It is well this is so terrible! We should grow too fond of it,"
said General Robert E. Lee as he watched his troops repulse the
Union attack at Fredericksburg on 13 December 1863.
This collection of seven original essays by leading Civil War
historians reinterprets the bloody Fredericksburg campaign and
places it within a broader social and political context. By
analyzing the battle's antecedents as well as its aftermath, the
contributors challenge some long-held assumptions about the
engagement and clarify our picture of the war as a whole.
The book begins with revisionist assessments of the leadership of
Ambrose Burnside and Robert E. Lee and a portrait of the conduct
and attitudes of one group of northern troops who participated in
the failed assaults at Marye's Heights. Subsequent essays examine
how both armies reacted to the battle and how the northern and
southern homefronts responded to news of the carnage at
Frederickburg. A final chapter explores the impact of the battle on
the residents of the Fredericksburg area and assesses changing
Union attitudes about the treatment of Confederate civilians.
The contributors are William Marvel, Alan T. Nolan, Carol Reardon,
Gary W. Gallagher, A. Wilson Greene, George C. Rable, and William