The Best Rebel Reminiscence: Edward Porter Alexander's Fighting for the Confederacy
On April 7, 2017 at noon, Gary W. Gallagher delivered a Banner Lecture entitled “The Best Rebel Reminiscence: Edward Porter Alexander's Fighting for the Confederacy.”
Edward Porter Alexander’s Military Memoirs of a Confederate: A Critical Narrative (1907) and Fighting for the Confederacy: The Personal Recollections of General Edward Porter Alexander (1989) stand unchallenged as the most analytical, dispassionate, and influential books of their genre. Alexander wrote from a singular perspective as one who had served on the staffs of Robert E. Lee, Joseph E. Johnston, and P. G. T. Beauregard before beginning a career in the artillery that soon revealed him to be the most gifted gunner in the Confederacy. Literally present from Manassas to Appomattox, Alexander participated in all the great battles of the Western Theater as well as fighting in Tennessee in late 1863. This lecture will assess Alexander’s two books, highlighting the process by which he crafted them and the degree to which they influenced subsequent generations of historians and other writers.
Dr. Gary W. Gallagher is the John L. Nau III Professor in the History of the American Civil War at the University of Virginia and the author and editor of many books and articles, including Cold Harbor to the Crater: The End of the Overland Campaign and Fighting for the Confederacy: The Personal Recollections of General Edward Porter Alexander.
This lecture was cosponsored with The Virginia Antiquarian Book Fair and the Virginia Antiquarian Booksellers Association (VABA).
The content and opinions expressed in these presentations are solely those of the speaker and not necessarily of the Virginia Museum of History & Culture.
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