Shenandoah 1862: Stonewall Jackson's Valley Campaign
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Shenandoah 1862: Stonewall Jackson's Valley Campaign

4.14 of 5 stars 4.14  ·  rating details  ·  64 ratings  ·  17 reviews
One of the most intriguing and storied episodes of the Civil War, the 1862 Shenandoah Valley Campaign has heretofore been related only from the Confederate point of view. Moving seamlessly between tactical details and analysis of strategic significance, Peter Cozzens presents a balanced, comprehensive account of a campaign that has long been romanticized but little underst...more
Hardcover, 623 pages
Published October 1st 2008 by University of North Carolina Press
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Josh Liller
A very in-depth book covering Jackson's famous Valley Campaign of 1862. It starts with Jackson being appointed commander of the Valley in November 1861 and ends with him departing the Valley in June 1862 to participate in the Seven Days Battles near Richmond. Jackson's somewhat infamous but often overlooked Romney Campaign during the winter of 1861-1862 is also covered. It may be the most complete treatment of the campaign ever written.

Cozzens has mostly written about the western theater of the...more
Christopher Saunders
Revisionist look at Stonewall Jackson's most famous exploit. As a detailed campaign history it's worth reading: Cozzens covers a lot of ground in admirable detail, describing strategic decisions, personalities and battles without losing reader interest. The main problem though is Cozzens's obsession with his hobbyhorse: that Jackson was not that great a general. He doesn't make a strong case, pointing up Jackson's unpleasant qualities (eg. his terse dismissal of Richard Garnett, secrecy towards...more
Thomas Walsh
The work "stellar" is used rarely when one describes the concept and exectution of a work of non-fiction. This book, however, deserves the word and more lauds. I have never read a work on the Civil War with such a scholarly approach and such depth of background and insight. As all Civil War buffs know "Stonewall" Jackson always though out-of-the-box. His strategy was unpredictable, always, and his shifts of attack legendary. Through these tactics, he thwarted the Union's attempt to re-inforce th...more
Of all the various authors currently writing Civil War history, I think Cozzens is by far the most readable. This book covers the entire campaign in the Shenadoah Valley up to the time Jackson's forces were pulled out and thrown into the defense of Richmond. you won't find anything here on Jackson's participation in those battles, as it falls outside of the scope of this book and it's just as well, as it wasn't exactly Jackson's shining hour.

The Valley campaign firmly established Jackson's reput...more
Aug 01, 2011 Jim added it
After writing several books on key battles in the Western Theater (Corinth & Iuka, Stones River, Chickamauga, Chattanooga), Peter Cozzens turns his attention to Stonewall Jackson's Shenandoah Valley Campaign. Unlike many previous histories, this book presents a balanced picture by presenting both the Union & Confederate perspectives. Cozzens also makes a critical analysis of Stonewall Jackson's tactics (Confederate losses were much higher than they could have been due to Jackson feeding...more
James Durney
Peter Cozzens established his reputation as an author with a series of excellent western battle histories. Now he turns his attention to one of the classic campaigns in America’s military history. “Stonewall” Jackson’s Shenandoah Valley Campaign is one of the best examples of what a smaller determined force can accomplish. The Robert G. Tanner and Gary W. Gallagher produced excellent campaign studies and Gary L. Ecelbarger is doing excellent work on individual battles. Tanner’s book has long bee...more
Avis Black
Shenandoah 1862 is solidly good, but not quite as good as Cozzens' earlier books, mainly because he doesn't concentrate on all the battlefield drama like he did in his volumes on the Western campaigns. Possibly this is because the conflicts of the Valley were micro-battles in comparison, often with no more than one division ever engaged at a time. It's refreshing to see an examination of the Northern generals because they are so often overlooked. In Cozzens' estimation Banks is not as bad as mod...more
Jerry Teipen
A very thoughtful and detailed account of the early battles of the War. Cozzens points out that Jackson was not without fault despite the way he is often portrayed by other books. He also elaborates on the incompetence of the commanding Union officers that allowed the conflict to progress beyond this time when the Confederacy was near defeat. This work is a nice mix of biographical data about the primary players and tactical discussion. I would absolutely recommend any of Cozzen's other works as...more
Joel Manuel
I hated to give this 3 out of 5 stars because Cozzens wrote what is probably my favorite Civil War book, "This Terrible Sound," about Chickamauga. I just felt a detachment in this book that doesn't seem to be present in his Western Theater books (on Chickamauga, Chattanooga, Iuka/Corinth, and Stones River). There weren't enough maps, which is essential in any study of the Valley Campaign. It just did not work for me, which is a shame because it was a massive undertaking (512 pages of text).
Oct 28, 2008 Christian rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Civil War afficionados
This is a well-written, highly-detailed look at the Shenandoah campaign of Stonewall Jackson.

But I couldn't finish it. The level of detail vastly exceeded my level of interest.

If you're really into the Civil War and/or Stonewall Jackson, I highly recommend this book -- five stars. If your interest is more casual, you might want to give it a try from the library first because it may be (much) more than what you're looking for.
An outstanding, detailed look at Stonewall Jackson's campaign in the Shenandoah Valley in the first half of 1862. Cozzens focuses on both the generals who dictated the battles and on the common soldier marching, camping and fighting in the misery.
Another good overall analysis of the Shenandoah Valley Campaign that provides a more balanced perspective of the actions of both the North and the South. A good companion read to Tanner's Stonewall in the Valley.
Apr 03, 2010 Jim rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: history
Had to get it back to the library, but will pick up again. Engaging at times, but hard to follow without knowledge of the places described. Since then, we visited some to the places, and next read will make more sense.
Read this after a visit to New Market Battlefield. Helps to visualize the book after you have seen the valley on a great day!
Worth reading for those interested in the valley campaign.
Jun 25, 2009 Harvey added it
A history of the Jackson Valley Campaigns in 1862. Well-written, but probably of interest only to a history buff, specifically a Civil war history buff like me.
Being from Virginia and visiting that area many times, this was certainly a great read for me. And Jackson is a hero of mine.
good book about the subject
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I have not read this yet 2 8 Jul 29, 2009 01:24PM  
No Better Place to Die: The Battle Of Stones River This Terrible Sound: THE BATTLE OF CHICKAMAUGA The Shipwreck of Their Hopes: THE BATTLES FOR CHATTANOOGA The Darkest Days of the War: The Battles of Iuka and Corinth The Long War for the Northern Plains

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