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Spring 1865

The Closing Campaigns of the Civil War

Perry D. Jamieson

Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
Imprint: University of Nebraska Press
Published: 04/2015
Pages: 296
Subject: History
eBook ISBN: 9780803274709


When Gen. Robert E. Lee fled from Petersburg and Richmond, Virginia, in April 1865, many observers did not realize that the Civil War had reached its nadir. A large number of Confederates, from Jefferson Davis down to the rank-and-file, were determined to continue fighting. Though Union successes had nearly extinguished the Confederacy's hope for an outright victory, the South still believed it could force the Union to grant a negotiated peace that would salvage some of its war aims. As evidence of the Confederacy's determination, two major Union campaigns, along with a number of smaller engagements, were required to quell the continued organized Confederate military resistance.In Spring 1865 Perry D. Jamieson juxtaposes for the first time the major campaign against Lee that ended at Appomattox and Gen. William T. Sherman's march north through the Carolinas, which culminated in Gen. Joseph E. Johnston's surrender at Bennett Place. Jamieson also addresses the efforts required to put down armed resistance in the Deep South and the Trans-Mississippi. As both sides fought for political goals following Lee's surrender, these campaigns had significant consequences for the political-military context that shaped the end of the war as well as Reconstruction.Purchase the audio edition.


Perry D. Jamieson is senior historian emeritus of the U.S. Air Force. He is the coauthor of Attack and Die: Civil War Military Tactics and the Southern Heritage and the author of Crossing the Deadly Ground: United States Army Tactics, 1865-1899.


“The last spring of the Civil War witnessed a series of compelling episodes that assured Union triumph after four tumultuous years that reshaped the republic. Perry D. Jamieson does full justice to the unfolding drama in a narrative rich in biographical detail, perceptive analysis, and scrupulous attention to the geographical sweep of the story.”—Gary W. Gallagher, John L. Nau III Professor in the History of the American Civil War at the University of Virginia and author of The Union War

“An engaging narrative of how the final six months played out and the military and political decisions that led to the final outcome. . . . Crisp, page-turning.”—Judkin Browning, author of The Seven Days’ Battles: The War Begins Anew

“In vigorous prose Perry Jamieson narrates the military campaigns of the Civil War’s final months on the two principal fronts in the Carolinas and Virginia. This book’s clarity of organization and accuracy of description, coupled with interpretive insights, enable the reader to grasp both the details and the larger picture of the war’s end.”—James M. McPherson, author of the Pulitzer Prize–winning Battle Cry of Freedom