The Civil War in Memory: 1877 to 2013

The Civil War in Memory: 1877 to 2013

Who represented the Civil War to mid-twentieth century Americans?

Born in Michigan in 1899, Bruce Catton was a journalist who turned historian around the age of fifty. Gifted with a prose that lifted and sang as well as crashed and burned, he wrote over a dozen books, all on the Civil War. Mr. Lincoln’s Army came out in 1951 and was followed by Glory Road in 1952 and A Stillness at Appomattox. Catton was a marvelous writer who did more with the personal stories of the boys in blue and gray than any previous author. It helped that he was essentially a nineteenth-century person, comfortable with the technology of that time.

Some critics bashed the sentimental nature of Catton’s prose, but few could dispute his mastery of the facts. As the one hundredth anniversary of the Civil War approached, he was “Mr. Civil War” to millions of Americans, and to his faithful readers he remained in that post till the end of his days.

Author Bruce Catton was a journalist who became popular for writing books about the Civil War, earning him the nickname “Mr. Civil War.”


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