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19th Century

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    America’s Civil War Review: Decided on the Battlefield

    Decided on the Battlefield: Grant, Sherman, Lincoln and the Election of 1864 David Alan Johnson Prometheus Books 2012, $27 In author David Alan Johnson makes the case that the United States Decided on the Battlefield, likely would have...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    Union Rout in Louisiana

    The plan was simple. In the spring of 1864, a combined Army-Navy operation under Maj. Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks and Admiral David D. Porter would move up the Red River to capture Shreveport, the “capital” of Confederate Louisiana, and...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    ‘As bad as can be’

    For a couple of days after fighting on South Mountain in Maryland in September 1862, skirmishes and artillery fire punctuated the efforts of Robert E. Lee and George McClellan to regroup their armies. Lee turned his attention to his...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    Her War: Fighting Sarah Thompson

    Union troops in Confederate territory opposition from secessionist women. Confederates, expected however, hadn’t anticipated having to do battle with Union-sympathizing Southern women. Unionism among Southerners was an unexpected and...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    Fiasco at Fredericksburg

    Offensive action. That’s what Abraham Lincoln wanted from his new commander in November 1862. The exasperating Maj. Gen. George McClellan was out as head of the Army of the Potomac, and Maj. Gen. Ambrose Burnside was in. Burnside...

  • Military History

    Queen’s Ransom

    How Hawaii’s indebted last queen lost her throne to sugar barons and the American rush to empire...

  • Military History Magazine

    The Prophet of Sea Power

    In 1890 Alfred Thayer Mahan published a book that transformed naval theory—and unleashed the world’s great fleets. Democracies are good at war for many of the same reasons they are good at capitalism and at the enhancement of the human...

  • Military History Magazine

    Napoléon: What Made Him Great?

    A talented combat leader, the diminutive emperor was also a shrewd judge of human nature. President Harry S. Truman once defined a leader as “a man who has the ability to get other people to do what they don’t want to do, and like...

  • Military History Magazine

    Nelson: What Made Him Great?

    Boldness, genius and a rare willingness to risk all in pursuit of victory. Few would disagree that Great Britain’s Vice Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson (1758–1805) was a great naval leader. Indeed, many historians consider him the...

  • Military History Magazine

    On Removing Seminoles

    Andrew Jackson’s policy of ‘Indian Removal’ ran into trouble in Florida—his name was Osceola. On Christmas morning 1837 Colonel Zachary Taylor and nearly 900 men—Regulars of the 1st, 4th and 6th Infantry regiments, plus 132...

  • Military History Magazine

    Grant: What Made Him Great?

    A reluctant soldier, the Union general was a study in contrasts. Some thinkers work with a single fundamental idea, while others construct from a broad spectrum of insights and experiences. Common sense suggests that successful generals,...

  • Military History Magazine

    Decisions: Crossing the Andes

    Feats of brilliance and finesse have distinguished military history’s finest commanders and inspired many of their decisive victories. Often, however, it is the fundamental qualities of endurance and strength that matter most. In...

  • Military History Magazine

    Valor: A Multitude of Heroes

    Lieutenant John Chard Royal Engineers Victoria Cross Rorke’s Drift, Natal January 22 and 23, 1879 Queen Victoria called the 1879 British defense of Rorke’s Drift “immortal,” and a modern historian labeled it “one of the best...

  • Military History Magazine

    Hallowed Ground: Balaklava, Ukraine

    I had read accounts of the October 1854 Battle of Balaklava— the most famous combat action of the Crimean War—since my childhood. I knew the theory of how Britain’s Light Brigade had galloped to its destruction because of muddled...

  • Military History Magazine

    William Jones-Secretary Who?

    Though virtually forgotten by history, William Jones was instrumental in creating the U.S. Navy that stunned Britain’s Royal Navy in the War of 1812. Naval history is replete with stirring tales of brave captains and stalwart crews, of...

  • Military History Magazine

    What We Learned: From Chippawa (1814)

    During the American Revolution the federal government was fixated on capturing Canada. In the decades following the war the British sent their Indian allies on raids south of the border, and with the 1812 declaration of the “Second War...