352 pages. Hardcover with dustjacket. Brand new book. UNITED STATES CIVIL WAR. After the Civil War, white Confederate and Union army veterans reentered-or struggled to reenter-the lives and communities they had left behind. In Sing Not War, James Marten explores how the nineteenth century's "Greatest Generation" attempted to blend back into society and how their experiences were treated by non-veterans. Many soldiers, Marten reveals, had a much harder time reintegrating into their communities and returning to their civilian lives than has been previously understood. Although Civil War veterans were generally well taken care of during the Gilded Age, Marten argues that veterans lost control of their legacies, becoming best remembered as others wanted to remember them-for their service in the war and their postwar political activities. Marten finds that while southern veterans were venerated for their service to the Confederacy, Union veterans often encountered resentment and even outright hostility as they aged and made greater demands on the public purse. Drawing on letters, diaries, journals, memoirs, newspapers, and other sources, Sing Not War illustrates that during the Gilded Age "veteran" conjured up several conflicting images and invoked contradicting reactions. Deeply researched and vividly narrated, Marten's book counters the romanticized vision of the lives of Civil War veterans, bringing forth new information about how white veterans were treated and how they lived out their lives. James Marten is professor of history at Marquette University and author or editor of more than a dozen books, including The Children's Civil War; Texas Divided: Loyalty and Dissent in the Lone Star State, 1856-1874; and Civil War America: Voices from the Homefront. Deeply researched and vividly narrated, Martens book counters the romanticized vision of the lives of Civil War veterans, bringing forth new information about how white veterans were treated and how they lived out their lives. -McCormick Messenger "No other book combines the cultural and social history of Civil War veterans, North and South, like Marten's Sing Not War. Beautifully written and deeply researched, this book captures a fresh perspective of veterans' lives, revealing their personal and distinctive experiences as they returned home after the war. A vivid, compelling, and original study that provides surprising new information about 'Johnny Reb' and 'Billy Yank. '"-Joan Waugh, author of U. S. Grant: American Hero, American Myth "Civil War soldiers returned home to a world that was transformed by their efforts. Many bore the physical marks of their service; many more carried hidden emotional scars. In this deeply researched and wonderfully written volume, James Marten presents the veterans' story in all its complexity. Marten mines novels, memoirs, newspapers, institutional records, and the private writings of scores of anonymous veterans to uncover how they navigated their postwar lives. The result is not only a powerful history of Civil War veterans, but also an important analysis of the forces that shaped Gilded Age America."-J. Matthew Gallman, author of Northerners at War: Reflections on the Civil War Home Front (Key Words: United States Civil War Veterans, James Marten).
University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill
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