High School Review.

By Christian Gomez

Harry Turtledove's "The Guns Of The South" is a whimsical adventure into an alternate History, and it is a true XX century masterpiece in alternate History literature. "The Guns Of The South" is not part of the Harry Turtledove's series that spans from "How Few Remain" to his latest great masterpiece "Settling Accounts: Return Engagement". Unlike in Harry Turtledove's "How Few Remain", the Confederate States of America do not win in 1862 by natural causes, instead a time traveller from the year 2013 by the name of Andries Rhoodie comes to the past during the Confederate War, and he offers Robert E. Lee something that the Confederate General cannot refuse: weapons and their ammunition, in this case the AK-47 automatic rifle. Also a photo book of the War in which the Confederacy was defeated, and coffee. With a number of AK-47 rifles, or "repeaters" as the Confederate soldiers call them, at the hands of Robert E. Lee's Northern Virginian Army and the rest of the Confederate armies, the Confederacy easily unleashes a blood bath onto the Union. Wave after wave of Union troops are instantly killed. It is no longer a war, but "murder" as one of Lee's men said during an engagement with the enemy. The Union Springfield muskets are no match for the power of the AK-47. History is quickly changed as The New York Times publishes various headlines depicting Confederate victories and Union slaughtered defeats, such as: "Disaster! Grant's Army overthrown in the Wilderness", "Forced to retreat above the Rappahannock, and there defeated once more". The journalistic article continues: "Unhappily, like with many of our engagements, the late fighting (though serving to illustrate the splendid valour of our troops) has failed to accomplish the object sought. The result thus far leaves us with a loss of upwards of 40 000 men in the two battles engaged there, and absolutely nothing gained. Not only did the rebels hold their lines, but they are advancing behind the impetus of their new breech-lading repeaters, against which the vaunted Springfield is of scarcely greater effect than the red man's bows and arrows". As a result, General Lee meets with U.S. President Lincoln to discuss the terms of Union surrender.

The novel is filled with great description of true historical characters, such as Confederate General Robert E. Lee, his wife and children, Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest, Union President Abraham Lincoln, Confederate President Jefferson Davis, and Lee's soldiers. You really feel that you are some sort of temporal observer of events in the story. This is a great novel for alternate History and Science Fiction readers. If you love Harry Turtledove's other novels, or if you have never heard of Harry Turtledove, you will still love this great novel. I consider myself an "historian" when it comes to the War, due to the fact that I am constantly researching on it. I have read several biographies of Robert E. Lee and seen a couple of films, such as "Glory", and my favourite "Gods and Generals". This novel is well written with accurate historical background information. A "must read" for any one who just like reading.

Bevin Alexander

The strategic genius of General Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson

"Lost Victories: The Military Genius of Stonewall Jackson" by Bevin Alexander, Historian, published in 1995.

First reader review

By William H. Mullins

This book is devoted to the proposition that alone among the Confederate leadership, General Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson had the strategic and tactical savvy to win the war for the Confederacy. Bevin Alexander, newspaper writer and former combat historian, presents tantalising evidence for this assertion, but in the end he fails to persuade fully.

The author examines First and Second Manassas, Jackson's Valley campaign, the Seven Days' battles, and the battles of Sharpsburg, Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville, to argue that "Jackson, not Lee, possessed the strategic vision necessary to win key battles and, possibly, entire campaigns. Instead, Robert E. Lee blocked the more daring and opportunistic Jackson, while pursuing a destructive strategy that permitted the Union to wear down the Confederacy. In the early days of the war Lee and an equally cautious Jefferson Davis ignored Jackson's eager calls to follow Confederate victories at Manassas and in the Shenandoah Valley with forays north to capture Philadelphia or Baltimore. Later, Jackson failed to push Lee into daring and rapid manoeuvres that might have completely destroyed Pope's army at Second Manassas or Burnside's battalions at Fredericksburg". Alexander offers Jackson's bold flanking march at Chancellorsville as proof of the wisdom of Stonewall's advice, arguing that only darkness and Jackson's mortal wound spared Hooker's forces.

No one can question Jackson's tactical ability. The author demonstrates that Jackson grasped early the coming changes in warfare, as the rifle replaced the smoothbore musket. Cavalry charges became ineffectual, secure defensive positions were more likely to yield victory than an attack, and offensives had to develop quickly, employ surprise, and be designed to turn a flank. Yet, Alexander's criticism of Lee's strategic caution misses a crucial point. Lee, like George Washington during the War of Independence from Great Britain, had the power to lose the war in a day. Although historians continue the debate of how aggressive Lee was, clearly he could not afford to act as boldly as Jackson and the author might have desired.

This is the central problem with the book: it is "what-if History," reaching the height of counter-factual hypothesis in the final chapter. There Alexander speculates on what might have happened had Jackson lived: "One cannot look at the weakness of the Confederacy and conclude that victory was impossible, instead one must look at the strength of Stonewall Jackson and wonder what other bewildering surprises lay within his mind". Although in the final pages such a notion is toned down, this quotation conveys the spirit of assertions throughout the book. Further, Alexander assumes a flawless operation each time that he imagines Jackson taking the field or invading the North. Academic historians will find problematic the absence of references to essential books and essays that have in the last thirty years addressed issues of risk and aggressiveness in Confederate war strategy.

"Lost Victories" makes interesting reading, however. Alexander's overviews of numerous battles are handy, though derivative, and his thesis is provocative. Yet, without the assessments of other historians to provide a context, this exercise in counter-factual History lacks the foundation that it needs for sufficient development.

Confederate submersible ships

Confederate semi-submersible, David Class, painting by Conrad Wise Chapman
Confederate semi-submersible, David Class
Painting by Conrad Wise Chapman
Confederate semi-submersible, David Class, engineer drawing
Confederate semi-submersible, David Class
Engineer drawing

The semi-submersible David Class was a precursor of the submarine, continued by various Confederate prototypes (the CSS Pioneer, CSS Bayou Saint John, and CSS American Diver), and finally by the fully submersible Hunley Class. David Class semi-submersibles had a crew of four men, propulsion by steam engine to a single propeller at the stern, and one torpedo with sixty Kilogrammes of explosive. The chimney is the air intake, the torpedo is attached to the spar at the bow.

 

Confederate submersible, Hunley Class, painting by Conrad Wise Chapman
Confederate submersible, Hunley Class
Painting by Conrad Wise Chapman
Confederate submersible, Hunley Class, engineer drawing
Confederate submersible, Hunley Class, engineer drawing
Confederate submersible, Hunley Class
Engineer drawings

The more advanced, fully submersible Hunley Class, had a crew of eight men, manual propulsion to a single propeller at the stern, and one torpedo with sixty Kilogrammes of explosive. Electric propulsion was considered for submerged navigation, but the electrolytic accumulators available at the time were enormous in size and in weight. Exothermic propulsion could not be used, a steam engine needs a good supply of air. Endothermic propulsion was in the 1860's only a futuristic idea (the Otto - Beau de Rochas engine and the Diesel engine were invented years later). The best solution was a manual crank operated by seven crew men, while the Commander coordinated their action, navigated the submersible, approached the target, and operated the torpedo.

On 17 th February 1864 the Confederate submarine CSS Hunley attacked and sank in five minutes the much bigger war ship USS Housatonic. This was the first successful attack by a submarine IN HISTORY, but the submarine also sank. She was recovered more than 136 years later, in August 2000. The eight men of the crew were then buried with full Confederate military honours, and the submarine, still ongoing restoration, is now exhibited at a museum near Charleston, South Carolina. In guided tours, visitors can enter a full size replica of the submarine, see her original instruments, and watch a documentary with historical and technical information.

R. W. Richards

The defeat of Union General Ulysses Sympson Grant in June 1864

"Alternative History Trilogy. Divergence: 1864 CE", by R.W. Richards, published by RoKarn in 1995 (0962550221).

What if Lee's Army of Northern Virginia had defeated Grant's Army of the Potomac at Ox Ford in spring 1864 and later captured Washington City ? The work of R.W. Richards addresses this hypothesis. It is divided in three volumes:

"A Southern Yarn": Story of Lee, Grant and a fictional sergeant during May and June 1864.

"Brothers in Gray": Conclusion includes recapitulation of the Battle of the North Anna, previously related in "A Southern Yarn", and the adjustment of its main characters in their return to civilian life in a victorious Confederacy.

"Gray Visions": Includes Confederate involvement in a war between Spain and some North American states, and a great European war similar to the First World War.

What if the Army of Northern Virginia had been more successful ? What if General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson had not been shot accidentally by friendly fire ? What if General Lee had had Jackson with him at Gettysburg ? What if it were Jackson instead of Longstreet who had been asked to take Little Round Top with his men and turn the left flank of the Union Army in that important battle ? What if Union General George Meade had been forced to withdraw from Gettysburg, back toward Washington City, with the Confederate Army attacking Harrisburg, Pennsylvania ? What if the outcome of this battle had forced the United States government to consider the possibility of the Confederacy remaining separate from the Union ? What if Lincoln had been defeated by a presidential candidate proposing "peace", in the election of 1864 ?

This example of "what ifs" is just one possible scenario out of many, known as counter-factual History. The game of "what might have been" is endless, but on occasion counter-factual History can be used to help us learn more about what really happened. Getting beyond just facts, the historian must come to terms with the meaning of events. If we play this out, then the United States would have been permanently torn asunder, being the first step toward the Balkanisation of North America, with other miniature states appearing from the remnants of the initial ones. Thus, no XX century super power, no major intervention in European world wars, no space race, and the list could go on. There remains, in Dixie, a sentimental attachment to the "Lost Cause" of the Confederacy. Confederate Battle Flags are ubiquitous, monuments to Confederate dead appear throughout Dixieland, re-enactments glorify the anonymous Confederate soldier, while books and films remind us of the virtues of ante-bellum society. The primary problem of most of us is that we fail to consider "what if", and in so doing, we miss the implications of events about "who we are" and "where we are" today. The real importance of historical studies is in drawing conclusions about the world in which we find ourselves now. It is the "Gone with the Wind" mentality of seeing ante-bellum culture as one of genteel belles and gallant gentlemen, defending their homes and fortunes against the rapacious Yankee.

Howard Means

Detective story in an improbable Confederacy of the XXI century

"CSA, Confederate States of America", by Howard B. Means, published by William Morrow in 1998 (ISBN: 0688161871).

Senior editor at the Washingtonian and author of Colin Powell, Howard Means here proposes that the Confederate States of America had won the War, and all that remains of the Union as we knew it, is a disaster area called the Industrial Zone. For President Spencer Jefferson Lee (great-great-grandson of both Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee) it is politics as usual. He is about to cut the ribbon on the greatest public-works project in History, but of course there is a political price to pay. Two bodies are found in the grim ruins of Washington City, each with a bullet in the head and all their fingers removed, so that they could not be identified...

First reader review: Do not Judge a Book by its Cover !

When I first saw the title "CSA" and read the summary of the plot, I felt that I had to have this book. Alternative History is a fascinating subject, and I have always enjoyed this kind of speculative fiction. However, the premise for the creation of the Confederate States and the destruction of the Union is so flimsy and historically unsound that the entire novel fell apart round it. Howard Means starts the book with the unlikely assumption that the Confederacy had won the war in 1865. Any serious historian can explain that a Confederate Victory coming so late would have been highly improbable, not to say impossible. By 1864 the Cause of the Confederacy was lost, and no final, great heroic display by Jefferson Davis in Richmond, could have saved it. Lee's Army had crumbled to less than a quarter of Grant's Army by 1865. There is no conceivable way in which the Army of Northern Virginia could have resurrected itself and conquered the Union. If the setting for a Confederate Victory had taken place after a Lee's Victory at Gettysburg, then the premise could have been kept up, but assuming the destruction of the United States in 1865 is not credible. Suspension of disbelief is one thing. Being asked to swallow this tripe is absurd. I would recommend never picking up this book, based solely on that, but the story itself is just as awful or worse.

Dissident people are sent to the "badlands" of the industrial waste land that was the former Union. The Vice-President's son (a mixed-up kid cliche), is kidnapped by a SLA-like Yankee group and taken to the former United States, where he is brain washed into believing the absurd of racial equality. He becomes a Patty Hearst type, falling in with his kidnappers. The book offers no real insight into the workings of the Confederate States, except for a few token paragraphs about how the President is always white, the Vice-President always black, and how the two chambers of Congress are one white and the other black. Also, the University of Virginia built an identical campus just for blacks, and it can be assumed that these Jim Crow-esque rules apply across the whole Confederate Nation. It is all rather sad, as the opportunity to explore how a real victorious Confederacy would have been, is lost in the mists of a ridiculous plot. Why would the former Union, with all its immense industrial power, be turned into a wasteland by a victorious Confederacy ? Would have not been better to exploit those resources ?

Second reader review: Waiting for a Pay-off.

I was intrigued by the concept of this book: a present-day world assuming that the Confederacy had prevailed in the War. The problem is that the book never pays off on the set-up. I had to force myself to keep reading with the hope that an interesting story or compelling characters would be just round the corner. But it never happened, the book remained dull and outright boring to the end.

Third reader review: I judged this one by its cover, and I lost !

By Mark Ter Bush

Ater reading the dust cover of this book, I snapped it. The first chapter was acceptable, with a little information on how the Confederacy had won the War of Northron Aggression. Then it was all down hill after that. Too much detail put into areas that had nothing to do about anything. A hateful liberal mis-mash about the joys of race mixing, homosexuality and such, with nothing whatsoever to do with alternative History. Very hard to get through.

Fourth reader review: Lack of dramatic content.

By Robert S. Gartner

Howard Means knows how to write because he keeps you fairly interested in the story. However, there is a certain lack of dramatic content throughout the book, which does not appear until the end. We find out little about what the Senate, House, newspapers or the Dixie public in general, think about the current state of events. And for a book on alternate History, his descriptions of the current world beyond his characters is sketchy. Such as: Is Nathan Winston the first black Vice-President of the Confederate States ? How is the rest of the Confederacy beyond Richmond ? How the former United States ? How the rest of the World ? The book is populated by too few main characters, and some of them disappear for 75 pages or more, before returning again. Means is too focused on Spencer Lee and Nathan Winston, and not enough on the world of the Confederacy. By adding a little political intrigue, more in depth (and alternate) descriptions of the world, and a stronger police investigation, this could have been a blockbuster. Instead, it is just a curiosity piece to go along with the other ho-hum "What If" books.

Fifth reader review: Poor History, Poor Premise, Worse Execution.

By M. Evan Brooks

A descendant of the SS-GB genre, this book is flawed by the lack of historical verosimilitude, coupled with its pedestrian writing. To have the Confederacy winning the war in 1865 because it was "renewed" by the heroic sacrifice of Jefferson Davis, is already too much of a stretch. Then to add a black House and a white Senate only stretches credibility beyond comprehension. In effect, Howard Means's approval of the racial case of 1896 known as Plessy versus Ferguson, "separate but equal", is taken to ridiculous heights. In the book written by Means, European History still has a National Socialist Germany, which is strange, since the success of the NSDAP in the 1920's and 1930's of Our Time Line, was to a great extent a consequence of German rage against the abusive Treaty of Versailles in 1919, that "ended" the Great War. In that Alternative Time Line, Great Britain is a virtual sinecure of the Confederate States. History between 1865 and 2000 is slap-dash and more than unlikely. The "detective" novel has a plot which is somewhat reminiscent of "Guns of the South" in terms of race relations, and of "Gorky Park" in terms of plot line, but it is handled so poorly that no one really cares. To top it off, the protagonist is a police detective by the name of Clark Haddon (in our real world there is a Haddon Clark well known as a local serial killer in Washington City). This novel is bad in many different aspects: poor historical development, poor plot line, poor writing... and these are its strengths. I have probably read worse books, but it is difficult to say when.

MacKinlay Kantor

After a Confederate Victory at the wrongly named "Civil" War,
an "Alternative" Time Line that converges into Our Time Line

"If The South Had Won The Civil War", by MacKinlay Kantor, collaborations of Dan Nance and Harry Turtledove, published in 2001 (ISBN: 0312869495).

First Reader Review: One of the first alternative History stories that I ever read.

Seeing that Mister Kantor's book-length essay (originally published in, I believe, Look magazine) was one of the first alternate History tales that I ever read, I have a considerable sentimental spot for it. I should have liked to have rated it higher, but for the fact that Kantor seems to suffer a failure of imagination after about his alternate 1880's. Before that point, his scenario is imaginative and well constructed, as other reviewers have detailed. After that point, however, his "alternate History" basically becomes Our Time Line, only with three North American republics instead of one, located South of Canada and North of Mexico: United States, Confederate States and Texas. It is quite possible that an independent Confederacy would have gone to war against Spain over Cuba, which was a frequent target of Dixie "filibusters" (freebooters) before the War, but Kantor blithely assumes that World History would have gone exactly in the same manner as it has done in Our Time Line. To cite just one example, it is really quite unlikely that all those three North American nations (USA, CSA, Texas) would have entered the First World War at the same time that the United States historically did in Our Time Line, or even that they would have entered at all. See the novel "The Wild Blue and the Gray" for another, and more realistic, scenario of Union-Confederacy tension over the Great War.

Second Reader Review: Excellent story of "What If ?"

This book looks at what would have happened if just a few things had happened differently during the War. In that Alternative Time Line, Union General Ulysses Sympson Grant is killed in a freak equestrian accident near Vicksburg, Mississippi, on 12th May 1863. The event seems to take the wind out of the Army of Tennessee, whose expedition had started earlier that year with such promise, but whose fortunes had been getting worse and worse. As consequence of the Yankee tragedy, the remaining Union forces surrender to the Confederate Army at Vicksburg. Farther north, the Battle of Gettysburg turns into a defeat for the Union forces (perhaps slaughter is a better word), who finally are forced to surrender to Confederate General Robert E. Lee. Word reaches Union President Abraham Lincoln that the end is near. On 4th July 1863 he and his family flee the White House at night, in the back of a horse-drawn ice lorry. His first destination is Richmond, Virginia, where he is the "guest" of President Jefferson Davis. There is little or no looting of Washington City by the advancing Confederate forces, although a number of White House items somehow make their way into Confederate homes. The looting is done by the citizens of Washington City, whose name is changed from District of Columbia to District of Dixie. The United States Government is given the chance for moving the offices and documents out of Washington DD, and they eventually end up in the new Federal capital of Columbus, Ohio, which is then renamed Columbia. Seward's Folly (the purchase of Alaska from Russia), never happens.

Throughout all of this, Texas remains independent. In 1898 a Confederate battleship is blown up in the harbour of La Habana, Cuba (in Our Time Line, exactly that disaster and in that year happened to the USS Maine, a Federal battleship. Quelle coincidence !!!). The Confederate States declare war on Spain, and send an expeditionary force against Spanish forces in Cuba. After a campaign successful for the Confederacy, Cuba is rebuilt and becomes the newest member of the Confederate States of America. Throughout all of the XX century, relations between the three nations (United States, Confederate States and Texas) are actually pretty good. This is a fascinating book. History buffs need to read it. Some knowledge of real History, more than the usual amount, would be a help. Highly recommended.

Third Reader Review: No butterflies here.

Alternative History also has its history, its ancients. And this is it: at least as far as the Confederate War be concerned, this small booklet is one of the earliest efforts in "what if?", published by parts in magazine form in the early 1960's. The fact that it was originally published in a magazine is quite obvious, since it rather tells about events and effects like a cursory book review. But even more obvious is the time when it was written, 1960. The author lets his readers suppose that the Confederacy had won at Gettysburg and at Vicksburg, that thus the United States and the Confederate States separated, but then that they joined efforts in fighting together the two World Wars (the TWO, not only the first one), and that on the centennial of separation, in 1965, they would consolidate again as a single nation ! ! !

In Our Time Line, Kantor had really been a United States soldier who fought in the Second World War, and the feelings of bond to their comrades in arms, either Dixies or Yankees, remained so strong in him that did not allow him to see what the true relations would have been between a defeated Union and a victorious Confederacy. Let alone to see how European History would have been different. To wish that History would have continued as before, and that the Union and the Confederacy would have been on the same side (at least in the First World War) is a very optimistic assumption, disregarding the "butterfly effect" (which says that a minimal change may provoke disastrous, totally unexpected consequences). It is interesting to note that at nearly the same time that this story was written, Ward Moore in his "Bring The Jubilee" comes to completely other conclusions.

Harry Turtledove writes in 2001 an introduction in which he praises this book, and credits it with inspiring him with his "Great War" series. I wonder why he decided not to let Texas secede from the Confederacy in his series. Or is that still to come? Anyway, this booklet is more a curiosity than a serious work of alternative History worth reading. No butterflies worth catching and looking at here.

Confederate military uniforms

Confederate Marine Captain, collar and sleeve
Marine Captain
Collar and lower sleeve
Collar:
Confederate Marine Colonel, collar
Colonel
 
Confederate Marine Lieutenant Colonel, collar
Lieutenant
Colonel
Confederate Marine Major, collar
Major
 
Confederate Marine Captain, collar
Captain
 
Confederate Marine First Lieutenant, collar
First
Lieutenant
Confederate Marine Second Lieutenant, collar
Second
Lieutenant
Upper sleeve:
Confederate Marine First Sergeant, sleeve
First
Sergeant
Confederate Marine Ordnance Sergeant, sleeve
Ordnance
Sergeant
Confederate Marine Sergeant Major, sleeve
Sergeant
Major
Confederate Marine Quartermaster Sergeant, sleeve
Quartermaster
Sergeant
Confederate Marine Second Sergeant, sleeve
Second
Sergeant
Confederate Marine Corporal, sleeve
Corporal
 

The Confederate States of America created a lasting lore that is a continuous source of inspiration for uncountable works of literature, music, painting or cinema. The imaginative richness of Confederate uniforms and Confederate flags is admired and studied by military historians all over the World.

Brian Thomsen and Martin Greenberg

The Battle of Gettysburg, July 1863: High Tide of the Confederacy

"Alternate Gettysburgs", by Brian Thomsen and Martin H. Greenberg, published in 2002 by Berkley (ISBN: 0425183777).

This book of short stories explores Gettysburg from a fictional standpoint. For example, one story asks "what would have happened if Longstreet had called off Picket's charge and then, sensing an opportunity, Union General Sedgewick had mounted an attack ?". The stories range from total flights of fancy to more subtle alternate outcomes. What if the battle had turned out differently ? In this collection, today's most popular writers of alternate History look at that question:

Brendan Du Bois
William H. Keith, Jr.
William Forstchen
Harold Coyle
Doug Allyn
James Reasoner
Jake Foster
Robert J. Randisi
Jim De Felice
Simon Hawke
Denise Little
Kristine Kathryn Rusch
Steve Winter
William Terdoslavich
Paul Thomsen

First Reader Review: What might have happened at Cemetery Hill ?

Counterfactual History, poohed by some academicians, is a popular topic for story tellers, and the Confederate War is one of the popular historic topics for writers of all specialisations. And what is more popular than speculating on what might have happened, if alternate decisions during the Gettysburg Campaign had produced a different outcome ? How might a different outcome have affected History, or even the fate of the World, if the Confederacy had been victorious in these crucial three days in summer 1863 ? Or what else could have happened in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania ?

The editors have charged a dozen-odd writers of different backgrounds to think and write with these questions in mind. Some of the stories stay in the realm of counter-factual History and point to the fact that only a few different decisions or developments may well have altered the whole course of events. For anybody interested in military History, chapters like "Sedgewick Charge" by the well known military writer Harold Coyles, or "Custer's First Stand" by Doug Allyns, will attract attention, as well as the concluding essays, which investigate the potential for alternate developments during the Gettysburg Campaign and beyond this narrow window over the whole War.

Of the more fictional and literary stories, one explores the impact of a completely different Gettysburg Address (speech pronounced by Union President Abraham Lincoln), another story muses about the murder of Abraham Lincoln, and another even touches the realm of Scientific Fiction in a piece about how powerful contemporary events may interact and even change century old historic facts. This one is certainly one of the best pieces of the volume, although the overall quality of the collection is varying strongly, from excellent reading stuff, over intriguing essays on alternate History, to some outright dull and uninspired texts.

All together, "Alternate Gettysburgs" is a recommendable addition to any war gamers library, a good companion for a visit to the Battlefield Park that the place is today, or just for an occasional dip into what is arguably the most covered and researched conflict in human History.

Second Reader Review: What if the Confederacy had won the Battle of Gettysburg ?

It is not surprising that alternative History stories about North America be intrigued by the possibilities offered by the War, or that the Battle of Gettysburg be the focal point of such speculations, or that Pickett's charge be most often considered as the pivotal moment. I remember watching war gamers playing out the Battle of Gettysburg on an immense map, and, of course, those playing the Confederates immediately took the high group on Culps Hill, Cemetery Ridge, and the Round Tops, and they tried to slaughter the Army of the Potomac as it arrived upon the scene. "Alternate Gettysburgs" is an uneven collection of short stories and essays focusing on various visions of what might have been, with a key change here or there.

Actually, few of the stories deal with Picketts charge, but it is clearly the pivotal event of the battle. Harold Coyle does a reversal by having the charge abandoned and having the Federals trying "Sedgewick Charge" instead. Doug Allyns in "Custer's First Stand" has the flamboyant Union cavalry officer making a foolish mistake in trying to stop the charismatic Confederate cavalry General J.E.B. Stuart from attacking the Union rear during the charge. Probably the oddest story in the collection, with its combination of History and Scientific Fiction, may be "In the Bubble", by William H. Keith, which takes war gaming to its ultimate level. "The High-Water Mark", by Brendan Du Bois, tweaks History a bit to turn the War into a World War. He is also the author of "Resurrection Day", published separately. Most of the stories include afterwords from the authors explaining their points of departure from History as we know it in Our Time Line.

Two of the stories deal with the Gettysburg Address pronounced by Union President Abraham Lincoln. "The Blood of the Fallen", by James M. Reasoner, has Lincoln giving a different speech at the dedication of the National Cemetery, because in this alternative world his son Tad dies from his fever. I especially liked "Well-Chosen Words", by Kristine Kathryn Ruschs, because as a rhetorician I appreciate her point that the Gettyburg Address might be Lincoln's most famous speech, but that he gave another one of equal importance (both of which, I should note, are etched in marble on opposite ends of the Lincoln Memorial).

Other stories are set in the alternative future of a world in which the Confederacy had won the War. "A Gun for Johnny Reb", by Simon Hawkes, is one of the few to try and ground the alterations in something beyond wishful hoping, offering a more realistic version of the novel "The Guns of the South", by Harry Turtledove. Certainly there are hits and misses throughout the book, but surely there are enough intriguing tales to make reading this book worthwhile.

Ironically, the best part of the book for me was the closing essay by William R. Fortschen, "Lee's Victory at Gettysburg... And Then What ?", which throws cold water on the idea that a Confederate Victory then and there would have changed the outcome of the War. Fortschen argues that a Confederate Victory on the second day would have been more probable (suggesting that a 15 minute break to fill empty canteens with water would have given the Confederates enough strength to take Little Round Top and turn the Union left), but then he makes a totally convincing case that the Army of Northern Virginia would never have been able to take Washington City. I am in total agreement with Fortschens argument. Other essays in the appendix section of "Alternate Gettysburgs" provide an overview of the battle, a look at the politics of war, and the social convictions of both sides surrounding the battle.

Alternative histories, as a general rule, seem to suffer from what I want to call historical echoes. I mean this to signify that even as an author goes off in a decidedly different direction, "real" events manage to make their way back into the tales. Thus, for example, in the fiction a general will die at Gettysburg in the same way that he died a year later in our real world, or a fictional presidential assassination will be eerily similar to an historical one. Ironically, then, the best alternative histories are those that are able to break truly free of what really has happened in Our Time Line, and to indulge themselves in fanciful flights of "what if..."

Third Reader Review: A collection of good and bad stories. More bad.

I enjoy alternate History and the what-ifs of crucial events in real History. Gettysburg seemed a very good event to write about, and I thought that this collection of short stories would be fairly good. I was somewhat erroneous. The majority of short stories in this book are average, but there are even a couple of really bad ones.

One of these stories is the first one in the book: "Sedgewicks Charge", by Harold Coyle. The story is about Confederate General Longstreet's decision to stop Pickett's charge. Union General Sedgewick then thinks that he may find his chance to destroy the retreating Confederate Army. But it was not the concept of the story that was disappointing, it was the execution and writing style of Coyle. He uses too many company names, and numbers, instead of focusing on the action that the story is trying to portray.

The rest were good premises, but a number of them had writing styles that were a bit lacking. There are, however, a few above-average stories in this book that really make it better. Overall, it is an acceptable book that has some commendable short stories in it. It also has in the back of the book a brief overview of the battle of Gettysburg, politics at the time, et cetera. I suggest reading this book, but possibly skipping over the tedious parts that I have mentioned, because they really detract from the book value as something to have on your shelf.

Newt Gingrich and William Forstchen

First, giving the wrong name of "Civil" War to an international war,
then, a heroic Union resistance in spite of their defeat at Gettysburg

"Gettysburg: A Novel of the Civil War", by Newt Gingrich and William Forstchen, published in 2003 (ISBN: 031230935X).

Review of the reviews written by Mark Kleiman and Stuart Buck:

Mark Kleiman pans Newt Gingrich's novel "Gettysburg", claiming: "Against the background of Lost Cause mythologising... it is a little hard to swallow the idea that Gingrich was not doing, or encouraging his readers to do, a little bit of wishing along with his imagining". Stuart Buck defends Gingrich on various grounds. As far as I can tell, however, neither Kleiman nor Buck have actually read the book. I have, and indeed, I have reviewed it. In my review, I have noted that this is the first book in a planned trilogy. The obvious comparison is with Harry Turtledove's series (not with "Guns of the South", which is entirely separate, but rather with the series that started with "How Few Remain"). It has been pretty easy to spot whither Turtledove is going: he is just re-writing the First and Second World Wars on North American soil. In contrast, it is hard to tell whither Gingrich and Forstchen are going.

In real History, the Union had such an overwhelming superiority in manpower, industrial output, weapons, and railway lines, that the Confederacy had no real chance. All that the Union President had to do was to find a general who could "understand the Mathematics involved", giving time for the Union to press defeat onto the Confederacy not by any inherent military qualities of the Union Army, which there were none, but just by sheer weight of numbers, by wearing out the Confederate War effort. Gingrich and Forstchen clearly know this: several characters make reference to these advantages at several points in the novel. But why did they write three books of alternative History, only to arrive at the same point as real History arrived (a Union Victory) by a different route ? Anyway, it should be an interesting journey into the unknown. One could now continue by reading "Grant Comes East", which I have not done yet. As the title of the second volume clearly suggests, Union President Abraham Lincoln is about to find his general. Given the title of that second book and the emphasis put in the first book on the Union's tremendous advantages, however, I very much doubt that the trilogy might end with a Confederate Victory.

It is an interesting experiment of thought in what might have happened, if Confederate General Robert Lee had exercised sound strategic judgment at Gettysburg. At the end, the Union has lost a battle, to be sure, but Gingrich and Forstchen make it clear that the War is far from being over. Contrary to the reviews in "Publishers Weekly" magazine, Kleiman also quotes that many of the Union leaders are treated with the same respect and sympathy that Gingrich and Forstchen treat Robert Lee. Indeed, if one had to identify a single "hero" of the first novel, one could make a strong case for Union General Henry Hunt. Union Colonel Joshua Chamberlain, as another example, is accurately portrayed as the authentic hero that he was in Our Time Line.

As further evidence that Kleiman has jumped to a hasty conclusion, beyond the points that Buck makes, consider that Gingrich's co-author William Fortschen is the author of "The Lost Regiment" series, which is an excellent alternative History and Scientific Fiction series about a Union regiment. I have read a lot of Fortschen's novels, and he is the last man of whom I could suspect of collaborating in a wish fulfillment venture for a Confederate Lost Cause. I recommend that you read Gettysburg, and maybe you withhold judgment until the trilogy be complete, before you decide if Kleiman be right by declaring that "it says something ugly about Gingrich's section, and his party, and the tame press". I suspect that you may find that Kleiman owes to Gingrich and his readers an apology.

First Reader Review: A very realistic book about a different Gettysburg.

Newt Gingrich and William R. Forstchen get together to write a very realistic War novel about what would have happened if Robert E. Lee had decided to carry out a sweeping, massive movement, to out-flank the Union Army. Unlike most books about the War, this book tosses out luck and almost magical changes in the thoughts of the main characters, basing the action and combat on the reality of the men and the leaders within both armies. The battle scenes are painfully real, causing me to feel horror at some of the details. Both authors refuse to hide anything, showing the heroism and the gore that was the War battlefield. A must for a What-If library !

Second Reader Review: One of the best alternative histories.

In this novel we get an accurate History of the first day in the Battle of Gettysburg. The fighting in that day was fierce, and the Union forces early seemed to be getting the better part of the action. However, Union General Reynolds was killed, and shortly thence after, the tide turned. By the end of the day the Union forces were pushed back to Cemetery Hill. Although they took a beating, the positions into which they were pushed back were still defensible. From this point on, the novel departs from what happened in real History and explores what might have happened. Confederate General Longstreet suggests to his superior, General Lee, that the Confederate troops commence a flanking action, and Lee accedes to this. So, rather than the head butting assaults in the Devil's Den and Little Round Top (and several other such skirmishes), Lee leaves a small force in front of the Union forces to bluff them, while the bulk of his troops march off to positions between Gettysburg and Washington City. Thus, the fierce fighting of the second day and the unsuccessful head-on assault known as Pickett's Charge on the third day, are both averted.

Union General Daniel Stickles sees what is happening and warns his superior, General Meade. In a fit of anger, Meade admonishes Stickles, and does not react in a timely manner. There is much confusion with the supply trains and General Haupt, who co-ordinated the railways for the Union forces, fails to get proper cooperation from the locals. The trains are captured by the Confederate forces and as the flanking action continues, confusion reigns. The balance of the novel plausibly explores what would have occurred in this situation. The authors assume just one major departure from real events: Lee sees the error of attacking the Union forces head-on, knowing that they have a defensible position on high ground. As in Chancellorsville, he divides his forces, leaving enough at Gettysburg as a decoy, while the others commence the flanking action. The outcome of this novel hinges on Meade's reaction to these events, and the success of the Union forces in responding. This great saga continues with a sequel entitled "Grant Comes East". I must recommend this gripping alternate History.

"Grant Comes East", by Newt Gingrich and William Forstchen, published in 2004 by Thomas Dunne (ISBN: 0312309376).

"Grant Comes East", the second book in the best-selling series by Newt Gingrich and William R. Forstchen, continues the story of a Confederate Victory at Gettysburg. The first book examined the great "what if" of North American History: could Lee have won the Battle of Gettysburg ? A Confederate Victory, however, would not necessarily mean that the Confederate Cause had gained its final triumph and a lasting peace. It is from this departure point that the story continues in "Grant Comes East", as General Robert E. Lee marches on Washington City and launches an assault against one of the most powerful fortifications in the world. Across 140 years, nearly all historians have agreed that after the defeat of the Army of the Potomac at Gettysburg, the taking of Washington City would have ended the war. But was it possible ? Lee knows that a frontal assault against such fortifications could devastate his Army of Northern Virginia, but it is a price that he fears must be paid for final Victory. Beyond a military victory in the field, Lee must also overcome the defiant stand of Union President, Abraham Lincoln, who vows that regardless of the defeat at Gettysburg, his solemn pledge to preserve the Union will be honoured.

Lincoln mobilises the garrison of Washington City to hold on, no matter at what costs. At the same time, Lincoln has appointed General Ulysses Sympson Grant as Commander of all Union forces. Grant, fresh from his triumph at Vicksburg, Mississippi, races east bringing with him his hardened veterans, to confront Lee. What ensues across the next six weeks is a titanic struggle, as the surviving Union forces inside the fortifications of Washington City fight to hang on, while Grant prepares his counterblow. The defeated Union Army of the Potomac, staggered by the debacle dealt at Gettysburg, is not yet completely out of the fight either, and it is slowly reorganising. Its rogue commander, General Dan Sickles, is thirsting for revenge against Lee, the restoration of the honour of his Army, and also the fulfillment of his own ambitions, which reach all the way to the White House. All these factors will come together in a climatic struggle, spanning the ground from Washington City, through Baltimore, to the banks of the Susquehanna River.

Once again, Newt Gingrich and William R. Forstchen create a brilliant story of how the War could have unfolded. In "Grant Comes East", they use their years of research and expertise to take readers on an incredible journey.

First Reader Review: Brilliant "Counter History".

As a History professor, who has taught War History on several occasions (although I am no expert, by any means), I can say that this series is amazing. I usually do not read jacket covers or blurbs, I jump right into the book. So, when I started "Gettysburg", I thought that it would be like "Killer Angels", but with slightly different characters. Then, surprise. By the second day of the battle it is clear that something is happening here (to quote Buffalo Springfield). After "Gettysburg", I could not wait for "Grant Comes East". The character development is astounding, and while historians may quibble with whether General Dan Sickles or Herman Haupt be correctly depicted or not, it still makes for a fascinating read. As a military historian, one of the things that is most impressive about both of these books is the authors' ability to get into the detail of war, both in combat and in camp life. The mere understanding of the logistics supplied by Haupt is no small feat, and the combat scenes leave you tugging for one side or the other, depending on your political proclivities. After this great book, I have the intention of reading the third part of the trilogy: "Never Call Retreat: Lee and Grant, the Final Victory".

Second Reader Review: The dialogues capture the reader.

Again General Meade is that ghost that haunts the reader. In "The Personal Memoirs" of Union General Ulysses Sympson Grant, the Commander of the Army of the Susquehanna writes that four horse generals (General Sheridan, General Ord, General Humphreys and General Meade) pressed the Confederate Army at Appomattox. But again the dialogue in the historical novel catches the reader. I enjoyed the prattle among characters in both camps before and after the Battle of Gunpowder Falls, in Maryland, on 19th August 1863.

Third Reader Review: Great book, title a little misleading.

You would not have thought that two Ph.D. types could write such good stuff. Perhaps it be because of their Ph.D.'s, that make these books so well researched as to be quite believable. In the first book, one very simple decision: "We are going to move, so that they have to attack us rather than us attacking them", is indeed likely to have changed History. Choosing to fight at Gettysburg was, in my opinion, the only big error of General Lee. He did not think so at the time, but it was the turning point. Union President, Lincoln, had a hard time finding a good general that could be the equivalent of Lee. But after Vicksburg he had Grant, and he knew what he had. This story, the second in the trilogy, turns farther from real History. After all, when you change the course of the War at Gettysburg, Lee is still in Pennsylvania with an almost intact Confederate Army of Northern Virginia, while the Union Army of the Potomac is basically shattered to pieces, and it would not play out the same. I also liked the treatment of Union General Dan Sickles. From what I have read, he appears to have been just as nutty as he is treated here.

"Never Call Retreat: Lee and Grant, The Final Victory", by Newt Gingrich and William Forstchen, planned for publication in late 2005 or early 2006.

Photographs of Confederate and some foreign personalities

Confederate President Jefferson Davis
Confederate President
Jefferson Davis
Confederate Vice President Alexander Hamilton Stephens
Confederate Vice President
Alexander Hamilton Stephens
Confederate Secretary of the Navy Stephen R, Mallory
Confederate Secretary of the Navy
Stephen R. Mallory
Confederate Secretary of War James A. Seddon
Confederate Secretary of War
James A. Seddon

There are about seven thousand known photographs of the War for Confederate Independence of 1861. It is the fifth military conflict of which photographs exist, the previous four being the War between Mexico and the United States (1846-1848), the Crimean War that confronted Britain, France, Sardinia and the Ottoman Empire against Russia (1854-1856), the Revolt of the Sepoys in British India (1857), and the Garibaldian Campaign for Unification of Italy (1859). Those wars put together count fewer photographs than the Confederate War. This is not a surprise, because Photography in those heroic years required an established studio, or means of transport for bulky and heavy equipment, including a portable laboratory or fast conveyance of photographic plates between the field and the laboratory.

 

British Ambassador in Washington Lord Richard Lyons
British Ambassador in Wash-
ington Lord Richard Lyons
Confederate Representative in London John M. Mason
Confederate Representative
in London John M. Mason
Mexican Ambassador in Washington Don Matías Romero
Mexican Ambassador in Washington
Don Matías Romero
Confederate General Robert E. Lee
Confederate General
Robert E. Lee

No other war was more photographed in the XIX century and first years of the XX, than the Confederate War. The various European or colonial wars, the Russian wars in central Asia or against Japan, wars in China, Africa, Central or South America, or in other areas, had not so much photographic coverage. There was some extensive coverage of the Second Boer War in South Africa (1899-1902), but only since the Great War (1914-1918) the number of photographs is higher for major military conflicts, having inaugurated the risky profession of war reporter, in whose activity courageous photographers or commentators are sometimes injured or even killed. Until the Great War the photographer and the journalist usually worked separately. Since then both professionals tend to form teams, providing images and information to newspapers, wireless or television stations, Internet, or books. Of those, only newspapers and books existed before 1914, but graphic printing was primitive (Xilography, Lithography, early Photoprinting). Wireless communications existed since the early XX century, but radio broadcast began in the 1920's.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photojournalism

 

Confederate General Thomas J. Stonewall Jackson
Confederate General
Thomas J. Stonewall Jackson
Confederate Cavalry General J. E. B. Stuart
Confederate Cavalry General
J. E. B. Stuart
Confederate General Pierre G. T. Beauregard
Confederate General
Pierre G. T. Beauregard
Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston
Confederate General
Joseph E. Johnston

The work of the first war photographers had been made possible by Photography pioneers such as Nicephore Niepce, Louis Daguerre, Hyppolite Bayard, Hercules Florence, John Herschel, William Talbot, Frederick Scott Archer, Niepce Saint Victor, and others who first discovered, or improved, photographic processes or equipment. The extant photographs, either monoscopic or stereoscopic, were made by various processes such as daguerreotype, calotype, ambrotype, tintype, melanotype, wet collodion, albumen print, salt print... or variants of them. The dry plate of gelatine iodide, chloride, bromide, or fluoride of silver, was introduced in the 1880's. Infrared light was discovered by Herschel, but infrared Photography only became practicable in the 1930's, after the original achromatic emulsions had given place to orthochromatic and panchromatic.

 

Confederate General John B. Gordon
Confederate General
John B. Gordon
Confederate General William Mahone
Confederate General
William Mahone
Confederate General John Bell Hood
Confederate General
John Bell Hood
Confederate General James Longstreet
Confederate General
James Longstreet

Photographs exist portraying actions of combat or its immediate consequences, civil or military individuals and groups or their activities, and many other aspects of life documented for posterity. In the Confederate War hundreds of itinerant or studio photographers immortalised the historical event, such as Confederate Lieutenant Robert Smith (who built a clandestine camera in the military prison), Andrew Lytle, Julian Vannerson, Charles Rees, Jay Edwards Moody, Frederick Durbec, James Osborn, George Cook, George Brown, Edward Whitney, Andrew Paradise, David Woodbury, Frederick Gutekunst, George Stacy, David Knox, George Barnard, Alexander Gardner, Mathew Brady, and others.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photographers_of_the_American_Civil_War

 

Confederate General John C. Breckinridge
Confederate General
John C. Breckinridge
Confederate General Ambrose Hill
Confederate General
Ambrose Hill
Confederate Colonel John Mosby
Confederate Colonel
John Mosby
Confederate Irish Colonel Joseph Kelly
Confederate Irish Colonel
Joseph Kelly

Photographic collections exist all over the World, in some countries more than in others. Many images are now available in Internet, but some may be difficult to find, because they are not openly exhibited in a document of the World Wide Web, they are inside a hidden directory, an electronic book, some rare protocol or some other form of storage, in what has been labelled as the 'Deep Internet'. If existing, they can be found, but not only through a search engine. A little more of Computing sophistication is necessary for doing serious research work.

Peter Tsouras

Insisting with the wrong name of "Civil" War,
but a more mathematical view of Butterfly Effect

"Dixie Victorious: An Alternate History of the Civil War", by Peter G. Tsouras, published in 2004 (ISBN: 1853675954).

First Reader Review: Thought-provoking alternative History.

The contributors to "Dixie Victorious" concentrate mainly on the military impacts of some relatively small change in the historical record. For example, the immediate presence of the personal physician of Confederate General Albert Sidney Johnston at the Battle of Shiloh in April 1862, saves the General from bleeding to death in this alternate History, as in real History he in fact died because no one was nearby to put a tourniquet on his leg wound. James R. Arnold conjectures that Albert Johnston's survival at Shiloh enabled him to lead the (fictional) campaign that saved Vicksburg for the Confederacy a year later. David M. Keithly and Michael R. Hathaway both offer counter-factual outcomes of Lee's 1862 campaign of Maryland (that in real History ended with a nominal Union Victory at Sharpsburg), which lead to Confederate Victory in the War.

Among the most interesting scenarios are Dudley's depiction of the triumph of Confederate ironclads over the Union blockade in the spring of 1862, and Cyril M. Lagvanec's fictional account of the 1864 Red River campaign in Louisiana. The latter was in fact a Union fiasco in real History, but Lagvanec argues that a few little twists could have made this often ignored event the turning point of the War, and a key to Confederate Victory. The contributors also are allowed to have some fun. Each historian presents an authentic bibliography, but the end-notes for most chapters are a mixture of real sources and some provocatively fanciful ones: "From Manassas to Manila Bay: The Campaigns of James Ewell Brown Stuart" (in real History, Confederate Cavalry General J.E.B. Stuart probably died in combat, although his body was never found. He never performed any military campaign in the Philippines).

The real purpose of such conjectures, as Tsouras points out, is to emphasise just how close the Confederacy came to win the War: how a relatively minor incident, such as Lee's actual injury just prior to the Maryland campaign in 1862, might have had major consequences. MacKinlay Kantor posited just two alterations of fact to change the course of History in "If the South Had Won the Civil War", which presents a more thorough projection of the aftermath of Confederate Victory. For those who are already familiar with the actual military and political courses of the War, "Dixie Victorious" is not just an amusement. The book illuminates the issues of these War campaigns and encourages new ways of viewing them. It is well worth your time.

Second Reader Review: Ten provocative alternative histories where the Confederacy wins.

"Dixie Victorious: An Alternative History of the Civil War" is a collection of ten essays imagining how the Confederacy could have won the War. It is edited by Peter G. Tsouras, author of several alternative histories including "Gettysburg: An Alternative History". The title, of course, spoils the outcome of all of the essays, but then the appeal here is more argumentative than it is narrative, and the question is whether each author can make a compelling case to tip in the other way the delicate balance between military success and failure.

Andrew Uffindell, "Hell on Earth: Anglo-French Intervention in the War", has the "Trent" incident resulting in Great Britain declaring war against the Union, and France following suit. Uffindell comes up with additional reasons for the two European nations fighting the war that neither wanted in 1861, and thus forcing the Union into fighting a war on all fronts, needing to defend their boundary with British Canada.

Wade G. Dudley, "Ships of Iron and Wills of Steel: The Confederate Navy Triumphant", has Confederate Secretary of the Navy, Stephen R. Mallory, creating a fleet of ironclads. Consequently, when the USS Monitor shows up at Hampton Roads, she faces not only one Confederate ironclad (the CSS Virginia), but three of them, and the historical stalemate of Our Time Line becomes a decisive Confederate Victory in the Alternative Time Line.

David M. Keithly, "What Will the Country Say ?: Maryland Destiny", turns Special Order Number 191, which fell into Union General McClellan's hands before the Battle of Sharpsburg, into a "ruse de guerre", as Confederate General Robert Lee baits a trap to destroy the Union Army of the Potomac. This one is an interesting twist on History, and yet another opportunity to show Lee as being clever and McClellan being incompetent, which is almost always fun.

Michael R. Hathaway, "When the Bottom Fell Out: The Crisis of 1862", revisits Lee's first North-bound campaign, and has the Confederate general avoiding hurting himself when he was thrown by his horse the day after the second battle of Manassas. Overall I tend to like the essays where the key change is rather simple, which is what Hathaway does by having Lee free from pain and clear headed during his first attack toward the North.

James R. Arnold, "We Will Water our Horses in the Mississippi: A.S. Johnston vs. U.S. Grant", has Confederate General Albert Sidney Johnston's life being saved by a tourniquet at the Battle of Shiloh. The Confederacy still loses on the second day, but Jefferson Davis is able to put Albert Johnston back in command of Confederate forces in the West, during the siege of Vicksburg. Clearly, the idea here is to insert Johnston back into the War in the westron theatre at the point where Davis most felt his loss, which explains why Shiloh still remains a Confederate defeat even in this alternate History.

Edward G. Longacre, "Absolutely Essential to Victory: Stuart's Cavalry in the Gettysburg-Pipe Creek Campaigns", has the Confederate Cavalry keeping in contact with Lee during the second invasion of the North. The Battle of Pipe Creek replaces that of the historical Battle of Gettysburg. Those who have read the alternative History "Gettysburg", by Newt Gingrich and William R. Fortschen, will find this essay of more than passing interest, since it shares the belief that there was a Confederate Victory to be had in Lee's second invasion of the North, but not at Gettysburg itself.

John D. Burtt, "Moves to Great Advantage: Longstreet vs. Grant in the West", finds Confederate General Braxton Bragg being wounded, therefore James Longstreet taking command of the Army of Tennessee and fighting Grant. Longstreet had agreed to go west, so that he could have an independent command, and Burtts essay argues out a best case scenario for what he could have accomplished, although his aggressiveness in the story might strike many as being beyond his real nature.

Peter G. Tsouras, "Confederate Black and Gray: A Revolution in the Minds of Men", has Jefferson Davis seizing the opportunity afforded by Major General Pat Cleburne's Manifiesto, to give the Confederacy's slaves an opportunity to earn their freedom by enlisting in the Confederate Army and Navy in 1864 (in real History this happened in March 1865, too late for changing the outcome of the War). This one has the advantage of taking actions that the Confederacy was eventually compelled to take, and moving them forward to a time when it might have actually helped the Confederate Cause.

Cyril M. Lagvanec, "Decision in the West: Turning Point in the Trans-Mississippi Confederacy", has Confederate General Kirby Smith taking back Arkansas and Missouri in 1864, as David Dixon Porter's Mississippi Squadron falls victim to its commanders greed for captured cotton. I had the most problems with this scenario, because I am not inclined to think that the Union would have reduced its overwhelming number advantages in Virginia and in Tennessee-Georgia, just to make up for setbacks in Louisiana, thereby setting up a domino of effects.

Kevin F. Kiley, "Terrible as an Army with Banners: Jubal Early in the Shenandoah Valley", basically has Union General Phil Sheridan's ride failing to reverse the Union's fortunes after Confederate General Jubal Early's attack in the Valley. Kiley also finds an opportunity to remove a major obstacle to a Confederate Victory with a single bullet, which I have to admit was a card that I thought would be played more often in these essays.

In most of these essays the Confederacy does not win the war militarily, but rather gains a pivotal military victory (or combination of victories) that tips the delicate balance and gives the Confederate States a political victory, such as when General McClellan defeats Lincoln in the 1864 Union election. All of these essays are presented as the work of military historians in an alternative reality. Each has foot notes documenting sources, with those from fictional sources noted with an asterisk (Lagvanec is the farthest over the rainbow, with all of his notes for his Trans-Mississippi essay having asterisks).

Readers will know exactly what they are getting with "Dixie Victorious", so, those who are offended by "What If" stories in general, and in particular those disliking scenarios in which the Confederacy wins the War, can stay far away. The idea here is to be provocative and to come up with diverse scenarios for this to happen, and in that regard this collection is successful. Students of the War will find a lot to argue about in these pages.

Roger Ransom

A serious title and a well-thought treatment of possibilities

"The Confederate States of America: What Might Have Been", by Roger L. Ransom, published by Norton in 2005 (ISBN: 0-393-05967-7).

An intriguing exercise in counter-factual History, operating under the assumption that the Confederate States of America did not, in fact, win the last election. Imagine, Ransom asks, that Robert E. Lee had not thrown George Pickett's division into the line of battle at Gettysburg, but had instead left the field. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia would not have been broken, as it happened in real History.

Review by Joseph Crespino, History teacher:

Perhaps more than any other Confederate national, President Jefferson Davis reaffirmed the Dixie sense that we had been involved in a noble struggle. Davis helped spawn a generation of men who sat outside the county courthouse, a stone's throw from the Confederate monument, and argued over how different things might have been, if only Major General James Longstreet had broken through on Little Round Top at Gettysburg, or if at that battle General Lee had never ordered Major General George Pickett to launch his hopeless charge against Union lines.

No historian has thought through such "what if" questions as seriously as Roger L. Ransom in "The Confederate States of America: What Might Have Been". The book begins with Ransom's "Recipe for Counter-factual History Pudding", mixing two parts historical plausibility with one part common sense and another part imagination. The culinary metaphor is apt, because many readers have displayed an almost insatiable appetite for this sort of speculative fare.

While Ransom, an historian and a teacher of History and Economics at the University of California, Riverside, stops well short of Williams' conclusion, most historians have a word for counter-factual History: "Fiction". But there is a method to Ransom's speculation. He argues that the best way to understand how profoundly the War altered World History, is to try to imagine what would have happened if the War had gone the other way. We know that the Union's Victory unleashed the forces that ultimately transformed the United States into the economic and political behemoth of the world in the XX century. But what if the Confederacy had somehow fought its way to a stalemate ?

Ransom takes the reader through the individual battles that swung the way of the Confederacy and led to an imaginary, counter-factual truce, in November 1864. As he dips back and forth between his counter-factual narrative and historical analysis, Ransom sheds light on a number of surprising places. Ransom also recounts the conventional wisdom that the performance of Lee's Army early in the war was nothing short of miraculous. The shift between Ransom's analysis and his fictional War can be jarring, as though, in the short space of a few lines, he hopped from the subdued aura of a university seminar room, to the front lines of a War re-enactment.

Pride of the Confederate Navy

Captain James Waddell, Confederate War Ship CSS Shenandoah
Captain James Waddell, Commander of the
Confederate War Ship CSS Shenandoah
Lieutenant John Grimball, Confederate War Ship CSS Shenandoah
Lieutenant John Grimball, First Officer of the
Confederate War Ship CSS Shenandoah

Between 19 th October 1864 and 6 th November 1865 the Confederate War Ship CSS Shenandoah captured an impressive THIRTY-EIGHT United States ships all over the World, in a heroic circumnavigation shown on the map below.

 

The Confederate War Ship CSS Shenandoah in Victoria, Australia, in 1865
The Confederate War Ship CSS Shenandoah
at port in Victoria, Australia, in 1865
The Confederate Flag is flying on her mast
World travels of the Confederate War Ship CSS Shenandoah in 1864 and 1865
World travels of the Confederate War Ship
CSS Shenandoah in 1864 and 1865

Conclusion of the review

The growing interest in our Glorious Cause

By P. A. Stonemann, CSS Dixieland

All the books shown here have been disposed in chronological order after the year of their publication. The reader should observe that the first essay of alternate History about the Confederate War was written in the 1930's, the first book of full length in the 1950's, another book appeared in magazine form in the 1960's, and then we jump directly into the 1990's. Although there may have been some works not listed here, we may assume that the literary pieces that have been listed represent some of the finest efforts in the direction of what could have been (or what still can be) in a victorious Confederacy. As it could be expected, they range from the fantastic to the probable, from the purely narrative fiction to the detailed descriptive and the persuadingly dissertative erudite letters.

From the collection of reviews shown above, we can get some important facts. One of them is this: the interest in the War for Confederate Independence is a growing thing, not only with regard to alternate History, but also to real History. In parallel, the involvement of many people in some kind of activities related to the War, is also in the increase: battle re-enactments, living History events, conferences, seminars, slide shows, motion pictures and documentaries, wireless and television programmes, or music festivals, are all pointing more to the Confederate War, than they did some years ago. Of course, this fact by itself does not necessarily mean that we may be witnessing the prelude of an awakening of Spirit for Independence in our, until now, sleeping majority of Dixie Compatriots. By now, at least, most of those events are more on the cultural side than on the political one, when not simply on the ludicrous. Recognising that reality, however, we ought to feel optimistic never the less, when we compare how things are going today, to the way they were going in the distant and the not-so-distant past.

There has always been in some Patriots a surviving sentiment for recovering our Confederate Independence, all the way since 1865 to the present, but this sentiment did not materialise into a political struggle until very recently. The claim for total Confederate Independence was not openly present in the platform of the "Dixiecrats" of Strom Thurmond, back in the 1940's, when he was a candidate in the elections to the Presidency of the United States (he did not win, but for many years he was a Senator for South Carolina). Neither such a claim was the main driving force of the followers of George Wallace, in the 1960's. Perhaps we may begin to find a known historical claim for recovering our lost Independence in Byron de la Beckwitt, from his Klan related activities in the 1960's, to his sad death in prison at the turn of the present century. Other well known Klan leaders, or former Klan leaders, such as Bill Wilkinson, James Farrands, Don Black, or David Duke, may have had their sympathies for the Confederate Cause, and most of them clearly have shown that sympathy at some event, but they have never publicly declared to be fighting for our National Independence.

In the mid 1990's P. A. Stonemann had the fortune of attending, attired in full Confederate uniform, an event that made History in our movement for Independence. For the very simple reason that it was the official start of this movement, one of the very first meetings where Confederate Independence was publicly proposed. The reunion took place in Southron Kentucky, in the birth place of President Jefferson Davis. At the inspiration of the biggest Confederate Flag in the World, painted on the ground at that historical place, some distinguished gentlemen concentrated the attention of the more than a thousand like-minded Compatriots who were eagerly protesting, because of the coward murder some days earlier, at the hands of a group of blacks, of a young red-neck who wore a Confederate Flag. There he was Colonel Bill Rolen, CSA, commanding a contingent of our soldiers. Also Mister Jared Taylor, author of the book "Paved with Good Intentions" and editor of the magazine "American Renaissance", full of factual information about the racial problems that the North American States (Dixie as well as Yankee) are increasingly facing since we lost the War. And above all, considering the implications of the lucid speech with which he aroused the feelings of his audience, was the charismatic President of the Southern League: Doctor Michael Hill.

"... We have our right to secede from the United States and form a separate sovereign nation, or nations ..." were some of Doctor Hill's premonitory words, asking our Confederate Compatriots to make a stand for Independence once more, and this time probably with greater success than we had in our effort of 1861, when we lacked the industrial power and resources that we have today (the example of the recently dissolved Soviet Union, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia, was in the minds of everyone in the assembly). In a reference to the liberal, race egalitarian propaganda orchestrated by the Union Government of these days, Mister Taylor reminded the public concentrated there that "Our Confederate ancestors never faced that", and that such a brain-washing propaganda was directly responsible for the murderous behaviour of certain elements in the current generation of blacks, who certainly must not have known that black soldiers enlisted and fought bravely for the Confederate Cause, beside the very important help that, with their work, black civilians gave to the War effort of the Confederacy. The Grand Dragon of Ohio, Mister Van Loman, privately commented to a group of comrades that "what is being said here today has had no precedent in the last hundred years". Against the defeatism of many pragmatics of these days, we found reason to believe in a re-awaking of courage for our Glorious Cause.

A somewhat heterogeneus collection of listeners heartily applauded these enlightened orators. There were at that place and time all kinds of elements of different persuasions, from Sons of Confederate Veterans and United Daughters of the Confederacy to Confederate Society of America, from Confederate Heritage Preservation Association to Southern League, from Ku Klux Klan to National Alliance, from Asatrú Heathens to Christian Identity. Much above our possible differences of opinion, we all were united in a strong bond of repulse against the totally unjustified murder of that young victim of mis-information, of the lies with which liberal-dominated public media constantly bombard the little minds of ignorant people, of the falseties and the fairy tales that many of those ignorants have swallowed, and to which a sizeable amount of them, particularly blacks, have fatally succumbed. As a note, not even a single individual there present was black. Even among photographers, journalists, television camera crews, sound technicians or police agents. We were an all-White concurrence. Some may interpret that fact by saying that the event was strongly inclined in disfavour of blacks, considering the tragic crime that had been perpetrated by a group of them, who had been caught and were waiting for trial. Another possible, and not at all mis-guided interpretation, is that most blacks have voluntarily "chosen" to separate themselves from Confederate celebrations of any kind, even the most innocent ones, because they have fallen victim to the fabricated historical myth that presents slavery as the main reason, for both sides, that fostered Confederate Independence and subsequent War in 1861.

All of this is a rather sad "Alternative History", more or less believed by many of the descendants of those blacks who fought for the Confederacy, or who supported it through their efforts in the fields, the mills, or the factories, of our 1860's Dixieland. Why would they have fought or supported the Confederate Cause with that fervour, if they had been treated so cruelly as it is usually portrayed in many magazines, newspapers, books, motion pictures or broadcast programmes of today ? Why had they helped their tyrant masters to keep the "peculiar institution" alive, when they were so badly exploited and abused as liberal-minded History teachers "explain" to their credulous pupils ? The answer to that enigma is only one: because, as a general rule, there was no such cruelty, exploitation or abuse in the minimal. Some injustices may have happened, against individuals of the "slave" race as well as against those of the "free" race. We do not claim that things were perfect in ante-bellum Dixie or during the War. We do not hold the naïve assumption that things have ever been perfect anywhere in all human History. They may have been better or worse, which is also a matter of the personal beliefs of the observer, but utopies have never existed. That is why they are called "u-topy", meaning "no-place" in Greek. From the fantasies of "Uncle Tom's Cabin" to the "opinion formers" of today, liberal media want to make blacks believe that they are heading towards an utopical "freedom", when in reality the opposite is true: they have become all the more slave, because not just their bodies, but their minds and souls as well, have been enslaved by the liberal Big Brother more than they could have ever been enslaved by any Rhett Butler stereotype of a master.

The winner of a war re-writes History, following his own ideas and beliefs, or simply his whimsical fancies and desires. He has the resources to do so, and he can keep control to some extent, more overtly or less, of the few persons who do not share the same views. There is no such a thing as total "freedom of expression", there never was in any country or in any century. The very idea is another liberal absurd. The control of expression may be tighter or may be looser, the punishment against transgressors may be harder or may be softer, but it is always present. The victorious Union re-wrote History because it had the power to do it, knowing that few individuals would dare to oppose, and that those few could be speedily silenced, one way or another, either by making them lose their jobs and keeping them in anonymous ostracism, or by exposing them to a public ridicule orchestrated by the collaborationist press. There is never lack of eager collaborationists for the regime that holds power. The winners presented an idealised version of the reasons for which they, the Union, had fought the War, and even offered their own interpretation of the reasons for which WE, the Confederacy, had fought the War. Individuals who personally knew the ante-bellum period and the War, of course did not swallow those myths, but as those persons who lived the War left this World one after another, the generations who replaced them gradually lost the notion of what had really happened. Those peoples who forget their own History are condemned to repeat it, or a variation of it.

Fortunately, we have the cure against that illness of historical amnesia. Since the times of Herodotus and Tucidides, History has been recorded in books. A lady or a gentleman wishing to be vaccinated for immunity against historical false myths, has only the task of finding the appropriate books, and of perusing them thoroughly. With regard to Confederate History, there are some good sources from which to start. For ante-bellum Dixie, the writings and discourses of John C. Calhoun are an excellent inspiration. For the War, read:

"Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government" and "Short History of the Confederate States", by President Jefferson Davis.

"Constitutional View of the War Between the States", by Vice-President Alexander Hamilton Stephens.

"Memoirs of Service Afloat", by Admiral Raphael Semmes.

"Autobiographical Sketch, and Narrative of the War Between the States", by Lieutenant General Jubal Early.

"Southern Military History", by General Clement Evans.

"Aide de Camp of Lee", by Colonel Charles Marshall.

"Military Memoirs of a Confederate", by Lieutenant E.P. Alexander.

"The Story of the Confederacy", by Robert Selph Henry.

"A Southern View of the Invasion of the Southern States, and War of 1861-1865", by Captain Samuel Ashe, last surviving commissioned officer of the Confederate Army. Captain Ashe was in his twenties during the War, and 95 years old when he wrote this book in 1935, detailing the true reasons that justified our secession from the United States in 1861, and the tragic aftermath of our historical decision.

For the consequences of the War and post-bellum Dixie, consult:

"Southern History of the War" and "The Lost Cause", by E.A. Pollard.

"Southern by the Grace of God", by Michael Grissom.

"The South was Right", by Captain James Kennedy and Corporal Walter Kennedy.

There are also other valuable works that could be recommended, and that should be known by a serious Confederate Patriot. In spite of being the losers of 1865, we have no lack of informative sources. It is only facing the task of finding them. Probably a much easier task in Dixie or Yankee North America, than it is in Brazil (millions of Brazilians cannot read even in Portuguese, let alone in English). Once You find books of Your liking, read them and arm Yourself with the powerful weapon of Knowledge ! ! !

War games are useful not only for learning History and for analysing past or present military chances, but also for developing strategic and tactic reasoning, like in chess. Interesting as they are, however, they are of course only games. If You want to change REALLY the course of History, then take courage and help the League of the South or other serious Confederate Patriots in our Glorious Quest for Independence ! ! !

If You could write letters of support, journalistic articles, historical essays or epic poetry, then You would convince many, as yet undecided people, of the righteousness of our Cause. If You could draw or paint illustrations, from humouristic cartoons to fine art canvas, or if You could photograph for journalistic covering of patriotic events or for artistic exhibitions, then Your pictorial skills would inform and attract another number of people. If You could compose or interpret music or dance, then a good amount of them would feel emotionally moved to our side. Whatever Your talents, You can do a lot for helping the Cause. Do not sub-estimate the power of tenacious will, and of faith in the final Victory.

The winner of a past war may be the loser of a future war, even against the same enemy. There is an all too human tendency for the winner to "sleep in the laurels of victory", or even for falling into corruption, inefficiency or degeneration, like it happened in the Roman Empire or in the Soviet Union. The Yankee empire will fall too, like the British or the French or the Spanish empires had fallen earlier, in different manners and at different times, but all of them following an unavoidable rule of History. If we shall be ready or not for taking our chance when that time finally arrive, that depends on us.

If we let the opportunity pass, it may never return, and our distinct Confederate nationality, our unique Dixie culture, will be gradually dissolved in the mists of Time... until finally, in the future, it will be only known to a few specialised historians or antiquarians, same as the old Egyptians or Sumerians are known today. We are already being studied by archaeologists: the discovery of the CSS Hunley (the first successful war submarine in Naval History) near Charleston, South Carolina, bears witness to the fact that we have joined the Egyptians and Sumerians in capturing the attention of learned scholars. Important and interesting as those studies are, we have to shudder at the prospect of being remembered only as curious relics in some museum.

There is no "small help", all contributions are welcome. Even a three year old child who holds a tiny Confederate Flag in his white little hands, is giving an important support to our Noble Struggle. He is doing what he can, and that is what is all about: each one of us helps according to his individual possibilities. There are many ways to help. I have suggested just a few of them, surely You may think of many others: from computer programming or scientific researching, to running the Olympic Marathon wearing a Confederate shirt or planting a Confederate Flag on top of Mount Everest. From the intellectual to the bizarre.

Shake off Your consumer-society comformism and move ! ! ! Start now ! ! ! Contact an officer of the League and ask him how You can help ! ! !

 

Confederate President Jefferson Davis
Confederate President
Jefferson Davis
Confederate General Robert E. Lee
Confederate General
Robert E. Lee
Confederate General Thomas J. Stonewall Jackson
Confederate General
Thomas J. Stonewall Jackson

Hyper links

Different alternate histories of a Confederate Victory

Different authors of course have different interests, different levels of knowledge in one area or another, and different writing styles. There are below hyper links to a few samples, although other texts depicting diverse alternate histories of a Confederate Victory, also exist in the Internet.

Union Lost
Alternate History of a Confederate Victory
http://www.angelfire.com/alt2/unionlost/ul_index.htm

 

Dixie Victorious
Alternate History of a Confederate Victory
http://cwbn.blogspot.com/2004_05_01_cwbn_archive.html

 

History of the Confederate States of America, 1861 - 1925
By Patrick Waldegrave Clopton, updated to 1925 by Carole Elizabeth Scott
http://freepages.history.rootsweb.com/~cescott/clopton.html

 

Repository of books, over a hundred of them on Confederate History

The books listed in this section are freely available in various text formats in at least two on-line collections, Project Gutenberg and Many Books, hyper linked below. Begun in 1971, Project Gutenberg is the oldest repository of free books in Internet, with over sixty thousand books in 2020.

There are mirrors of the Gutenberg collection in various parts of the World, for facilitating the download of books or of other data sets, such as images or sounds. Books can be downloaded without compression, or compressed by Zip algorithm. No other compression algorithms are used.

Many Books is an independent repository connected to Project Gutenberg. Many Books takes all of the books from the Gutenberg collection and converts them to various formats for mobile devices, such as tablets or telephones, formats which Project Gutenberg itself does not use. In Many Books it is also possible to publish comments about books, while in Project Gutenberg it is not.

In the Gutenberg collection almost all books on Confederate History are in English. There are some books in other languages that give valuable data on Confederate History, but they are not focused on it. Therefore the technical information detailed below about formats and encodings has been included for facilitating the reading of books on other subjects. For Confederate History it is not necessary, because with rare exceptions the books are in English and can be rendered by any computer in a format or another.

Text formats and character encodings in Project Gutenberg

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Languages that do not use the Latin alphabet or its variants may be encoded in Unicode UTF-8, or also in Big-5 or another encoding.

Books containing complex mathematical formulae, music scores, or other special characters, which are difficult or impossible to render as plain text, use only hyper text or use one of the formats given below (although some other formats are used for a few books):

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Warning for Free-DOS or other DOS systems: The standard character encoding in DOS (8-bit IBM ASCII) is not used in the Gutenberg collection. If unable to display Unicode, then the options for a DOS system are HTML (if having available a suitable user agent, such as Arachne or Dillo), or conversion from 8-bit ANSI ASCII to 8-bit IBM ASCII, or just rendering 8-bit ANSI ASCII with strange characters instead of the correct characters, for letters with diacritic marks or for other special characters.

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Unfortunately there is no easy solution, because the Gutenberg collection began with books in English encoded in 7-bit ASCII. By the time when other languages were included in the collection, 8-bit ANSI ASCII was preferred over 8-bit IBM ASCII and Unicode was not implemented yet. Most of those books were later encoded also in Unicode. There are a few executables for Free-DOS that can display Unicode or convert from Unicode.

How to search for a book in Project Gutenberg

To search, keywords separated by spaces are typed, then the ENTER key is pressed.
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Many other searching combinations are possible. The list of all books in the Gutenberg collection is available in plain text. For a certain year the data set is named GUTINDEX.xxxx (where 'xxxx' is the year, for instance GUTINDEX.2019 for the year 2019). The list of the complete Gutenberg collection (over sixty thousand books in 2020) is in a really huge data set named GUTINDEX.ALL

Project Gutenberg
Since 1971, the oldest collection of Internet books (over sixty thousand in 2020)
http://www.gutenberg.org/

 

Many Books
All of the books from the Gutenberg collection, converted to mobile formats
http://manybooks.net/

As of December 2019 this is the list of books on Confederate History, written mainly from a pro-Confederate perspective by Confederate or by foreign authors. There are other books, not listed here, written from a different perspective.

History of Dixie before February 1861

Historical origins

The Birth of the Nation (Jamestown 1607), by Mrs. Roger A. Pryor
Jamestown, Virginia, by Charles E. Hatch (The Townsite and its Story)
Old Times in Dixie Land, by Caroline E. Merrick
The Dixie Book of Days, by Matthew Page Andrews
Pictures of Southern Life, by William Howard Russell
My Southern Home, by William Wells Brown (The South and Its People)

Regions

A Defence of Virginia (history), by Robert L. Dabney
The Blue-Grass Region of Kentucky, by James Lane Allen
A Visit to the Mammoth Cave of Kentucky, by John Wilson
Handbook of the Mammoth Cave of Kentucky, by Horace Carver Hovey
History of California, by Helen Elliott Bandini

Peoples

Bayou Folk, by Kate Chopin
Natchez, Symbol of the Old South, by Nola Nance Oliver
Our Southern Highlanders, by Horace Kephart
The Lost Tribes of the Irish in the South, by Irvin Shrewsbury Cobb

Traditions

Bypaths in Dixie (folk tales), by Sarah Johnson Cocke
American War Ballads and Lyrics (two volumes), by Various
Dishes and Beverages of the Old South, by Martha McCulloch-Williams

Slavery

Abolitionism Exposed, by W. W. Sleigh
The Right of American Slavery, by True Worthy Hoit
Lectures on the Philosophy and Practice of Slavery, by William A. Smith
American Indian as Slaveholder and Secessionist, by Annie Heloise Abel
Negroes and Negro "Slavery", the first an inferior race, the latter its normal condition, by J. H. Van Evrie
Cotton is King and The Pro-Slavery Arguments, by Various (Hammond, Harper, Christy, Stringfellow, Hodge, Bledsoe, Cartwright)
Address to the People of the United States, together with the Proceedings and Resolutions of the Pro-Slavery Convention of Missouri
    (Lexington), by Unknown

Heating of the conflict

Speeches of the Honorable Jefferson Davis, 1858
Presidential Candidates: United States in 1860, by D. W. Bartlett
Nullification, Secession Webster's Argument and the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions, by Caleb William Loring

 

Confederate song writer James Ryder Randall in 1861
Confederate song writer
James Ryder Randall in 1861
Confederate soldiers at Gettysburg in July 1863
Confederate soldiers
at Gettysburg in July 1863
Confederate writer Annelizah Chambers Bradford Ketchum (1824-1904)
Confederate writer Annelizah
Chambers Bradford Ketchum (1824-1904)

History of the Confederate States from February 1861 to May 1865

Explosion of the conflict

Debates and Proceedings, US Constitution (February 1861), by Lucius Eugene Chittenden
Baltimore and the Nineteenth of April 1861, by George William Brown
A Rebellion in Dixie, by Harry Castlemon

Land battles

Chattanooga and Chickamauga, by Henry V. Boynton
Chickamauga, Useless, Disastrous Battle, by Smith D. Atkins
Chickamauga and Chattanooga Battlefields, by James R. Sullivan
The Battle of Stone River, by Henry Myron Kendall
The Third Day at Stone's River, by Gilbert C. Kniffin
The Battle of Stone River, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, by Frederick Phisterer
Army of the Cumberland and the Battle of Stone's River, by Gilbert C. Kniffin
The Battle of Gettysburg, by William C. Storrick
The Battle of Gettysburg, by Frank Aretas Haskell
The Battle of Gettysburg 1863, by Samuel Adams Drake
Lee and Longstreet at High Tide (Gettysburg), by Helen D. Longstreet
The Battle of Atlanta, by Grenville M. Dodge
The Battle of Allatoona, October 1864, by William Ludlow
The Battle of Franklin, Tennessee (November 1864), by John K. Shellenberger
The Shades of the Wilderness (Lee's Great Stand), by Joseph A. Altsheler
From Manassas to Appomattox, by James Longstreet (Confederate General)
Lee's Last Campaign, by John C. Gorman

Naval battles

The Story of the Kearsarge and Alabama, by A. K. Browne
Cruise and Captures of the Alabama, by Albert M. Goodrich
The Cruise of the Alabama and the Sumter, by Raphael Semmes (Confederate Admiral)
Memoirs of Service Afloat During the War Between the States, by Raphael Semmes (Confederate Admiral)
An Englishman's View of the Battle between the Alabama and the Kearsarge (Sunday 19th June 1864), by Frederick Milnes Edge
A Brief Sketch of the Work of Matthew Fontaine Maury during the War, 1861-1865, by Richard L. Maury

General course of the war

The Supplies for the Confederate Army, by Caleb Huse
The Numerical Strength of the Confederate Army, by Randolph H. McKim
Confederate Military History (twelve volumes), by Ellison Capers
Three Months in the Southern States, April-June 1863, by A. J. L. Fremantle (British Colonel)
The History of the Confederate War, Its Causes and Its Conduct (two volumes), by George Cary Eggleston
Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government (two volumes), by Jefferson Davis (Confederate President)

Confederate personalities

The Real Jefferson Davis, by Landon Knight
Beauvoir Jefferson Davis Shrine, by Anonymous
The Life of Jefferson Davis, by Frank H. Alfriend
Robert E. Lee, by Ruth Hill
A Life of General Robert E. Lee, by John Esten Cooke
The Life of Gen. Robert E. Lee, by Mary L. Williamson
Recollections and Letters of General Robert E. Lee, by Captain Robert E. Lee
The Life of Gen. J. E. B. Stuart, by Mary L. Williamson
The Life of Gen. Thomas J. Jackson "Stonewall", by Mary L. Williamson
Raiding with Morgan, by Byron A. Dunn
History of Morgan's Cavalry, by Basil W. Duke
Personal Reminiscences of the War of 1861-5, by William Henry Morgan (Confederate General)
The Memoirs of Colonel John S. Mosby, edited by Charles Wells
Mosby's War Reminiscences, by John Singleton Mosby (Confederate Colonel)
Two Wars (1846-8, 1861-5): An Autobiography of General French, by Samuel Gibbs French

Memoirs of persons not of high rank

In the Ranks (1861-1865), by R. E. McBride
Five Years in Texas (1861-1865), by Thomas North
A Confederate Girl's Diary, by Sarah Margan Dawson
The Story of a Cannoneer Under Stonewall Jackson, by Edward A. Moore
Reminiscences of Confederate Service, 1861-1865, by Francis W. Dawson
Recollections of a Confederate Staff Officer, by Gilbert Moxley Sorrel
Camp Court and Siege (Two Wars: 1861-1865 and 1870-1871), by Wickham Hoffman
Recollections of Thomas D. Duncan, a Confederate Soldier, by Thomas D. Duncan
Following the Flag (August 1861 to November 1862), by Charles Carleton Coffin
Minutiae of Soldier Life (Army of N. Virginia 1861-1865), by Carlton McCarthy
Life in the Confederate Army, by Arthur Peronneau Ford and Marion Johnstone Ford
Reminiscencies of a Confederate soldier of Co. C, 2nd Virginia Cavalry, by Rufus H. Peck
A Diary from Dixie, by Mary Boykin Miller Chesnut of South Carolina (wife of a Confederate General)
Memoirs of a Veteran Who Served as a Private in the 60's in the War Between the States, by Isaac Hermann
Kelion Franklin Peddicord, by Mrs. India W. P. Logan (Quirk's Scouts, Morgan's Kentucky Cavalry, C. S. A.)
A Belle of the Fifties, by Virginia Clay-Clopton of Alabama (events from 1853 to 1866, narrated by Ada Sterling)
Doctor Quintard, Chaplain C.S.A and Second Bishop of Tennessee, by Charles Todd Quintard (His Story of the War 1861-1865)
Reminiscences of Service with the First Volunteer Regiment of Georgia, Charleston Harbour, in 1863, by Charles H. Olmstead
Experience of a Confederate States Prisoner, by Beckwith West (An Ephemeris Regularly Kept by an Officer of the Confederate States Army)

Specific military services

History of the Confederate Powder Works, by Geo. W. Rains
Maryland Line in the Confederate States Army, by W. W. Goldsborough
Notes of Hospital Life from November 1861 to August 1863, by Anonymous
Reminiscences of the Guilford Grays, 27th N. C. Regiment, by John A. Sloan
A History of Lumsden's Battery, C.S.A., by George Little and James Robert Maxwell

Specific social groups

The Copperhead, by Harold Frederic
Ye Book of Copperheads, by Anonymous
The Women of the Confederacy, by J. L. Underwood

Traditions and everyday life

Southern War Songs, by Various
Songs and Ballads of the Southern People (1861-1865), by Anonymous
The Call of the South, by Robert Lee Durham
Life in Dixie during the War, by Mary A. H. Gay
Two Little Confederates, by Thomas Nelson Page
The Southron Soldier Boy, by James Carson Elliott
Drum Taps in Dixie (1861-1865), by Delavan S. Miller
Under the Stars and Bars (history), by Walter A. Clark

The bitter end

Before the Dawn (Fall of Richmond), by Joseph Alexander Altsheler
The Falling Flag (Richmond and Appomattox), by Edward M. Boykin
Two diaries From Middle St. John's, Berkeley, South Carolina, February-May 1865, by Susan Ravenel Jervey, Charlotte St. Julien Ravenel
    and Mary Rhodes Waring Henagan

History of the Confederate States after May 1865

Aftermath

Dangers of the Trail in 1865, by Charles E. Young
After the War: A Southern Tour, by Whitelaw Reid (1 May 1865 to 1 May 1866)
Dixie After the War (1865-1877), by Myrta Lockett Avary
Robber and Hero (Jesse James 1876 Raid on Northfield Minnesota), by George Huntington
The Southern States, March 1894, by Various
The Struggle between President Johnson and Congress over Reconstruction, by Charles Ernest Chadsey

Racial conflict

America's Black and White Book, by William Allen Rogers
The African Colony (the Reconstruction), by John Buchan
The Alternative: A Separate Nationality, or the Africanization of the South, by William Henry Holcombe

Order of Knights of the Ku Klux Klan

When the Ku Klux Rode, by Eyre Damer
The Ku Klux Klan, by Annie Cooper Burton
The Modern Ku Klux Klan, by Henry Peck Fry
Ku Klux Klan, by J. C. Lester, D. L. Wilson and Walter L. Fleming
Ku Klux Klan Sketches, Humorous and Didactic, by James Melville Beard
Oaths, Signs, Ceremonies and Objects of the Ku-Klux-Klan, by a Late Member

Although there are many more books on Confederate History, those available in Project Gutenberg are an excellent start for interested readers.

 

Dixie, Oh My Dixie...

Short poem by P. A. Stonemann,
CSS Dixieland, December 2019

I wot not why art thou
so far and distant now

With my eyes full of tears
thy Holy Name sounds in my ears

Waiting for the Walkyries to take my soul
to the Eternal Night dreamt by the owl

Like an ocean stand the Depths of Time
betwixt thine existence, and mine...

A ship of the Confederate Navy
A ship of the Confederate Navy
Painting by Don Troiani

Readers interested in Confederate Music
are invited to visit the CSS Dixieland
page on Country Music. Information on
Confederate songs, lyrics for some of
them, and a sample of audio or video
records, have been collected there.

Country Music

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