Essay on What They Fought for

708 Words Nov 28th, 2006 3 Pages
What They Fought For

1861 - 1865

This book was a good analysis of Civil War soldiers' diaries, and letters to their loved ones. Which explains what they were going through in their lives and what they fought for and risked their lives for in this conflict. In the book the author James M. McPherson uses information from l00's of diaries and letters from the soldiers to learn why they fought in this war. The Union soldiers fought to preserve the Nation that was created in 1776, to save it from destruction. The Confederate soldiers fought for their independence, liberty, self government, and for revenge. James M. McPherson's lectures were given at Louisiana State University called "The Walter L. Fleming Lectures in Southern
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He got most of these letters from the U.S. Military History Institute in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. The rest of the letters came from the Huntington Library in San Marino, California, the University of Carolina in Chapel Hill and from Duke University. McPherson's wife was his assistant and helped him with his research. The author tries to achieve the stated purpose in his book by diligently examining and studying all the letters and diaries in order to recreate and give an accurate and detailed description of the life and times of the people who lived during the civil war. No historical account can be accurate without the author's complete dedication to his work and the subject matter. McPherson is passionate about this subject and ensures that no detail is left out, no stone unturned, in his quest to give an accurate account of the Civil War. If he did not do this, he would not be doing justice to the people who lived through those difficult and trying times. He would be committing historical blasphemy. Some important highlights from the book were the motivated volunteer soldiers who risked there lives in the Civil War both Confederate and Union. Eighty to ninety percent of the fighting soldiers were volunteers. Most of them volunteered in the first year of the war. During this