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Nine-tenths of tactics are certain, and taught in books: but the irrational tenth is like the kingfisher flashing across the pool, and that is the test of generals…T. E. Lawrence

Generals in gray; lives of the Confederate commanders Baton Rouge] Louisiana State University Press [c. 1959], 1983 printing Ezra J. Warner Generals Confederate States of America Hardcover. xxvii, 420 p. ports. 25 cm. Bibliography: p. 401-420. and printing. Clean, tight and strong binding with clean dust jacket. No highlighting, underlining or marginalia in text. VG/VG   

Generals in Gray sketches the careers of every Confederate general from the senior ranking Samuel Cooper, Adjutant and Inspector General, to the youngest brigadier, William Paul Roberts, who in 1861 was only nineteen years of age; from Daniel Weisiger Adams, the lawyer and sometime duelist who was thrice wounded in the war, to Felix Kirk Zollicoffer, the Tennessee Congressman who fell at Fishing Creek.

Besides the individual biographies and the unique assemblage of photographs, Generals in Gray contains a most interesting summary of facts about the Southern military leaders. To mention only a few: 146 of the generals were graduates of West Point, including all the full generals and fourteen of the seventeen lieutenant generals. Two-thirds of the officers had served with the U. S. Army in Mexico, against the Indians, and as far back as the War of 1812!

Yet, it was a young man’s war — John B. Hood was a full general at 33; Stephen D. Lee, a lieutenant general at 30; and Fitzhugh Lee, a major general at 27. The average ages of the generals in the four grades were, in descending order of rank, 48, 41, 37, and 36 years. Most of the generals (129) were lawyers, but other professions were represented. Of the full roster, 70 per cent were in grade at war’s end; but nearly 19 percent of all generals were killed in action. There are dozens of other facts that give the reader an overall view of the Confederate command.


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