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Mr. Lincoln's Forts: A Guide to the Civil War Defenses of Washington, New Edition

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During the American Civil War, Washington, D.C. was the most heavily fortified city in North America. As President Abraham Lincoln's Capital, the city became the symbol of Union determination, as well as a target for Robert E. Lee's Confederates. As a Union army and navy logistical base, it contained a complex of hospitals, storehouses, equipment repair facilities, and ani During the American Civil War, Washington, D.C. was the most heavily fortified city in North America. As President Abraham Lincoln's Capital, the city became the symbol of Union determination, as well as a target for Robert E. Lee's Confederates. As a Union army and navy logistical base, it contained a complex of hospitals, storehouses, equipment repair facilities, and animal corrals. These were in addition to other public buildings, small urban areas, and vast open space that constituted the capital on the Potomac. To protect Washington with all it contained and symbolized, the Army constructed a shield of fortifications: 68 enclosed earthen forts, 93 supplemental batteries, miles of military roads, and support structures for commissary, quartermaster, engineer, and civilian labor force, some of which still exist today. Thousands of troops were held back from active operations to garrison this complex. And the Commanders of the Army of the Potomac from Irvin McDowell to George Meade, and informally U.S. Grant himself, always had to keep in mind their responsibility of protecting this city, at the same time that they were moving against the Confederate forces arrayed against them. Revised in style, format, and content, the new edition of Mr. Lincoln's Forts is the premier historical reference and tour guide to the Civil War defenses of Washington, D.C.


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During the American Civil War, Washington, D.C. was the most heavily fortified city in North America. As President Abraham Lincoln's Capital, the city became the symbol of Union determination, as well as a target for Robert E. Lee's Confederates. As a Union army and navy logistical base, it contained a complex of hospitals, storehouses, equipment repair facilities, and ani During the American Civil War, Washington, D.C. was the most heavily fortified city in North America. As President Abraham Lincoln's Capital, the city became the symbol of Union determination, as well as a target for Robert E. Lee's Confederates. As a Union army and navy logistical base, it contained a complex of hospitals, storehouses, equipment repair facilities, and animal corrals. These were in addition to other public buildings, small urban areas, and vast open space that constituted the capital on the Potomac. To protect Washington with all it contained and symbolized, the Army constructed a shield of fortifications: 68 enclosed earthen forts, 93 supplemental batteries, miles of military roads, and support structures for commissary, quartermaster, engineer, and civilian labor force, some of which still exist today. Thousands of troops were held back from active operations to garrison this complex. And the Commanders of the Army of the Potomac from Irvin McDowell to George Meade, and informally U.S. Grant himself, always had to keep in mind their responsibility of protecting this city, at the same time that they were moving against the Confederate forces arrayed against them. Revised in style, format, and content, the new edition of Mr. Lincoln's Forts is the premier historical reference and tour guide to the Civil War defenses of Washington, D.C.

21 review for Mr. Lincoln's Forts: A Guide to the Civil War Defenses of Washington, New Edition

  1. 5 out of 5

    Henry B. Davis IV

    This reference book describing the locations, composition, armament, and units that manned every fortification of Washington D.C.'s defenses during the American Civil War is really a jewel that captures a lot of valuable information about these works and the Army who manned them. Each section contains vignettes from Soldiers' letters home, newspaper articles, or other period sources (if available) which really helps this book to read more like a narrative. I would love to see an organization ded This reference book describing the locations, composition, armament, and units that manned every fortification of Washington D.C.'s defenses during the American Civil War is really a jewel that captures a lot of valuable information about these works and the Army who manned them. Each section contains vignettes from Soldiers' letters home, newspaper articles, or other period sources (if available) which really helps this book to read more like a narrative. I would love to see an organization dedicated to historic preservation like the American Battlefield Trust which specializes in the American Revolution, War of 1812, and Civil War get permission to update this book. By extending this book's narrative treatments, adding color pictures and / or artist renderings, possibly expanding the appendices to include other relevant information (i.e. pictures and descriptions of the artillery pieces discussed, an expanded fortification glossary with illustrations, etc.), and last but not least developing a tour application (app) for mobile devices like the American Battlefield Trust and others have done for many other historic sites; I think this book's audience would be expanded and greater visibility for these often endangered sites would be gained. Although President Kennedy's vision of these sites being partially reconstructed and linked by a circular roadway passed away with him, many of these sites could still be revitalized and serve a great role as community recreation and educational resources with some consistent exposure and better applied funding. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in fortification, the American Civil War, Field or Siege Artillery, or American Military posts in general.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Victor

  3. 5 out of 5

    Robert

  4. 5 out of 5

    Henry B. Davis IV

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jim Collins

  6. 4 out of 5

    Steve

  7. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Hauck

  8. 4 out of 5

    Borhsarchives

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jim

  10. 4 out of 5

    Rocky Farr

  11. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

  12. 5 out of 5

    Stanislav

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jon Martin

  14. 4 out of 5

    Mary

  15. 5 out of 5

    John

  16. 5 out of 5

    Daniel

  17. 5 out of 5

    Jane Dietzel-cairns

  18. 4 out of 5

    AndreaZ

  19. 5 out of 5

    David

  20. 4 out of 5

    Noah

  21. 4 out of 5

    Mandy Venable

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