Thursday, May 15, 2014

Book Review: Confederate General: Stonewall Jackson

Confederate General: Stonewall Jackson; We the People, by: Robin S. Doak, Compass Point Books, Mankato, MN, 2009.
This is a brief history of Stonewall Jackson, and being so brief it is not able to tell many things clearly.  It starts with First Bull Run, where Jackson picked up his nick name.  However this created a confusion for the story line, as the author came back and covered this again.  It also misses 2nd Bull Run entirely, which was where the Jackson motto of “Always mystify, mislead, and surprise the enemy, if possible.  And when you strike and overcome him, never give up the pursuit as long as your men have the strength to follow.” 
This book does point out the fact that Jackson was dead before Gettysburg.  Had he been alive, the battle very likely had had a different result. 
It is good to remember Jackson, but this book, in being brief misses much of the highlight.  It even skims over the Seven Days Battle, which was not Jackson’s finest generalship.  Other books are needed for a good study of Jackson, but this is an introduction, and it is a book geared to younger readers.

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