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 Posted: Mon Feb 22nd, 2010 10:14 pm
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samhood
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According to Amazon.com a new book on John Bell Hood will be released in April 2010. Titled "John Bell Hood and the Fight for Civil War Memory" by Brian Miller, the book will challenge the misinformation which has permeated Civil War history as a result of modern books by Western Theater authors. The promo on the book states:

Some Southern generals, like Lee and Jackson, have stood the test of time, celebrated in their place in history. And then there are generals like John Bell Hood, reviled and ridiculed by generations of Civil War historians as one of the inglorious architects of the Confederate disgrace in the Western Theater. The time has come to rethink this long-held notion, argues Brian Miller, in his comprehensive new biography John Bell Hood and the Fight for Civil War Memory, and to reassess John Bell Hood as a man, a myth and a memory.

In this first biography of the general in over twenty years, Miller offers a new, original perspective, directly challenging those historians who have pointed to Hood’s perceived personality flaws, his alleged abuse of painkillers, and other unsubstantiated claims as proof of his incompetence as a military leader. This book takes into account Hood’s entire life—as a student at West Point, his meteoric rise and fall as a soldier and Civil War commander, and his career as a successful postwar businessman. In many ways Hood represents a typical southern man, consumed by personal and societal definitions of manhood that were threatened by amputation and preserved and reconstructed by Civil War memory. Miller consults a variety of sources, explaining not only what Hood did but also the environment in which he lived and how it affected him.


What emerges is a more nuanced, balanced portrait, unfettered by the one-sided perspectives of previous historical narratives. It gives Hood the fair treatment he has been denied for far too long. By looking at Hood’s formative years, his wartime experiences, and his postwar struggles to preserve his good name, this book opens up a provocative new perspective on life of this controversial figure.


Brian Craig Miller is an assistant professor of history at Emporia State University. He is author of The American Memory: Americans and Their History in 1877.



 Posted: Mon Feb 22nd, 2010 10:30 pm
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javal1
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Sam,

Thanks for letting us know. Found his bio online, quite impressive. The question I wiuld have though is whether he has any new info or is it just his take on the same old stuff? If he has new letters, writings, etc. it holds great promise. If not, IMO it's just another opinion.



 Posted: Tue Feb 23rd, 2010 12:03 pm
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samhood
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Javal:

Eric Jacobson (a Carnton and Carter House historian and author of "For Cause and For Country: A Study of the Affair at Spring Hill and the Battle of Franklin") spoke to the author and says he has new material, especially on Hood's postwar life in New Orleans.

Regarding new material on military issues related to Hood, the sad thing about the current literature on Hood by Sword, Connelly, McDonough and others is that so much historical evidence is available but was suppressed by Sword et al because it did not support an anti-Hood theme. I have numerous excerpts from the OR, diaries, letters, memoirs and other records that are sympathetic or supportive of Hood's actions as commander of the AOT, yet none of them appear in any of the books by those authors. Whether Brian Miller found them or even considers military subjects in the new book I do not know...I have never corresponded with him.  



 Posted: Wed Feb 24th, 2010 02:42 pm
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samhood
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A recent blurb on the new Hood book:

"Miller is particularly strong on the cultivation of Hood's legend as a part of the Lost Cause narrative...He has done nice work in areas previously neglected, offering the first new research to emerge on Hood in years." David Coffey, author of John Bell Hood and the Struggle for Atlanta.



 Posted: Wed Feb 24th, 2010 03:04 pm
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javal1
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LOL - funny thing Sam. Coffey is my son's history professor at the University of TN at Martin. He raves about him. I met him once and he seems like a great guy.



 Posted: Sat Aug 14th, 2010 05:14 am
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Basiliximab
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Just ordered the book, looking forward to getting started on it. I've always admired General Hood and have been waiting for some time for a book like this to be written. Thanks for the recommendation!



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