Hailed as prophet of modern war and condemned as a harbinger of modern barbarism, William Tecumseh Sherman is the most controversial general of the American Civil War. “War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it,” he wrote in fury to the Confederate mayor of Atlanta, and his memoir is filled with dozens of such wartime exchanges. With the propulsive energy and intelligence that marked his campaigns, Sherman describes striking incidents and anecdotes and collects dozens of his incisive and often outspoken wartime orders and reports. This complex self-portrait of an innovative and relentless American warrior provides firsthand accounts of the war’s crucial events—Shiloh, Vicksburg, Chattanooga, the Atlanta campaign, the marches through Georgia and the Carolinas.
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