Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Justin Martin

Justin Martin is the author of A Fierce Glory: Antietam--The Desperate Battle That Saved Lincoln and Doomed Slavery.

From his Q&A with Deborah Kalb:

Q: Why did you decide to focus on the battle of Antietam in your new book?

A: This was the Civil War’s most pivotal battle. I would argue that it was more important than Gettysburg.

The battle took place near Sharpsburg, Maryland, on Sept. 17, 1862, and it was the culmination of a first-ever Confederate invasion of the North.

The Rebels had cooked up a diabolically clever scheme. Score a victory on Northern soil and England and France might interfere on the South’s behalf, the Union midterm elections might be disrupted, the state of Maryland might even secede and join the Confederacy.

However, Lincoln had a sly secret plan of his own, contingent on a Union victory. He planned to issue the Emancipation Proclamation, which to this point was hidden away in his desk, known only to his closest advisors. By freeing the slaves, the Proclamation promised to invest the Union war effort with a new and nobler purpose.

So the stakes were huge. Whatever side won at Antietam was likely to...[read on]
--Marshal Zeringue