Best Selling Books on the American Civil War

Here’s a list of some of the best selling books on the Civil War!

[amazon_link id=”0345359429″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era by James M. McPherson[/amazon_link]

Published in 1988 to universal acclaim, this single-volume treatment of the Civil War quickly became recognized as the new standard in its field. James M. McPherson, who won the Pulitzer Prize for this book, impressively combines a brisk writing style with an admirable thoroughness. He covers the military aspects of the war in all of the necessary detail, and also provides a helpful framework describing the complex economic, political, and social forces behind the conflict. Perhaps more than any other book, this one belongs on the bookshelf of every Civil War buff.

[amazon_link id=”0671867423″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Lincoln at Gettysburg: The Words That Remade America by Garry Wills[/amazon_link]

A former professor of Greek at Yale University, Wills painstakingly deconstructs Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address and discovers heavy influence from the early Greeks and the 19th century Transcendentalists. The author also probes Lincoln’s decision to rely more on the Declaration of Independence than the U.S. Constitution, a decision Wills says represented a “revolution in thought.” He speaks effusively of the 272-word address: “All modern political prose descends from [it]. The Address does what all great art accomplishes. [I]t tease[s] us out of thought.” Wills’ book won the 1992 National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism.

[amazon_link id=”0684824906″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin[/amazon_link]

In Team of Rivals, esteemed historian Doris Kearns Goodwin’s perspective is focused enough to offer fresh insights into Lincoln’s leadership style and his deep understanding of human behavior and motivation. Goodwin makes the case for Lincoln’s political genius by examining his relationships with three men he selected for his cabinet, all of whom were opponents for the Republican nomination in 1860: William H. Seward, Salmon P. Chase, and Edward Bates. These men, all accomplished, nationally known, and presidential, originally disdained Lincoln for his backwoods upbringing and lack of experience, and were shocked and humiliated at losing to this relatively obscure Illinois lawyer. Yet Lincoln not only convinced them to join his administration–Seward as secretary of state, Chase as secretary of the treasury, and Bates as attorney general–he ultimately gained their admiration and respect as well.

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[amazon_link id=”037550494X” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]A World on Fire: Britain’s Crucial Role in the American Civil War by Amanda Foreman[/amazon_link]

Even before the first rumblings of secession shook the halls of Congress, British involvement in the coming schism was inevitable. Britain was dependent on the South for cotton, and in turn the Confederacy relied almost exclusively on Britain for guns, bullets, and ships. The Union sought to block any diplomacy between the two and consistently teetered on the brink of war with Britain. In A World on Fire, Amanda Foreman examines the fraught relations from multiple angles while she introduces characters both humble and grand, bringing them to vivid life over the course of her sweeping and brilliant narrative. Between 1861 and 1865, thousands of British citizens volunteered for service on both sides of the Civil War. Through personal letters, diaries, and journals, Foreman has woven together their experiences to form a panoramic yet intimate view of the war on the front lines, in the prison camps, and in the great cities of both the Union and the Confederacy.

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[amazon_link id=”1400040159″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]1861: The Civil War Awakening by Adam Goodheart[/amazon_link]

1861 is an epic of courage and heroism beyond the battlefields. Early in that fateful year, a second American revolution unfolded, inspiring a new generation to reject their parentsaE