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A Rebel's Recollections
by George Cary Eggleston
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Midwest Book Review
Originally published in 1875, George Cary Eggleston's memoir (which proved immensely popular among readers throughout the country) is a nostalgic, often amusing collection of essays based on the author's Civil War experiences. Eggleston describes life in Virginia before the war, offers glowing assessments of the men who filled the Rebel ranks and the women who stood behind them, satirizes the Confederacy's finances and its army's red tape, and recollects the war's end. He also provide compelling portraits of his heroes, lavishing praise on Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, and especially, Jeb Stuart. By 1905, A Rebel's Recollections had run through four editions, suggesting how well it reflected the mood of the nation, which by then wanted to forget angry sectionalism and glorify the soldiers of both sides in an idealized view of the war. Having been long out of print, Gaines M. Foster now provides a new introduction, deftly placing Eggleston's memoir in the context of recent historiography. A Rebel's Recollections is an engaging, informative and entertaining book that all students of the Civil War will want to read.
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