Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Chickamauga Cavalry Excerpt

I was delighted to find an excerpt from David Powell's upcoming book Failure in the Saddle in the Fall 2010 edition of CWPT's Hallowed Ground. Powell is one of the two or three most knowledgeable people I am aware of on the Chickamauga campaign, and I've really been looking forward to the release of his book. We're inside my household's holiday book-purchasing moratorium window, so I'll have to wait a few more weeks, but the excerpt provided an excellent preview.

Powell's article focuses on the fight at Reed's Bridge near the outset of the battle. Elements of Minty's and Wilder's cavalry brigades held off advancing Confederate infantry at critical fords, providing important time for Union forces to react to the enemy advance. This has long been one of the most interesting parts of the battle to me, as there were several conflicting reports of just what happened in this fight by eyewitnesses after the war. There was quite a debate in the National Tribune across several issues. Some I've been able to locate, some I'm still looking for. A very romanticized version of the 4th U.S. Cavalry's participation in the fight can be found in James Larson's Sergeant Larson, 4th Cav., but the accuracy of this account has ben questioned.

If the quality of this article is indicative of the book itself, readers are in for a treat. Powell successfully weaves numerous (sometimes conflicting) firsthand accounts of a confusing series of skirmishes into a cohesive story that is as informative as it is entertaining.

The article can be found online here, and the book itself can be purchased from Savas-Beatie online here. David Powell's excelent Chickamauga blog can be found here, and in the blog list to the left side of this page.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


After a great deal of time, trouble and tribulation, i am once again back to the blogosphere. A number of work and family issues seriously affected my ability to post the last couple of months, but that should all be behind me now, and I'm looking forward to a bit of writing therapy here on the blog.

Fortunately work has continued on the 6th Cav manuscript during my absence, so we hope to have it before a publisher very soon. I still need to finish the Fairfield Dead series, and was inspired to compile a biographical sketch of the 4th Cavalry's Wirt Davis by a recent magazine article/ book excerpt to be discussed in the near future. A review of Eric Wittenberg's book on Brandy Station (see interview here)and David Powell's Failure in the Saddle will also be appearing before long.

Something happened to the link for Mike Block's Today at Brandy Station blog, but that has now been fixed.

It's very good to be back, I'm looking forward to posting.