Extraordinary Circumstances

Extraordinary Circumstances

The Seven Days Battles
Brian K. Burton
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 10/08/2010
Format: Paperback 28 maps
ISBN: 978-0-253-22277-0
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A Selection of the History Book Club2011 AAUP Public and Secondary School Library Selection

The first campaign in the Civil War in which Robert E. Lee led the Army of Northern Virginia, the Seven Days Battles were fought southeast of the Confederate capital of Richmond in the summer of 1862. Lee and his fellow officers, including "Stonewall" Jackson, James Longstreet, A. P. Hill, and D. H. Hill, pushed George B. McClellan’s Army of the Potomac from the gates of Richmond to the James River, where the Union forces reached safety. Along the way, Lee lost several opportunities to harm McClellan. The Seven Days have been the subject of numerous historical treatments, but none more detailed and engaging than Brian K. Burton’s retelling of the campaign that lifted Southern spirits, began Lee’s ascent to fame, and almost prompted European recognition of the Confederacy.

Author Bio

Brian K. Burton is Dean and Professor of Management at the College of Business and Economics, Western Washington University. He is author of The Peninsula and Seven Days: A Battlefield Guide.


“A detailed and engaging retelling of the Seven Days Battles, a campaign that lifted Southern spirits, began Lee’s ascent to fame, and almost prompted European recognition of the Confederacy.”

“A full and measured account marked by a clear narrative and an interesting strategy of alternating the testimony of generals with their grand plans and the foot soldiers who had to move, shoot, and communicate in the smoky underbrush.”
 — The Virginia Magazine

“A well-written, thoroughly researched study of the Seven Days. . . . Provides thorough and reasonable analyses of the commanders on both sides.”
 — Georgia Historical Quarterly

“A welcome addition to scholarship that should be the standard work on its subject for some time to come.”
 — Journal of Military History

“A thoroughly researched and well-written volume that will surely be the starting point for those interested in this particular campaign.”
 — Journal of American History

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Table of Contents

1. "The Nation Has Been Making Progress"<br />
2. "How Are We to Get at Those People"<br />
3. "The Responsibility Cannot Be Thrown on My Shoulders"<br />
4. "Charging Batteries Is Highly Dangerous"<br />
5. "Little Powell Will Do His Full Duty To-Day"<br />
6. "We’re Holding Them, But It’s Getting Hotter and Hotter"<br />
7. "I Have A Regiment That Can Take It"<br />
8. "You Have Done Your Best to Sacrifice This Army"<br />
9. "His Only Course Seemed to Me Was to Make for James River"<br />
10. "But What Do You Think? Is the Enemy in Large Force?"<br />
11. "He Has Other Important Duty to Perform"<br />
12. "Why, Those Men Are Rebels!"<br />
13. "We’ve Got Him"<br />
14. "He... Rose and Walked Off in Silence"<br />
15. "I Thought I Heard Firing"<br />
16. "It Is Nothing When You Get Used to It"<br />
17. "We Had Better Let Him Alone"<br />
18. "Press Forward You Whole Line and Follow Up Armistead’s Success"<br />
19. "General Macgruder, Why Did You Attack?"<br />
20. "The Thickest Red Mud Imaginable"<br />
21. "Under Ordinary Circumstances the Federal Army Should Have Been Destroyed"<br />
Important Persons in the Seven Days Campaign<br />
Orders of Battle<br />
Appendices<br />
Notes<br />
Bibliography<br />
Index<br />

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