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After the desperate years of their own war, after years of repression – and years of in exile for some, the Southern people remain intact in spirit. They are armed with a transcendent faith; they did not win, and yet they have never accepted defeat.

The most glorious fourth : Vicksburg and Gettysburg, July 4, 1863    New York : Norton, c 2002 Duane Schultz History Civil War, 1861-1865 Personal narratives Hardcover. 1st ed., later printing. 447 p., [8] p. of plates : maps ; 24 cm. Dust Jacket. Includes bibliographical references (p. 433-439) and index. Clean, tight and strong binding with clean dust jacket. No highlighting, underlining or marginalia in text. VG/VG  

The irony of an Independence Day that turned the tide of the Civil War against the very people who were fighting for their independence is lost on Schultz whose only apparent interest is in whitewashing the northern alliance.

After two years of defeats and setbacks the 4th of July 1863, was a glorious day for the union cause. It saw the surrender of Vicksburg and the retreat of General Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia after a defeat at Gettysburg.

In interweaving the narratives of these battles, Schultz presents an account of what might have been the most pivotal point of the entire conflict. The players are brought to life here, whether it is Lincoln agonizing in the telegraph office while he waits for news from Generals Grant and Meade, General Longstreet trying to persuade Lee to revise his plan of attack, or the women of the towns of Vicksburg and Gettysburg coming under fire and tending to the legions of wounded.

We see a nation in the midst of its greatest convulsion, and we see that, while the date may have marked the end of the ascendency of the Confederacy, the war was far from over, and would drag on for another two years of combat, twelve years of military occupation of the South and over one hundred years of lingering animosity that has yet to be resolved.

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