I can hardly believe it’s time for Part 3 of this series! (Click here for part 1 and part 2!) I’m so excited to share the books that helped me so much with my Battle for Heritage Series! If I can help even one author or History Buff in their search for answers, it will be worth it! So, without further ado, let’s jump in!
1.Will at the Battle of Gettysburg by Laurie Calkhoven ©2011 by the author, Dutton Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Young Readers Group.
Okay, so this isn’t a history. In fact, it is a children’s middle-grade fiction novel. But, hear me out 😉 This story is told in the perspective of Will, a 12-year-old Gettysburg native. Though this book is strongly biased and claims the South fought to keep their slaves, which is false, this book is eye-opening as to what civilians went through during the fighting, what it was like for a little boy to see war, and the confusing feeling of pity for the enemy. And of course Abel is my favorite character, a young Confederate, who, surprisingly given the stance of the author, educates Will on why the South is actually fighting. This is well worth reading. I made minor edits to my copy for historical inaccuracies (regarding the cause of the war) and a few minor swear words. Please proof it before handing it to a child under 10.
2.Gettysburg: The Confederate High Tide by Time Life Books ©1985 (again, my copy isn’t down, so I’m not sure of the specifics.)
This book for the most part focuses on the facts of the battle rather than the cause of the war, so it’s a pretty safe read. Very informative and a recommended read. There are a few words to mark out, due to historical quotes. In general, this is a good book on the history of the Battle of Gettysburg. Recommended for ages 16+ for understanding.
3.To Die in Chicago by George Levy ©1999 by the author. Pelican Publishing Company, Inc., 1999, Second Printing
This is not a book for Children. I highly recommend an adult read this book first if you plan to hand it over to someone younger than 16. Ever wondered what it could be like if America had concentration camps? Welcome to Camp Douglas. If anyone ever tries to tell you how terrible Andersonville in Georgia was (which was caused by tight spaces and national food shortages, not to mention the Union’s halt of prisoner exchange), remind them of Camp Douglas. Some of the worst War Crimes committed by the Union happened here in the systematic starvation, torture and degradation of Southern POWs. Recently, people have been talking about the confinement of Japanese Americans during WWII, referring to the camps as concentration camps. While there is no question that everything wasn’t up to scratch, it is disrespectful to Holocaust survivors and Confederate POWs to compare their comparative paradise with the genocide committed by the Nazis and Union soldiers. I’m sure either group would have gladly switched places. I am by no means trying to down play any wrong that may have been committed against our country’s citizens. I’m just saying that there are some unfair historical cover ups going on. I personally think this book should be read by 18+, given the sensitive subject matter.
4.Reccolections and Letters of Robert E. Lee compiled by Capt. Robert E. Lee Jr., C.S.A. (public domain) First published 1904. Mine is a Dover 2007 edition.
I’ve mentioned this book in a previous post, so I won’t spend too much time on it here, but this book is so good! Who better to write a book about the South’s beloved Marse Robert than himself and his son? A mixture of commentary from Rob and letters, journals and orders from Gen. Lee make this a must for every student of War Between the States History! Recommended for 14+ for understanding.
5.Civil War Period Cookery compiled by Robert W. Pelton ©2003 by the author. Infinity publishing, 2012 edition
This book is chock full of fun information about the food and drinks of days gone by. (Warning: some recipes call for alcoholic beverages, which I DO NOT condone. These are removed from my recipes.) Ever wondered what the bread of choice was from Stonewall’s army? How about the chicken and gravy Gen. Mosby grew up on? How about Clara Barton’s Mint Lemonade? Southerners and Northerners will be delighted by the storehouse of insider information about these famous family recipes and biographical sketches about the cooks and the eaters! I love this book and hope to cook from it soon. Though I probably will steer clear of U.S. Grant’s family recipe for laxative bread…
Well, that’s all for now! Thank you so much for stopping by today!
Hello and here we go again with another bookish post! Today, I’m bringing you five more research books that were super useful to me while writing The Battle for Heritage Series! I hope you enjoy it! (Click here to read part 1!)
1. The South Was Right! By James and Walter Kennedy ©1991, 1994 by the Authors. 5th Edition, October 1996, Pelican Publishing Company, Inc., 1994
Don’t let the title frighten you! (I personally love it!) This book is not a bash against the people of the north, but rather a cultural, political and historical study of the South, from before the Revolution to the Reconstruction. It busts some of the myths about American Slavery, Abraham Lincoln and the 1800s Government as well as explaining where the Southern culture comes from. It covers race relationships in the South, war crimes and some problems that were handed down to us by our forefathers. 5 stars all the way! This book is cited in my book, Our Heritage to Save, and inspired a scene in my current WIP (Work in Progress), A Song of Home. Because this is a history book, there are some grim facts inside. Thus, I recommend this for readers 18+.
2.Stonewall Jackson by Charles Ludwig ©1989 by Mott Media
This was the first biography (and only biography!) I read about Stonewall Jackson (I have three on my to be read list). This book was amazing and gave me a great introduction to this American Hero’s life. Knowing about his family, how he met Anna, and about his conversion gave me more insight when I tried to portray him in my books. Another 5-star read. Recommended for ages 8 and up! (I was in high school when I read this)
3.The Blue and the Gray compiled by Henry Steele Commager ©1950 by the Bobbs-Merrill Company, Inc.
This book is another compilation of soldiers’ letters, stories, and journal entries. I specifically used this book to research military punishments and treatment of prisoners in the Union Prison Camps. It wasn’t delightful reading, as such things are always sad, but this book is amazing! It gives song histories, little known stories of the war and a wonderful first-hand account of what it was like to live then, told by those who did. We’ve all heard of the Rebel Yell, but have you heard of the Yankee Yell? I hadn’t! But it was a real thing and is still used today…just not in the same way! Check out this book for the story, told by a southern soldier about his first encounter with the yell, what it sounded like and what he and his fellows thought of it. Very Interesting stuff. Because of potential language (I don’t remember any, but there may have been a word here and there I marked out), I would recommend this book for adults and older teens. Pre-teens will enjoy it if it has been edited.
4.Confederate Black Ops by Charles L. Tilton II ©2015 by the author, 1st Edition! Published by Blacksmith LLC, Fayetteville, N.C.
Oh…wow! This book was so good. I need to reread it! This book is written by an Army special ops guy, so he knows what he is talking about. This book covers so much about espionage and the techniques that the Southern forces utilized that are still used today! There were a couple things I marked out, but an older person could quickly fix this up for a young person to enjoy. If you are interested in learning more about the kinds of things certain of my characters might have gotten into, read this book. That being said, there are a few things in the book I disagree with, namely some of the things said about John Wilkes Booth and an assumption that a member of Lincoln’s cabinet was actually a Southern operative. I personally think there are a lot of holes in that argument, due to other research I have done. But please, read the book and draw your own conclusions. I am not an expert, lol! 😉
5. Christ in the Camp by J. William Jones © 1887, by B.F. Johnson & Co., © 1904 by The Martin & Hoyt Co. (I got mine from Vision Forum)
This was the second nonfiction book that I read about the War Between the States. I got this for my…14th birthday? Yes, 14th. It was soooo good, and at the time, it was the longest book I had ever read (400+!). This book was written by Robert E. Lee’s chaplain, a Baptist, who documented the revival that took place from 1862-1865. This was the last region-wide revival that took place in America and was solely located in the Southern Armies and surrounding towns. Unfortunately, it did not spread through the Federal armies, though if it had, I think more people would have been willing to take the war back to the table where it belonged.
Where was I…?
Anyway, this book is so good for those researching the spiritual ramifications of the War Between the states, regardless of where your loyalty lies. Honestly, this book isn’t even about the cause of the war; it barely mentions it maybe…twice? I can actually only think of one place where I read it, but I’m adding another, just to be on the safe side. It’s been a few years since I’ve read this book. Anyway, whether you are from the south or from the north, or not from America at all, this is a lovely study on the Hand of God in our Nations’ history. Fun Fact: Did you know that more Baptists fought in the Confederate Army than any other denomination? I didn’t until I read this book! It’s full of fun tidbits and heartwarming testimonies to the Power of God in War. Highly recommended. I would say High School and up for understanding, but there is nothing bad in this book 😉
So, those are my top Research Books for this post! Have you read any of these?
Have a Blessed Week!
Good morning, afternoon or evening, where ever you are and whenever you’re reading this! I’m thrilled to have you back here at Life of Heritage Corner! This post was originally supposed to be put up next month, but on a whim, I decided to do it now. It has been requested that I share some of the books that I get my information from, specifically for my series, The Battle for Heritage, set during the War Between the States. 📚 So today, I’m going to share 6 of the books that really helped me get my series together, specifically for The Land of Cotton!
Very early on in my work, a dear man gave me over a dozen books from his personal collection. These books have helped me a lot! In fact, three of them made this list! So, here are my top six research books.📝
1. The Civil War by Bruce Caton ©1988 by American Heritage Inc. edition.
Now, I disagree with Mr. Caton on his view of the War Between the States, but the main thing I used this book for (which was very well researched; he’s known as the Civil War Authority of his day) was the special bonuses at the end of the book. Part 1 is a Chronology of the Civil War, dividing the events up by year, month and day. I relied heavily on this while plotting my series and still refer to it constantly. Part II is the Index to the Chronology. This listed all the battles alphabetically, then in small print listed the month, day and year it took place, so you could look it up in the chronology. Very helpful! Part III is The Leading Participants. Alphabetically, the political and military leaders of both sides are listed, with a paragraph telling who they are, what they did in the war, when they did it, if they were wounded and when, what battles they fought in, what command position they held and when, and when they died (if applicable). It is a gold mine! To be honest, I’ve yet to actually read the book…I’ve only used the bonus indexes!😆
2. The Time-Life History of the Civil War (I don’t have my copy down right now, so I’m not sure what edition it is, but click here to see it.)
I read parts of this book, depending on what battle I was currently working on. It gave quotes from soldiers as well as times and places when things happened. But mostly, I used it for the pictures. There were drawings✏, photos📸 , and paintings🖌, some more modern and some made during the war. I used these for inspiration for characters, activities and battle sequences.
3. A Civil War Treasury of Tales, Legends and Folklore, Edited, with an Introduction by B.A. Botkin ©1960 by B.A. Botkin, 1993 Promontory Press Edition
Warning: It does need some editing…there are a few bad words and a few stories that need to be taken out!
This book is exactly what it sounds like, Tales, legends, folklore, letters and journals written by the people who actually experienced the war! Now, the title insinuates that not everything in the book is 100% accurate, which is true, but there really isn’t a lot of “Tall-Tales”. Most of the content is history written down by the multiple authors. You get a great look at what the men fought for, what camp life was like, what it was like back home and what was going on in the officers and politicians’ heads. There are news articles as well. It’s a great way to immerse yourself in the time period, the language and the mindset of the people. You hear from both the famous and the unheard of, and that’s one of the reasons I enjoy it!
4. Beloved Bride by Bill Potter ©2002-2012 by Vision Forum (Read a full review here!)
This book is beautiful! 😍 It’s one of the books that made me fall in love with General Stonewall Jackson. And yes, most of what I wrote about Stonewall came from reading this book (his dialogue is based off his actual patterns of speech, things he really said and the way he responded to situations.) It’s one of my very favorite non-fictions! Read it, just go read it! ❤
5. A Pocket History of the Civil War by Martin F. Graham ©2011 by Martin F. Graham Osprey Publishing Edition
Oh, wow! I found this book at Ollie’s on sale and it was truly my pocket guide! Again, I didn’t agree with this author’s take on the war, but I found for the most part, it seemed pretty neutral. The statistics were very helpful as well as the breakdown of how to load a rifle. If you read The Land of Cotton, the scene where the boys are going through the process of joining up and the scene where one of the boys is loading his gun, both came from this book. It’s a very comprehensive guide. I also got a lot of information for my Soldier Life // Privates post from this book! Definitely a book to pick up if you are writing about the War Between the States or if you want a little more than a basic overview of the war. My only hang up with this story is that they say the only reason the South went to war was over slavery, which wasn’t a reason at all. Otherwise, I can’t think of anything…
6.The Civil War for Kids by Janis Herbert ©1999 by Janis Herbert, Chicago Review Press 1st Edition
This book gave me the idea to include loading the rifle in my book, though I used #5 to get a clearer understanding. It also inspired me to include espionage in my book. Even though it’s biased for the Union, you’ll find it jammed packed with information and activities. 📒There’s also fun bonus facts about the war, like what names of places mean, who named what battles, biography sketches, etc. If you’ve read Our Heritage to Save, you may remember the scene where Titus dives into the breakdown of the army’s companies, regiments, etc. I got all that from this book. I highly recommend it!
So that’s it for now! Hope this has given you something to springboard off of. In the future I hope to tell you about some of my Confederate resources, more histories and even some documentaries that help me! If you have any questions about these books, please let me know and someone from my team (aka me or my family!) will answer them for you!
The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee, and the books, but especially the parchments.
II Timothy 4:12
(King James Bible)
Until Next Time,
*Emoji provided by Emoji One
Hello and happy Friday everyone! I have another blog post for you today (Third one this year!) and it’s going to be so much fun! A Book List! 📚 If you are like me, you are a book nut, specifically when it comes to historical fiction. Well, today, I’m stepping into the Non-Fiction world and bringing you some of my favorite books about two famous American Heroes, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson! 😍 In addition to my favorites, I will be sharing some books that are on my TBR! 📖
But why these two for my very first book list?
Well, January happens to be the birth month of these amazing Christian men! General Lee was born on January 19th, 1807. Stonewall was born January 21st, 1824. So, it was only fitting to do this post in their honor. 🎈🎁 *Nods at my logic*
Now. Let’s get into the Book List!
Robert E. Lee
You have no idea how many books I own with “Robert E. Lee” as the title! Even though Stonewall is my favorite of the two, I have far more books about General Lee. Here are my favorites…
Recollections and Letters of Robert E. Lee by Robert E. Lee Jr. (More here!)
Oh, people, read this book!!!!!! It is my very favorite book about Robert E. Lee and I reference it for my books. Who better to write about this great man than his son? Rob does an excellent job chronicling his father’s life, from his very first memory of the general, to Robert E. Lee’s last days. The honor he bestows on his father and his attention to detail is amazing! And I must admit, I really fell in love with his writing style. It felt as if I were right there, riding through the war with Robert E. Lee. And the chapter where Rob takes a break from his father’s story to tell about himself, and the capture of his older brother…no words. It was so good!
Robert E. Lee by Noah Andre Trudeau
This is the first biography, and probably the first history book outside of textbooks, that I ever read and it is amazing! Such an up close and personal look at Gen. Lee and a little of his family as well. Not just the Civil War History of him either; this book goes back before that.
Boy of Old Virginia: Robert E. Lee by Hellen A. Monsell
This is a book written for school Children years ago. I dug up this copy at Goodwill and almost didn’t buy it! Then, my dad found it and brought it back to my attention. I took that as my cue that I needed to buy this book and I’m so glad I did! It’s a nice look at Lee’s childhood and what it was like growing up in the Lee household. It doesn’t touch on his war record, which was a unique twist. Highly recommend it. My younger brother loved it!
Robert E. Lee by Lee Roddy
This is a middle-grade book, but again, a lovely overview of the life of Robert E. Lee. Highly recommend it for an easy read, if you aren’t super into biographies. Great for Homeschool curriculum too!
These are not all of my books on Robert E. Lee, but you get the idea 😉 I can actually think of two more right of the top of my head!
Oh, my favorite Hero ever! I am working on building my Stonewall library, but for now, here are the books I’ve read…
Beloved Bride by Bill Potter (Read my review here!)
This book is amazing! I think every young person should read it, male and female! Married couples, history buffs, people waiting for the right one, just go read it! Fun Fact: I used this book as research for The Rivers of Sorrow! Read Beloved Bride, and you will know which story I pulled for my book!
Stonewall Jackson by Charles Ludwig
This is another middle-grade book and the best biography I’ve read on Stonewall thus far! It’s the only one I’ve read…anywho, this book is so good! Like Robert E. Lee by Lee Roddy, it’s perfect for Homeschool and is an amazing introduction to Stonewall Jackson
Robert E. Lee & Stonewall Jackson
Christ in the Camp by J. William Jones
J. William Jones was Robert E. Lee’s personal chaplain. A Baptist preacher, Jones chronicled the revivals through the war that broke out in the Confederate camps. While it mainly focuses on Gen. Lee, Jackson appears more than once in this history! I highly recommend it for High School students, history buffs and Civil War enthusiasts!
Warriors of Honor by New Liberty Videos
This is a documentary that chronicles the Christian faith of Stonewall Jackson and Robert E. Lee. If you love these generals, your collection is not complete without this DVD! I saw it several years ago at a Night Watch Service (only half though!) and I purchased my copy at Ft. Macon on Confederate Memorial Day. (Yes, that is a real holiday! May 10th, mark your calendar.)
My American Heroes TBR (To Be Read) List
Life and Campaigns of Lieutenant General Thomas J. Stonewall Jackson by Robert Lewis Dabney
Dabney was a personal friend of Jackson and a member of his personal staff, the perfect person to write the official biography of one of America’s finest heroes. I got this as a prize for giving a suggestion to a new website. Cannot wait to read this!
Rebel Yell by S.C. Gwynne
Civil War enthusiasts will be shocked that I haven’t read this book yet 😉 Published in 2014, this is supposed to be THE book about Stonewall, so I cannot wait to dive in! I received this as a gift from one of my readers who didn’t need their copy anymore! Thank you so much!
Stonewall: A Novel by John J. Dwyer
This is a borrowed book from my grandpa and I have been wanting to read this book for so long! I’m not sure how I’ll like it since it’s a novel about a historical figure and I don’t like it when people take too much liberty with historical figures…hopefully, it’s just recreating conversations or something.
Robert E. Lee: A Novel by John J. Dwyer
Like Stonewall, this is another borrowed book form grandpa. Again, not sure how I’ll end up enjoying this one, but I do highly anticipate it!
The Shaara Civil War Trilogy by Jeff and Michael Shaara
This includes Gods and Generals, Killer Angels and The Last Full Measure. I’ve been meaning to read this books for a long time, but it wasn’t until this year that I picked up Gods and Generals. I have no idea what the title has to do with anything, to be honest. But, aside from some words I’ve had to mark out, the book is very interesting and lines up with what I’ve read about these famous figures, or makes me want to research these people more (looking at you, Gen. Hancock!). I really hope I enjoy these. G&G is deeper, so I read it in spurts. Someday, hopefully, it will end up in a wrap-up!
So, that’s all I have for you today! Hope you enjoyed my very first book list! Something to think about: What are your favorite historical (fiction or non-fiction) books? List them and share them with a friend! There are never enough book recommendations!
Until Next Time,
*Emoji art supplied by Emoji One
That's right! I'm not only posting three posts in one week (click here and here to read them :)) but I'm also doing two posts in one day! Let me explain why...
For the last few posts, I've been scheduling them to go up ahead of time, just in case I can't make it to WiFi...this is not one such post :) Yesterday, I got a phone call from my local printer and they told me...
"The Rivers of Sorrow is ready for pick up! Here is your total..."
That's right! As of right now, The Rivers of Sorrow is available for purchase! For $14.00+ $3.00 s/h, the 3rd installment of The Battle for Heritage Series could be yours! I can hardly believe it! I've literally been working on this book for five years! Five! And to finally be able to hold it in my hands...unless you've published a book, you've know idea what that feels like :)
To celebrate the release, I've got a few goodies for you! An excerpt from the story, and some of my favorite quotes from the book! Enjoy!
From Chapter 1
January 4th, 1863
“Now, march right over to that tree, Yank. Keep them hands where I can see them!”
Confederate Lieutenant Richard Mason rubbed his eyes. “What now?” he mumbled as the shouting continued. He glanced at his pocket watch: 3:46 A.M. January 4th, 1863, was already upon them.
Groaning, Richard kicked off his blanket and stepped out into the cold Virginia night. “What’s going on out here?” he demanded, not at all happy to be losing sleep because of a troublesome federal prisoner.
Sgt. Tyler Nace turned and saluted his lieutenant and friend. “Sorry to disturb you, Lt. Mason. This yank tried to escape. Cpl. Calling sounded the alarm and we cornered him here. Calling had to shoot before he would surrender, sir.”
Richard frowned as blood dripped from the federal soldier’s left arm. “Sgt. Mason is on duty. Have him see to the fed’s arm. I want the prisoner secured for the night. Double the guard.”
“Yes, sir,” Tyler and Cpl. Jeremiah Calling said in unison, saluting. They led the prisoner to the infirmary. Sgt. Seth Mason moved from tent to tent, treating the wounded as needed. He too was aggravated with the escapee.
Richard’s younger brother checked over the wound. “Clean through. Jeremy, you saved his arm.”
The prisoner remained silent. Tyler studied him, noting the flash in the middle-aged man’s eyes. He’s probably pretty upset about being held prisoner by boys, Tyler thought. He’s old enough to be our father!
Seth finished tying off the bandage. “There, that’ll do it.” Seth winced and held his head. “Do I ever have a headache!”
“You need to get some sleep,” Jeremy stated in his to-the-point way. “You work too hard and too late. Go get some sleep.”
“Later. I’ve still got two tents to check. And after that I need to get these shoes to Eddie,” he said, jerking his thumb towards a pair of used brogans sitting on the desk.
“He could sure use them,” Tyler remarked. “He hasn’t complained, but I know his feet are about froze. He’s been walking around in his socks the last few days.”
Jeremy shook his head and pushed the prisoner toward the tent opening. Tyler joined them outside and the trio made their way back to the prisoners’ hold. Tyler nodded to the guards as they climbed the steps and opened the door.
“I tried,” the prisoner told his groaning comrades. Tyler pushed him past the group and led him to a separate room. They couldn’t risk the prisoner causing an uprising.
Titus Mallory, a Confederate sergeant, arrived to help guard. He walked among the soldiers keeping a sharp eye on them. There wouldn’t be trouble on his watch.
Morning light found the soldiers no warmer than the night before. Winter camp had been made around Moss Neck at Camp Winder following bloody fighting at Fredericksburg on December 13th, 1862.
Richard put on his hat and mounted his horse, Champion. He urged the handsome stallion into a run as they headed for his commander’s headquarters.
Major Alexander “Sandie” Pendleton looked up as Richard entered. “Morning, Lt. Mason. Gen. Jackson’s been waiting for you.”
Richard doffed his hat and nodded as Pendleton checked to see if the General was ready for him. “You may go on in, Lieutenant,” Pendleton said.
Richard saluted Lt. Gen. Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson as he entered the room. Jackson returned his salute. “Do have a seat, Lieutenant.” Richard fought the desire to rake his fingers through his dark auburn hair. When Stonewall stared at him like he was now, Richard imagined the general could see right through him.
Stonewall sifted through his papers. “I hear you and your command had a bit of excitement during the late fighting.”
Richard took a deep breath and replied, “Yes, sir. Two brigades were divided, but God pieced us all back together.”
Something of a smile hinted at the older man’s lips. “Indeed, He did. Our ever-kind Heavenly Father smiled on us during this campaign.” He shuffled through the papers and laid them aside. “Your Capt. Baines is up for a promotion to Major, Lt. Mason.”
He watched Richard’s expression. Noticing a slight change of his countenance, he asked, “Are you disappointed? Perhaps you believe your captain unworthy of the honor to be bestowed upon him.”
“Oh, no, sir!” Richard assured him. “I only feel sorry for our company. Capt. Baines is an inspiring leader, and I wish he could remain in its command. But I do not begrudge him the honor. I suppose to wish him back is selfishness on my part.”
Jackson nodded slowly. “It is. But hardly to be unexpected.” Silence stole over them. Jackson leaned forward and clasped his hands. “Have you a suggestion for company commander?”
Richard thought a moment. “Lt. Tucker would do well, sir…the campaigns of last year were unkind to our officers, sir. There were many wounded or killed, and others had to take spots in other companies.”
“Is Tucker a trustworthy man?” the general inquired.
“To the utmost, sir. By seniority it belongs to him.”
The general nodded again. “The men have elected you.”
Curious yet? Hop on over to my contacts page to place your order today!
And now for some quotes...
Well, that's all for now! Hope you have a fantastic weekend and please, tell your friends about The Rivers of Sorrow!
Writing for Him,
Christian. American. Southern. Author.
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