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Paperback Reveille in Washington, 1860-1865 Book

ISBN: 0881847321

ISBN13: 9780881847321

Reveille in Washington, 1860-1865

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Format: Paperback

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Book Overview

An authentic, robust & scholarly description of everyday life in Washington during the Civil War. Soldiers, the wounded, politicians, spies, whores & war-profiteers, a quiet, half-loyal Southern city suddenly turned into a turbulent metropolis. Winner of the 1942 Pulitzer Prize in History, it is an authentic, scholarly description of life in Washington during the Civil War, written in a highly readable style. In 2001 a Reader's Catalog Selection,...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Grad. Student Review.

This book provides a good survey history of the US Civil War based in Washington DC. The information in the book is dated. The book was published originally in 1941. The book suffers from the historical writing conventions of the time. That being a lack of footnotes or endnotes and the bibliography is divided how the author deems and not by primary and secondary sources. It is a very well written book and reads quite easily, for a history book. This book won the Pulitzer Prize in 1941.

Looking for good historical fiction after John Adams?

If you love reading about the Civil War and the presidency of Lincoln, this book which has fallen out of the mainstream deserves to come back into the public eye. I'll be giving it as a Christmas gift this year to my history loving friends. Remarkable and satisfying. (I know John Adams is not fiction, but I was looking for something amazing after I read JA, and I found this...)

A Book to Cherish

FULL DISCLOSURE: I am a native Washingtonian and a Civil War enthusiast. (I would have said "buff," but like that sage, George Costanza, I'm not sure what a buff is.) So having said this, I love this book. Leech is a wonderful writer and this Pulitzer Prize winner is a discovered gem. (Original copyright 1941)You're hooked from the start - "That winter, the old General [Winfield Scott] moved from the rooms he had rented from the free mulatto, Wormley, in I Street to Cruchet's at Sixth and D Streets. His new quarters, situated on the ground floor - a spacious bed-room, with a private dining-room adjoining - were convenient for a man who walked slowly and with pain; and Cruchet, a French caterer, was one of the best cooks in Washington."The "star" of the book is, indeed, the city of Washington, D.C. Many players walk across the D.C. stage and Leech's research paints vivid portraits not seen before about the Lincolns, Walt Whitman, Andrew Carnegie, Winfield Scott, John Wilkes Booth, and many, many others. It's a D.C. you have never really seen or heard that much about. It's a scrappy, dusty/muddy, unfinished city, begging for respect. A city that found itself a lynchpin between Union soldiers heading to battle and the many battlefields of Virginia. We see the soldiers come, go and return. Some are dead, many are wounded. But the focus is always on the District of Columbia.Past and present D.C. residents will get a kick out of reading things like "Tennallytown" for today's Tenleytown; the importance then of today's Bladensburg; the importance then of what today are mere Metro stops - e.g., Fort Totten, the Navy Yard and Silver Spring. Even Rockville, Maryland, puts in a guest appearance. Leech covers the key years - 1860 to 1865 - with painstaking research. Just take a glance at the Appendix. "Bills for President Lincoln's Funeral," "Other Incidental Bills" -- to include Mrs. Lincoln's funeral outfit. Look at the chronology of main events from Fort Sumter's surrender (April 13, 1861), to the Grand Review of the Union armies (May 23 & 24, 1865). You'll find biographical notes on major players from Henry Adams to John Ellis Wool. (I hadn't heard of him either until this great book.)Leech's bibliography covers hundreds of general reference works, D.C and New York newspapers and manuscripts. It's a breathtaking list and helped assure me that I could draw a good deal of confidence in the events as reported by Ms. Leech. No wonder this book won a Pulitzer!Listen to D.C., 1864 - "The capital, in 1864, was too sophisticated for panic. No city ever heard the noise of cannon in its suburbs with a greater appearance of sang-froid. People were eager to learn the facts. They bought and devoured every newspaper extra."This touching scene from 1865 - "Gray uniforms, rather than blue, now predominated in the capital. There were increasing numbers of Confederate deserters. Twilight was settling over Richmond. Lee's losses of starving and

Introduction to Civil War

This was the first book I ever read on the Civil War and it turned me on to a host of other CW books. This tells the story of Washington and Lincoln during the War Years and weaves a narration of the war itself. Explains the transition of DC from a sleepy capitol to a major city. Brings to life through wonderful writing the hustle and bustle of a great city. Loved it.


This wonderful book brings to life the city of Washington during the Civil War. Mrs. Leech describes the daily life of a city swarming with soldiers, office seekers, politicians, and others with such intimacy that you feel you are there.
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