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Subdued by the Sword
A Line Officer in the 121st New York Volunteers
Subdued by the Sword
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James M. Greiner - Author
Price: $75.50 
Hardcover - 278 pages
Release Date: October 2003
ISBN10: 0-7914-5867-9
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-5867-9

Quantity:  
Price: $31.95 
Paperback - 278 pages
Release Date: October 2003
ISBN10: 0-7914-5868-7
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-5868-6

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Summary Read First Chapter image missing

Presents the life of Captain John S. Kidder during the Civil War, as told through letters to his wife, Harriet, at home in rural New York.

Drawing on previously unpublished letters written by John S. Kidder to his wife, Harriet, during the Civil War, James M. Greiner recounts the triumphs and tragedies endured by one New York family. Kidder, a carriage maker living in the rural village of Laurens, responded to President Lincoln's call in the summer of 1862 for more troops by personally recruiting over seventy men living nearby. Serving under Emory Upton, considered one of the most talented soldiers produced by the Union, Kidder was captain of Company I of the 121st New York Volunteers. The regiment saw action at Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, Rappahannock Station, the Wilderness, and Spotsylvania. Kidder's letters home contain rich details of camp life, the difficulties of commanding men who had only recently been his neighbors, and the highs and lows associated with soldiering during the Civil War. They also reveal Harriet's struggle to maintain the family home and business due to the uncertainties of army pay.

“…the book is a good read, and offers a great deal of information about the lives of line officers during the conflict that forever changed this nation.” — New York History

"Greiner has left no stone unturned to provide a complete history of the 121st New York Volunteers. It's a fascinating story, told from the perspective of a field soldier. The insights into the daily life of the Union soldier are remarkable. He also explores life on the home front, showing how desertions and casualties impacted life in a rural New York village." — Allen Ballard, University at Albany, State University of New York

"What is most appealing about this book is the freshness of this new material—the window it opens onto the life of an ordinary family, which made considerable sacrifices to fight for the Union. Civil War aficionados will enjoy the opportunity to watch the war unfold through the eyes of entirely new characters." — Harold Holzer, editor of State of the Union: New York and the Civil War

James M. Greiner is an independent historian and researcher in Herkimer, New York, and the coeditor (with Janet L. Coryell and James R. Smither) of A Surgeon’s Civil War: The Letters and Diary of Daniel M. Holt, M.D.


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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

1. The New Americans (1830–1862)

2. "You must not fret about me" (November 1862–April 1863)

3. ". . . a most terrible battle" (May 1863–July 1863)

4. "I do not wish to boast, but . . ." (August 1863–April 1864)

5. "I rec'd a severe wound in the face" (May 1864)

6. U.S. General Hospital, Annapolis, Maryland (May 1864–June 1864)

7. Elmira Prison (July 1864–December 1864)

8. "Victory is ours" (January 1865–April 1865)

9. Laurens, the Port Warden and Retirement (1865–1905)

Appendix A

Appendix B

Notes

Bibliography

Index



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