Category Archives: Booknote

Booknote: Twenty-five Hours to Tragedy; The Battle of Spring Hill and Operations on November 29, 1864: Precursor to the Battle of Franklin

Amazon states:

Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 9.11.25 PM.pngTwenty-five Hours to Tragedy: The Battle of Spring Hill and Operations on November 29, 1864 – Precursor to the Battle of Franklin is a compilation of eyewitness testimony linked by narrative telling the story of the great missed opportunity by the Confederate Army of Tennessee on November 29, 1864. Led by General John Bell Hood, a Confederate envelopment around Columbia, Tennessee left Union Major General John McAllister Schofield’s Fourth and Twenty-third Army corps strung out and beyond supporting distance of their wagon train. One lone division that had been sent to Spring Hill to protect the Union Army’s wagon train found itself confronting nearly 25,000 Confederate soldiers by mid-afternoon. While Union Major General David S. Stanley did all in his power to stop the Confederate attack, it seemed nothing could save them. Suddenly the fog of war set in, and as the sun sank on the western horizon, the Confederate high command found itself paralyzed with inaction, indecision, poor judgment and finally darkness. This maneuver forced General Schofield to conduct a harrowing forced march to Spring Hill past nearly 22,000 highly motivated Rebel soldiers within a few hundred yards of Columbia-Franklin Pike as darkness cloaked the field. While the Federals marched into a set Confederate trap that was never fully sprung, Confederate commanders stumbled through the starlight, and the Union army slipped past the lion’s den. The next day brought about the Battle of Franklin – a direct result of Confederate inaction and miscommunication the night before at Spring Hill. Twenty-five Hours to Tragedy is the largest and most in depth account of the actions that took place at Spring Hill. This account adds more testimony and sheds even greater light on a night filled with confusion and disappointment for the Confederate high command. Told by over one-hundred-and-fifty eyewitness participants, the accounts are linked by narrative that place the reader on the field in the midst of enthusiastic Confederate and anxious Union soldiers. The events of November 29, 1864 sealed the fate of the Confederate Army of Tennessee. Only twenty-five hours after the Confederate Army’s arrival on the battlefield of Spring Hill, the decision to assault the heavily defended fortifications at Franklin was made. It was a decision that would not have to be made had the Confederates followed through with their plans at Spring Hill. Follow the armies in their race to Spring Hill, the combat there and the critical decisions that led to the Federal escape and a total Confederate command breakdown in the most devastating blunder of the American Civil War.

Order on Amazon



A Revised History of the 33rd Alabama Volunteer Infantry Regiment

I want to share this email I received from a blog follower:

My late father, L. B. Williams, wrote A Revised History of the 33rd Alabama Volunteer Infantry Regiment, his grandfather’s regiment. It contains the roster of the regiment and comments on some of the members.The book is now available in the public domain at Google Books. The family would appreciate your making this information available to your site visitors.

You will get the option to download the PDF file by clicking on the “gear” icon at the top right corner of the book page.
Thank you,
Teri Williams Easterling

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Hood scholar-author to speak at upcoming FCWRT, signing his new book on “Hood’s Lost Papers”

Stephen M. “Sam” Hood will be signing his new book, The Lost Papers of Confederate General John Bell Hood, at the February 8th Franklin Civil War Roundtable in Franklin.  This is event is free to the public and begins at 3:00 PM.  Sunday, February 8th  2015 at the Franklin Police Headquarters at 900 Columbia Pike.


The book can be pre-ordered on Amazon.

From the Publisher:

Screen Shot 2015-01-21 at 10.58.00 PMScholars hail the find as “the most important discovery in Civil War scholarship in the last half century.” The invaluable cache of Confederate General John Bell Hood’s personal papers includes wartime and postwar letters from comrades, subordinates, former enemies and friends, exhaustive medical reports relating to Hood’s two major wounds, and dozens of touching letters exchanged between Hood and his wife, Anna. This treasure trove of information is being made available for the first time for both professional and amateur Civil War historians in Stephen “Sam” Hood’s The Lost Papers of Confederate General John Bell Hood.

The historical community long believed General Hood’s papers were lost or destroyed, and numerous books and articles were written about him without the benefit of these invaluable documents. In fact, the papers were carefully held for generations by a succession of Hood’s descendants, and in the autumn of 2012 transcribed by collateral descendent Sam Hood as part of his research for his book John Bell Hood: The Rise, Fall, and Resurrection of a Confederate General (Savas Beatie, 2013.)

This collection offers more than 200 documents. While each is a valuable piece of history, some shed important light on some of the war’s lingering mysteries and controversies. For example, several letters from multiple Confederate officers may finally explain the Confederate failure to capture or destroy Schofield’s Union army at Spring Hill, Tennessee, on the night of November 29, 1864. Another letter by Lt. Gen. Stephen D. Lee goes a long way toward explaining Confederate Maj. Gen. Patrick Cleburne’s gallant but reckless conduct that resulted in his death at Franklin. Lee also lodges serious allegations against Confederate Maj. Gen. William Bate. While these and others offer a military perspective of Hood the general, the revealing letters between he and his beloved and devoted wife, Anna, help us better understand Hood the man and husband.

Historians and other writers have spent generations speculating about Hood’s motives, beliefs, and objectives, and the result has not always been flattering or even fully honest. Now, long-believed “lost” firsthand accounts previously unavailable offer insights into the character, personality, and military operations of John Bell Hood the general, husband, and father.

Author Sam Hood

Author Sam Hood

Stephen M. “Sam” Hood is a graduate of Kentucky Military Institute, Marshall University (bachelor of arts, 1976), and a veteran of the United States Marine Corps. A collateral descendent of General John Bell Hood, Sam is a retired industrial construction company owner, past member of the Board of Directors of the Blue Gray Education Society of Chatham, Virginia, and is a past president of the Board of Directors of Confederate Memorial Hall Foundation in New Orleans. Sam resides in his hometown of Huntington, West Virginia and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina with his wife of thirty-five years, Martha, and is the proud father of two sons: Derek Hood of Lexington, Kentucky, and Taylor Hood of Barboursville, West Virginia.

New book on Gen Jacob Cox out

My blog readers may want to check out this new book on Gen Jacob Cox by Gene Schmeil.

Cox book

Professor Steven E. Woodworth says this about Gene’s book:

“This is a comprehensive biography of … a very important figure, not only in Civil War military history but also in political and religious matters. This book makes a significant contribution by relating in a thoughtful, analytical way the life and career of one of the most important Ohioans of that era. The author has clearly done his homework, and the text is not only well researched but very polished.”

Steven E. Woodworth, professor of history, Texas Christian University

For more info

New book on Confederate deaths & burials in Nashville 1861-1865

Historian Timothy L. Burgess has recently published a significant work on Confederate deaths burials in Nashville. Perhaps no one knows this subject better than Mr. Burgess, who has been researching the subject for nearly four decades.

Burgess book cover


To order the book:

$22.00 with postage
Send check or MO to:
Tim Burgess
128 Maple Dr.
Hendersonville, TN 37075