Major Problems in the Civil War and Reconstruction Documents and Essays

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  • Edition: 3rd
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-06-01
  • Publisher: Wadsworth Publishing

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Designed to encourage critical thinking about history, the Major Problems series introduces students to both primary sources and analytical essays on important topics in US history. This text, designed to be the primary anthology for the introductory survey course, covers the span of the Civil War. The Third Edition, with new co-author Amy Taylor, includes a new chapter on Lincoln and Davis as military leaders, reorganized home front chapters, and many new documents and essays reflecting the latest scholarship.

Table of Contents

Perspectives on the Sectional Conflict
"The Second American Revolution," Hayes Historical Journal, Spring 1992
"We Should Grow Too Fond of It: Why We Love the Civil War," Civil War History, December 2004, pp.368-83
"The Civil War as a Crisis in Gender," in Catherine Clinton and Nina Silber, eds., Divided Houses: Gender and the Civil War (Oxford University Press,1992), pp.3-21
"The First Occupation," The New York Times Magazine, May 29, 2005 (entire article)
The Slave South
Frederick Law Olmsted Observes Southern Lassitude, 1854
Hinton Rowan Helper Exposes Southern Backwardness, 1857
James Henry Hammond Claims Southern Cultural Superiority, 1845
George Fitzhugh Praises Southern Society, 1854
J.D.B. DeBow Explains Why Nonslaveholders Should Support Slavery, 1860
An Abolitionist Journal Condemns Slavery and the Slave Trade, September 1837
N.L. Rice, a Proslavery Minister, Blames Abolitionists for the Slave Trade, October 1845
"Antebellum Southern Exceptionalism: A New Look at an Old Question," Civil War History, September 1983, pp.230-44
The Domestic Slave Trade as Slavery's Lifeblood
The Impending Crisis
The Independent Democrats Protest the Kansas-Nebraska Act, January 1854
Stephen Douglas of Illinois Explains the Objectives of His Bill, February 1854
Senator Robert Toombs of Georgia Insists on Congress's Responsibility to Protect Slavery in the Territories, January 1856
Senator William Henry Seward of New York Warns of an Irrepressible Conflict, October 1858
Senator Albert G. Brown of Mississippi Denounces the Federal Government for Failing to Protect the South, December 1859
"The Republican Party and the Slave Power," in Robert H. Abzug and Stephen E. Maizlish, eds., New Perspectives on Race and Slavery in America. (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1986) pp. 51-75
"Kansas, Republicanism, and the Crisis of the Union," in Fehrenbacher, The South and Three Sectional Crises (Louisiana State University Press, 1980), pp. 45-65
Sectionalism and Secession
Ralph Waldo Emerson Condemns the South for the Assault on Charles Sumner, February 1857
Abraham Lincoln Addresses the Issue of Sectionalism, February 1860
South Carolina Declares and Justifies Its Secession, December 1860
Mississippi's Secession Commissioner Urges Georgia to Secede, December 1860
Confederate Vice-President Alexander H. Stephens Identifies "The Cornerstone of the Confederacy," March 1861
Susan-Mary Grant, "When Is a Nation Not a Nation?: The Crisis of American Nationality," in Grant, North Over South: Northern Nationalism and American Identity in the Antebellum Era (University Press of Kansas, 2000), pp.130-52
"Revolution or Counterrevolution?: The Political Ideology of Secession in Antebellum South Carolina," Civil War History, September 2000, pp.205-26
Generals and Campaigns: How They Fought
Gives President Lincoln a Lesson in Grand Strategy, July 1862
Takes the Offensive, September 1862
C.S.A., Assesses Lea and McClellan at Antietam, September 1862
His Plan for the Overland Campaign, April 1864
His Thoughts on the Eve of the Overland Campaign, 1886
Explains How the War Has Changed, September 1864
General Grant Reports His Assignment Accomplished, July 1865
"A Civil War Watershed: The 1862 Richmond Campaign in Perspective," in Gary Gallagher, ed., The Richmond Campaign of 1862: The Peninsula and the Seven Days (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 2000) pp. 2-23
"The Significance of the Overland Campaign, April-May 1864," in Grimsley, And Keep Moving On: The Virginia Campaign, May-June 1864 (University of Nebraska Press, 2002), xiii-xvii, 222-39 + map on p.5
Soldiers And Combat: Why They Fought
C.S.A., Argues that Secession Will Protect Slave-holders, March 1861
U.S.A., Rejects Accommodation with Slave-holders, March 1862
U.S.A., Comments on Runaway Slaves, April 1862
C.S.A., Describes His First Experience of Combat, July 1861
U.S.A., Discusses Morale among the Soldiers, April 1863
C.S.A., Reports on the Aftermath of Gettysburg, July 1863
"Everyman's War: Confederate Enlistment in Civil War Virginia," Civil War History, March 2004, pp.5-26
"A 'Vexed Question': White Union Soldiers on Slavery and Race," in Aaron Sheehan-Dean, ed., The View from the Ground: Experiences of Civil War Soldiers (University Press of Kentucky, 2007), pp.31-66
"From Volunteer to Soldier: The Psychology of Service," in Mitchell, Civil War Soldiers (Viking Penguin, 1988), pp.64-82
The Northern Home Front
The Detroit Soldiers' Aid Society President Calls on Women to Assist the War Effort, November 1861
Mary Livermore Recounts How She Organized the 1864 Northwestern Sanitary Fair, 1889
Cincinnati Sewing Women Protest Their Wartime Wages, February 1865
Henry W. Bellows Explains the Work and Goals of the Sanitary Commission, January 1864
President Lincoln Addresses the Philadelphia Central Fair, June 1864
Secretary of the Treasury Chase Appeals to the Public for Financial Support, July 1861
The New York Tribune Supports Expansion of the Government Bond Drive, March 1865
"The Problem of Women's Patriotism, North and South," in Nina Silber, Gender and the Sectional Conflict (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 2009) pp. 37-68
"Let the Nation Be Your Bank: Jay Cooke and the War Bond Drives," in Lawson, Patriot Fires: Forging a New American Nationalism in the Civil War North (University Press of Kansas, 2002), pp. 40-64
The Southern Home Front
Governor Joseph E. Brown of Georgia Denounces Confederate Policy, September 1862
Eliza Adams Seeks Assistance from the Confederate Government, 1862
Plain Folk Protest the Burden of the War, February 1863
The North Carolina Legislature Protests the Confederate Debt and Martial Law, May 1864
Catherine Edmonston of North Carolina Discusses Matters Public and Domestic, January 1865
Cornelia Peake McDonald of Virginia Comments on Class and Conscription, March 1864
Elizabeth Patterson of Virginia Tries to Reconcile Her Loyalty and Her "Misfortune," March 1865
"Patriotism, Sacrifice and Self-Interest," in Faust, Mothers of Invention: Women of the Slaveholding South in the American Civil War (University of North Carolina Press, 1996), same extract as in 2nd Edition. Amy M. Taylor, "Of Necessity and Public Benefit: Southern Families and Their Appeals for Protection," in Catherine Clinton, ed., Southern Families at War: Loyalty and Conflict in the Civil War South (Oxford University Press, 2000), pp.77-93
"Policy-making Produces Innovation and Controversy," in Escott, Military Necessity: Civil-Military Relations in the Confederacy (Praeger Security International, 2006), pp. 15-37
Ending Slavery
General Benjamin F. Butler Discovers the "Contrabands," July 1861
The Freedmen's Inquiry Commission Considers Policy toward the Former Slaves, June 1863
President Lincoln Defends Emancipation ("The Conkling Letter"), August 1863
The U.S. Adjutant General Describes the Condition of Fleeing Slaves, August 1863
Joseph Miller, U.S.A., Protests the Mistreatment of His Family by the U.S. Army, November 1864
James H. Payne, U.S.A., Complains of Racial Discrimination on the Battlefield, August 1864
Frederick Douglass States the Freedmen's Demands, April 1865
Gertrude Thomas Is Upset that Her Slaves Are Leaving, May 1865
"Defending Emancipation: Abraham Lincoln and the Conkling Letter, 1863," Civil War History, December 2002, pp.313-37
"Black Glory: The African-American Role in Union Victory," in Gabor S. Boritt, ed., Why the Confederacy Lost (Oxford University Press, 1992), pp.135-62
Northern Republicans and Reconstruction Policy
Presents His "Grasp of War" Theory, June 1865
Senator Lyman Trumbull of Illinois Explains His Civil Rights Bill, January and April 1866
Representative Thaddeus Stevens of Pennsylvania States His Terms, January 1867
Representative George W. Julian of Indiana Defines the Scope of Reconstruction, January 1867
Senator John Sherman of Ohio Urges Caution and Moderation Towards the South, February 1867
Congress's Terms for Readmission and Reconstruction, June 1866 and March 1867
Albion Tourgee, a North Carolina Republican, Later Condemns Congress's Reconstruction Policy, 1879
Eric Foner, "The Radical Republicans," in Foner, Reconstruction: America's Unfinished Revolution, 1863-1877 (HarperCollins, 1988), pp.228-39
Michael Les Benedict, "Preserving the Constitution: The Conservative Basis of Radical Reconstruction," Journal of American History 61 (June 1974), pp.65-90
Life And Labor In The South After Emancipation
Martie Curtis Remembers Her Struggle After Emanciptaion (undated)
A Georgia Planter Requests that Freedwomen Be Required to Work
Henry Adams Reports on Women and Fieldwork, 1867
A Freedmen's Bureau Agent Discusses Labor Relations, November 1867
Richard H. Cain of South Carolina Stresses the Importance of Land, February 1868
Edward King Describes the Postwar Plantation System in the Natchez District, 1875
"'Sweet Dreams of Freedom': Freedwomen's Reconstruction of Life and Labor in Lowcountry South Carolina," Journal of Women's History, Spring 1997, pp.9-30
The Freedmen's Bureau and Social Control in Alabama
Reconstructing Southern Politics
The State Colored Convention Addresses the People of Alabama, May 1867
Former Governor James L. Orr Defends South Carolina's Republican Government, June 1871
Representative Robert B. Elliott of South Carolina Demands Federal Civil Rights, January 1874
Representative Alexander White of Alabama Defends "Carpetbaggers," February 1875
Albert T. Morgan of Mississippi Recalls His Achievements as Sherriff, 1884
"A Society Turned Upside Down," in Hahn, A Nation Under Our Feet (Harvard University Press, 2003), pp.237-59
"Building Citizenship in Louisiana, 1862-1873," in Scott, Degrees of Freedom: Louisiana and Cuba after Slavery (Harvard University Press, 2005), pp.36-60
Ending Reconstruction
Senator Carl Schurz of Missouri Condemns Reconstruction, January 1871
James Shepherd Pike Offers Liberal Republican View of Reconstruction in South Carolina, 1873
Representative L.Q.C. Lamar of Mississippi Assails Reconstruction, June 1874
Governor William P. Kellogg of Louisiana Demands Punishment for the Coushatta Assassins, September 1874
Governor Adelbert Ames Deplores the Violence in Mississippi, September 1875
Governor Daniel H. Chamberlain of South Carolina Defends Conciliation and Reform, January 1876
President Grant Disclaims Responsibility for Reconstruction in South Carolina, July 1876
"Counter Reconstruction: The Role of Violence in Southern Redemption," in Eric Anderson and Alfred A. Moss, Jr., eds., The Facts of Reconstruction: Essays in Honor of John Hope Franklin (Louisiana State University Press, 1992), pp.121-40
"Black Workers and the South Carolina Government, 1871-75," in Richardson, The Death of Reconstruction: Race, Labor, and Politics in the Post-Civil War North, 1865-1901 (Harvard University Press, 2001)
The Civil War in Historical Memory
Jubal Early Defends the Legacy of the Confederacy, August 1873
Roger A. Pryor Elevates Soldiers' Heroism Over Slaves' Emancipation, May 1877
Frederick Douglass Urges Americans to Remember the War's True Meaning, May 1878
William T. Sherman Insists There Was "Right" and "Wrong" in the War, May 1878
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., Calls for Reconciliation, May 1884
George W. Williams Proposes a Monument Honoring Black Soldiers' valor, 1888
Walt Whitman Speculates that "The Real War Will Never Get in the Books," 1882-83
"Decoration Days: The Origins of Memorial Day in North and South," in Alice Fahs and Joan Waugh, eds,, The Memory of the Civil War in American Culture (University of North Carolina Press, 2004), pp.94-123
"Race, Memory, and Masculinity: Black Veterans Recall the Civil War," in Joan E. Cashin, ed., The War Was You and Me: Civilians and the American Civil War (Princeton University Press, 2002), pp.136-52
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