To the victorious Confederates, it was the Battle of Leesburg. The badly beaten Federals named it for the imposing fortress-like rocky precipice on the northern side of the Potomac near Washington DC - Ball's Bluff. Fought three months to the day after First Manassas (Bull Run) and another in a long line of Federal defeats during the first year of the war - the battle was, as author James Morgan puts it, "a reconnaissance mission gone bad." Federal commander Gen. Charles P. Stone had planned a raid on a suspected Rebel camp, precipitating a skirmish between elements of his troops and those of Confederate Gen. Nathan "Shanks" Evans. As a series of skirmishes developed into a full-scale brawl involving some 1700 soldiers on each side, careless and costly decisions by one of Stone's commanders, Col. Edward D. Baker, led to Baker's death and a catastrophic finish, as hundreds of Union soldiers fell or threw themselves off the cliff. In the ensuing political uproar in the North, Stone became the convenient Federal scapegoat and his career was destroyed. A charter member of the volunteer Ball's Bluff guide group, Morgan, a former Marine, began to realize that the conventional battle narrative he and others were telling to visitors "just did not feel right." Further reading and more intensive study of the battlefield led him to delve deeply into primary materials to correct misconceptions and find the factual interpretation of events of this little and relatively unstudied battlefield. With the requisite keen understanding of the battlefield's terrain, Morgan has woven together a site-driven narrative in graceful style that is appropriately highlighted with participant's quotes. Featuring previously unused primary manuscript sources and a variety of first-hand accounts, this second volume in Ironclad's landmark Discovering Civil War America Series is highlighted by fine maps and numerous contemporary illustrations. A signature element of the series is the driving/walking tour of the sites, including the Ball's Bluff National Cemetery. This book is a must for all Civil War buffs, especially those interested in early clashes of the war and lesser-known battlefields.
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Born in New Orleans, Jim Morgan grew up in Pensacola, Florida, and now lives in Lovettsville, Virginia. A former Marine, Jim is a past president of the Loudoun County Civil War Roundtable, a member of the Loudoun County Civil War Sesquicentennial Committee, and a volunteer guide at Ball’s Bluff for the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority.Review:
"A Little Short of Boats examines the entire military engagement in meticulous, heavily researched detail, and is an excellent addition to Civil War military history shelves and college library collections." (Midwest Book Review)
"Kudos to Savas Beatie for producing a physically beautiful book . . . A Little Short of Boats will appeal especially to readers interested in tactical battle studies. This reviewer recommends it enthusiastically." (Civil War News)
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Book Description Ironclad Publishing, Villa, Kentucky, U.S.A., 2004. Soft cover. Book Condition: New. No Jacket. 0967377048 Beautiful, Un-Read, Absolutely, Like New Book, Pristine And Beautiful. Book Is Mint And True New Condition. Beautiful, Like New Book! Not Remainder. Not Ex-Library. This Is A New Book. Bookseller Inventory # 023407
Book Description Ironclad Publishing, Villa, Kentucky, U.S.A., 2004. Soft cover. Book Condition: New. No Jacket. 0967377048 Beautiful, Un-Read, New Book, Book Is Mint And True New Condition. A Clean, Bright, New Book. Not Remainder. Not Ex-Library. This Is A New Book. Bookseller Inventory # 020639
Book Description Ironclad Publishing, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110967377048